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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A Des Moines park that for decades drew thousands of people for its amusement park rides, music and dancing is set to return.

Riverview Park advocates have announced $4 million in funding that will pay for an outdoor concert venue and other features, the Des Moines Register reported.

The Parks Area Foundation is a nonprofit formed by residents of the north-side Oak Park, Highland Park and Union Park neighborhoods and has been the driving force behind the park restoration project. The group has raised $750,000 by flipping burgers and selling hot dogs during summer gatherings. It also secured financial support from the city of Des Moines, Polk County and Prairie Meadows.

Des Moines has given $2.5 million and will receive 5 percent of the annual gross revenues starting in 2022.

“We in the city believe (Riverview Park) has a great potential to be an economic driver in the city once it’s built,” said Ben Page, director of parks and recreation for the city.

Polk County and Prairie Meadows are expected to give $250,000 to secure naming rights for the park’s Prairie Meadow Riviera Stage. The stage will be 50 feet long (15 meters) with a 45-foot (13 meter) ceiling.

Riverview Park is a nostalgic location for many residents who would ride roller coasters at the amusement park or attend teen dances and concerts at the Riviera Ballroom. It opened in 1915 and was modeled after Brooklyn’s Coney Island. It closed in 1978.


Information from: The Des Moines Register,