This website brings back so many memories. My Dad built our house on the corner of Butterfield by 83. This was my stomping ground as a kid. I remember the warehouse and the castle. We lived across the street from the old fire station, we always went to the carnival. I was 5 when we moved to OBT.
Tom Kaufman said:November 12, 2016 8:55 am PST
I remember Dispensa's Caste of Toys because it was next to the Drive In on Rt 83 at Roosevelt Road. I always thought Dispensa's was the precursor of Toys R Us. I remember the carnival rides because they were contracted to do the Lowell Jamboree from late 50's to 1967. Particularly remember the train, ferris wheel and tilt-a-whirl that showed up every year.
JEntler said:October 10, 2016 7:30 pm PST
Thank you very much much for the website. The castle will always be a magical place for me. I was 7 when the park closed but ran into something this weekend that reminded me of the Kiddie Kingdom. I took my twin toddlers to Blackberry Farm in Aurora this weekend and all three if us were mesmoized by the train. I am almost positive that it is the same train that was at the castle. Or, at least the same make and model. Are you aware of the wherabouts of the train to help confirm a 33 year old memory?
Tim Boyce said:September 1, 2016 1:27 pm PST
The drive in movie and the stop sign on Roosevelt road what a change. I worked for John with his family setting up rides. A great experience, Hope all is well miss the truck rides down 183 with the carnival equipment and setting up the ferris wheel.
Janet Nadolski said:July 20, 2016 2:20 pm PST
WOW! This is so interesting. We bought Nick Dispensa's house in Westmont and lived down the street from John Dispensa. I never knew they were such a big deal! Very interesting reading......Thanks for writing this!
Bonnie (Jaska) Pyburn said:July 18, 2016 9:39 am PST
It's 1952. I was 7 years old. We had 2 carnivals a year in Villa Park and waited for each with excitement. One on the 4th of July and then the Firemen's Carnival. Dispensa was always there. I can close my eyes and still smell the popcorn, see the lights and hear those wonderful sounds.
Amanda Bunn said:June 11, 2016 6:28 pm PST
Before I give praises to this site, I have to be honest about something. Dispensa's was around WAY before my time. ( I wasn't born until 1988) I ended up seeing 2 ads for Dispensa's Castle of Toys & 1 add for Dispensa's Kiddie Kingdom on YouTube. This ended up making me very curious about the history of these places. It wasn't long afterwards that I stumbled across this site. What a fascinating history & a cool looking place as well! I'm sure that if I were around back then, I most likely would've wanted to go there as a child. Thank you for having this site here not only for nostalgia's sake; but for the people who like to learn about history as well.
Paul Dispensa was a dear family friend and my brother's godfather. I remember spending lots of days at the park, and never wanting to leave the toy castle (and getting to be in there before and after park hours- it's who ya know!) Thanks so much for this, the nostalgia is awesome!
Peggy Buck said:June 9, 2016 7:16 pm PST
Nice to meet you today and tell you what great memories my adult kids have of K.K.!
Dave Durland Jr said:April 16, 2016 10:16 pm PST
Thank you for bringing back many Awesome childhood memories of birthdays and parties spent at kk. So sorry it's gone. Was sold right when we were moving from Lombard to Texas. I was born in 71' and have so many warm fuzzies for that place!!
BFuller said:February 9, 2016 7:19 am PST
Such wonderful memories. Thank you for making this website.
Ellen Gallt said:January 25, 2016 5:45 pm PST
So many wonderful memories you helped us make. I sure do miss the castle and all the wonderful rides my kids enjoyed when they were small. Sorry you had to leave, the tower isn't half as much fun and Kiddie Kingdom was. Thanks for the memories!
wayne olson said:January 13, 2016 12:24 pm PST
i spent countless hours walking over there from our house in yorkfield. what great memories, what great people !
what happened to the train. i have been looking and find anything.
Eric L. said:January 6, 2016 12:05 pm PST
I just came across this site. I was born in 1973, and I have fond memories of this place. it was rare that I got to go to the toy store, but it was always a treat. Probably the biggest toy store I ever saw. Kiddie Kingdom was another story; The prices for the rides made it a major selling point for my family, and I recall many times having a blast riding all those rides.
I still recall the last time I went there, walking through the toy store, it must have been near the time they were closing up for good, as many shelves were empty. It was a sad day, but I'm glad I got to experience this place as a kid. Great memories! Thanks for sharing them!
Danny Gorman said:November 28, 2015 12:07 pm PST
Thank you for taking me down memory lane. I was born in '72 and my earliest memories are of Kiddie Kingdom. I remember a lego castle which seemed 20' tall but in reality, may have been a couple feet tall.
jimbo said:November 2, 2015 9:08 am PST
lots of memories lionel trains. said to see it go. never want to leave the store. i wish they could bring it back.i like to see memorbila. awsome store thank you
Erin said:September 6, 2015 3:12 pm PST
Thankyou for bringing back the best memories of my childhood! I am still sad this many years later that kk no longer exists,I still cringe when i drive by the oakbrook terrace building that "killed" my favorite place :( lets start a petition to try and maybe bring back this magical place?! Santas village returned why not kiddie kingdom :)
SusieQ said:June 2, 2015 8:14 am PST
My brother and I always reminisce about Kiddie Kingdom and how much fun we had. My parents would try to surprise us when taking us there, but we knew the curved exit that led towards the park and would start chanting "Kiddie Kingdom! Kiddie Kingdom!' Thanks for this website - the photos bring back all the memories, and the story of the Dispensa family was really engrossing! Great family.
I remember going to Dispensa's Kiddie Kingdom every weekend. Generally we spent every day of the weekend there. My youngest was born in 1982 and I remember how much he loved riding the rockets. My favorite was "It's a Small World" I loved getting stopped atop of the Ferris Wheel on a clear night with the stars twinkling. My sons first lesson on how to sit still. Thanks for all the fun and memories. My oldest son loved all the model trains and cars in the toy store. Such a great selection and the best of places for family fun.
Karl Boucher said:October 3, 2014 8:21 am PST
Best selection of toys-period. Got some great glow in the dark board games and cool space halloween masks. The mini mighty mouse roller coaster was my favorite along with the dark room ride on the side of the castle. The little ducky game was also my favorite as a kid. Great place.
Barbara said:September 24, 2014 8:15 am PST
Just dreamed about Dispensa's. I only remember riding by in the car back seat, and seeing this as we zoomed by. "What's THAT??" I gasped, my eyes wide. It was like Brigadoon rising from the mist.
Janice Nason said:September 15, 2014 6:51 pm PST
Thank you for creating this site for my generation's Riverview. I remember the plastic duckies you picked up from the water to see what number you got to learn what prize you got, and the octopus ride. You can't bring back the good 'ole days but you can revisit them on the internet!
Dennis Helfritch said:September 15, 2014 12:38 pm PST
Greetings to all the Dispensa kin out there! I worked for Dispensa Carnivals as a "bingo beater" for five summers (1958-1962). I must have set up 1000 tents. I worked for John and John Jr. It was good, healthy work for a HS/college kid, and I reminisce often.
Sherri said:August 5, 2014 12:48 pm PST
WOW is all I can say!!! The memories are the best! I remember the feeling that I had to this day when I walked in to the castle of toys! And the rides...loved them all! We went many times a year until I was about 8. Thanks for putting this together, amazing job!
Wallace Larsen said:January 28, 2014 11:06 am PST
I worked with Nick and his family & Prudy I was with Suburban Life News Paper Nick invited my wife & I to his house for dinner . Loved the castle and the family. We also went to Nicks parents anniversary party . Those were the good years.
Marla said:January 24, 2014 8:13 pm PST
This website really brings back memories! I loved Kiddie Kingdom as a kid! My mom would bring us there all the time. My favorite was the Storybook ride. It was a little creepy but I remember it the most. I wish that there were some pictures of the inside of that ride. I also remember my Dad taking me the the Castle of Toys to get the My Little Pony stable. It's too bad it isn't still around so I can bring my kids. Thank you for the memories!
Bill Ward said:January 13, 2014 12:49 pm PST
My Mom (Angela Ward) worked there. It was the last of the great Christmas's but I'll say the memory of that building is etched upon my mind. As a child I looked at that place and always thought of being a successful business owner one day. Thanks for the inspiration and by the way; Now I only like vintage toys!
Scott Hall said:December 26, 2013 11:09 am PST
My brother and I worked at the Kiddie Kingdom during the summer of 1983. He worked the Tilt-a-Whirl and I worked in the pizza shop. My favorite job as a teenager. What a fun place. Thanks for the memories.
James B said:November 10, 2013 8:59 am PST
The website is wonderful to reminisce about, as my family went to KK often. We were discussing the rides, but can only remember in general, but cannot recall specific rides and their names. Can you send or list them on the website? Thanks for all your work on the website.
Zackery Demur said:November 6, 2013 8:22 am PST
Thank you so much for the memories. I grew up in Lombard and my parents would take my sisters and I on Friday nights after my dad got home from work. I remember the scambler the best and the fun house ride where you would sit in this high backed car and ride through it. I was so sad as a kid when it closed and the tower was built in its place. I hated that building.
Pete Smith said:October 14, 2013 6:36 pm PST
I went there as a kid in the 70's. It was fun, inexpensive and nearby.
Thanks for the website!
Jamie O'Neal said:September 24, 2013 8:41 pm PST
I remember waiting in line with my mom for my first cabbage patch.....Dale Isadoa....I was only 5 but I remember waiting and the line was all the way out in the parking lot. Thank you for making this page! As a manager of Toys R Us its amazing to see how far we have come.
I just found a picture of my parents and children getting on the merry go round, circa 1979
Chris said:September 9, 2013 10:30 am PST
I remember my parents taking me there in the early 80's and was sad to see it go. Any idea if there are Kiddie Kingdom t-shirts or something that someone could purchase with the name on it? It is nice to have something like that from my childhood.
Olympia Ruppe said:September 7, 2013 12:26 pm PST
I was born n 1972 and we used to go with my family quite a bit. That was the big hit spot for kids. Alot of wonderful memories.......then unfortunately it had to end......Thanks, for all the memories and reminding us of our childhood.
tomk said:September 6, 2013 12:22 pm PST
Many fond memories of buying model car kits and Aurora AFX cars there - still have most of them.. another great memory of seeing Russ Howell do a 360 demo for GT skateboards there..
J. Garrett said:September 1, 2013 8:31 pm PST
My best friend Alan Sevy worked in the ice cream parlor and knew Linda well. He passed away in 2009. RIP my old friend, I miss you!!!
Elizabeth Huslig said:August 12, 2013 7:12 pm PST
Thanks so much for this wonderful trip down Memory Lane. I remember the Children's Theater...in the fall it seemed more like a haunted house with the dim rooms. The Scrambler was my very first ride. In the Castle of Toys I remember the baby dolls in the bottles. I just had to have one with red hair :) The jingle is so good to hear. Thanks again.
Mary (Hruby) Gillen said:July 4, 2013 11:49 am PST
Remember this so well as a child-also working with Rose at a carnival once running the cane toss. Mom and Rose were good friends-sure wish this place still existed-my grandkids would LOVE it! Never could have imagined this being found on the internet-such wonderful memories!! Love you, Rose!
Ronni said:May 27, 2013 4:30 pm PST
OMG... It looks exactly like I remember it... ( even in black and white lol )
Content copyright . Dispensa's. All rights reserved.