WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — Ask your average long-time Rhode Islander about Rocky Point, and chances are they’ll have some fond memories to share. The iconic amusement Park in Warwick is long gone, but some local businessmen are trying to bring part of it back.
Just the name Rocky Point brings a rush of nostalgia to Anthony Restivo.
“My mother and father met there years ago, and just like most Rhode Islanders, I spent many summers there. Enjoyed the food and the chowder.”
The famed amusement park was a New England staple for decades, until it closed its doors for good in 1996 — a sad time for native New Englanders, like Restivo.
Since then, he says he’s been trying to find ways to restore Rocky Point’s legacy, “to bring back the food and the memories. Probably never have the park again, but bring back the memories.”
Now, a new eatery, the Rocky Point Clam Shack, is “the closest that we can get to Rocky Point itself,” he says.
The red, white and blue front gate to the park has been recreated in the facade of the small building, which is adjacent to the Ann and Hope building on Post Road. Rows of picnic tables stretch in front of the shack.
Restivo and his business partner say the outdoor fried seafood stand is nearing completion. The goal is to help folks remember the old amusement park days — with original food recipes.
Some memorabilia may also be put on display. “Maybe the Skyliner. Maybe a toboggan from the flume brought down, and some of the original cups.”
Restivo says he’s been working with collectors, the city, and the Rocky Point Foundation to turn the dream into a reality.
“It’s all been worth it. The city’s been great. We had a lot of help with the city and the zoning,” he said.
The Rocky Point Clam Shack is set to open up its windows during the first week of April.