Sunday, December 21, 2008

The sad state of the Forest Park Carousel

The carousel in Forest Park during the winter months is an unwelcoming site: fences block the entrance, dead leaves litter a cold hard ground and the 49 carved horses, lion, deer and two chariots sit hibernating behind blue and yellow corrugated metal gates.

But when it’s time for the carousel to reopen in the spring, the Department of Parks and Recreation wants to have a new vendor in place to operate the ride, one that the city hopes can drum up some more customers for a historic machine that too few know about.

New York has four carousels in its parks: in Central Park in Manhattan, Prospect Park in Brooklyn, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens and Forest Park.

But despite being constructed by the Van Gogh of carousel carvers, the Forest Park ride is probably the least used of them all.

While the carousel sits at the corner of Woodhaven Boulevard and Myrtle Avenue, it is barely noticeable from the streets. Signage is poor: the only markers for the structure sit just outside the enclosure.

Vendors needed to publicize historic Forest Park carousel

Forest Hills 72 weighed in on the carousel:

It's a great carousel, but like a lot of Queens parks, it is neglected. Burned out light bulbs remain unchanged, it's dark and somewhat depressing, and there is an inexplicable amount of broken equipment inside the carousel's tent for storage. Sometimes it looks more like a junkyard than a merry go round.

This being Queens, we have come to expect nothing more.


Anonymous said...

The carousel is waaaaaay set back from Woodhaven and Myrtle. I forget it's there myself until I hear the music while walking through that part of Forest Park. I haven't checked it out up close in many years.

Anonymous said...

It really is such a shame. My boys love the carousel but the area and the one vendor is so skeevy looking and run down I almost hate taking them there.

Unfortunately with the upcoming budgets being a fraction of what they were last year, I don't see this being fixed up anytime soon.

Anonymous said...

Make it a Hindu shine, or the turf equivalent to dragon boat races, or a West Indian festival, or a Hispanic cultural event.

The clubhouse will give tons of money for the area and plenty of press coverage.

Thousands of people will show up for the once day off from the menial life.

That is about the only successful thing they can pull of days.

We all should feel good about that ... shouldn't we??