History Notes, April 28: Adventure Village

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EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP – Welcome to History Notes, our weekly feature that looks back through Egg Harbor Township history. Each Sunday, we will get a chance to learn or reminisce courtesy of Lynn Wood of the Greate Egg Harbour Township Historical Society, who will be sharing early photos of places in Egg Harbor Township with our readers online and in our print editions.



Adventure Village

Submitted by Lynn Wood of GEHTHS/This picture shows the hotel and saloon back in the 1960's. My father, Fred Warner, builder and creator of the park, is in the picture holding my little brother's hand. Submitted by Lynn Wood of GEHTHS/This picture shows the hotel and saloon back in the 1960's. My father, Fred Warner, builder and creator of the park, is in the picture holding my little brother's hand.

Adventure Village was located between Storybook Land and Zaberers restaurant on the Black Horse Pike. In 1959 it opened for business in the summer months and continued for 10 years. My father, Fred Warner, built the old-time themed amusement park and moved our family from Gladwyne Pa. to McKee City.

Adventure Village was a unique family fun spot featuring old model T car rides, a diamond mine, old train ride through the woods (which occasionally got robbed), and free hourly entertainment of old-time movies like Laurel and Hardy  in the Hippodrome Theater, or a skit out in the center of town. 

Submitted by Lynn Wood of GEHTHS/This picture from the 1960s shows the train ride and antique car ride. Submitted by Lynn Wood of GEHTHS/This picture from the 1960s shows the train ride and antique car ride.

“Slippery Sam” would talk to the boys and girls in the jail and occasionally escape while masses of children descended upon him to put him back in jail. Then the children would get “sworn in” by a keystone cop or the mayor of the village (my dad) and receive their tin badges.

The drink of the house in the Pink Garter Saloon was pink lemonade with a garter around the cup. Maybe some of you remember the antique car shows, nighttime square dancing, horse and buggy rides through the woods back to “Rattlesnake Junction,” or having your birthday party celebrated in the tree house. All these creative ideas came from our father.

It was a family business. My brother Scott, alias “Slippery Sam,” still carries scars from attacks from the boys and girls after escaping from jail.

After having enough of the park, Dad auctioned off the rides and turned the buildings into apartments. That continued for about another 10 years.

It was sold several times over since then, and the site was finally bought by Auto Lenders in 2009.

Submitted by Lynn Wood of GEHTHS/This photo shows the Mansion House Hotel being demolished in 2009. Submitted by Lynn Wood of GEHTHS/This photo shows the Mansion House Hotel being demolished in 2009.

There is a Facebook group dedicated to sharing memories of this former landmark. Click here to join.

Upcoming events at the Great Egg Harbour Township Historical Society:

During Nucky Johnson’s days in court in Camden, he was represented by Frank Ferry, Esq. Ferry has written a book about Johnson’s life and will give a presentation at the Second Annual Greate Egg Harbour Township Historical Society dinner at Harbor Pines Golf Club on Friday, May 17. Dinner starts at 6:30 p.m.

For ticket information call Lisa Press at (609) 646-9633. Ferry will do a book signing that evening as well.

Visit the GEHT Historical Society Museum, located at 6647 West Jersey Ave. Hours are 1-3 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays or by appointment, or see them on the web at www.gehthsmuseum.org

READ MORE HISTORY NOTES:

History Notes, April 21: Nucky

History Notes, March 31: McKee City railroad

History Notes, March 3: Asbury church

History Notes, Feb. 10 : Ice skating at Bargaintown Mill Pond

History Notes, Feb. 17: Ice houses and ice cutters

History Notes, Feb. 23: Saw mills of Egg Harbor Township


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