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Old-timey Sandy Lake Amusement Park in Carrollton closes after 48 years

Old-time Sandy Lake Amusement Park in Carrollton closes after 48 years

Carousel merry go round
Riding along on a carousel, trying to catch up to you. Courtesy photo

After nearly 50 years in business, Sandy Lake Amusement Park, an amusement park in northwest Carrollton, shut down on October 17. The owners posted a notice on Facebook announcing that the park had been sold.

"After 48 successful years, the owners have sold the property," the post said. "The owners truly appreciate the millions of patrons, thousands of organized groups and special events we’ve hosted at the park. If the park's legacy is leaving most people with golden memories or pleasant thoughts, then the park has done its job."

The park was sold to its neighbor Southwest Landscaping, which will use the property for storage of trees and plants. The property will no longer be available for public use.

Proprietors were Tom and Suzy Self, and Suzy's brother Frank and Vickie Rush. They represented the third generation of the Rush family, which established Craterville Park in 1923 near Lawton, Oklahoma. Their family purchased Sandy Lake in 1971, which went on to be recognized as one of the finest "traditional" American parks.

Their open season ran from mid-March to mid-September. Attractions included more than 20 rides, a swimming pool, mini-golf, paddle boats, picnic pavilions, a game arcade, and food stands with popcorn, hot dogs, and pizza.

They also hosted the annual Fun Fest, a music festival every May for middle school students from all over North Texas. There were already plans underway for its return in 2019.

Suzi Self told NBC DFW that "we just felt like it as a good time to sell."

The Facebook post traces the park's history and its role in the community.

"While the history of the landmark swimming pool dates back to the 1930’s, popularity of the park really blossomed in 1971 when the amusement rides, picnic grounds, and other attractions were added," it said. "The park also hosted events like Santa Fe Days in the Park, DubSplash, thousands of company picnics, reunions, birthday parties, and more."

"Widely known for Bar-B-Que catering, many groups planned their annual events based on the food service provided by the park," it said. "Over the years the variety of attractions and extensive picnic grounds became more and more popular as the city grew up around the serenity of the park."