4th Annual Carousel Festival Returns August 24
Photographer / Jubilee Edgell
The Carousel Festival in Logansport has high expectations for their annual festival heading into its fourth year. Taking place this year on August 24, the festival is based around the original Dentzel Carousel in Riverside Park. The Carousel Board wanted to draw attention to this rare piece of history in Cass County.
“It’s a natural historical landmark,” says board member Linda Baldwin. “It was kind of hidden behind closed doors, and it’s in a park that’s not on a main road. There were only three in the United States, that’s an original Dentzel intact.”
Dentzel Carousels are distinctive due to the intricacies involved in their creation. Since 1867, the Dentzel handcrafted wooden carousels. Complete with real horsehair and oil paintings, the works of art were manufactured until the beginning of the Great Depression. In a typical year, only two to three carousels were made and sent out to amusement parks across the United States.
Since the festival started in 2016, Baldwin and the other six members of the Carousel Board have worked hard to ensure that guests always have something to do at the festival. This year, guests of all ages are sure to find something to enjoy
“Our history has been that we offer unique things to do,” Baldwin says. “And we have different food vendors than you’re used to.”
Visitors are invited to start the day as early as 8 am with a breakfast hosted prior to the start of the festival. Guests there can enjoy biscuits and gravy and plenty more. After chowing down between 8 and 10 am for breakfast, people are invited to begin exploring all that the festival has to offer.
Of course, the carousel will be running, offering rides for visitors. Alongside the carousel, children can enjoy a miniature train ride. Besides carousel and train rides, guests are invited to check out a draft horse with wagon rides. Children also have the opportunity to try out mini motorcycles. Helmets are provided. If that isn’t enough excitement for your kids, they can also meet Disney princesses Elsa and Anna, from the hit movie “Frozen.”
For those interested in events that will get your heart rate up, visitors can participate in a laser tag challenge and a couch potato race.
“A couch potato race [is] where people dress up and do a little race with that,” Baldwin says laughing.
Couch potato race participants are invited to decorate a couch, new or old, put it on wheels and race it for one kilometer around the park. One person must remain seated on the couch the whole time, with other team members pushing them. As always, visitors can also join in playing miniature golf.
Throughout the day, many organizations will be there for entertainment, too.
“We have a Johnny and Sally show that perform,” Baldwin says. “We have another two guys named James and Andres that will be singing.”
One of the biggest attractions, though, will be coming from the Peru Circus.
“The Peru Circus brings all these kids that are local, and they do all kinds of performances,” Baldwin adds. “They perform on a higher up platform, where they do all kinds of different acts. They perform two times that day, with two different performances, with each one lasting about 45 minutes apiece.”
The local police and fire departments will be there, bringing police cars, fire trucks and ambulances for people to check out. In addition, the fire department will be bringing their smokehouse, which helps teach people about fire safety. The National Guard will also be present.
Of course, there will also be the traditional fair attractions: face painting, elephant ears, craft vendors, carnival games and a magician. On top of all of that, there will be a car show, where visitors can see the Batmobile.
For more information about the festival, you are invited to check out the Carousel’s Facebook page: Cass County Dentzel Carousel. Their office is open Monday through Friday, from 10 am to 3 pm. If you are looking to visit the Carousel outside of the festival, please give a call to 574-753-8725 beforehand. The Carousel Festival is Saturday, August 24 from 9 am to 8 pm.