The City Magazine Since 1975

Summer Nights: How time was well spent on the historical Folly Beach boardwalk

Summer Nights: How time was well spent on the historical Folly Beach boardwalk
June 2021


Asign reading “Welcome to Folly’s Playground” beckoned thrill seekers to the block-long amusement park at Oceanfront Plaza, complete with a merry-go-round, roller coaster, Ferris wheel, and the popular Tilt-a-Whirl (pictured here in 1938). While that park and adjacent pier were lost to a fire in 1957, a new pier and 1,700-foot boardwalk built in the early ’60s ushered in another golden age for the town as folks jived barefoot on a basketball court-sized dance floor, hit the boardwalk’s roller-skating rink and nearby bowling alley, and indulged in classic American summer fare like hot dogs and ice cream. Beachgoers kept the fun going through the night as well, migrating toward the bright lights on the nearby rides after long hours of playing in the sun. The pier and pavilion were lost to another fire in January 1977, until Charleston County Parks purchased over an acre of beachfront property, opening the Edwin S. Taylor Folly Beach Fishing Pier to the public on the Fourth of July in 1995.