Q. What was the history of the trampoline fad spots around town in the 1960s? I know there was one on South College Road that cost like 50 cents to jump 30 minutes or so.
A. In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s the country got on a big trampoline fad, and Wilmington jumped in whole-heartedly. There were quite a few establishments here where you could pay a quarter or 50 cents to jump away. Both adults and children soon were flocking to them. They were over sand, dirt, gravel and concrete.
Although spread all over the area there seem to be an abundance of these sites from Winter Park going down Oleander Drive to Wrightsville Beach. The lot at Park Avenue and South College Road was originally where people could rent pony and horse rides. That gave way to trampoline jumping, and today it’s a used car lot.
There were also places at Oleander and 42nd St, out near Seagate on Oleander Drive, and other spots around town. The most popular place, probably because of it’s location, was a block from Johnnie Mercer’s Pier.
Although very popular the fad only lasted a short time and was pretty much gone by the mid 1960s. There were a few physical liabilities, falling off, broken bones, being extremely hot on the skin among others. Also, being put up over concrete and gravel made for some very painful landings.
Even so there was nothing like flying in the air.
Do you remember trampoline spots? Share your memories in the Comments section below.
Date posted: December 20, 2012
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