SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE 28/WYOU 22 EYEWITNESS NEWS) — To many, summer means outdoor fun, and amusement rides. We’re taking you back to Scranton’s Nay Aug Park for a look at two different periods in the 20th century when taking a boat ride, taking a train ride, or going on a carousel was a short family trip away.
Luna Park, located near the famous Nay Aug Gorge opened in 1906. In 1984, the late Scranton native Clint Gruener told then WDAU’s Sue Miller what he recalled about the “grand amusement paradise.”
I could remember the merry-go-round. And then up on my left was a dance hall and the boats that were hauled up on the cogs,” Gruener recalled.
The spectacular rides here were short-lived after a devastating fire in 1916. Some 68 years later Gruener still had vivid memories of the disaster.
Living on Harrison Avenue, we rushed to the front windows of our bedroom and some went up into the attic and watched the flames reaching for the sky,” Gruener told us.
Permanent rides returned to Nay Aug Park in the 1950s. A carousel, miniature Lackawanna railroad, boats, and more provided family entertainment close to home.
Nay Aug Amusement Park was run by brothers Karl and Ralph Strohl. These rides kept running into the 1990s.
In recent years there have been times when temporary amusements have been set up at Scranton’s largest park.