By Andrew Zimmerman, Multimedia Journalist - email
LEAVENWORTH, KS (KCTV) -
Leavenworth at one time was considered the carousel capitol of the United States, with master builder C.W. Parker building nearly 1,000 wooden carousels there. Today less than 200 are still around and this weekend one has a special celebration.
Saturday, C.W. Parker's 118th carousel is celebrating its 100th birthday. Jerry Reinhardt, the director of the C.W. Parker Carousel Museum, remembers when they purchased it for a mere $100,000.
"Basically it was a pile of junk," Reinhardt said.
With parts missing, wood rotted and almost no budget, fixing 118 turned into quite a project.
"A crew of volunteers worked for about eight years," Reinhardt said.
Now, the carousel looks like new.
"It runs smooth. It's fast," Reinhardt said.
Today's carousels spin at about half the speed they used to, but this one hasn't slowed down. The speed scared some kids, but Reinhardt said the fear doesn't last long.
"They ride it for about 30 seconds and, all at once, you can see the smiles change and they get that big grin," he said.
At the museum, they've had riders as young as 4 weeks and as old as 99 years.
"The older ones sometimes have more fun than the young ones because, when they get all through, their thoughts have gone back to their memories and occasionally you'll see a little tear," Reinhardt said. "Life changes, you know."
Saturday's event will be wishing a happy 100th to No. 118. It will be held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
There will be free cake, ice cream, lemonade and carousel rides as well as tickets available for other activities.
The celebration will be held at the C.W. Parker Carousel Museum at 320 South Esplanade St. in Leavenworth, KS. It will also celebrate the 149th birthday for C.W. Parker and the eighth anniversary of the museum.
Copyright 2013 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
Wednesday, July 30 2014 3:15 PM EDT2014-07-30 19:15:51 GMT
Pointing the finger at Republicans for Congressional inaction, President Barack Obama accused them of posturing and doing everything they can to stymie economic growth.More >
Pointing the finger at Republicans for Congressional inaction, President Barack Obama accused them of posturing and doing everything they can to stymie economic growth because they are not happy he is president.
Tuesday, July 29 2014 5:50 AM EDT2014-07-29 09:50:38 GMT
Copyright 2014 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.More >
Listeria is listed on the the baby's death certificate as an immediate cause of her death. Her mother, says that while she was pregnant, she ate food that was part of a recent, nation-wide Listeria recall.More >
Wednesday, July 30 2014 7:45 AM EDT2014-07-30 11:45:17 GMT
It's not a disease and it's not contagious, but "Invisible Black Dog Syndrome" is a sad, real condition affecting local animal shelters. The term refers to the propensity of would-be-adopters walkingMore >
It's not a disease and it's not contagious, but "Invisible Black Dog Syndrome" is a sad, real condition affecting animal shelters. More >