Water. Traffic. Airplanes. Boats. Swimming. Frame buildings. Alcohol.

The potential for death and disaster has been present at the resort town since it opened on the lakeshore in 1869.

And there have been disasters: fires, crashes, drownings and a riot.

Pages are devoted to the individual disasters:

June 28, 1945: Drowning.

July 7, 1945: Two Geneva girls drown.

June 29, 1951: Twin-engine plane crashes into Lake Erie.

July 11, 1952: Fire destroys Arcade.

July 19, 1958: Parachutist jumps into lake, drowns.

July 25, 1958: Drowning at Korabeck’s Beach.

Nov. 21, 1961: Palmetto Beach drowning (2-year-old).

July 4, 1964: Riot.

November 1979: Second arcade fire at Pera’s.


Our guests remember:

Chestnut Grove

My extended family and I vacationed at Chestnut Grove from 1948-1964. Being from McKeesport, it was a dream come true to go there every summer. I currently live in Michigan but go back occasionally. Not too long ago, I found a post card of some of the cottages where the swings and horseshoe pit were and a local artist is making me a 24×36 painting of it. I can't wait to see it! So many wonderful memories and so few things left as reminders. It is nice to know that others still remember and care.

Michelle Turner ( a Chestnut Grove Kid)


We vacationed every summer at Idle-A-While in the late '50s and early '60s, partially because my aunt was the receptionist there. I often got to ring the bell summoning guests to breakfast, lunch and dinner in the dining room, which was staffed by co-eds from various universities. Evenings were spent playing bingo, fascination and other games on the strip or bridge and poker back at Idle-A-While. Great memories.
John Bloom

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