SLIDING THE SLIDE AT WOODFIELD MALL

One of the first postings I wrote for this blog centered around the opening day of Woodfield Mall.  https://ourlocalhistory.wordpress.com/2010/07/04/woodfield-mall-opening-day/  Because this magnificent mall factored into the childhood and youth of so many who grew up in this area, the comments have been many and varied.  They’ve run the gamut from the fish tanks to favorite restaurants to the skating rink to the movie theaters.

Recently, a visitor named Ron posted a comment that mentioned a huge metal slide that could also be found at the mall.  He remembered it was outside of Chas. A Stevens but didn’t recall where that store was located.  He even mentioned that he had a photo of the slide.  With his generosity, you can see the photo below.big slide at woodfield

After a little research, I think I’ve discovered that the slide was near the current-day A&W restaurant in the J C Penney wing.  As seen by the photo, the slide had circular cutouts at the top with wooden or, possibly, plastic sides.  After sliding down, the kids obviously didn’t always take the stairs back up to the top.  In fact, it looks like the brick encasing the slide became part of the whole experience.

I couldn’t tell you when the slide was removed.  I’d have to say sometime around 1980?  Maybe you worked in a store nearby and could pinpoint a possible year when that happened?  If so, we’d love to hear what you can add about the famous Woodfield slide…

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library

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8 Responses to “SLIDING THE SLIDE AT WOODFIELD MALL”

  1. SB Says:

    Yes, that slide was the best. It wasn’t that long but it was a slide, in a mall. It wasn’t in a playground, it was just an alternative to the stairs. And yes, you had to climb on the bricks to go back up of course! There were also large circular holes in the brick walls nearby and around the mall to climb into and play. There was an ice rink and a restaurant to watch it from (John’s Garage). It was a great place for kids compared to going to the grocery store.

  2. Liz K Says:

    My sister and I loved that slide! Everytime we went to Woodfield, we went down the slide and threw pennies into the fountain. We were so sad when the slide was removed.
    The slide has been gone over 30 years, but to this day, everytime I walk past A & W, I look towards the area the slide was located. Such great memories!

  3. JeffyT Says:

    I remember the sides of the slide being wood, Jane. And I agree with comments posted above. The slide was a fun part of the early Woodfield experience; the kids alternative to the stairs. Kids LOVED it. Bring it back, Woodfield!

  4. Ashley Says:

    I know exactly where that is located, right outside of A&W – And even though I grew up in the mall in the late ’80s and early ’90s, long after it seems the actual slide was removed, I still slid down the bricks (as opposed to walking down the stairs) anytime I was there as a kid :). And I see kids even to this day doing the same.

    Would be cool if they reinstalled a slide there, since everybody still seems to slide down those bricks with or without the actual slide!

  5. Chi-Town Res Says:

    After the mall was first built, when I was 18, I took my 4 year old brother to Woodfield and he wanted to go down the slide. I thought it was very high for him, so I said that I would go down with him in my lap. The slide was very steep and when we hit the bottom, I severely injured my tailbone. It was fractured and you cannot begin to imagine the kind of pain that shoots through your entire body when that happens, due to all the sensitive nerve fibers there. I could not sit comfortably for about a year afterwards.

    I called the mall and told them about my injury and warned them that the pitch was dangerously steep, especially if any parents or older siblings were inclined to ride down with small children in their laps as I did. (I never threatened or tried to sue them,) My guess is that there were other people who were injured subsequently and that’s probably why they removed the slide, because it was not there for very long after that.

  6. rnw7654R Says:

    Yep, JCPenney wing on the right heading our from center of the Mall. I have home movies now on video of the kids having fun. lawyers probably put a stop to that!

  7. nenamatahari Says:

    I loved that slide when I was a kid.

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