Riding the Roller Coaster

This train station in Omaha was built in 1870.

My novel Lost on the Prairie begins with the main character Peter setting out from Newton Kansas on an immigration journey to Canada. He is travelling by train and the first stop the train makes is in Omaha Nebraska. Peter and his two brothers decide to visit the Krug Amusement Park in Omaha while they wait for the train to continue its journey north.

The Krug Amusement Park was operated by Krug Brewing in Omaha. The company was founded by a German immigrant Fred Krug in 1893. It was a large modern brewery that employed around 500 people. 

The beer pavilion at the Krug Amusement Park in the early 1900s

  In 1902 the Krug family decided to sponsor an amusement park.

The Krug Amusement Park in the early 1900s

In my story, Peter visits the park in 1907 and rides the roller coaster there.   The roller coaster at the Krug Amusement Park called The Big Dipper wasn’t really built till 1917 so I took a little historical licence having Peter ride it in 1907.  

The Krug Amusement Park had a hot air balloon

I know from historical documents about the park that it had a Tunnel of Love, a hot air balloon ride and that dancers performed in the park’s special dance pavilion.  In my novel, Peter sees all those things on his visit to the Krug Amusement Park as well.  

Peter shares his seat on the roller coaster in Omaha with a girl named Annie. And although they only spend a short time together it is certainly memorable.   I won’t tell you why!  I have to leave some things for you to find out when you read my book. 

Other posts about Lost on the Prairie 


Filed under Lost on the Prairie

2 responses to “Riding the Roller Coaster

  1. Carl

    FYI another rollercoaster existed at Krug Park the one pictured above is the one that was taken down in 1917 “the Figure 8 tobbagan” The big Dipper replaced it in 1918 a more traditional roller coaster and is famous for the incident that occurred in 1930 killing 4 people and injuring 20. Roller coasters were banned in the city because of this.


    • Dear Carl,
      This is so interesting. Do you know when the one that was taken down in 1917 was built? That would mean my novel character actually could have ridden on a roller coaster there in 1907. Where might I find more information on the earlier roller coaster before the Big Dipper. Thanks.


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