There’s Not Much Left of Boblo Island Except Summer Memories [Video}
Growing up in Michigan back in the 70's had your usual staples. Towne Club pop, Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlour, and summer trips to Boblo Island Amusement Park.
Boblo Island was our own little Cedar Point for anyone who grew up in Michigan and it was annual family outing for many each summer. The amusement park opened in 1898 and closed September 1993. The only access was by one of two ferries from Detroit or Amherstburg, the SS Ste. Clair and the SS Columbia. The boat rides alone made heading to Boblo the best memories of summer.
The park was located on Bois Blanc Island, Ontario located just above the mouth of the Detroit River. Summers were full of families enjoying food, fun, and of course iconic rides such as The Nightmare, Falling Star, Wild Mouse, Sky Streak, Screamer, and a carousel. There was also a zoo, a railroad and mini golf to keep everyone busy. Henry Ford himself even financed a dance hall that was the second largest in the world and capable of holding 5,000 dancers.
Now surrounded by tall grass and weeds there's not much left to show the amusement park was even existed for all of those year. Most of the rides were sold off to other parks. The Sky Streak Ride was moved to Selva Magica, a theme park in Mexico, and the Nightmare was initially moved to Six Flags Houston where it was known as the Mayan Mindbender, only to be moved once again to a theme park in Amarillo, Texas. Although there are some relics that still stand tall like the Space Needle ( the eeriest thing for me to see).
In 2016 the one of the Boblo boats, the S.S. Ste Claire, was purchased by a collector and moved to Riverside Marina. The collector was hoping to restore the boat filled with memories, but unfortunately in July of 2018 the boat caught fire and was destroyed.
Although the amusement park section of the island is deserted, there is a residential area on the other side with homes, condos and a marina. For all you that were kids loving your summers on Boblo Island, now you really CAN live there.