“As we celebrate Memorial Day here at our newly reopened Pleasure Beach, I want to thank all of the men and women who have bravely fought for our country, and given their lives to protect our democracy.”— Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch
Bridgeport, Conn. (May 25, 2015) – Today, Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch joined State Representative Steve Stafstrom and Council Members Jose Casco, Melanie Jackson, and Milta Feliciano at Pleasure Beach for a Memorial Day celebration.
“As we celebrate Memorial Day here at our newly reopened Pleasure Beach, I want to thank all of the men and women who have bravely fought for our country, and given their lives to protect our democracy,” said Mayor Finch. “Together, as we celebrate this important day, let us keep our fallen service members, and their families, in our thoughts and prayers.”
On Saturday, Pleasure Beach – a 71-acre barrier island off the Long Island Sound that is owned by the City of Bridgeport – opened to the public for its first full summer season in 19 years. It’s available via water taxi from 10:00AM-6:00PM on weekends in May and seven days a week beginning in June. New attractions at the barrier island this year include a historical walking tour and expanded concessions.
Bridgeport took ownership of Pleasure Beach in 1892. It served as home to a nationally acclaimed amusement park and ballroom for the first half of the 20th century. But fires and declining visitor numbers put the amusement park out of business in 1966.
The barrier island continued to go from periods of revival and decay until Father’s Day of 1996 when the bridge to Pleasure Beach set ablaze. The bridge was deemed unusable after the fire, and Pleasure Beach remained inaccessible from that point on.
Mayor Finch restored access to the barrier island after nearly two decades of neglect on June 28, 2014. For the two months that Pleasure Beach was open last year, more than 25,000 people visited via free water taxi.
Even with less than ideal beach weather over the weekend, nearly one-thousand people visited the barrier island during opening weekend as of noon on Monday, said city officials. And, visitorship was increasing steadily due to the warm weather and sunshine.
“What a great place to be today,” said Steve Stafstrom who brought his wife and daughter with him to visit Pleasure Beach. “It’s like a little piece of Nantucket right here in Bridgeport.”
Pleasure Beach is accessible on weekends in May via free water taxi, which picks beach goers up at the fishing pier located on Seaview Avenue near its intersection with Central Avenue. It will be open seven days a week beginning in June.
For more information on Pleasure Beach, visit: