Fantasy Island Campground is family owned and operated. We are located on the island between Sunbury and Northumberland, where both the North and West branches of the Susquehanna River conjoin. This area of the river is referred to as Lake Augusta. The 3,000 acre lake is formed with the inflation of the Adam T. Bower Memorial Dam each summer. At 2,100 feet long, it is the world's largest inflatable dam. The lake averages 7-8 feet in depth. It is a popular area for water recreation, including boating, fishing, and swimming.
Fantasy Island Campground is unique, in that it once was an amusement park with a rich history. Around 1900, the land was leased from James C. Packer, a Sunbury millionaire who owned the island, to create "Island Park." The park began with very few amusements other than picnic facilities. Vaudeville shows and motion picture shows were later added and became a large crowd draw.
In 1923 Steila M. Wiest of Shamokin bought the land that housed Island Park, for an amusement park. In 1925, the crown jewel of the park, a dance pavilion, was erected. Some of the nation's biggest names in entertainment filled engagements there, including in it's later year's, names like Chubby Checker and Dick Clark. After the completion of the dance pavilion, an 80' by 100' swimming pool was built. The pool held a total capacity of 737,000 gallons of water. While the pool was being built, a roller coaster was also being constructed. After 2 years of construction, the "Island Flyer" was officially opened in 1926. The park also featured a carousel, built by the world famous Dentzel Company of Philadelphia. The carousel measured 50 feet in diameter, with 3 rows of animals, 50 in total, plus 2 chariots. (The round building that housed the carousel still stands and is what we currently use as our rec-room. It is a very unique feature of our park.)
Unfortunately, in 1972 Hurricane Agnes swept through the area, causing historic flooding. Much of the park was destroyed. The relic of the park, the dance pavilion, sustained excessive damage and had to be torn down. An article from Sunbury's "Daily Item" newspaper referred to the demolition of the popular dance hall, as "an end of an era." The land was developed into a campground in the late 70's and thus, Fantasy Island Campground was born.