May 11, 1908
There was one of the biggest opening day crowds that Fairmount park ever saw at the amuseent place yesterday -- until about 7 o'clock last night. Then the crowd suddenly dwindled because of a rain that insisted on falling in quantities almost large enough to drown one.
A few minutes before the heavy rain came a slight drizzle began to fall. But the crowd wouldn't go The ticket sellers remained as busy as ever, the merry-go-round music box kept up the same familiar tunes and the man at the boathouse almost wept as he looked at the crowd waiting for boats and then remembered that every boat was out on the lake. Then the big excitement came. It didn't fall gradually, that rain. It insisted on coming down with a sloshing sound that resembled the overturning of thousands of barrels of water And the crowd scattered. Those near the pavilion made a rush for shelter and stayed there while others ran to the roller rink, the hotel, the annex -- anywhere to get out of the rain. Every place with a roof on it had all the person it could hold. For a few minutes the concessions that were enclosed did about as big a business as they'll ever do. At the car loop there was a crowd that reached fro the tracks to the fence of the park, a crowd that jostled and scrambled -- almost fought to get on cars.
But outside of that everything was lovely. The management was pleased, even if the crowd did have to leave about four hours too early -- pleased that the park should be attractive enough to draw the crowd it did after the rain of the morning. During the sunshiny hours of the afternoon the concessions, the walks, everything was crowded.
H. O. Wheeler's American band was enjoyed by many yesterday. Mr. Wheeler is one who does not believe in playing only classical music. On all his encores he plays music of a light character that goes well after a classical number.
And every one said that the park was prettier and more capable of furnishing amuseent than ever before -- even when they were coming home, wet and tired, after the rain.