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What happened to the merry-go-round at Greenfield Park?

John Peaspanen

Mayor Harper Peterson unveils the former Greenfield Park carousel in a March 2003 press conference. The city hoped to restore the former kiddie ride to its original condition. StarNews file photo.

Nobody will be saddling up for a ride any day soon.

Dylan Lee of the Wilmington City Manager’s Office said, “The remains of the old carousel are in storage in the city’s Coleman complex on Marstellar Street. There are no funds currently allocated to the restoration of the carousel.”

In addition to there being no plans to restore the merry-go-round, it could not be set up as-is. Even if there the city had funding, the old ride is incomplete. Lee noted that only “a portion of the original components and only some of the horses” are in storage. It is unknown what became of the missing pieces.

According to a Star News article from Dec. 2002, it was stated that two carousel horses, flanking the doorway to city hall, were from among the herd that once graced the Greenfield Park merry-go-round. Then-Mayor Harper Peterson had plans to renovate the attraction, which was removed from the park in 1979. For whatever reason, the merry-go-round repair never gained momentum.

The original cast-metal carousel had 12 horses and three stationary seats, according to the late Gary Shell, the city’s former director of Parks, Recreation and Downtown Services. The city reportedly had all of the pieces in storage as of 2002.

When operated, it is said the carousel played the song “Buffalo Gals, Won’t You Come Out Tonight.”

As it stands, those gals can come out. They just won’t get to enjoy the carousel.


What happened to the tour boat on Greenfield Lake?

Does anyone remember the train at Greenfield Park?

What happened to the large wooden carving of a Native American that stood at Greenfield Park in the 1970s and 80s?

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One Response to “ What happened to the merry-go-round at Greenfield Park?”

  1. On April 9, 2013 at 11:07 pm Thomas Wade wrote:

    Based on the picture, this was a “Merry-Go-Round”. Typically “Merry-Go-Rounds” rotate clockwise while “Carousels” rotate counter clockwise. Also Carousels typically only have horses. The reason Carousels went counter clockwise is that an original use was to alow lance practice where the lance needed to be on right side. For instance, the carousel at Walt Disney World has all white horses and rotate counter clockwise.

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