Wild Ride: The Places
Dreamland Amusement Park, Parkersburg, OH
A small amusement park located on an island in the Ohio River, Dreamland opened in 1926 pretty much in the middle of nowhere, although the nearby town of Parkersburg grew much larger because of it. Owned for the most part by first the Parker and then Wayne families. Dreamland has stayed small, adding few rides over the years, always anchored by the big five attractions: The huge wooden Dragon roller coaster, the too-exciting-for-current-regulations Devil’s Drop parachute ride, the very popular Tunnel of Love, the vintage Fortunetelling Machine, and the oversize statue of the park mascot, FunFun.
Five Airstream trailers are located behind the park, four in a clearing in the trees, and the fifth at the edge of the island. They were brought in during the 40’s when Ethan’s grandfather, the Guardia Hunter at the time and the owner of the park, decided that the Guardia should be inside the park at all times and gave a trailer to each member. Although not all Guardia have lived in the trailers, the inhabitants of the trailers have all been Guardia.
The Dream Cream
Built as the commissary for the Guardia, the Dream Cream served as a sandwich-and-ice-cream shop until the late ‘90s when the current proprietor began specializing in ice-cream-on-waffles and phased out the sandwiches because “they were a pain in the ass to make.” The Dream Cream is now famous across the Midwest for its exceptional ice cream, and many people come to Dreamland specifically to eat there since the proprietor refuses to market or ship the ice cream offsite.