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Ready to spin: Updated Balboa Park Carousel to reopen on May 29

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Balboa Park carousel-Coronado 1915.jpg
Posted at 2:01 PM, May 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-28 17:09:35-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — The Balboa Park Carousel has been closed for more than a year because of the pandemic, but during that time work has been underway to usher the ride back into service with an updated look.

Crews have worked for the past year to enhance the park attraction and restore it to 1910 specs from the original manufacturer's catalog.

Some of the work done includes electrical system upgrades, structural enhancements, fire safety upgrades, new LED lighting, ticket booth refurbishments, and new flooring and paint.

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Now, the ride is ready to make its grand debut to the public.

The carousel will welcome riders starting May 29 to June 15 on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., then from June 15 to Sept. 6 daily from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

In 2017, the nonprofit Friends of Balboa Park purchased the 1901 carousel and started a $3 million campaign to fund the purchase, restoration, and preservation of the ride. That campaign was met this year, though ride sponsorships are still available and donations to preserve the attraction are still being accepted.

The nonprofit is also crowdsourcing donations for the blue butterfly on the carousel kiddie ride. Donors who give $50 or more will get four tickets to the carousel and a chance to submit a nickname for the ride's permanent plaque. More information on that campaign is available here.