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Old Chicago - Bolingbrook, Illinois

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Author Topic: Old Chicago - Bolingbrook, Illinois  (Read 12139 times)
Desolate Angel
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« Reply #75 on: November 22, 2010, 01:13:33 am »



The Log Race was a really fun log flume.  It started out with a long twisting tunnel that we'd always shriek or make noises in.  Eventually you'd emerge from the darkness and head up it's lift hill before plunging into the little lake at it's bottom.  You really didn't get that wet on it but you didn't need to as Old Chicago was always a nice warm temperature even if it was below zero outside.  We were instructed to look up at Mom every once in a while and eventually she'd wave us to come to her therefore ending our riding the Log Race over and over.

My last visit to Old Chicago was with a couple of friends.  It was in early 1980 and I was eight years old.  Jack Alvarado, Scott Peterson and I rode our bikes to Scott's Grandparents house which sat on I-55's frontage road a short distance from Old Chicago.  After we visited them for a while we headed for Old Chicago.  We rode up to the massive building with hardly a car in the parking lot and leaned our bikes onto one of the lions pedestals and went into Old Chicago.

There were very few stores left in the mall as we walked around to take a look at the park.  It was a ghost town and outside of the very few employees  we were the only people there.  Old Chicago was dying.  We made our way to the entrance of the Fairgrounds and didn't even see a soul there.  We thought about just walking into the park but really didn't want to get into trouble so we just looked down on the still park.

I remember standing there looking from ride to thinking about all the fun times that I had there.  I remembered the Log Race marathons with my sister, climbing around in the Fun Factory, watching the floor become my sky while going through the Chicago Loop's corkscrews and I remembered most importantly that Old Chicago was a place that even though my family life was hellish and it seemed that no one loved each other, we became a family at Old Chicago.

We stood there for a little while longer then turned our backs and walked away.

 We eventually moved out of the area but every once in a while I'd find myself going through Bolingbrook, whether going to the water slide that once sat across I-55 from it's hulking remains or to visit friends who still lived in Romeoville.  Each time I saw that building it brought back my memories.

The last I saw of Old Chicago was early in 1986.  I was onboard a buss headed to Springfield  for the Lisle Jr. High 8th grade trip.  We left well before sunrise and by the time we reached I-55 the sun was just peaking over the horizon.  I remember sitting in the back of the buss and looking back toward Old Chicago.  The dome no longer towered over the plains but instead was a huge pile of debris silhouetted by the rising sun of a new day.

Goodbye old friend, goodbye Old Chicago.   

 
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