Throwback Thursday: Kiddie Park's history, future plans; Connection to Walt Disney

Throwback Thursday series airs on KSAT News at Nine

By RJ Marquez - Digital Content Curator, Andrew Wilson - Digital Producer, Rick Medina, Video Editor

For more than 90 years, Kiddie Park has been home to countless parties, birthday celebrations and family get-togethers.

The park on Broadway Street opened in 1925 and is one of the oldest children’s amusement parks in the country.

“We had always been told that Walt Disney actually visited Kiddie Park when touring the United States to try and figure out how he was going to put together Disney World,” said co-owner Brent Conger. “Generations and generations of kids and families have come here.”

The carousel, the old-fashioned Ferris wheel, the boats and mini-planes are all iconic rides that have been updated over time, but connect families to the past.

All of the attractions at Kiddie Park are still in their original form, including the carousel horses, which were hand-painted and hard carved-before the 1920s. 

“I have a picture of myself on the saucers and then I have a picture of my son that's the same age,” said Conger. “Both of us 4 years old and it is identical, same ride and we look the same.”

After years of entertaining families, the park hit a rough spot in the late 2000s and was in need of several repairs.

Conger and the Weaver family revamped the park and brought it back to life.

Kiddie Park is now set to undergo another big change. The park and its attractions will relocate to the San Antonio Zoo later this summer.

The last weekend for people to enjoy Kiddie Park at the Broadway location will be July 4.

Conger says it’s bittersweet but opens a new chapter in the park's long history.

“Being able to go to the zoo and open the doors to more people, we're really excited about it and can't wait,” said Conger.

The move also guarantees local families will still be able to make memories at one of San Antonio's most treasured landmarks.

“There's not many places like this left in the nation, and our biggest thing is to keep it in San Antonio and keep it running for years and years,” said Conger.

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