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Salem's Riverfront Carousel

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101 Front St NE
Salem, OR 97301
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Salem's Riverfront Carousel project was inspired by a trip Hazel Patton took in 1996 to visit family in Missoula, Montana. While there she went to see the first old-world style carousel built in the U.S. since the Great Depression. When Hazel rode the carousel, she knew it was more than the music and motion of the ornately carved and hand-painted horses that created magic in Missoula. The real beauty was how the carousel united the community by combining history with the creative talents of Missoula's citizens. She knew that the citizens of Salem could bring similar magic to the banks of the Willamette River.


The vision of Salem's Riverfront Carousel is to touch the hearts, spark the imaginations and ignite the creative spirits of a broad spectrum of volunteers by creating a work of art that will stand as a historical landmark and an enduring symbol of community pride and cooperation.


The mission of Salem's Riverfront Carousel is to enhance the quality of life in the Willamette Valley by invigorating community cohesiveness, fostering cultural and educational opportunities, creating a living history, and increasing tourism.

Community Cohesiveness:

The project has brought together artists and wood-carvers who designed the Carousel's unique character, experts who have outlined the financial needs and defined self-sustaining revenue potential, specialists who have organized ideas into marketing materials, writers who put the stories into words, and public speakers who have inspired groups ranging from school children to residents of Salemtowne Retirement Community to become involved.


Who can resist the charm of the carousel? Some come to admire the exquisite artistry. Some search for information on how to create their own community projects. Most come because it is fun! There is something magical about climbing up high on a wooden horse, listening for the organ music to begin, anticipating the tummy tickles that are inevitable when the carousel starts to move and the horses take off on their circular flight.

RIDES: $1.50 each. Children under 42" tall must be accompanied by an adult (adult is free, just pay for child).
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