Residents Launch Petition To Save Rye Playland

  • Comments (19)
A petition to keep Rye Playland an amusement park has gained more than 1,200 signatures since being launched. Photo Credit: The Daily Voice

RYE, N.Y. - A group of residents have started an online petition to keep Rye Playland an amusement park. The group is against a proposed renovation by Sustainable Playland, Inc., which is one of four proposals being considered for the park.

More than 1,200 people have signed the petition since it was launched on Feb. 21. It was created by Save Playland Amusement Park and is addressed to the Westchester County Executive and Board of Legislators. It argues that the proposal by Sustainable Playland Inc. would reduce too many rides, and that Playland should primarily be an amusement park.

"Playland must be operated by an experienced amusement park operator which will maintain and improve the existing amusement park including all historic buildings and structures, without shrinking the footprint of the amusement area or decreasing the number of rides," the petition reads.

Legislators are currently deciding between four projects. The $34 million Sustainable Playland proposal would add an “Aqua Zone” mini-water park, outdoor ball fields and an outdoor field house, new restaurants and a "Great Lawn" with views of the Long Island Sound.

A $25 million proposal by Standard Amusements, LLC would add new rides, water-themed attractions, four new sports fields and a community lawn. A $26.4 million project by Central Amusements International would add new rides, mini-golf and a children's entertainment center. The fourth proposal by The Paidia Co. would rebrand Playland as Legoland New York.

The petition supports the proposals by Standard Amusements and Central Amusements International. It opposes Sustainable Playland's plan because it believes  it would remove too many rides and severely reduce parking.

"Decreasing the size of the amusement park by removing rides will reduce Playland’s appeal, decreasing attendance and revenue," the petition reads.

Save Playland Amusement Park started as a Facebook group dedicated to making sure that Playland stays open and remains a full amusement park.

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Comments (19)

KRider:

If this works and a private business is brought in to run the place, they definitely need to think about getting more security. I can't tell you how many fights, drunks, and obnoxious kids I've encountered with my family with the Playland staff just standing there doing nothing.

Anyways, maybe the article should include a link to the petition too? Not everyone reads the comments.

technomom:

I could care less if it has rides or not. Clearly, the rides that are there aren't making money. The place is a run-down dump and the county should get out of the business of running it.

Sell it to the highest bidder. Who cares if they put rides there?

technomom:

I could care less if it has rides or not. Clearly, the rides that are there aren't making money. The place is a run-down dump and the county should get out of the business of running it.

Sell it to the highest bidder. Who cares if they put rides there?

GreenburghDad:

this is one of the most poorly run businesses ive ever seen... ANYWHERE....full stop. I took my son last year, and it was like a joke, it's a shame, such nice grounds and a beautiful setting, but the people that work there are so poorly trained and have no idea whats going on, and the rides are so expensive, 7$ per slide to go down a kiddie slide is just stupid, I wonder if any of the people petitioning to save it have actually been there in the last year.

Billy L.:

Of course the pay per ride is expensive. For $25 you have bought a pass that was good for unlimited rides all day. LOL I think you made a mistake there. And for the record, I founded the group that started the petition and I have been going to Playland anywhere 10 to 15 times a season for the last 24 years.

Laureefrench:

Playland used to be such a magical place. It was a clean, safe place to bring small children. I remember the smell of the ocean and the boardwalk. The people who worked there were polite.
I can remember the transition period. They started to sell booze. The attention went to entertaining adults instead of children. Workers are kids more interested in texting. Not so clean any more. Hollering and fighting.
I hope someone gets smart and realizes that it is a historical area that needs to be cleaned up and used as it was intended. When that happens, they will make money.

Francis T McVetty:

Chip N Putt:, you have hit it out of the park, pun intended! Why is the county still in the amusement park business? The county has enough problems with doing the things that they are required to now. Sell the property and let someone that actually knows how to run a business continue. If it is profitable, then it will survive. Goes along with Darwin's theory.
No more tax payers dollars!!! We, the taxpayers, can just barely survive the taxes we are paying now.

Billy L.:

That's what the petition is for! To get the county out of the amusement park business. The private companies we here at "Save Rye Playland" support are two private operators that will PAY THE COUNTY to run the park and invest in it as well. So fundamentally you agree with us.

Chip N Putt:

Westchester County needs to get out of the amusement park business. Sell the place as soon as possible. No sweet lease deal to an operator, just get out and use the proceeds to pay down debt.

Perhaps some Rye area residents that love the place so much should get together private funding and they can run the place to their hearts content. Any consideration to continue to involve our county board of legislators in any ongoing oversight is silly. These folks are a laughing stock.

Billy L.:

Did you read the petition? The whole point of it is to get a private company to run it instead of the county. The group they have selected that we oppose is a public private partnership with a non-profit that is still subsidized by the taxpayers, as pretty much every non-profit is by default by being tax exempt.

Chip N Putt:

Billy L.,

I did read the petition. Not interested in the county turning over the place to an OPERATOR. That would suely include some sort of sweetheart lease with all sorts of loopholes and liabilty stuck on the county taxpayers. I have no confidence that the county board is capable of oversight as the property owner.

The property, buildings, boardwalk, parking lot, beach front,,,, everything, should be SOLD. And please don't start with the historical significance angle, those buildings are single use money pits.

Perhaps your proposed "operator" could work with a private equity fund/group or some sort of REIT to buy the place. The funds are flush with cash. If the operators business plan is sound, the good folks interested in saving the place as an amusement park can partner up with such an entity and buy the place from the county.

Billy L.:

The other issue I have is why was it ok for the county to continue to own their golf courses and have a private company operate those? What about Tibbetts Brook park and the $10 million pool that was installed? I don't hear you complaining about any of those.

Billy L.:

Well let me give you a little education. The county cannot sell Playland. It's dedicated as public parkland by the state of New York and to undo that dedication to sell it would require a legislative hurdle that has rarely ever happened in NY. You need a super majority of both houses of NY state government. That said, did you read the deal that the private operator offered the county? It's a sweet heart deal...for the taxpayers. Paying off some of the county's debt, millions a year leasing the park and investing all of their own money into it. These buildings are designated landmarks and are significant to the history of Westchester and the amusement industry. If you do not care about that fact, then you're clearly someone who does not appreciate history and culture and are limited, as a person. I don't want to the county running Playland anymore than the next guy but it's silly to sit here and say sell it when that can't really happen. Standard Amusements actually has a hedge fund that was going to supply a lot of the money for their plan.

Chip N Putt:

Billy L,

You are correct, I did not say anything about the golf courses that the county owns.

Not sure why you feel the need to describe me as "someone who does not appreciate history and culture and are limited, as a person", but that is not my problem. I support many worthy cultural venues and programs. I have lived in Westchester for 56 years. Playland being "significant to the history of Westchester" is an opinion I do not share. Determining that the Playland buildings be designated landmarks was/is a mistake. We could have a grand arguement over the historical significance of the buildings, but the place is just not that important.

Fix up the beach, plant some trees and grass, find amusement elsewhere. Open space along the shore would be a wonderful thing.

Good luck with your efforts, but you really need to temper comments if you expect to win support for this or any other effort.

tedc:

Rye needs to get out of The Westchester County business. Sell the rest of the county to Connecticut or New Jersey as soon as possible. No sweet succession deal to allow the thieves in White Plains to linger, just auction the rest of the county off and use the proceeds to endow Playland.

Sandy 12345:

@rtg: The petition is online, no need to ''bring it'' to other towns. Here's the link:
http://www.change.org/petitions/save-playland-amusement-park

MaXiPxGrL:

That place is a dump

rtg:

Please bring the petition to other towns and cities, Port Chester/ Rye Brook, Mamaroneck, Harrison.. all of our other cities in the county and lower Rockland, The Bronx. All of these areas also enjoy Playland and its close proximity to them. you would get A LOT more signatures then just in Rye!!!

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