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Latest Carousel News April 2014 Subscribe online today. 
Latest Carousel News  April 2014
Current Articles...
Wth Bud Hurbut of Knotts Berry Farm, Marianne Stevens and others...
Award Winning Documentary - A Slice of Life: Carousels
Nearly Lost Forever, The Documentary on Historic Carousels and the People Around the Movement in the 1980s-1990s, Has Been Saved and now on DVD

(Editors Note: Just like some of Hollywoods greatest films, David Bartholomews award winning documentary, A Slice of Life: Carousels, was nearly lost forever as its original master deteriorated with time. Just recently transferred to DVD, the film is now here to stay and available for all to see. In commemoration of the DVD release, here is an exclusive with creator/director/producer of what some call, The most complete video ever offered on these magical machines and the pioneers of their modern day appreciation. In his slice-of-carousel-life documentary, filmmaker David Bartholomew details here many never-before-told, behind-the-scenes, stories of the making of his enchanting documentary. David calls it A first glimpse at the lost liner notes that never existed until now.).

By David Bartholomew
A Slice of Life: Carousels The Lost Liner Notes

My name is David, and I am a lifelong carousel addict.
(Response from room in unison...), Hello, David...

I first entered the world of the carousel in a small way in the early 1990s. Looking for a subject for my first documentary that could have a chance of showing what I could do as a filmmaker, as well as have some chance of reimbursing any monies I might sink into it, carousels was on a short list that I submitted to my close friend and soon-to-be documentary partner, Gary Parker.


Antique Carousel to Auction on Prime-Time TV Jan. 18
Antique Carousel and Batmobiles at Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Collector Car Auction
By Roland Hopkins

Scottsdale, AZ The 2014 Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale Collector Car Auction is underway and expect it to be bigger and better than ever. In addition to nearly 2,000 classic and antique cars, this year's auction will feature a historic 1922 antique carousel and an 1865 band organ, along with two Batmobiles. The 2014 Scottsdale auction-event began Sunday and continues through next Sunday, January 19.

1900s Carver and Manufacturer O. C. Buck
O. C. Buck, Little Known 'Golden Age' Carousel Carver

By William Benjamin, Ph. D.
Special to The Carousel News & Trader

Jean Whitlinger contacted The Carousel News editor recently with the following message. I am looking for information about my great grandfather O. C. Buck who emigrated from Germany to NY in the 1800s. I am told he was a carver for Looff and was known for carving big ears on his horses. My cousin found that he had a company that made fixtures for carousels and once saw a picture in a book that had his name on the metal parts. He went on to own carnivals on the east coast but I would love to find an example of his carvings. Do you know of anyone who could assist me with this? Roland forwarded the message to us. Since it appears that very little has been documented about Oscar C. Buck, we investigated his history and carvings.

Buck Family History
A framework for further research on Oscar C. Buck was found in United States Federal and New York State Census records dating from 1900-1940 as well as his Naturalization document. He was born on January 22, 1867 in Hohenzollern, Germany, and learned to carve as a young boy. He arrived in New York City at the age of 16 on January 22, 1883.

1880s Steam, 1940s Solar and the Grand PTC 72
Three Historic American Carousels to Sale in One Auction, Nov. 16

Union, IL
On November 16, 2013, just outside of Chicago, will be what could be easily touted The Greatest Carousel Auction of All Time. Three historic carousels will be going to auction in one day. Three very different, and each specifically unique and important historic carousels. Sadly, this is not the first time that three carousels have been offered in one auction. This was done a few times in the 1980s and 90s, but that was quite different. Those machines were broken up and sold piece-by-piece. There will be no individual animal bidding here.

These carousels are being offered as a whole only. This is certainly the first time that three substantial historic carousels have been offered at auction as whole units only. And what an amazing grouping of carousels it is. The beautiful 48-horse, 3-row park machine, PTC #72. An 1880s steam carousel with original steam engine, and a classic 1940s Allan Herschell portable and fully Solar Powered.

C. W. Parker 118 Celebrates 100 Years
NCA Carousel 40th Anniversary Convention at C.W. Parker Museum
By Marilyn Reinhardt

Leavenworth, KS The year 2013 has been a busy one at the Parker Carousel Museum in Leavenworth. We had our 100-year Anniversary Celebration for our Parker Carry-Us-All #118, and we are getting ready for the NCA (National Carousel Association) to come to town for their annual Carousel Convention to be held here September 25 - 29, 2013.  Officially founded in Sandwich, MA, in 1973 (as the National Carousel Roundtable), 2013 also marks the 40th anniversary of the NCA.

Historic Rochester 1905 Dentzel Carousel to Spin Again
Gears On the Way for Historic Ontario Beach Carousel
By Roland Hopkins

Rochester, NY The historic Ontario Beach carousel should be spinning with smiles again soon. Replacement gears for the 108-year-old Dentzel menagerie merry-go-round are due to arrive Tuesday (July 23). The gears shipped last week from Brass Ring Entertainment in Sun Valley, CA, according to Dan Horenberger, owner of Brass Ring Ent., who contacted the upstate New York park as soon as he saw the news that they had closed the treasured antique carousel.

CMMA 2013 Convention will Gather around the 1902 Dentzel Carousel
Carousel Modelers and Miniature Assoc. Convention to Logansport, IN

By Patrick Wentzel

Logansport, IN The 2013 Carousel Modelers & Miniatures Association (CMMA) Convention will be held June 28-30 at Riverside Park. This years convention is being hosted by The Friends of the Logansport Carousel. CMMA displays will be located in the carousel building surrounding the historic circa 1900 Dentzel menagerie carousel.

The Logansport Dentzel is a rare carousel, as it is one of only three remaining operating stationary Dentzel carousels.

Beginning in NE at Riverside and Roger Williams Parks
Kings Dominion Carousel PTC #44 - A Historic Masterpiece of Joy and Regret

By Richard Gardner

Like all Philadelphia Toboggan Companys classic carousels, PTC #44, the forty-fourth carousel built by the company, has provided joy and pleasure to hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of riders over its lifetime.  From its earliest tenure at Riverside Park in Agawam, Massachusetts (now Six Flags New England), through the greatest part of its life at Roger Williams Park in Providence, Rhode Island, to its current home in Kings Dominion Park in Doswell, Virginia, the carousel has delighted its riders, engendered community pride, and instilled a pride of ownership for its owners and operators for nearly a century of operation. And as with many of these classic carousels, there has been a sense of loss and regret when circumstances forced a change of ownership.

PTC #44 is 4-row park carousel with a 56-foot diameter platform. It carries a contingent of 66 horses, including 16 outer-row standers and 50 inner-row jumpers. The carousel was built in 1917, was first sold by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company to Joseph Aroldi, and it was first installed at Riverside Park.

Animals Completed, Funds Raised, and the 1909 Dentzel Mechanism Restored
Success for Albany Historic Carousel and Dentzel Museum

By Tyson Brown
Special to The Carousel News & Trader

Albany, OR If there was one word to describe 2012 for the Albany Historic Carousel it would be successful. Successful that many hand-carved, hand-painted animals were finished this year, successful in the impressive restoration of a classic 52 animal 1909 Dentzel mechanism and successful in the 2012 fundraising campaign, the lifeblood of any nonprofit organization. 2012 was a tremendously important year for the Albany Historic Carousel.

The carving and painting, both meticulous and time consuming, continued to produce inspiring results. Of the fifty two animals on the carousel, we have twenty eight animals finished, with the rest currently in-progress. As a 501-C3 nonprofit, we offered the opportunity for people to sponsor the animals and to take part in the design process. As a result, each animal has a name, background story and a reason for being what it is. We are pleased to announce that all 52 animals, two chariots and six alternate animals have been sponsored and designed. With this exciting development, the Albany Historic Carousel is getting closer to fulfilling its ambitious goal of constructing the 8th community carousel in the United States.

Carousel Purchased Through an Ad in the Oct. 1991 Carousel News
Operating a Kiddie Mangels/Illions - For the Love of Carousels

By Sue McMeans

Atascadero, CA My husband, Andy, and I have always had a love for the magic and wonder of boardwalks and amusement parks, county fairs, carnivals and their carousels. There is nothing quite like whirling lights reflecting off of mirrored surfaces, lake waters and ocean waves to spark the imagination of our universe. The sounds of band organs, carney barkers and crowds of people having fun seem to draw us further into that universe.Add to that the smells of cotton candy, candied apples, hot dogs, cinnamon rolls and barbecued food, and all of our senses become alive again. It is as if we have been given permission to become kids again.

We are lured into the fantastical, stupendous world of excitement and anticipation of an old fashioned churning, clanking mechanical world of rides from a by-gone era, shedding all cares of an adult, work-a-day world.
We have always been lovers of the details and simple beauty of old rides. We are both content to sit for hours and watch the mechanical movements that make the machines go and to study the beautiful work of artisans from the past.

Antique Carousels, Classic Cars, Mechanical Music and more...
Antique Carousel as Lead Attraction in December Auctions Coast-to-Coast

By Roland Hopkins

North Palm Beach, FL.
An operating antique carousel will be surrounded by an amazing lineup of classic American cars in RM Auctions' "Cars of Dreams" December 1 auction in Florida, while in Los Angeles, 25 rare antique carousel figures will highlight Bonhams "Carousel and Circus Memorabilia and Mechanical Musical Instruments and Automata Auction" on December 4.

At the "Cars of Dreams" Auction in North Palm Beach, RM Auctions will be offering the sale of the John Staluppi Cars of Dreams Museum. The sale will feature more than 120 fine, rare and highly desirable American cars. And in addition to the automobiles, the heart of the collection and one of the most interesting and dramatic pieces, is the historic, 1918 Herschell-Spillman carousel.

Painted Ponies Co-Author Founded the ACS and NCA
Grand Dame of Historic Wooden Carousels, Marianne Stevens, Passes at 83

ROSWELL, NM – A pillar in, if not grande dame of, the close-knit world of antique wooden carousel lovers and aficionados, Marianne Stevens, passed away peacefully Tuesday morning. She was 83. Marianne helped to raise awareness of the beautiful American treasures that are our antique hand-carved wooden carousels from the late 1800s-early 1900s. She was instrumental in the founding of the NCA and the ACS and she was also co-author of "Painted Ponies", likely the most noted book on antique wooden carousels ever written.

The following remembrance of Marianne is from long-time, dear friends, and fellow historic wooden carousel lovers, Rol and Jo Summit.

In Fond Remembrance:

Marianne Stevens

January 7, 1929 – September 11, 2012

New Haven's Historic Carousel Turns 100!
Help CT's Lighthouse Point Carousel Celebrate 100!

By Roland Hopkins

NEW HAVEN, CT – Help Celebrate 100 Years of the Carousel at Lighthouse Point Park. There are still tickets available for the very special, once-in-a-century "Carousel Gala" dinner on Saturday evening from 6 pm - 11 pm. The memorable evening  in honor of the carousel's 100th, will include a lobster dinner and drinks, as well as music and dancing, and a Ferris wheel, in addition to the 100-year-old birthday carousel. And there will be fireworks to cap it all off. Seats for the "Carouse Gala" including all of the above are $100 per person and any proceeds from your tickets will go toward keeping the carousel beautiful and spinning smooth for another 100 years.

Upstate New York Welcomes New Carousel
Volunteer Carved Adirondack Carousel Celebtrates Grand Opening

By Marge Glowa

SARNAC LAKE, NY – The Adirondack Carousel will hold a Grand Opening on Saturday, May 26 from 1 pm to 8 pm at its permanent location in the William Morris Park in Saranac Lake. The unique carousel is populated by animals native to upstate New York. All of the carousel animals were carved and painted by talented volunteers artists who you can meet at the opening.

Save the Jantzen Beach Carousel!
Last Ride on Historic Jantzen Beach Carousel April 22

By Dr. Tracy J. Prince and Dr. Tanya Lyn March

(The authors submitted this piece on the precarious fate of the historic 1921 Jantzen Beach C. W. Paker, one-of-a-kind Carousel as an op-ed to the "Oregonian", who refused to run it. Instead, the newspaper published a fluff piece on how the developer was planning a massive remodel of the Jantzen Beach Super Center Mall, and neglected to state that the developer’s site plans do not include a structure that could house the historic Jantzen Beach Carousel.)
Portland, OR – For several months, Oregon’s historic preservationists have been burning up the internet with worry over the future of Jantzen Beach’s spectacular wooden carousel. Activists noticed signs posted at the Jantzen Beach Mall (where the carousel is the main feature in the food court) announcing that the carousel’s last day to operate is April 22, after which it will be crated up and stored, with its future unknown. Blogs were written, a Facebook page was created, and petitions were circulated.

Grab the Brass Ring in Sandusky
Merry-Go-Round Museum Unveils 2012 Carousel Exhibit

By Kurri Lewis

Special to The Carousel News & Trader

SANDUSKY, OH“Grab the Brass Ring” is the newest exhibit at the Merry-Go-Round Museum in Sandusky. Just recently opened, the exhibit displays a large selection of carousel animals from several nationally known private collections. This exhibit provides a more enticing look into the wonderful world of carousels with historic pictures of the carving shops, as well as informative displays to go along with the historic figures.

And this year, for a limited time only, the museum will be displaying two of the four original 1988 postage stamp animals: the Gustav Dentzel Deer (ca. 1895) and the Muller Armored Horse (ca. 1917), from Cedar Point’s Kiddy Kingdom Carousel.

Only Balboa Park and Seaport Village Retain Antique Machines
115 Years of Historic Carousels in San Diego

By Eric C. Pahlke
Author of “Treasures from the Golden Age, West Coast Carousels”

San Diego is California’s oldest city, first discovered by Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo in 1542. The city’s development lagged behind that of its northern neighbors, San Francisco and Los Angeles, and it remained a sleepy outpost until the Southern Pacific Railroad came to town in 1885. San Diego came into its own at about the same time that hand carved wood carousels became popular during the Golden Age of the Carousel.

Twelve Carousels in 115 Years
Over the past 115 years, San Diego County has been home to at least eleven hand-carved wood carousels and one metal machine. Two of the wood carousels are still operating in the city of San Diego. Four other wood machines are still running along the West Coast, as is the one metal carousel. In total, there are twelve classic carousels with some San Diego heritage. Here is some background on these machines.

William Nunley/Timothy Murphy MGR
A Look Back at a Rockaway Beach Carousel

By Gray Tuttle

Rockaway, NY - In the summer of 1966, we moved our park train from a shopping center in Winston Salem, NC, to Grand Strand Park in Myrtle Beach, SC. Grand Strand was under construction by William “Bill” Parker. The park was opened that year in time for the July 4th holiday. After three successful seasons and Fred Fried’s “Pictorial History fo the Carousel”, we felt that the park needed a carousel. During June 1969, we located a three row 1930s Spillman machine in storage at Fairyland Park in Kansas City, MO. Judy and our son, Jamie, flew to Kansas City and bought the machine and brought it back. It arrived in time for the July 4th holiday.

The carousel bug had bitten us and we located a four row Nunley-Murphy machine in storage at Nunley’s Kiddieland in Baldwin, Long Island, NY.

Resurrected in 1976 After 20 Years in Storage
Historic Dentzel Menagerie at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

By David Babb

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis shares with a new generation a genuine antique American carousel. The Children’s Museum, or “TCM”, operates the charming antique Dentzel carousel in the Carousel Gallery (on the fourth floor) each day the museum is open. This amounts to 2,500 hours and 110,000 riders per year, and has been the pattern followed since carousel’s restoration and installation in 1976. Boys, girls and adults enjoy the hand-carved figures, lights and music of this grand old, high-mileage carousel. Experiencing this carousel can bring a smile to the face of some, or a tear to the eye for others.

A Historic Carousel Chariot and Horse Tale
Zippel Park, Charles Dare, Gillie Godard and Gillett, WI

By Leah Farnsworth

NOTE: This story was inspired by a photograph from the Killingly Historical Society Wildwood Park carousel (CN&TJuly, 2010) which Leah identified as a Dare platform style machine with gallopers; like the one that her two Dare  horses and three chariots were on.

"The carousel platform had wheels that ran on a track. Dare also made a suspended carousel platform with stationary animals and a “Flying Horses” style, which was a swinging type with all of the horses and chariots hung from poles, without anything below them. It was seeing the Killingly photo that inspired me to finish this story, which I had been thinking about for some time." said Leah.

It began with a phone call from a man in Florida in March, 1985. He was a friend of a family member who also lived there. He loved antiques and had seen a photo of an old Dare carousel horse. He asked me to find a Dare for him. Within a week I had located a Dare in New Hampshire, sent a check, and it was soon delivered. When it arrived, I took photos of it and rushed them off to see if he wanted any changes before we shipped it to him. When I called, he said that he had forgotten to call me back to tell me he had purchased a Carmel from a carousel person in New Mexico.


Feature Articles...
A Look Back at the Man and the Builder
M.D. Borrelli, MFG of High Grade Carousels M.D. Borrelli, MFG of High Grade Carousels
By William Benjamin, Ph.D.,
and Barbara Williams

In our previous article in The Carousel News and Trader (January, 2010) concerning Frederick Dolle, we included valuable insights about Dolle that were detailed in a letter that M.D. Borrelli sent to Frederick Fried in 1963. This letter was obtained from the Frederick and Mary Fried Folk Art Archives located in the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History. We referred to this as the “Borrelli letter”.

Carousel reference b


Playland and Fairyland Park Carousel Figures
Dolle Article Uncovers History on Borrelli-Carmel Horses Dolle Article Uncovers History on Borrelli-Carmel Horses
By Leah Farnsworth

On a cool March day in 1981, we arrived at the docks of a freight company near Milwaukee, WI. My husband, Peter, and I were there with a trailer to pick up a crate from Oregon. Inside was a large Borrelli-Carmel stander that I had purchased from a friend in Portland. I wanted to know its history.

In her 1983 book, The Art of the Carousel, the late Charlotte Dinger has a photo of this horse in park paint on the Ocean City, NJ, Playland Pier carousel. Charlotte told us that it was


Bushnell Park S&G, Rye Carmel...
The Best of the Best Carousels, Part 2 The Best of the Best Carousels, Part 2
By Marianne Stevens

To continue with my list of the carousels that I believe to be the best of their kind: for Carmel, I would choose Rye Playland in Rye, NY. Although there are several other nice Carmels in existence, including Knoebel’s Grove in PA, and Lighthouse Point in CT, the quality of the carving is outstanding on Rye’s carousel. The very beautiful horses are bedecked with roses, eagles, rabbits, et al. This machine belongs to the municipality, so perhaps it is safer than most.



From Dan's Desk
Berkshire, Three Rivers, Historic English Carousel... Berkshire, Three Rivers, Historic English Carousel...
By Dan Horenberger
(March 15, 2010)

Berkshire Finishes their First Horse and Wins Grant
The future carousel in Pittsfield, MA, held an open house for the dedication of Kali, the first carousel pony fully carved, painted and jeweled for the carousel being built by county-wide volunteers over the next three years.

The armored pony was modeled after one carved by famed carver John Zalar in 1910. Zalar worked for carousel/builder Charles Looff in Coney Island. The original figure was on a carousel tha




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