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Encyclopedia Dubuque

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EAGLE POINT FUN LAND

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EAGLE POINT FUN LAND. On June 30, 1963 Eagle Point Fun Land, "the tri-state's most unique fun spot," opened for business with an archery range, go-karts, an 18-hole miniature golf course, pitching machine, pony rides, roller-skating, and a zoo. The business venture of Paul Wagner, Leslie Furuseth, and Tom Andresen, Eagle Point Funland was located at the north end of Rhomberg Avenue. The amusement center was near the approach to the RHOMBERG BRIDGE and within the quarry of the EAGLE POINT LIME WORKS.
Skating rink with sides down. Photo courtesy: contributor to Telegraph Herald and https://www.facebook.com/pages/You-know-you-grew-up-in-Dubuque-Iowa-if-you-remember/130170407077838

The skating rink was one of the center's main attractions. Constructed with hinged, wooden walls that could be swung upwards to present an open-air pavilion, the rink's special lighting made the blue floor glisten. Music of the day was played to the skaters who kept the rink busy during its daily hours of 7:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. and Sunday afternoons from 2:00-4:00 p.m. The rink was also used for school and private parties as well as hockey games. Furuseth, who had co-owned the W & W Roller Rink located near the present site of Walmart, and Wagner were both experienced skaters who took alternating weekends managing the rink.

Go-karts for Fun Land were purchased from a dealer in Wisconsin. Immediately popular, the go-karts were often purposely flipped and used to run into other drivers.

Since Fun Land was built within the quarry, temperatures soared since there was little breeze. After a busy time of racing or skating, customers flocked to the concession stand. In addition to soft drinks and snow cones, popcorn and cotton candy were available.

Funland's zoo included Felix, a 400-500 pound African male lion purchased from a zoo in Madison, Wisconsin. Other features of the zoo included a black bear, an assortment of birds including a peacock, and a chimp named Carol who occasionally escaped and climbed the cliff by EAGLE POINT PARK.

Fun Land's success began to diminish by the late 1970s when competition from other attractions reduced attendance. The closing of the bridge in 1982 stopped traffic from coming past and liability insurance finally made operating the center impossible. It closed within a few years.

The 1968 through 1989 Dubuque City Directory listed 2705 Rhomberg.


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Source:

Day, Mike. "Fifty Summers Ago, the Fun Began." Telegraph Herald, July 21, 2013, p. 1 and 6a