Lotus Isle-Faloma Streetcar, c1932

Lotus Isle, the “Million Dollar Pleasure Paradise” was a short-lived amusement park on Tomahawk Island. Meant to compete with Jantzen Beach, the park, opened in 1930, was mismanaged and plagued by misfortune. A 1933 fire destroyed virtually all traces of the park. From the small Lotus Isle Park on the site today you can still see pilings that carried the streetcar between there and Faloma on the mainland. The Faloma Market at N Marine Drive and Gantenbein Avenue may be the only reminder of the area’s name.

A2008-001.56 Lotus Island-Faloma streetcar station 1932(City of Portland Archives)

9 thoughts on “Lotus Isle-Faloma Streetcar, c1932

  1. You can still trace that streetcar on tax maps. Load up Google Maps and zoom in to MLK and Columbia Blvd until you see all the property lines. Just after MLK veers left you can see traces of a narrow right of way heading north across the slough before veering left itself. This then heads straight across Middlefield Rd., right past the Faloma Market and ties in (via imaginary lines and posts like today’s) with Lotus Isle City Park. The satellite view is just as cool.

  2. My dad played drums in a band at Lotus Isle. It was led by the Hune Brothers. The band did broadcasts on a local radio station.

    The first band to play there, when it opened in June 1930, was the Frankie Kenin Orchestra, and they played in the Peacock Ballroom. I believe that ballroom burned and they rebuilt it.

  3. According to the Portland Parks and Rec website, there was also a plane crash, and the fire was started intentionally to burn it down after it closed: “The short-lived amusement park was plagued by debt, alleged gangland connections, and a plane crash which destroyed several buildings. It closed after the 1932 season and a bonfire was set to virtually destroy all memory of the park.” <a href="http://www.portlandonline.com/parks/finder/index.cfm?PropertyID=241&action=ViewPark&quot;

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