Voted the World’s Best Seaside Park

Santa Cruz, 1959

I was 10 years old in 1959 and living in Hayward. I was looking forward to our summer visit to Santa Cruz. I had saved up $5 for the rides and penny arcade. (I spent countless hours figuring out exactly how to spend my money as I had been before a few times and knew how much the rides cost.) Of course, I had to ride the Giant Dipper and that took up a majority of the funds. I always liked the Baseball Game in the penny arcade, where the ball comes down a ramp and you hit it with a lever to get hits. I had to buy some saltwater taffy at Marini’s. I also had to ride the spinning top in the Fun House where you tried to hold on before being thrown off. I’m sure they don’t have that anymore due to liability issues, but the 50s were simpler times.


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