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A bit more detail:


The former bowling alley, which was constructed in 1909, the year after a 1908 fire destroyed most of the park’s midway, now is in rubbles — waiting to be cleaned up.


It joins the debris left over by the Feb. 1 fire at the historic Dreamland Ballroom, a fire which recently was ruled an arson. Nickolas Dean Pope, 19, of 9740 Linesville Road, Hartstown, was arraigned late Friday afternoon on Pennsylvania State Police charges of two counts each of arson endangering persons, arson endangering property, burglary and criminal trespass. Authorities allege Pope burned the Harmonsburg Presbyterian Church on Jan. 13, causing an estimated $180,000 in damages to the more than 160-year-old building; and the Dreamland Ballroom on Feb. 1, causing an estimated $1.5 million in damages.


A contractor had been in the former bowling alley at the park last fall and put wood cribbing in and shored it up, according to George Deshner, CLP general manager.


However, because of the building’s deteriorated condition, it hadn’t been in use and was roped off to make certain nobody entered.


“The beams in the roof were rattling,” he said, noting the condition worsened after the Feb. 1 Dreamland Ballroom fire.


The building sits across the midway from the ballroom and Deshner theorizes the heat from the fire caused more damage to the facility.


Last week, sections of the roof were sagging and pulled down the walls on the northeast tower. “We could hear the building creaking and groaning and making all kinds of strange noises,” Deshner said.


A section of the roof collapsed either Wednesday or Thursday and the east wall of the building started leaning. By Saturday, half of the roof collapsed, leaving only the walls standing. “They crashed to the ground (over the weekend),” he said.


The building measures about 175 to 180 feet long and about 50 feet wide. In the 1940s and 1950s, it housed a bowling alley. It later became a fun house and then housed the Ultimate Trip.


The park’s big freezer is stored in one section of the building and will have to be removed before the cleanup starts. He is estimating it will take between $20,000 and $25,000 to clean it up. He said perhaps the debris can be removed at the same time as the Dreamland Ballroom debris is removed.


That won’t be for at least a month, however, as shooting of scenes from a movie is to begin in that area in the next two weeks, he said. That process will include set-up and wrap-down time plus the filming.


Because the final contract isn’t signed and because attorneys haven’t permitted information about the film to be announced, Deshner couldn’t release the name of the movie. Those approvals are expected within the next several days.


In the meantime, the Trustees of Conneaut Lake Park are preparing to open Camperland for the summer on May 1. Dock rentals also will be available.

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I'll give this guy the electric chair after what he did to the park. I'm so happy he did not "fire" the Blue Streak..




Investigators have arrested a man for the arson fire at Conneaut Lake Park, and a Crawford County church.


The Dreamland Ballroom at Conneaut Lake Park went up in flames on February first.


Since then, State Police and the ATF have been investigating the fire as a suspected arson.


12News has learned that investigators have arrested 19 year old Nicholas Pope of Hartstown. He was arraigned late Friday afternoon in front of Judge Rita Marwood.


He faces 8 charges, including arson, burglary, and criminal trespass.


Pope is also charged with the January 13th arson fire at Harmonsburg Presbyterian church.

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I actually read some sort of good news today,


"Park Board Continues Work

on Master Plan


The Trustees of Conneaut Lake Park are continuing their work on the master plan for the park. As part of this effort, the board is still looking for investors for both the short term and long term of the plan. The short term plans include opening parts if not all the park to establish an income and operating capital while the long term plans are developed and implemented.


Camperland and Boat Docks

To Open for 2008 Season


The Conneaut Lake Park Camperland and the Boat Docks have moved to the definite list for areas of the park to be open in 2008. Inquires for these two areas can be directed to the park office at 814.382.5115 or Camperland at 814.382.7750. Decisions on other areas of the Park are yet to be decided."


This was on their website, which hasn't been updated for about a year, until now.

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  • 2 weeks later...

What Nickolas Dean Pope said to investigators was released,


Pope told investigators he had driven to the amusement park with another friend early that morning and they walked through the park.

He said he entered the Dreamland Ballroom/maintenance building through an unlocked door. Pope said made a torch out of wood, rags and cooking oil he found in the building and walked around inside it.

He said he tossed the torch inside the building after awhile, which caused a fire and he left. Pope said he re-entered the building in an attempt to extinguish that fire, but wasn’t able. Pope told investigators he and his companion then left the park, but returned later to watch firefighters battle the blaze.



In a later interview with Wick and Trooper Dana Beckwith, a Pennsylvania State Police fire marshal, Pope changed his story slightly. Pope said he ignited debris inside the Dreamland Ballroom before departing the building, rather than just tossing the torch.

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  • 3 months later...
  • 3 weeks later...
They said they will try to have the train and Devil's Den open this October, but if the money is there, it could reopen in 2009.


Any update on the October part of this?


I'd like to drive up if it is, indeed, going to be open. Even if it is just these couple of rides.

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The latest Buzz is that they still are planning to I was told by several people from the park.


Also the Beach Club has reopened along with the fry stand.And work is conntinuing on the Hotel Conneaut.


Awesome. Keep us posted, plz.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The website for the halloween event has been launched and it sounds great. some of the attractions include.



Freddie's House

Butcher's Basement

The Haunted Hotel

The Cemetary

Midway of Madness

The Devil's Den

The Fog


These all sound great and I will try to make it out the first weekend. The event runs October 3 through Nov 2.


Haunted Conneaut & Ghost Lake


What:Ghost Lake

Where: Conneaut Lake Park

When: Fri-Sun, Oct. 3-Nov.2

For: Only $15

WHo: were waiting for you


Ghost Lake

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This looks GREAT...how cool is that after the park has been idle for so long? Great way to capture the "haunted hotel" theme. I really would like to see the inside of this place. I thought that the town was creepy enough when I was there in the spring, this ought to be very interesting.


I would do anything to support this area and the park to help get it back up and running again. They need help desperately...I would encourage any theme park enthusiast that is close to get their butts out to Conneaut Lake this fall!



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  • 2 weeks later...

I don't fully understand from reading their website: Are all of the rides going to open as well? I would definitely make the trip to ride Blue Streak again and have a first on their gravity powered dark ride (Dante's Inferno I think its called), though I am not much for Halloween houses- too much gore and not enough true scare.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I have to say, Ghost Lake is a HUGE success. It is ine of the best haunted attractione I've ever been to. They had lines this past Saturday 2+ hours long to get in all night. If they get crowds like that every week, they could wind up with some serious $$$ to open next season.

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