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The Abandoned Carousel

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A weekly Arts, Society and Culture podcast
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Episodes of The Abandoned Carousel

Racism, Riots, and Euclid Beach Park Urban theme parks were often shuttered in part due to racist discrimination. This episode of The Abandoned Carousel gives a broad overview of 20th century recreation riots and urban theme park closures, focu
The First Ferris Wheel George Ferris is credited with the invention of the first Ferris wheel, star of the 1893 Columbian Exposition in Chicago, Ferris Wheel Park, and the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition in St. Louis. This is the history of
Carousel 15 Philadelphia Toboggan Company carousel #15 has been around for 113 years and counting. It's survived at least four parks, two fires, and two malls, and it's been on the National Register of Historic Places twice. Listen to the hist
Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables, and Canadian World A fierce woman who made her own way in a time very different from today. Several fierce women, in fact. This is the incredibly interesting story of Lucy Maud Montgomery, her creati
Royal Land (Meridian, MS) Today's story covers an amusement park mostly lost to time, except for its iconic castle-styled entrance gate. Royal Land operated for two years, but to talk about it, we've also got to cover the drive-in movie theate
Dinosaur World, or John Agar's Land of Kong (Arkansas) Today a crumbling pile of concrete in rural Arkansas, this park was once a glimmering roadside haven for the family vacations of decades past. In today's episode, I get into the history of
Wobbies World (Australia) At Wobbies World, there's lots to do... This week, the story of an oddball transportation-themed park in Australia. Super 80s, with plenty of vintage planes, helicopters, and trams. The park looked far more exciting
A Town Called Santa Claus Season's Greetings! Why, we've got a topically related episode for you today! This is a good one, folks. This episode covers the towns called Santa Claus: Santa Claus, IN; Santa Claus, GA; and Santa Claus, AZ. There
Gaslight Village Gaslight Village was a shining gem in Lake George, NY, providing summer vacationers with "yesterday's fun today". Though the park was shuttered decades ago, it still holds the hearts and minds of those that knew it. Come find
Disney's Discovery Island (Walt Disney World, Orlando, Florida) This is the story of a place, abandoned in plain sight at Walt Disney World for over two decades. This is the story of Discovery Island. It had a long history before it became Dis
Okpo Land Internet legend holds that this place is one of the scariest abandoned theme parks out there. The truth seems more prosaic, as always. A little bit history, a little bit horror. Find complete show notes and references for this episo
Takakonuma Greenland (高子沼グリーンランド) Takakonuma Greenland (高子沼グリーンランド) was a small local theme park in Japan. Now demolished, it is best known for its urban legends and ghost stories. In this Halloween-adjacent episode, I tell you the legends and
The Floyd J. Moreland Dentzel/Looff Carousel The story of a century-old carousel that's survived multiple theme parks, multiple fires, and even a hurricane. You'll also hear about Burlington Island, Rancocas Lake Park, and Casino Pier. Yes, I
Little Amerricka Born out of a miniature train hobby, Little Amerricka formed organically, like a theme park mushroom. Lee Merrick and Darryl Klompmaker collected rides from defunct amusement parks. They've carefully restored them in a cornfie
Dogpatch USA Dogpatch USA started out as a trout farm. Through an enterprising vision and a connection with the hugely popular Al Capp "Li'l Abner" comic strip, the park became successful for a time. Changing cultural interests, money troubles
C. P. Huntington Collis Potter Huntington was a railroad tycoon involved in the making of the Transcontinental Railroad. One of the engines on his line was named after him: C. P. Huntington. She operated in active train service from 1863 throu
Skinner's Wet 'n Wild (Manitoba) We're back to Canada for another waterpark this week. Enjoy the last days of summer - school is almost back in session (or maybe already in session where you are). Today, a short history of Skinner's Wet 'n Wi
Lake Dolores (Rock-A-Hoola) Waterpark Lake Dolores is really three (or four) waterparks in one. Bob and Dolores Byers built America's first waterpark back in the 60s, putting their land to a new use after trying some alfalfa farming. Lake Do
Trinity Loop (Newfoundland) This is a story about an abandoned place, but it's also about so much more than that. This is a story of preservation, what we choose to remember, and what we choose to keep alive in common memory through storytelli
It's Shark Week! This week, I encourage you to go back in your feed and listen to my Rosie the Shark episode. (Or, you can view the shownotes and the video version on my website https://theabandonedcarousel.com/8.) I'll be back next week wit
The Abandoned Planes of Villamarzana Gigi Stecca, a brewer and entrepreneur, assembled two planes in the middle of rural Italy, reportedly inspired by the Italian seniors who desired to board an airplane. "The Planes" operated as a pizza resta
Elektrenai Children's World (Lithuania) Built in Lithuania during the Soviet era, this theme park operated until 2013. Elektrenai's Children's World (Vaikų Pasaulis) remains popular with locals even in the park's abandonment. This is a happy,
American Adventure (Derbyshire, UK) Built on the site of a failed former amusement park that itself was built on a former coal mine with roots as old as the Domesday Book, the American Adventure Theme Park operated in Derbyshire, England. Amer
Joyland Park in Wichita, Kansas is home to memories of generations. This episode provides a condensed version of the Joyland story shared in previous episodes, including recent hopeful updates about the future of the property. Joyland was creat
Rose Island Amusement Park (Indiana) Almost a century ago, this amusement park was the happening place, where people went to escape the city smog near Louisville. Abandoned for most of the 20th century after destruction in the 1937 floods, Ros
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