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Glen Echo Park, Glen Echo

#8 of 20 in Parks in Montgomery County
Park · Nature / Park
Glen Echo Park is an arts and cultural center located in Glen Echo, Maryland that, in its former incarnation, was a popular Washington, D.C.-area amusement park that operated for several decades from the early 1900s to the 1960s. The arts and cultural center takes its name from the amusement park.
Located roughly nine miles northwest from downtown Washington, D.C., the site of Glen Echo Park was originally conceived and developed as a National Chautauqua Assembly in 1891. Following the foreclosure and sale of the Chautauqua grounds in 1903, leisure facilities were then developed for the growing population of Washington, D.C. In 1911, the site was significantly expanded to become Glen Echo Amusement Park, which operated continuously until its closure in 1968.
Today Glen Echo Park is one of the more important cultural resources in the Washington, D.C. area, offering hundreds of classes, workshops and performances in the visual and performing arts. The facility is well known for its Art Deco architecture, an antique Dentzel carousel, a historic Spanish Ballroom, as well as its children's theaters, social dance programs, and many public festivals, including Family Day and the Washington Folk Festival. Each year more than 400,000 people attend events and participate in instructional activities at the park. The National Park Service also offers park history tours and maintains a visitors area.
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Glen Echo Park reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
94 reviews
  • Although everything was closed due to Covid there is historical info all around this unique park which used to be an amusement park back in the 50s and 60 s Peeking through the windows of an enclosed....  more »
  • This was an old amusement park. We were there during COVID so we did not see everything that we could have seen but I am still really glad we went.  more »
  • This place feels like you have stepped back in time - in all of the BEST ways. The place is beautifully preserved and kept up. The Spanish Ballroom is large and elegant with a proper stage for live bands and LOTS of room for dancing. The entire perimeter is lined with benches for resting or storing your personal stuff while you’re on the floor. Gorgeous calliope with hand carved horses just outside too.
  • Was here for the expansive annual art show on Labor Day weekend. I especially love the pottery barn with so many unique pieces. Classes in many areas are taught all year round - online catalog. Glass blowing demonstrations. The carousel is currently closed (Sep 2019), under repair it looks like. Adventure Theater performances for kids. History display of the park's founding when it was all-white. Dancing in the big ballroom year round.

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