Family Time: Euclid Beach Park Days & Motorcycles/Tractors

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Stuart O. Smith, Jr.

Family Time: Euclid Beach Park Days & Motorcycles/Tractors
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I am creating this blog post to capture my memories of three exhibits that I visited with members of my family on two days in July. Each of these exhibits has a unique connection to me and/or my family:

On Sunday, July 24, 2022, I visited the Western Reserve Historical Society's Cleveland History Center, and a week later, on Sunday, July 31, 2022, I visited Lake Metroparks Farmpark. In addition to the personal connection of these events, it was interesting to compare the motorcycle engines with the engines shown at the Farmpark.



Sunday, July 24, 2022 - My Son's Amusement Park Memorabilia Collection at "Euclid Beach Park Days"

Euclid Beach Park Days 2022!
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If you follow me on Twitter, or have looked my past blog posts, you will see that I mention Euclid Beach Park often. I share information both about my family visiting the present-day Cleveland Metroparks Euclid Beach area, and to the history of the Cleveland amusement park that closed in 1969. This is because my wife and co-blogger, Julie, and son, Kevin, are on the board of Euclid Beach Now (thus, we go to a lot of events related to the park). Julie also is a volunteer at the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel at the Western Reserve Historical Society's Cleveland History Center.

I have written many blog posts about Euclid Beach Park, but the one I most recommend reading was written in 2019, the 50th year since the park's closing. I recommend it, since it gives an overview of the park's history, my wife's and son's involvement with preserving its memory, and the current use of the park:

The following are tweets regarding Kevin's display of his huge, vintage, amusement park memorabilia collection at the Cleveland History Center's "Euclid Beach Park Days" on July 23 and 24, 2022. Kevin's brother, Michael, joined him for both days, but Julie and I were only able to attend on Sunday, July 24, 2022. Kevin's collection originally contained only items from Euclid Beach Park, but in recent years, it has expanded immensely.

Tweets promoting Euclid Beach Park Days:


One Week Before

One week before Euclid Beach Park Days, on my way back from the FRONT VIP Preview Party, the last photo I took that evening was of the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel. Read more about my day in University Circle for the FRONT International Preview activities in my last blog post:


Saturday, July 23rd


Arriving Early on Day Two

On Sunday, July 24, 2022, my family arrived before the Western Reserve Historical Society's Cleveland History Center opened to the public so that we could help Kevin set up his extensive display. It is fun to be in the museum early and watch them do the test run of the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel.

Jon Rudder from WEWS News 5 Cleveland television station was also there interviewing John Frato while they rode on the carousel (see video in the following tweet). John Frato is one of the Euclid Beach Boys, secretary on the executive board of Cleveland's Euclid Beach Park Carousel Society, and the carousel operations coordinator for the Cleveland History Center's Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel. Julie and Kevin are on the board of Euclid Beach Park Now, where John serves as president of the board.


Next Generation of Amusement Park Historians!

Jon Rudder interviews the next generation of amusement park historians! Kevin Smith & Troy Parsh
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As you can imagine, most of the members of Euclid Beach Park Now and collectors of Euclid Beach Park memorabilia are older, since the park closed 53 years ago. That is why I suggested to Jon Rudder that he interview my son, Kevin, and Kevin's friend, Troy Parsh. They are the next generation of amusement park historians! While Kevin’s Northeast Ohio Amusement Memories collection included mostly smaller items. Troy Parsh's Amusement Preservation Museum includes roller coaster cars from Euclid Beach Park and other amusement parks. Both Kevin and Troy are very knowledgeable about the history of local, defunct amusement parks.

The following tweets show Troy Parsh and Kevin being interviewed by Jon Rudder. The interview was broadcast later that night on News 5 Cleveland:


Kevin’s Northeast Ohio Amusement Memories

Kevin’s Northeast Ohio Amusement Memories
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Kevin’s NE Ohio Amusement Memories

Welcome! Please “Like” this page to follow my ongoing efforts to collect and preserve artifacts and memories of Northeast Ohio’s defunct amusement parks & other bygone points of interest. Going forward, the posts you’ll see here will include:

~Updates on my latest vintage acquisitions;
~Information on future events where I’ll be displaying my collection;
~Facts and photos from my research of, and travels to, historically significant locations;
~And even the occasional piece of commemorative artwork or creative writing!

I hope you enjoy what is to come, and in the process, learn about some of Northeast Ohio’s fascinating places which once were!

Kevin's memorabilia collection:


Amusement Preservation Museum

Amusement Preservation Museum
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Amusement Preservation Museum

Here at the Amusement Preservation Museum we are preserving the past for the kids of tomorrow! When it comes to restoration we are no stranger, our first project was Raging Wolf Bobs and we will continue to share our restoration efforts as we breathe new life into abused and forgotten history!
Contact us today to set up your viewing appointment and to enjoy a ride on the Swingin Gyms!

Troy Parsh's collection includes several roller coaster cars, a log flume ride car, and much more! He also has rebuilt a “Swingin’ Gyms” ride that you can try when you visit Amusement Preservation Museum. You can learn more about the Amusement Preservation Museum in my blog post from the time my family took me there for Father's Day 2022:


More Amusement Park Exhibitions


Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel

Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel
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A Brief History of the Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel:
1910: Philadelphia Toboggan Co. (PTC) creates a new, larger, grander carousel (known as PTC#19) for Euclid Beach Park, with 4 rows of horses, 3 inside rows of “jumpers” and an outside row of nearly life size stationary horses and 2 chariots.

1969: Euclid Beach Park closes and the Carousel is sold to Palace Playland in Maine.

1996: Palace Playland is sold.  The Carousel is consigned to an auctioneer who moves the Carousel back to Cleveland. Purchased by The Trust for Public Land, the Carousel is sold to Cleveland Tomorrow.

1998: Cleveland Tomorrow places the Carousel under the stewardship of the Western Reserve Historical Society. WRHS begins restoration of all horses and chariots to the 1910 period.

1999-2000: Restoration of figures is completed.

2004: Cleveland Tomorrow gifts the horses and chariots to WRHS, making WRHS the full and sole owners of the Carousel.

2010: On the 100th Anniversary of the Carousel, WRHS partners with Cleveland’s Euclid Beach Park Carousel Society and Euclid Beach Park Now to return the Carousel to public use.

2014: The Euclid Beach Park Grand Carousel once again opens up to the public for rides

Enjoy unlimited Grand Carousel rides on Euclid Beach Days:


Euclid Beach Park Days on News 5 Cleveland

It was fun to see the Cleveland History Center's Euclid Beach Days featured on News 5 Cleveland on the evening of Sunday, July 24, 2022.


Euclid Beach Park Map

Compare the historic map in the following tweet with the current Google Map to learn where the Euclid Beach Park rides used to be located:



Mark Your Calendar! September 25, 2022!
Announcing the 17th Annual "Remembering the Sights and Sounds of Euclid Beach Park!"

Announcing the 17th Annual Remembering the Sights and Sounds of Euclid Beach Park!
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2022 event details:

September 25
Remembering the Sights and Sounds of Euclid Beach Park - 17th Annual
1 pm - 5 pm
Euclid Beach Park (Cleveland Metroparks) 16301 Lake Shore Boulevard, Cleveland, OH 44110

Rain or Shine - Free Parking

Euclid Beach Park memorabilia, photo posters with narrative of specific rides and attractions once at Cleveland's most beloved amusement park, set where the ride/attraction stood at Euclid Beach.

Accompanying car show, The Cars we Drove to Euclid Beach.

Weber's Premium Vintage Ice Cream, Humphrey Popcorn Balls.

Event history:

From the beginning of the organization in 1989 as the Euclid Beach Park Nuts, a memorabilia/remembrance event has always been held close to the end of September near the date Euclid Beach Park closed forever. The first remembrance event was modest, a weekend in Euclid Square Mall's Euclidian Room, watching EBPN's founder David Scott's father's movies of Euclid Beach Park rides; his dad was the park's chief engineer. Individuals displayed their items from the park and former employees shared stories. . . .

Euclid Beach Metropark today:

Cleveland Metroparks Euclid Beach Park
Once the site of the famous Euclid Beach Amusement Park, Euclid Beach Park now features a 650’ beach with shaded picnic areas, a scenic observation pier and a reservable pavilion. Though it closed in 1969, signs of the amusement park including the shuffleboard area, remnants of the beachside fountain and concrete footers of the Flying Turns roller coaster are still visible.

If you missed Euclid Beach Days at the Cleveland History Center, then plan on going to the original location of the amusement park on September 25th for Remembering the Sights and Sounds of Euclid Beach Park.

This will be the 17th year that members of Euclid Beach Park Now have invited the public to gather at what is now Cleveland Metroparks Euclid Beach Park to enjoy revisiting the memories of Cleveland's cherished old-time amusement park!


Trolley Idea

Tom Kunsman suggests that the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority bring their trolleys to the Remembering the Sights and Sounds of Euclid Beach Park:



Sunday, July 24, 2022 - My Son and I Study the Motorcycle Mechanics at the "Year of the Motorcycle" Exhibition

The Year of the Motorcycle!
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The Year of the Motorcycle | Now Open!

The second exhibit in the Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum’s “Year of the Motorcycle” is now open!

Open Road: The Lure of Motorcycling in Ohio, is a one-of-a-kind exhibit featuring a fascinating selection of vintage and modern motorcycles from popular brands such as Harley-Davidson, Indian, Vincent, Triumph, Honda, Kawasaki, and Suzuki, as well as lesser-known brands such as Penton, Velocette and Tehuelche.

Many of the motorcycles in the exhibit have Ohio ties. Some are in perfect, restored condition; some have patina earned from being ridden on the rolling roads of Ohio; and some have been modified for racing or to pay tribute to a certain motorcycle stuntman. All of the Open Road bikes were sourced from private collections, and this is the first time they’ve ever been displayed together.

The Open Road exhibit is a shining example of the wide variety of rides that motorcyclists can experience, and reinforces why so many Buckeye bikers love life on two wheels.

My son, Mike, and I enjoyed exploring the Year of the Motorcycle exhibition that is at the Cleveland History Center. We did not just look at the motorcycles from a distance, but instead looked closely at all the mechanics, and talked about how each of the different components of the motorcycles worked. Fortunately, the museum set up the exhibition so you can get right up to the motorcycles -- just be sure to respect the museum's mission of preservation by not touching the motorcycles!!

See the close-up photos I shared:


Motorcycle Memories

In my middle-school and teen years, I grew up in a neighborhood where many of my friends had off-road mini-bikes and motorcycles. Seeing the Year of the Motorcycle exhibition brought back a lot of memories. It was fun to be able to tell stories from my youth to my son, Mike, and show him some cycles that were very similar to those that my childhood friends owned:



Laurel School STEM -- Motogo Cleveland

Laurel Featured in Currents Magazine Story About Motogo Partnership
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Laurel Featured in Currents Magazine Story About Motogo Partnership
In June a handful of Laurel Upper School students took STEAM engagement to the next level by building their own motorcycle engine  through a partnership with Motogo, whose vision is to spark confidence in everyone to build their own future, one motorcycle engine at a time. Currents Magazine featured Bill Rice, Director of Community Engagement, and highlighted the culmination of this fun project, where students held their official kick start test with a vintage 70's Honda model motorcycle.  . . .

STEM and STEAM at Laurel
STEAM = Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics

Our STEAM Initiative provides a myriad of experiences designed to allow students to make cross-disciplinary connections, and to develop the skills necessary for them to be: engaged citizens, competent evaluators of information, capable problem solvers, innovative thinkers and creators.

It was interesting to learn that the second motorcycle I recognized as being similar to one a friend of mine owned when I was in high school was rebuilt by the students at Laurel School as part of their STEM program. As I was writing this blog post, I learned that, in addition to Laurel School, other local schools partner with Motogo Cleveland to "Bring Back Shop Class!"

Skidmark Garage is a 10,000 sq. ft. community motorcycle garage where you can work on your motorcycle. They provide the tools, space, and community to assist you with your project.

In 2017, Skidmark founded it’s non-profit, 501c3 educational wing, Motogo, to teach kids confidence through motorcycles. Like Skidmark, Motogo believes all are welcome who welcome all.

Skidmark Garage is owned by Brian Schaffran, a former high school math and history teacher and a current Motogo coach.

I also learned that Motogo Cleveland is the nonprofit educational wing of Skidmark Garage. I mentioned about this Cleveland community garage first opening in a 2016 tweet -- ". . .@skidmarkgarage will be opening a new community #motorcycle garage . . ." -- which is in my 2016 Ingenuity Fest blog post:


Here are articles, some with videos that I have embedded, about Motogo Cleveland:


Please share the following tweets that you find interesting by retweeting, so that others will learn about the good work of Motogo Cleveland:


In addition to Laurel Schools, here are some tweets shared by other schools benefiting from the Motogo Cleveland program:


Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum Renovation

. . . ‘News From The Crawford’, our quarterly online publication dedicated to informing, entertaining, and engaging the members, visitors, and supporters of the Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum.

December 2021 | News from the Crawford

Exciting News from the Lower Gallery

With generous funding from the State of Ohio, our work to renovate the lower gallery of the Crawford Auto Aviation Museum is underway. In partnership with AECOM, WRHS will complete aesthetic and critical infrastructure upgrades to this roughly 26,000 sf gallery that, with few exceptions, has not been altered or restored since the museum opened in 1965!  . . .

While you are visiting the motorcycle exhibition at the Crawford Auto Aviation Museum section of the Cleveland History Center, be sure to go to the lower floor to see the newly renovated gallery:


1910 New Era Auto Cycle

When Mike and I were looking at the 1910 New Era Auto Cycle, a staff person at the museum gave me the business card of the program manager who was responsible for their motorcycle exhibition. I hope to follow up to learn more about this motorcycle that was made in Dayton, Ohio. While writing this blog post, I did find some information about it on a website of a museum in California:


Cleveland Inventor Garrett Morgan

As I was leaving the History Center for the day, I took a look at the Cleveland history exhibits near the back entrance, including the Garrett Morgan safety hood. The next day, via Chris Ronayne's (former president of University Circle, Inc.) tweet, I learned that it was the anniversary of the week that Garrett Morgan used his invention to save workers at the 1916 Lake Erie Tunnel Disaster.

I have written about Cleveland inventor Garrett Morgan in two of my blog posts:



Sunday, July 31, 2022 - My Dad and I Study Tractors and Small Engines at the "Historical Engine Society's 51st Annual Antique Power" Exhibition

Lake Metroparks - Historical Engine Society Antique Power Exhibition
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Historical Engine Society Antique Power Exhibition
On July 29, 30 & 31 Lake Metroparks Farmpark will host the Historical Engine Society’s 51st Annual Antique Power Exhibition. If you or someone you know enjoys machinery—this is the event for you!

For the past 50 years, the Historical Engine Society’s simple tractor show has grown from a small engine show to more than 300 engines on display last year. During your visit you can expect to see antique tractors, construction and excavation equipment, cars, trucks, hit and miss engines and Rumely Oil Pulls. Witness the power of these antiques as they compete in a tractor pull, grain threshing, earth-moving demonstrations throughout the day and a parade of machinery (Sat. and Sun - 10 am).

The Historical Engine Society is a not-for-profit organization whose purpose is to provide a focal point for people interested in the machinery that built America. The Historical Engine Society encourages collection, preservation, restoration and exhibition of power-producing devices and the machinery driven by these units. The annual show is a year-round effort, culminating in a gathering of people and their machines.

Visitors are treated to the sights, sounds and demonstrations of the power of the past.


One week after studying the mechanics of motorcycles with my son, I attended an event about different types of engines (primarily engines in tractors and small engines) with another family member -- my dad.

One of my sister's and my earliest childhood memories was of my dad driving us and the neighborhood kids in a trailer behind his tractor. We both remember going with the tractor to the "dump" down near the lake. It wasn't until I was an adult that I learned that my dad had rebuilt the tractor.

Thus, by following @LakeMetroparks on Twitter, I saw that the Lake Metroparks Farmpark was hosting the Historical Engine Society’s 51st Annual Antique Power Exhibition. I knew that my dad would enjoy it. I am so glad I learned about this Farmpark event from their tweet:



Historical Engine Society

Historical Engine Society’s 51st Annual Antique Power Exhibition at Lake Metroparks Farmpark
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The Historical Engine Society, Inc is a non profit organization whose purpose is to provide a focal point for people interested in the machinery of a bygone era. We encourage collection, preservation, restoration and exhibition of power producing devices and the machinery driven by these units. Items range from steam traction engines, to gas tractors and engines, to horse drawn and hand powered machinery. , , ,
. . .
The Historical Engine Society now has over 300 members. We work in cooperation with Lake Metroparks Farmpark to maintain the mechanical antiques in the collection and also to present the annual Antique Power Exhibition. . . .

My dad just recently moved back to the Greater Cleveland area so that my sister and I could oversee his care. I often take my dad to local museums and parks, and I was looking for some new place to take him on this last Sunday of July. Attending the Historical Engine Society’s 51st Annual Antique Power Exhibition was a great way to share with my dad his memories of rebuilding his tractor.


Thank you, Lake Metroparks, for the fun day!

In addition to the special exhibition by the Historical Engine Society, there is a lot to see at the Farmpark. My dad and I did stop to see the dairy cows, but we will need to come back to see all the other farm animals when we have more time.

Lake Metroparks Farmpark has several special events in all seasons of the year, which, like the engine exhibition, I learned about by following @LakeMetroparks on Twitter. Here are two of my blog posts about an autumn event and a winter event at the Farmpark:


@LakeCountyOH - A Remarkable Day!

It is fun to interact on Twitter with @LakeCountyOH when visiting parks and venues in Lake County, Ohio. They do a good job of sharing information about what's happening in the county.

Later in the week, after the Historical Engine Society’s 51st Annual Antique Power Exposition, I was on the phone with my dad and sister. My dad went on and on telling my sister how much he enjoyed his time at the engine exhibition.



Related Blog Posts

In addition to the blog posts I mentioned above, I always like to end with a list of related blog posts. My wife and co-blogger, Julie, and I have written many blog posts that relate to this one. Rather than listing them all here, it is best that you just see them all by pulling up the posts tagged with:


Thanks for reading my blog post. I hope it encourages you to visit Euclid Beach, Cleveland History Center, and the Lake Metroparks Farmpark, as well as attend events keeping alive the memory of the Euclid Beach amusement park.