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History-Go-Round

3 Jul

HISTORY-GO-ROUND

North Tonawanda’s Enchanting Carousel Kingdom

By Stephen Cravak

Nestled amongst tree-lined avenues of a Buffalo suburb, resides a  hidden gem. A testament to human passion and preservation stands a relic of America’s industrial past and its continued pursuit of amusement. When on Thompson Street in the heart of North Tonawanda, your eyes need to be peeled for a red brick complex  built in 1915. Inside its crimson walls organs serenade and horses run wild. You will enter not a re-creation, but a true representation of the past. Welcome to the Herschell Carrousel Factory Museum.

The museum has been treating visitors to a merry-go-round of insight into the area’s rich contributions to antique carousels and children’s ride production. The building served as the primary facility for the Allan Herschell Company.

Hop aboard living history!

According to Carousel historian and collector Charlotte Dinger, Allan Herschell was born in Scotland in 1851 later emigrating to Buffalo, New York. After seeing a carousel in New York City, he was determined to begin building steam-operated merry-go-rounds. His first company the Armitage Herschell Company was unable to survive two fires and economic downturn. Herschell’s passion for carousels led him to continue on by joining forces with his brother-in-law to form the Herschell-Spillman Company. It’s not surprising that it was a mere 2 years after Herschell’s retirement that he jumped back into the carousel business. Founding the Allan Herschell Company, the fourth carousel producer in North Tonawanda, Herschell competed against the Spillman Engineering Company, who conveniently removed his name.  Continue reading

Crave’s Favorites: Giant House

14 Feb

Most amusement parks offer the standard issue assortment of thrill, family, and kiddie rides. But once in a while, you stumble upon something extraordinary. Welcome to “Crave’s Favorites” where I share some of my favorite rides, attractions, and aspects of amusement parks from across the globe.

 DREAM WORLD’s GIANT HOUSE

Since you were a child, you’ve planted magic seeds, ascended a giant beanstalk and explored the fearsome giant’s castle. But this was all in your head. While I’m not doubting the power of imagination, how would you like to visit a recreation of the Giant’s castle? Now you can… if you happen to be on the outskirts of Bangkok. Dream World amusement park has a large fairy tale focus and actually built one of the coolest walk-through and Facebook photo friendly attractions in existence today.

What do we have here?

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