50 Years of Family Fun
In 1964 Charles “Buddy “ Jenkins and Arnold Palmer met…Jenkins had just acquired a large parcel of bayside property in Ocean City MD and Palmer-the reigning “King” of golf at the time was developing Driving Ranges and Miniature Golf courses.
Jenkins purchased a franchise and in July 1964 opened the Arnold Palmer Putting Course and Driving Range. The following year, he added 10 Amusement Rides and over the next several years Jolly Roger® Park established itself as a major tourist attraction in the seaside resort.
And In 1974, Jenkins acquired the rights to the iconic Ocean City Pier and with a multi-million dollar renovation added new rides and attractions.
Over the years, Jolly Roger® Parks added a wide array of attractions-a full scale Amusement Park, several live shows, a petting zoo but most importantly in the early 1970’s at the 30th St location added a Go Cart Track and a concrete water slide that were the beginnings of Speedworld®-now home of one of the largest collections of go carts and tracks in the country with over 11 Tracks and 400 cars…And Jolly Roger’s® crown jewel, Splash Mountain Water Park-arguably one of the best water parks in the region.
As Jolly Roger® Parks celebrate their 50th Anniversary this summer, this family owned and operated Amusement Park has become a tradition of family fun for generations of tourists. And it’s 35 acres comprise the best of nostalgic rides and new cutting edge attractions…it has truly become an Ocean City landmark.
- 1964Opened as Arnold Palmer Miniature Golf Course and Driving Range on 30th St. in Ocean City
- 1965Added 6 Rides – including a Merry-Go-Round, Kiddie Roller Coaster, Skyliner and Train – the Train still operates today
- 1966Added Carousel, Dry Slide and Bumper Cars
- Early 70’s SplashMountain begins with a concrete Water Slide
- 1974Acquired Pier and began major renovations and added new Rides and Attractions
- 1976Speedworld® begins with 2 tracks – Formula One and Family Track
- 1979Jungle Golf is built – the first “elevated” Miniature Golf Course on the East Coast
- Early 80’sBumper Cars and Speed Boats added
- Early 80’sOpened Gold Rush – a Miniature Golf Course and Arcade in North Ocean City
- 1983Added Log Flume
- 1984Second Miniature Golf Course – Treasure Golf
- Mid 80’sSaw a Series of Live Acts and Shows
- Alligator Pond
- Flying Wallendas
- Petting Zoo
- Bill Wills Parker Playhouse
- Dolphin Show
- High Dive Acts
- Royal Hannford Circus
- Lion and Tiger Shows
- And who could forget, Donte the Elephant and Earl the Chimpanzee
- 1986The Ferris Wheel, 1001 Nights, Music Express and Enterprise were added during the second renovation of the Pier
- 1986More Amusement Rides and Haunted House added at 30th Street
- Early 90’sSpeedworld® expands with several new tracks
- 1991SplashMountain expands with addition of Lazy River
- 1996Wild Mouse Roller Coaster added to Park
- 1998Expansion of Lazy River and addition of Lost Lagoon at SplashMountain
- Early 2000’sStealth, Master Blaster, Wave Pool and Rain Forest added at SplashMountain
- 2007Added Eye of the Hurricane at SplashMountain
- 2010Ziplines added to Speedworld®
- 2011Aqua Loop – the East Coast’s only 360 Degree Looping Water Slide – added at SplashMountain
- 2014Jolly Roger® Amusement Parks Celebrates 50th Anniversary
- 2015Opened the Cyclone – world’s first Cart Coaster