Monday, October 18, 2010

Carousel Magic

GUILDFORD, ENGLAND - MAY 31: Children enjoy a ride on a carousel during the Surrey County Show 2010 at Stoke Park on May 31, 2010 in Guildford, Surrey, England. The annual Surrey County Show is the biggest one day agricultural show in the UK attracting up to 40,00 people. A surge in the numbers of people keeping livestock and growing their own produce has led to a focus on a more rural atmosphere at this year's show. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
I have always loved the carousel horses.  I first met them in books as a child, oh how exciting to be able to ride a real Merry-go-Round whenever you wanted.  I looked forward to the carnival that came to out community every year, because they had a Merry-go-Round!  My love for the beautiful horses continues to this day.

A few years ago Doris a friend who lives in Helena, MT took us to "The Great Northern Carousel".  What a great piece of art by many wonderful artists.  Here is an excerpt from the website:

"The Great Northern Carousel is a modern hand built menagerie carousel reminiscent of the splendid, turn-of-the-century carousels. Most of the 37 animals and one chariot were hand-carved by Ed Roth of Long Beach, California and hand painted by Bette Largent of Spokane, Washington. Todd Goings built the mechanism in Marion, Ohio and also built the spinning tub for the carousel.  And, local artist Mary Harris created the original glass artwork depicting Helena area landmarks and scenery on the Carousel rounding boards."

Last year one of art teachers did an art unit with Carousel Animals.  I did a little research for her and learned about the National Carousel Association.  Last year they visited  two Montana carousels the Great Northern Carousel in Helena, MT and "A Carousel for Missoula" in Missoula, MT.  When looking at the archives I found out about a private carousel "Dream Maker Carousel" that is open to the public in Somers, MT.  I told my husband I want to go see it next year.

This brings me to one of the new books that I added to our school library collection.  "Feivel's Flying Horses" by Heidi Smith Hyde.  This picture book tells the story of a woodcarver that comes to America and became one of the wood carvers making carousel horses for Coney Island.  I found the historical note by the author very informative.  It is a great book to introduce the Jewish immigration to America in the late 1800's.

Links of Interest: Carousel News Carousel links
Carousel Live Binder -  

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