Unionville Museum hosts event to show town its unique past


Frank Fishman

Hitchin’ a ride — Unionville community members receive a guided tour from the Unionville trolley. The tour provided information about the town and the roll trollies once played in the community.

Frank Fishman, Sports Editor

The Unionville Museum and the Unionville Historic District and Properties Commission held an event in Unionville, “A Trolley Ride to Suburban Park,” on Sunday, October 20, to commemorate the restoration and re-opening of Suburban park.
There was something for everyone: free trolley rides with stops at newly renovated Wood-n-Tap restaurant, the site of the original trolley office, historic Suburban Park, and the Unionville Museum. Guided tours of Suburban Park were given at the nearby Cottage Street, with free carousel rides. All-American foods such as burgers and ice cream were available for purchase from vendors at Lion’s Pool Park.
Museum Board President and lifelong Unionville resident Patty LeBouthillier believed the event was successful for its very first year.
“The day was great. We give a special thanks to all who came and helped us celebrate our trolley car event and our wonderful exhibits,” LeBouthillier said.
The Unionville Museum featured exhibits on Suburban Park and Farmington High Schools’ State championship basketball team. Team members played with visitors behind the museum with refreshments served in the front.
Farmington resident Mike Fishman, saw the event as a great opportunity for the community to learn about its historic past.
“It was nice to get a glimpse of our history. It was enriching to hear some of the first-hand experiences of some of the Chest members who lived here
in the 1950s, before the Flood of 1955. It was cool to see the remnants of the amusement park that was within Suburban Park over 125 years ago. I’m very impressed by the Boy Scouts who took it upon themselves to renovate the park and share it with the people of Unionville,” Fishman said.
Lead sponsors of the event were the Farmington Community Chest and the Lion’s Club. Numerous other local businesses donated funds and services to make the event possible. The event was inspired by the revitalization of Suburban Park, coordinated by Eagle Scout Timothy Germano, Troop 170.
“Restoring Suburban Park was part of my Eagle project. I was going through and found that there was an amusement park here, and I thought it was really interesting and wanted to spread the message to the town,” Germano said.
In addition to the trolley rides, the boys basketball team played basketball with kids in the nearby parking lot and had a van collecting food for the Farmington Food Pantry as part of their Hoops for Hunger innovative.
“This was put on by a bunch of great people, and we’re fortunate to take part in it and have fun with the kids. We love giving back to the community and helping those in need,” senior Tyler Cortland said.
Visitors can park in public lots throughout downtown Unionville to visit the Museum, located next to the Tunxis House Fire Department. Suburban Park is open and free to the public year round, located across the street of Stop and Shop.
For more information, visit www. unionvillemuseum.org or call the Unionville Museum at 860-673-2231.