Memories of Eldrige Park

The kids of the Fifties were fortunate to see and experience what was probably the last dying breath of an attraction that few of them will forget - the Merry Go Round at Eldridge Park. This is a photo of a Carousel at Holyoke, Massachusetts today. It's very reminiscent of the one at Eldridge back in the Forties and Fifties. Our vantage point is the approximate location of the ring mechanism, which was a contraption that dispensed metal rings that were grabbed by riders as their position went around. Once each ride, a brass ring was loaded into the ring contraption and the lucky person who latched on to that ring got to ride free next trip. A few riders were talented enough to grab more than one ring on a go around. Some could grab as many as three or four. It was a matter of fast hands and long arms.

The organ music coming from the hub of the Merry Go Round blared away and kids with ice-cream cones, cotton candy and sticky fingers purchased ride tickets from an attendant in a caged booth nearby. Simultaneous screams of fear and joy emanating from the building next door gave evidence that a popular Fifties haunt known as the Fun House was as busy as ever. The whine of the little electric engines in each of the bumper cars across the way and the smell of ozone created by their sparking contacts as they dragged across the ceiling above all added to the ambiance of a wonderful evening at Eldridge Park.

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2002 SHS Class of 58
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