The mission of this blog has always been to help preserve the amazing attractions that exist in the world and to educate people about them in hopes that they can remain open. Unfortunately, this one left us too soon. Not everything in Kiddieland is candy-coated mother goose statues, so today we’ll be looking at a spooky mini golf course, once a treasure for monster kids in Ocean City NJ. This boardwalk is home to at least a half dozen mini golf courses today, but none will stick in my memory as much as the now defunct “Graveyard Golf”.
Graveyard Golf was one of those ramshackle attractions that you couldn’t believe was real. In fact, all of my internet searches on it come up empty…but I was there, and I know it was not just in my nightmares-Right?
Occupying a small area contained in chain link fence on 12th street and the boardwalk, not far from Jilly’s , Graveyard Golf had some of the most jaw dropping fiberglass statues I’ve ever seen in person. A larger than life Dracula perfect for a “high five” photo op guarded a fanged hole, spiders, goblins, and ghosts dotted the landscape. You could even find a vacationing Freddy Krueger donning his beach wear and beads at the exit.
All the classics were represented, but seemed just a little “off” like The Creature From the Black Lagoon, whose sculpt was just different enough to keep the Universal lawyers away, or the Wolfman who slightly resembled the cowardly lion with pointed ears.
Then there was this Gargoyle, who looked suspiciously like the Gargoyle played by Bernie Casey in the 1972 made for TV movie, Gargoyles. (Didn’t think I’d catch that one, did you, statue sculptor ?)
The sculpts were like nothing I’d ever seen, and I don’t know what became of any of these figures. After several more trips to Ocean City, Graveyard Golf had vanished and become a memory. A few people remember it when I bring it up, but many have no recollection of this place ever existing. These photos are from the summer of 2006. Now there are no more witches, devils, vultures or skulls. Does anyone out there in kiddieland know anything more about this course? It was a favorite, and I’d love to see (or possibly purchase) any of these statues if they are sitting out there in a garage somewhere.
There are still plenty of places to play golf in Ocean city. For those looking for a spooky experience, there is even a “Haunted Golf” featuring an indoor course with animated figures and high tech lighting effects and modern pop music blasting like a night club, but it can’t hold a candle to Graveyard Golf’s simplicity and charm. This is one that is really, truly missed.
Happy haunting and here’s to hoping these guys all survived and are out there somewhere! I can’t be the only one who wants to see them back on the boardwalk!