Wednesday, February 13, 2008

TOM'S MONKEY JUNGLE ELDON, MO

I’m afraid I don’t have much info on this tourist attraction that was once located in Eldon, Missouri at the Lake of the Ozarks. It was next to the Corral Drive-In Theatre and I believe it disappeared sometime in the late 60's or early 70's. Here’s a few souvenirs that I’ve found over the years.








Update - I just found an old brochure from this place and you can see it here. Nice to finally have a photo of the front of this attraction. Also, when you read the brochure you'll notice they advertise a free gift to newlyweds. I bet the ashtray pictured above was the newlywed gift.

5 comments:

Mike Middleton said...

The pride of Eldon. Wish it was still there.

Karswell said...

I just barely remember this too... lots of great stuff from Lake of the Ozarks is now long gone, I barely even recognize the area anymore from the fun place it was when I was a kid.

Todd Franklin said...

Mike - Yes, me too!

Karswell - Yeah, the Lake looks the same as anywhere else.

Anonymous said...

It must of disappeared in the 60s because I grew up there and have never heard of it. I lived there from 74-81.
Thanks for mentioned it, learn something new about my old hometown. :)

Mike Waite said...


Tom's Monkey Jungle was owned and operated by Tom Edwards who also owned the Corral Drive Inn Movie right next door to the "Jungle" and the Ozark Theater movie house in town. Tom was quite a business man and did a lot of innovative things for the town of Eldon, such as bringing the first in door movies around 1940. My brother worked at the Monkey Jungle when he was in the 8th grade as a "guide" during the summer. That was around 1958. I was 8 years old then.
The Monkey Jungle was a fun place for tourists to stop in just before getting to Bagnell Dam and Lake of the Ozarks, a 15 minute drive to the south on US highway 54. There was a gift shop, snacks and cold drinks, and, of course, lots of animals to see. It is a part of Americana that entertained travelers during the time between 1930s to 1960s. Too bad we miss those cute stop overs as we fly by on the interstates.
Mike Waite