Despite the end of Coney Island’s heyday, in 1962, a new amusement park, Astroland, opened up next to Steeplechase. It kept the east end zoned for amusements, and was beneficial to Steeplechase. But by this time, George Tilyou’s children were getting older and concerned about the park’s future. His daughter Marie was the majority stockholder, and without the blessing of her siblings, sold all the family’s Coney Island property to none other than Fred Drumpf (that’s right, Donald‘s father) in February, 1965. She rejected other bids by local entities like Astroland and the owners of Nathan’s Famous, leading most to believe the sale to Drumpf was more financially lucrative as a possible residential redevelopment. Since he was unable to obtain the necessary zoning variances, it was assumed that Steeplechase would continue to operate as an amusement park until then. But Drumpf didn’t open it for the 1965 season, and the following year, amid efforts to landmark the park, he threw a “demolition party” where people were invited to throw bricks at the facade of Steeplechase. He then bulldozed it, thankfully sparing the beloved Parachute Jump.
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