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Update August 2011

Update August 2011

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Published by Margaret Franklin
carousels, art, quilts, drawing, painting, solar energy
carousels, art, quilts, drawing, painting, solar energy

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Categories:Topics, Art & Design
Published by: Margaret Franklin on Aug 30, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Carousel of Friendship
“Your Imagination is Your Preview of Life's Coming Attractions” ~Albert Einstein~ 
Latest Updates August 2011
The idea of the
 Autism Awareness Carousel 
was born in November of 2008! Around thetime of my second Geneva Autism Symposium, I started publishing some of my early designsin my Facebook account. The idea of a community carousel is something I've been thinkingabout for years and the Autism Awareness Carousel was to be an attraction with animals andart designed by (but NOT strictly limited to) people on the autism spectrum. Having Asperger'sSyndrome myself, plus a lifelong fascination with carousels, this concept would be anattraction that would embody both of my special interests, plus provide a sensory-friendlyplace for friends and families to gather. It would be open year round in a special buildingwhich also houses a gift shop, museum and a small food-court and tea room.Here are a few places that have inspired various aspects of my concept:The
Faust Park 
carousel in St. Louis Missouri (left) is housed in a beautiful year-round facilitythat has its own adjacent dining room for banquets and receptions, and a gorgeous gift shopwith all kinds of wonderful things for sale. The
carousel (right) is part of a museumthat used to be a school. Artifacts are displayed in the former classrooms and the carouselitself is in the gymnasium. This picture was taken from up in the bleachers.The
Conneaut Lake
carousel (left) in Pennsylvania has scenery panels of local landmarks.And the Tickleberry Farm carousel (right) in Lahaska, Pennsylvania has a lovely fast foodrestaurant area and games arcade. Both are tastefully done so they do not distract from the
carousel.In January of 2009 I started a group on Facebook to promote my idea. Response since thenhas been overwhelming. I have nearly 2000 members.In May of 2009 I attended my first National Carousel Association
Conference. I'vebeen to several of the regular conventions that they've usually had in the fall but theseconventions are more specifically aimed at the behind-the-scenes aspect of the carouselindustry; building, construction, promotion, marketing, the whole nine yards. There is a LOT toconsider when building a community carousel. No two projects are the same. If they werethere would be such a thing as a
“Community Carousel Building for Dummies” 
book! I hademailed various community carousels to ask how they got started and I must say I wasoverwhelmed by the amount of information that was out there!Our May 2009 conference took place in Sandusky, Ohio, the home of Cedar Point and theSandusky Merry-Go-Round museum. It was a thrill to ride the Cedar Point carousels onceagain, especially the Prior & Church Racing Derby, and we also visited an aluminum Theelcarousel at Shopfle Park in Lorraine County.Our main meeting was at the Sandusky Merry-Go-Round Museum. Here I am on the leftshowing some pictures of my artwork, and on the right, our group seated at our round-tablediscussion about gift shop ideas.One of the amazing things that the Sandusky MGR museum has that I'd like to have at myown carousel are these crayon rubbing stations. There are at least half a dozen podiums setup around the museum with raised metal images of various carousel animals with a supply of paper and crayons where visitors can create free souvenirs like these to take home:

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