Books: by Title: Crystal Beach: The Good Old Days

The American Dream came true in Canada, as American entrepreneurs such as the Rebstocks and Halls converted a wilderness lakeshore into the Crystal Beach Amusement Park. So great was the demand for this unique and wondrous place that 17 passenger ferries carried millions of people from around the world to the Canadian shore for 100 years.

To understand how important Crystal Beach was to people around here, you just have to ask. It was so much more than an amusement park, because of the other attractions, and the very trip to get there.

An excursion to Crystal Beach meant a trip on the Canadiana or one of the several other ferries that whisked eager Americans over the international border. The Canadiana alone ferried more than 18 million people to Crystal Beach.

And once inside, there was something for everybody. The smells and tastes were unforgettable. Just the taffy or the one-of-a-kind "Hall's Original Suckers" were worth the trip. There were rides for all ages, most notably the terrifying Cyclone roller coaster, and its somewhat milder successor, the Comet. Others preferred the "Laff In The Dark" funhouse, or the unique ride set in the lake, the Sea Swing.

And that setting also made for romantic twilight walks along the lake shore. It was a fine place for a date, perhaps with a stop at the ballroom, where the greatest big bands of the era played.

Once again, Erno Rossi has managed to fix on a topic that really resonates with Western New Yorkers and Southern Ontarians. This unique book features 16 pages of vivid, colored and 94 classic black and white photos.

ISBN: 0-920926-04-5