My brother told me about your planned reunion after reading about it in today's Lynn Item. I have many fond memories of Pleasure Island. I'm 42, grew up in Peabody and attended Camp Montrose in Wakefield as a camper and counselor for many summers. The highlight of camp was an end-of-the-summer visit to Pleasure Island.
Based on my childhood trips to Pleasure Island and a visit to Disneyland, I developed a lifelong fascination with theme parks and attractions. I now write and self-syndicate a monthly newspaper column called "What's the Attraction?" It appears in the travel sections of Sunday newspapers including the New Hampshire Sunday News, the Staten Island Advance, the Atlantic City Press and the Daily Herald outside Chicago. Because my column has a national audience, I don't think a story about Pleasure Island would be appropriate. I may, however, be interested in covering your reunion and writing a story for one of the Boston or New England papers.
I see that you have already made the Rex Trailer connection. He is a friend and a wonderful guy. I'm sure he would want to be involved with a PI reunion.
I have a book, "Window on Main Street," written by Van France. It is an autobiography which is mostly about Van's work at Disneyland where he developed the Disney University program. There are a few pages, however, about Van's months at Pleasure Island and the work he did there with its training program.
I never realized, until I got older, how fortunate we were to have such a gem of a park in our backyard. I thought there were similar parks throughout the country. It's sad that nothing ever replaced PI in the Boston area. (And don't even get me started about Six Flags New England-- It's got some wonderful rides but it's NOT a theme park.)
Please let me know as you develop dates. And good luck! -Arthur
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