Wow! Tom Thumb Opens A New Door In The Woody Boater Universe.

They look happy and board all at the same time. – ebay photo

The other days fun story on Tom Thumb boat rides, opened up a cool universe in the Amusement Park ride area. i think what threw me was the boat featured yesterday seemed a lot better than some round pool thing where you just went around in circles.

Now that is cool as all get out – ebay post card

As I started looking into it, some great images started appearing. And it apears that these boats kinda followed the design of the times. Some were built well, and others simple plywood or plastic. And had small engines. Which is a cool part.

Is that blonde details? Why do I have a feeling after one year these poor boats were slopped with paint and vomit!

Even the Little Rascles got into the game! Darla you gold digger you!

Train your back seat drivers young – ebay photo

I bet the ride guys hated those clanging bells after a while – ebay photo

I know where one of these is. Engine and all. But not as cool as the early ones

Like these from Dreamland in England! Kinda a Thunderbolt- Photo Daily Mail story on theme park opening HERE

22 replies
  1. Jim Staib
    Jim Staib says:

    I had a set of those with four steering wheels. There were seven in a round trough. It was an old carnival ride. They were all hooked together like the pony ride. Six were just boats but one had an electric motor and an inboard propeller. It’s job was to stir up the water. They moved via a motor in the center.

  2. WoodyGal
    WoodyGal says:

    My first “boating” experience was in one of these! Fairyland Park in Kansas City had the little boats that went around in a circle, bells too!

  3. Ken MacStephen
    Ken MacStephen says:

    We will have one of the header boats in our winter boat show. 8 eet with outboard motor in bow. Toronto Jan 18 to 26 Toronto!!

    • Rich DeGlopper
      Rich DeGlopper says:

      This boat came from and amusement park in Auburn New York that closed. Emerson Park is still open as a recreational facility. The boat is circa 1950. It has a fiberglass hall and a plywood bottom and deck. Of course I had to give it the look of one of our beloved Woodies! I do not have any information on the amusement park and would love to hear from you if you know anything about it or have any pictures of the ride which apparently was sold at an auction.

  4. Danny B
    Danny B says:

    Trimper’s in OC, MD has some neat old ride boats still in use complete with 60s era hardware in great shape. I have the same bow light on my boat.

  5. Eric Z
    Eric Z says:

    Years ago I sold amusement rides and we git trade-ins. Took an old 8 sweep Allan Herschell ride center and made a 4 sweep boat ride. Picture of my son filling the tank for his 3rd B-Day party. Maybe ACBS could start a new event at chapter, regional and national shows; Tom Thumb class races. Might help attract a younger set of members. Around Woodyboaterville they have “Cocktail” boat races that attract a nice crowd!

  6. m-fine
    m-fine says:

    The local ones at Sea Breeze have the four steering wheels and just go in circles. They seem like a good candidate for small block V8 modern power.

  7. John Rothert
    John Rothert says:

    wow, you found my Little Rascals clip….now THAT was one neat boat….and cute girl too! Maybe that was my initial attraction to Going Boating! Darla is better looking than the Dodge nose piece any day! Thanks Matt for finding that cool memory!

    John in Va

  8. Todd C
    Todd C says:

    I remember Elich Grdens or Lakeside amusement parks (Denver) had little wood boats you could take out on a pond. First boat it ever took out by myself! Hooked after that. They looked kinda like the attached photo.

  9. Dan T
    Dan T says:

    That Miss Nancy Dee is just the nicest and cutest little boat. Every kid on the planet would love to have one of those. Miss Nancy’s could create a whole new generation of Woody Boaters and twenty or thirty years from now there could actually be a market for our full size boats.

  10. Thomas M Rist sr.
    Thomas M Rist sr. says:

    Would anyone know where I can get a set of plans to build a amusement park boat from the 60’s those advertised here on boats from years ago.
    Please email me with any info to
    Kb3ufb@gmail it would make a good project for the grandkids.

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