Candy 1951

Candy, 1951

From Candy Jean Halverson, granddaughter of Harry and Bea Matthews

Hello out there to all Tiny Town fans.  Imagine my surprise to learn that there are those of you who remember Tiny Town, and who want to exchange photos and memories with others who visited my grandfather’s dream, Tiny Town Kiddieland Park.  Harry Curtis Matthews, known as Matt, was a man of considerable ingenuity and compassion.  A philanthropist and champion of the underdog, he turned his passion for building kiddie rides in his front yard into a thriving business and center of fun for young and old.  Apparently Matt was an engineer and builder as well.  Back then we kids didn’t even know that Matt had built many of the rides himself.

TT Logo

Tiny Town Logo

Your enthusiasm has inspired me to get out the old scrap books, search the web for Tiny Town memorabilia and begin conversations with visitors, former employees, and children of celebrities who appeared there.  As a result, I decided to create this Tiny Town web site and Facebook page, where we can all share pictures and impressions from those bygone days when family fun was only a few blocks or miles away, and riding the merry-go-round cost a mere ten cents.

Check out our Facebook page by clicking on the link to the right that say’s “Like” our Facebook Page.


19 responses »

  1. Jean Farrow Nelson..

    I remember having my 7th Birthday Party at Tiny Town..I remember you as Candy, a little girl.My aunt was aunt Jean.I remember your grand mother..I think she was my aunt Jean’s Mother. I remember your sister Sherri and your mother who I believe was my aunt Jean’s sister. So long ago. Tiny Town was such a fun place.

  2. My gosh. Tiny Town. Matt was the first person I knew that drove a Cadillac. My mom and dad, Ray & Helen Spicer use to kid him about showing off by driving that big old black Caddy. Matt always said the Cadillac was a poor mans car. If you could get it paid for it would run forever.
    I worked in the snack shack for a couple of years. Can’t think of the ladies name that I worked for. I was only about 8 or 9 when I worked there.
    My brother-n-law Jim Wallace worked the ponies. My sister Carol worked several of the rides. I grew up at Tiny Town. Every weekend. Mom & Dad were good friends of Matt and his wife.
    Great People.

    • candacetinytown

      Wow.l Thanks for your memories. I think it was a 1953 Cadillac. NaNa (Mrs. Matthews) kept the car garaged for years after Matt’s death in 1956. We would take it out for outings on holidays or other special occasions. The young people who worked at Tiny Town were my friends and played a big role in my life. I remember Jimmy Wallace. Yes, we were all child labor back then But I loved working at Tiny Town!!

  3. Barbara Chalcraft Paulsen

    Loved going to Tiny Town in the 50s.

  4. Karen (Murray) Sharp

    Hi Candy. I don’t know if you remember me, but I went to Jr. High with you in Compton and remember being friends with you and hanging out at Tiny Town with you. My name was Karen Murray but we moved to Gardena when I was in the 9th grade and I lost touch with everyone. I love having these memories come up. Those were good days. Hope everything is well with you. God Bless.

    • candacetinytown

      Hello Karen. Thanks for being in touch. I’m not sure that I remember you, and there’s a lot I don’t remember, but I’m glad we knew each other and enjoyed time together at Tiny Town. Yes those were good days and Tiny Town was a tremendous positive influence on my life. I have some other websites, for example: candacenenglish.com or candacenatvigenglish.com or musicintheblood.com. And I’d love to know more about you. Can you send a photo? That will probably jog my memory. Yes, I hope all is well with you too. Best wishes. Candace

  5. I grew up in Gardena and remember Tiny Town with great affection. My mom would take us kids out there on my birthday for many years. I remember the train the best as I love trains. Our pleasures were so simple back then but so rich nevertheless.

  6. Oh, who didn’t love Tiny Town?f My folks used that place as my reward for being a good girl and getting good report cards. I loved that little train and the ponies so much. Wasn’t there a merry-go-round, too? When did it close? That’s where Cole’s Market was built.

    • I saw the list of children’s celebrities that went to TT – also Engineer Bill was there; I actually got to pull the whistle and win a jump rope there

  7. I was born in 1948 and my earliest memories of Tiny Town still live on in my mind… Cannot count the number of times I went there with my parents and brothers and sisters.. Cotton Candy was a favorite… There was a train that circles the little town… We lived in Compton in Victory Park until 1963 then moved to the City of Ontario… I took those memories with me…

    Leon Baguley. Boise, Idaho.

  8. I remember vividly going with my father to Tiny Town. I loved it! I have some pictures somewhere. I’ll look for them and share.

  9. My Grandma would take mt to Tiny Town and I loved the ponies! I would ride other things, but as soon as I got off them, it was right back over to the ponies! I was crazy about them!

  10. This is just amazing. Such good memories. Each day after school, buying a soda, just being with friends. My best memory is the ponies. I so wanted one.

  11. Thanks for the site. I was born in Bixby Knolls Hospital in June of 1953. We lived until 1955 in Victory Park (a two-story across from the school and a one-story). We then moved to a house one block west of Disneyland. We went to Tiny Town often, and the memories are filed in my head. Both sets of grand parents lived in Compton. Mom’s folks lived on Clark off of Atlantic. They took us to Tiny Town often. Dad’s folks lived in Victory Park as well. They originally lived on Poinsetta. Family mythology has it that Michael McCue was involved with the Chamber of Commerce in the latter part of the “40’s. Thanks again. Ed McCue

  12. Tiny Town was a joy.

    Located on the SE corner of the insection of Olive/Alondra blvd and Poinsettia Ave…directly east of the Roosevelt Junior High auditoreum.

    The carosel was a classic…however, the boat ride was unique and very different. We walked past on the way to Emerson elementry school. Heath Reality office in a house due North. Cole’s Msrket built on the lot. Saw the Oscar Myer Weinnermobile in that lot….still have the weiner whistle.

    Many happy memories.

  13. How well I remember Tiny Town. Especially on Easter Sunday when little baskets were handed out to every child who was there. For my family it was a very special place. Many thanks.

  14. Karen L. Van Sant

    This is so cool, Candace! We all have our stories, and it’s such fun to dig them up and re-experience the excitement we felt as 6-yr-olds or whatever. For me, it was Tilden Park & the old merry-go-round there, in the Berkeley hills. Your playground was filled with other children, how wonderful.


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