Ellis D. Atwood gave this historic amusement park its name, his initials (E.D.A). He started this railroad by purchasing most of the surviving equipment from Maine’s once expansive network of two-foot gauge rail’s and had them trucked south to Carver, Massachusetts. This was the making of Edaville Railroad.
In Maine, these two-foot gauge rails covered several sections of the state starting in the late 1800’s. These short line railroads fell prey to the depression and competition from automobiles. With the railroads shutting down, Ellis D. Atwood began purchasing the remaining rails in 1946 and 1947 and had it trucked to cranberry bogs of Carver, Mass.
Atwood had a plan, he built a railroad 5 ½ miles long around his 1,800 acre plantation of cranberries. He used the trains to service his bogs as well as hauling paying customers through the plantation for sightseeing. This operation evolved into a “Family Fun Park”; with an emphasis on carnival type rides, bright lights and extravagant Christmas displays. Edaville Railroad became a local institution, and drew visitors from far and wide.
Jon Delli Priscoli purchased Edaville and it’s 250 acres in 2002. There have been many exciting changes under his ownership including the reconfiguration of the entire rail course and the incorporation of vintage amusement rides such as an antique carousel and an illuminated Ferris Wheel. Other attractions throughout the year include, “Pumpkins Aglow” in October, and our Christmas Festival of Lights offering train rides through brilliant displays lit with over 7 million lights during our Christmas season.
In 2015, the latest and greatest addition to the park debuted – Thomas Land! This section added 11 new rides, along with a stage show and multiple dining and shopping venues while bringing Sodor to life in the picturesque New England landscape of Carver, Massachusetts.
Our first adventure of the day was getting to have breakfast (as a VIP before the park opened) with Curious George and the man with the yellow hat. The breakfast was pretty basic. Scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, pancakes, waffles, and home fries. Juice and coffee were also available. Please check out the end of this blog of the highs and lows of the trip to read more details on this. Curious George did come join us and was there to take pictures with. I couldn’t help but notice there was a girl (maybe 9 or 10) with special needs there, and she seemed to adore Curious George. Curious George and the man in the yellow hat were absolutely amazing to her. It warmed my heart. It really was adorable to watch all of the hugs and kisses she couldn’t wait to share with them.
Christopher: He loved them both and gave them high fives.
Travis: Would not get within 3 feet of either of them. We took a few pictures. However our time visiting, was short lived.
While we were walking through the park the first feel I got was it still had it’s old feel. It isn’t a super new, trend setting, thrill park. It is much more intimate and perfect for families with small children. The rides in the park are mostly geared for the younger kids which is great because other places it can be hard for them to find anything to ride on. They had some rides that were small enough that my 2 (almost 3) year old could ride on by himself, which he thought was awesome!
The new addition to the park, Thomas Land, is so cool! We loved it. The train ride that leads you through the park and around the cranberry bogs is pretty/scenic and also relaxing. As I was watching everyone, the parents and children, seemed to be enjoying the ride equally. They have a really cute gift shop where you can buy anything from Thomas The Train.
The Dinoland park of the park was one of Travis’ favorite parts. He wanted to see the dinosaurs over and over. In this area of the park there are a few dinosaur themed rides, but also a wooded area, with a trail, that lead you through time. You see many species of dinosaurs. The dinosaurs move and make noises as you approach.
I wasn’t sure how much Travis would enjoy this because, he is kind of funny about things like that. He is usually not a fan. Christopher on the other hand is fascinated by everything and has no fear. They both really, really, liked it.
I would imagine the park at Christmas time is magical. They have many things to explore and do during the holiday season. A trip I hope to make. They are well known for their festival of lights.
They are having many special guest weekends, where you can meet favorites like, Peter Rabbit, Hello Kitty, and Superheros & Princesses. Check out this link for more information: http://www.edaville.com/events
Our Favorite and Least Favorite Parts:
Thomas Land and the train ride.
Very cool and informative display of dinosaurs.
The size of the parks rides.
You can bring in your own food and there are many shaded areas and tables you can enjoy your lunch.
The bathrooms and park were clean.
They have a cool museum and indoor rides. It almost seems to be a secret, because we got to enjoy the whole area all by ourselves.
They offer birthday parties. If we lived closer, I would definitely have a birthday party there.
Not So Favorites:
This is the most important not so favorite part: The wooded, dinosaur trail, was loaded with mosquitoes. I did not bring bug spray. We did rush through the area because the mosquitoes were so bad. TIP: BRING BUG SPRAY
The park is still in the process of expanding, I wished more of it was complete.
The VIP package I thought was expensive for what it provided. My expectations were too high.
All in all, it was a great family trip. We missed Domenic (my 13 year old step son) however I think he has kind of outgrown this park. He would have enjoyed watching the two little guys, but not quite his speed anymore.