Kiddie Park, Bartlesville, Oklahoma

Kiddie Park was the main reason for going to Bartlesville.  We got there the last day it was open this season (the last Saturday in August) so it’s too late for you to go this year. 

The Little One had been pining for a Ferris Wheel,* and Kiddie Park has one just her size.  (You have to be shorter than three feet, ten inches.)  We were lucky it was open.  The floods earlier this summer had closed it down for about a month.  (Nothing like the flood of 1986, which nearly covered the train depot, but enough to cause problems.)  We were also lucky our friends had mosquito repellant for us since it is in Johnstone Park, through which the Caney River flows. 

Turtle Roller Coaster Turtle Roller Coaster 

Ferris Wheel Getting on the Ferris Wheel

Carousel Riding the carousel (Always, in our family, the last ride of the night.  As it turns out, it was my mother’s tradition as a child, too.  So this is a third generation tradition.) Can you see how tired she is?

After she ate nearly a whole bag of cotton candy, and spent two hours riding the turtle roller coaster, the little airplanes, the big airplanes, the pirate swing, two sessions of jumping in the moon walk (which she insists is called a convertible for reasons known only to someone at Vacation Bible School), the big roller coaster (too dark for a good photo, but it was my brother’s introduction to roller coasters) now known as the Little Fireball, the train, and, finally, the carousel, she was more than ready to go home.  (Unusual, since she is never ready to leave anything.) 

I carried her out to the car, and on the way, she announced she felt sick.  She didn’t actually throw up — chewing gum plus psychology can sometimes do wonders to settle a queasy stomach. 

Although I’d been asking her all evening about pottying, she didn’t need to go until we were half-way back to the friends’ house where we were staying.  Then, it was a potty emergency (but not to the point she wanted to stop and use the grass).  So, we rushed on home.  As we pulled into the cul-de-sac, I realized the backseat was oddly quiet.  She had fallen asleep in the middle of her potty emergency.  I did wake her up, and got her to potty and bathed, but she slept hard that night.

Total cost:  six dollars (including a dollar for the bag of cotton candy).  (Most rides cost a quarter, although the train, carousel, and bigger roller coaster cost fifty cents.  I rode the train, carousel, and bigger roller coaster with her.  Her grandmother accompanied us on the train.)

Future plans:  She is setting up Kiddie Park playdates for next summer with Fayetteville friends.  She also uses it as a conversation starter when she needs one.  (Last night, she asked our 4-yo neighbor if he had ever been to Kiddie Park.  He hasn’t.)

*Did you know the first Ferris Wheel was at the 1893 Columbus Exposition in Chicago?

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One Response to “Kiddie Park, Bartlesville, Oklahoma”

  1. Barbara Williams says:


    I am putting together an article for The Carousel News and Trader magazine about Oklahoma’s carousels. Would it be possible to use the photo of your daughter on the Bartlesville carousel in the article?

    Barbara Williams

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