May 02, 2013

News Release

For Immediate Release

Doling Museum birthday, Older Americans Day is May 4

The Springfield-Greene County Park Board's Doling Museum marks its 7th birthday Saturday, May 4, 1- 3:30 p.m., celebrating both its birthday and Older Americans Day at the Northview Center, 301 E Talmage, in Doling Park.

The dual celebration includes an opening ceremony at 1 p.m., followed by birthday cake and music from the Acoustic Essays, playing country, bluegrass, folk and gospel. Info on Park Board programs is available. The event also honors older Americans, following the national theme of Older Americans Day, " Unleash the Power of Age." The event is free and open to the public.

The Doling Museum highlights the colorful history of Doling Park, a popular picnic, caving and swimming destination for generations of Springfieldians since the Doling family purchased the land in 1882. The park reached its heyday in the early1900s, when private investors added an amusement park with a roller skating rink, dance hall, bandstand, ball fields, penny arcade, boat rentals and Shoot-the-Chutes, a multi-story outdoor slide which people rode with flat-bottomed boats into Doling Lake. The then-named Springfield Park Board purchased Doling Park in 1929, and though the amusement park was dismantled, the skating rink continued to operate through the 1960s.

Doling is considered one of the Park Board's ten Historic Parks, highlighted throughout this year during the Park Board's centennial celebration. The Park Board was established May 22, 1913, and has grown from that time from two to 102 parks sites.

The Doling Museum opened in 2006 in the footprint of the former skating rink, and the museum's enclosed courtyard is edged with the skating rink's original rock wall. The museum houses artifacts and memorabilia, including historic photos of Doling Park, skating costumes, and actual cars from The Mouse and Dodge-Um — two rides from the amusement park.

Regular hours for the Doling Museum are Sundays 1 – 4 p.m., Tuesdays 1 – 5 p.m. and Fridays 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., April through October. Admission is free. For more information, visit or contact the Doling Museum through the Northview Center at 417-837-5808. For media inquiries, call Jenny Fillmer Edwards, Public Information Administrator, Springfield-Greene County Park Board, 417-874-2176 or 417-224-5510.