Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Giant Slide on Route 66 in Illinois Offers Business Opportunity

From the June 23rd Chicago Tribune.

But, it will cost you a cool $175,00 and it just might be likely prove to be a big headache to move as it stands 50 feet tall and is 170 feet long. Right now it sits just off Route 66 at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield, just a hop, skip and a jump from Bill Shea's.

Businessman Dennis Herrington hopes the next owner will keep it where it is. It is considered a fair landmark along with state fair fries and has become synonymous with the fair and is often seen behind state governors.

It was one of 42 "Giant Slides" (there is also one at the Wisconsin State Fairgrounds) built in the 1960s in the US, Australia and Canada, said Fred Pittroff, the slide's inventor, who said he built the Springfield one over a weekend in 1968. He operated it for five years and sold it to a family who ran it until they sold to Herrington in 1993.

This last owner says he gets between 25,000 to 30,000 people to ride those burlap bags down the slope for $3 a ride, or two for $5.

It's a Sliding Away I Go. --RoadDog

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