In 1972, executives from Warner Brother’s had a problem with one of the most popular attractions at Jungle Junction. The reptile house had an hourly show that featured highly poisonous snakes. The issue was that the handler was allergic to the anti-venom if he was bitten. Park management needed a find a method to quickly transport the handler to a medical treatment facility.
Warner Brothers contacted local physician Dr. Arthur Zampella and together, application was made to the Federal Aviation Administration for a heliport at Idylease. In the off possibility of a snake bite, the handler would be transported to Idylease and then flown by air to a trauma center where he would be treated by alternative methods.
The Idylease Helistop is a remnant of Jungle Habitat from 40 years ago and still maintains the FAA license. The heliport is currently used by the NJ State Police if major accidents occur in the area. Patients are transported to Idylease and flown to the nearest trauma center from the landing field.
Richard Zampella is the Owner & Operator of Idylease, a former resort hotel located in Newfoundland, NJ which is a historically significant example of early 20th century resort architecture in Northwest, New Jersey.
Dr. Daniel Drake Article from the Butler Argus March 26, 1950. Dr. Drake Owned and Operated Idylease from 1906 until he died in 1951. Thanks to Ron & Andrea Roeser who live in Dr Drake’s former residence for providing me the original newspaper clipping. NEWFOUNDLAND — Sunday will mark the Sixtieth Wedding Anniversary for Dr. and Mrs. Drake of Union Valley Road, Newfoundland. The couple plan to celebrate quietly at their home.
Dr. Drake, who is 86, and who has been practicing medicine for For 61 years, can be found every day at his offices at his home and at Idylease Inn, a sanitarium across the road.
Idylease opened in 1903, and Dr Drake was appointed president and head of the staff. His appointment first brought him and his wife to Newfoundland. He was associated at the time with the late Dr. Edgar A. Day of Brooklyn.
Books on medicine became his first interest, while living with his brother, Dr. James Drake of Hancock, N.Y., who encouraged him and financed his five years at the University of Vermont, where he received his degree at the age of 25.
He started his practice in Equinonk, Pa., where he was initiated into the rugged life of a country doctor, during an epidemic of pneumonia. There were calls day and night, out into the forests where woodchoppers lived with no telephone, electric lights or any modern conveniences. He always carried a shovel to dig his way out of snowdrifts, in those horse and buggy days. “I went to work at 25, and have been working ever since.” the doctor explained. “My hobby you see is practicing medicine, nothing else.”
Due to a shortage of nurses, patients at the sanatorium are limited to elderly men, who are cared for by male orderlies. This reduced the work at the sanatorium for Dr. Drake, but he is still kept busy with office and outside calls.
He is a member of the American Red Medical Association and one of the oldest members of the Passaic County Medical Association.
For 40 years he has been president of the Board of Health and for many years president of the American Red Cross local chapter.
Mrs. Drake’s hobby is flowers and rare plants. There are 163 plants in the windows of the large colonial house built for the Drakes in 1932. The doctor often assists in the caring of the plants. A picture of one of Mrs. Drake’s prize plants, the “Sansevieria Cylundria,” or “Devil’s Tongue,” was shown in a current magazine, with the history written by her.
The couple were married in Deposit, N.Y., at the home of the bride. The event was sandwiched in-between the doctor’s morning and evening calls in Equinonk. He had to make his morning calls, “but,” her chuckled, “I was lucky, that day, they were all in town.”
When the ceremony was over, he and his bride, the former miss Miss Belle M. Walley, hastened back to Equinonk in time for office hours and night rounds.
Their first vacation and belated honeymoon came when the doctor was 60 years old. They had their first Florida trip. After that first vacation, the Summer months were spent in a camp in Canada.
The Drakes have a daughter, Leonore, at home, and a son, Dr. L. B. Drake of Franklin. There are two grandsons, William Walley Drake, a student at Harvard University, and Charles Daniel Drake of Bryn Mawr, Pa.
Happy New Year from Idylease. It’s our 115th Birthday. Idylease first opened her doors to the public on New Year’s Day in 1903. We are celebrating 115 years as West Milford’s most noted Historic Landmark. Here’s wishing you all the joy of the season. Have a happy new year!