The Boardwalk’s commitment to historic preservation has earned the park both state and national honors. The entire Boardwalk and the Cocoanut Grove site is a California Historic Landmark. In 1989 the Boardwalk joined impressive California historic sites including the governor’s mansion, Hearst Castle, and the state capitol building as California Historical Landmark #983.
In addition to its state historical status, in 1987 the U.S. National Park Service named the Boardwalk’s classic 1911 Looff Carousel and the 1924 Giant Dipper wooden roller coaster as National Historic Landmarks. The national designation places the park in the company of such landmarks as Jefferson’s Monticello and Mount Vernon.
Writing in praise of the Giant Dipper’s 1987 nomination for National Historic Landmark status, historian James H. Charleton of the National Park Service noted that the wooden coaster is “the only one on the west coast that remains the centerpiece of an active amusement park.”
Both the national and state awards are noted on bronze plaques mounted near Boardwalk Entrance 3, by the Looff Carousel. A nearby display features boards from the park’s old wooden boardwalk, which is now paved.
More historical information as well as a photo gallery is located in the Historium on the second level of the Boardwalk’s Neptune’s Kingdom amusement center. A self-guided walking tour leads visitors past dozens of interpretive signs located throughout the park.
The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk has been owned and operated by the same private corporation, the Santa Cruz Seaside Company, since 1915. As theSanta Cruz Beach Boardwalk continues to add new rides, the company’s dedication to preserving the park and area history continues.
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The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk is located at 400 Beach Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95060. For general information, call (831) 426-7433 or (831) 423-5590, email [email protected] or visit www.beachboardwalk.com