Lakeside Amusement Park

This center of fun and thrills hasn’t changed much since the mid-20th century, but that’s part of its charm.

The Lakeside Amusement Park is packed with authentic retro charm, from old-school-style roller coasters to neon-lighted boulevards and cotton candy. This family-friendly attraction has been delighting visitors for over 100 years.

The 70-year-old Cyclone is a favorite attraction and one of only a handful of wooden roller coasters left in the country. The twists, turns and dives of the two-minute ride still provoke squeals of delight from giddy riders.

There’s plenty here to occupy thrill seekers in search of an adrenalin kick. Try the Wild Chipmunk, the Whip or the Tilt-A-Whirl. Snack on a corn dog, ride the Ferris wheel and jump on the bumper boats for an authentic carnival experience that’s almost like stepping back in time. Take a look at the 1908 carousel, reportedly made out of parts from other carousels. It includes original hand-carved wooden figures.

The amusement park was built on the edge of Lake Rhoda in 1908. It featured fine dining, live theater and two miniature trains from the 1904 World’s Fair in St Louis, which are still in operation today. In the 1930s the park underwent extensive renovations and much of the art deco style and neon lighting from this period remains.

Everything has a distinctly old-world feel, including the prices, which remain surprisingly low compared to many modern amusement parks. You’ll find the usual amusement park food such as hotdogs, burgers and fries. There’s often live music and street performers, and very few lines, which makes it an appealing destination on a balmy summer evening.

The Lakeside Amusement Park is open in the evenings May through mid-September. It’s a short bus ride or easy drive from downtown Denver.