Canobie Lake Park is an amusement park located in Salem, NH. Its origins date back to 1902, when it was opened as a trolley park and botanical garden by the Hudson, Pelham & Salem Railways. After the introduction of the automobile for everyday travel, the park became less popular and after several owners in addition to damage caused by a fire and a hurricane, the park was bought by three New Jersey friends in 1958, who renovated and updated it and have maintained the park until the present day.

Due to its history, the park has a mixture of rides and attractions from various time periods. The oldest ride in the park is the Yankee Cannonball, a 1936 wooden roller. Canobie Lake Park now has more than 85 rides, live entertainment, retail and gift shops, restaurants, and snack stands as well as games stands.

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Attractions and rides

The main attractions at Canobie Lake Park are the rides. These are categorized as kids rides, family rides, thrill rides, and water rides. The rides for children consist of the Alpine Swing, where children are seated on swings and are spun around in a circle, and The Autobahn, which comprises 16 different vehicles such as motorcycles and a sports car riding around a track. The Boats ride consists of a number of four-seater boats that travel around an inside water track. Similar rides are the Helicopters ride and the Fire Engines and Tanks ride. Behind Kiddieland is Flower Power, another children’s ride, which consists of two-seater cars that travel in an oval. Other rides are the Sky Fighters, Pony Carts, Mini Skooter, Kids Carousel, Mini Dinos, Kiddie Canoes, Jungle Bounce, Junior Sports Cars, Jump Around, and Jeeps. The final ride for children is Sea/Land Rescue, which sees eight biplanes fly in the air as they rotate above the ground.

The family rides are open to both adults and children. Visitors can choose from the antique cars driving circuit, the antique carousel dating back to 1903, the moving Boston Harbor patrol boat ride, or the Blue Heron Boat Cruise, featuring a 40-foot pontoon boat. Amongst the other 15 rides in this category is Zero Gravity, a cage that spins like a roulette wheel with riders in a standing position. The thrill rides are aimed at various sizes and ages. Two popular rides with visitors are the Starblaster and the Yankee Cannonball. The Starblaster consists of an 80-foot vertical tower where riders are blasted up and down twice at high speed. The Yankee Cannonball is an example of a traditional and old-fashioned wooden roller coaster, with the ride comprising 60 seconds of drops and air time.

There are four water rides at Canobie Lake Park. These are the water slide and rubber raft ride known as Tall Timber Splash, the 40-foot drop Police Pond Log Flume, the water adventure playground Castaway Island, and the 50-foot drop chute water ride the Boston Tea Party. The park has 21 food and drink facilities, including make-your-own slushy flavor drinks at the Tropical Chillers stand, hot sit-down meals at the Dancing Bear Canteen, and sweet drinks and snacks at the Lemonade Stand. Several gift shops are present in the park selling souvenirs such as t-shirts, water bottles, candies, and keychains. A further shop of sorts is the Tattoo Barn, where visitors of all ages can buy and use transfer tattoos. Some of the retail and gift shops offer tax-free shopping opportunities.

Within the park there are over 25 games stations. These include the Pinball Parlor, with a variety of pinball machines, and the 3-Point Challenge, where contenders shoot as many hoops as they can before the buzzer sounds; game wins result in tickets that can be redeemed at the Main Arcade for prizes. The park hosts shows on the Midway Stage with performances running throughout the day; shows include themes like Extreme Sports and a Tribute to Gaga.

Ongoing programs

Canobie Lake Park hosts an annual Battle of the Bands program, where 18 bands enter and perform at the park with the first three places winning monetary prizes. Educational programs are also on offer, with various subject areas being taught to all age groups under the Do It, Create It, and Learn It courses. Educational programs are also available through grade level, such as Physics, The Interactive Classroom, and Elements of Fun. The Canobie Institute’s live presentations are interactive presentations at the Midway Stage for children on the topics offered in the educational program.

85 N Policy St, Salem, NH 03079, Phone: 603-893-3506

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