Africa USA, Boca Raton, african animals, florida attractions, closed attractions, Palm Beach county, history

John and Jack Pedersen

Jack Pedersen

John Pedersen

Shirley Schneider &
Lillian Pedersen

Ginger Pedersen at the Africa USA Lagoon

Welcome to the virtual Africa U.S.A.! I created this site as a tribute to the ingenuity, hard work and dreams of my father and grandparents. Africa U.S.A. was truly a special place, something that can never exist again in our world of too much safety and lawsuits. Even though I never saw Africa U.S.A. firsthand (I was born after it closed) my father and grandparents stories were always entertaining and exciting. I wish they could see the web site and read the memories that people share in the guest book. My cousins John and Jerry Schneider experienced Africa U.S.A. as children and have fond memories of growing up with chimps and cheetahs in the house.

Boca Raton has certainly grown up since Africa U.S.A. was created. South Florida of the 1950's only had two north-south routes - US-1 and 441 - no I-95 or Turnpike. Many of the newspaper articles I have describe Africa U.S.A. as being in "western" Boca Raton. It's hard to imagine that today. The "old" Florida roadside attractions are all but a thing of the past as the concrete jungle has taken the place of the African jungle at Africa U.S.A. Most living here today cannot know the Florida of the past, and with continued growth and expansion more and more of old Florida is lost.

My father Jack Pedersen truly loved Africa U.S.A. and endured many hardships in Africa while on safari to gather the animals. He died in 1998 after a long battle with multiple sclerosis. His favorite animals at Africa U.S.A. were Mojah and Mbili, the cheetahs. He loved to have them in the front seat of the convertible, top down, just to get the stares of disbelief from passers-by.

Africa U.S.A is an important part of the history of Boca Raton and Palm Beach County. I hope the website has brought back some fond memories. Visit the sight often as new features will be added.

Thanks for visiting - please add an entry to the guest book and email any snapshots you have of your visits to Africa U.S.A.

Boca Raton Train Station in the early 1950's
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