If you go down to the woods today — specifically the ones in Sussex County, New Jersey — you’re most definitely in for a big surprise. Deep within the forest lies Luna Parc, a colorful and unique wonderland that stands as a testament to one man’s 30-year obsession. The Parc isn’t a museum or a tourist attraction; it’s the home — and personal artistic playground — of Ricky Boscarino, who is continuously adding whimsical new things to his sprawling, magical property.
“This can’t be real”
“This can’t be real.” These were the words of Jersey’s Best magazine writer Hunter Hulbert when he first arrived at Luna Parc and gazed in wonder at the multi-colored property and bizarrely beautiful sculptures. He felt as though a fairytale castle had been transposed from the frames of a Disney animation to the forests of New Jersey.
The stunned journalist’s eyes struggled to believe it was a real place, in real life! As he eloquently put it, “I burst out laughing — half in shock, half in amazement.”
Such reactions are common when confronted with Luna Parc; Boscarino himself admitted his one-of-a-kind creation might not be for everyone. He told Hulbert, “As soon as you walk through the front door, it’s sensory overload on so many different levels.”
He continued, “I think some people love it, while others can become disoriented, and that’s one of the aspects I love about the project is that people come here, they have an experience, and they’re moved one way or the other.”
A family of craftsmen and artisans
Who is Boscarino? Well, as the man himself told New Jersey Digest, “I always cite my Italian heritage as where I really got my skills. I grew up in an artistic family, a family of craftsmen and artisans.”
He added, “My dad was amazing with materials. He could work with wood and cement. He was also a draftsman and a very good illustrator. I got a lot of my skill set from my dad by helping and observing him.”
“There was a lot of creativity”
The singular artist continued, “On the Boscarino side, the Sicilians, many of them were carpenters and furniture-makers.” Of course, he wasn’t going to leave out his mom’s side of the family, insisting, “They were generally creative, kind of kooky thinkers, seamstresses, and amazing chefs.”
This mix of familiarity with several artistic disciplines, coupled with a general atmosphere that supported free-thinking, led to a super-fulfilling childhood. Boscarino smiled, “There was a lot of creativity in my household growing up.”