Electric Park (2nd), Flower Beds

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Description: Postcard of the flower beds at Electric Park (2nd)
Location: SC58
Collection: Mrs. Sam Ray Postcard Collection (SC58)See finding aid: http://localhistory.kclibrary.org/u?/Local,36981
Historical Article: Electric Park, built by the Heim brothers at Brush Creek Boulevard and the Paseo, was opened May 19, 1907, to a crowd of 53,000. Its immediate success has been attributed to: a less sophisticated population to please, good transportation, a need for entertainment and the fact that there were still no radios, television sets, automobiles or home air conditioners.J.J. Heim, Mike Heim and Ferdinand Heim, owners of the Heim Brewing Co. and an earlier successful Electric Park in the East Bottoms, spared no cost in developing their new project.The city fathers refused them a license to sell beer, but the returns from the sale of popcorn, hot dogs and ice cream as well as from the shooting galleries, the swimming pool, boat rentals and the dance pavilion would indicate that nobody worried much about beer. There was a charge of 1 cent for ice water.Well remembered were the daily free band concerts from a large music hall, with sides open to let in the breeze. Here John Phillip Sousa's band and other famous ensembles thrilled large audiences, comfortably seated and with palm leaf fans fluttering.Another popular feature was the night spectacle of Living Statuary at the fountain in the lake. Here beautiful young women emerged each evening at 9 o'clock as if by magic and held the crowds spellbound with their graceful tableaux while changing colored lights merged over the scene.The owners had installed a $70,000 fountain imported from Germany, with a device that elevated a pedestal out of the water bringing the classic group posing from the fountain's base. J.J. Heim jealously guarded and operated the complicated device personally. (Not a drop of water touched the women or their fabulous costumes.)Today the area extending all the way to Prospect presents a prosaic scene of curving city streets and the apartments and townhouses of the Village Green.Kansas City TimesAugust 23, 1985
Barcode: 20000640
Item Type: Postcard


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