StabilizatioN: phase I
We're happy to announce that the Charles I.D. Looff Crescent Park Carousel has officially reopened! Phase I of our Stabilization Project has been completed and we are able to operate the Carousel this season. Rides will be limited to 20-30 people as we move toward Phase II, projected to begin in October 2023. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we work diligently to keep the magic of our beloved Carousel alive for another generation.
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The City of East Providence has been working with Geisser Engineering and Todd Goings of Carousels and Carvings to create a plan to reinforce the mast foundation and the framing to the center floor, which will help to begin stabilizing the carousel.
The City then hired New England Foundation and Stabilization Company, based here in East Providence, to begin implementing the plan.
The plan calls for the installation of 16 helical supports to be installed into the sand. These supports are motor driven into the sand at key locations and will be attached to the floor framing and as well as the new cement piers that will be poured beneath the mudsills to support the mast.
The work is progressing and all 16 helical piers have now been installed. The next step will be to have the forms made, and the concrete poured.
We will post another update soon, so please check back often!
The Carousel mast has its own foundation, including four supporting foundation piers, separate from that of the building. After 125 years, those foundation pieces are no longer doing their job. No reason to panic! This can be corrected. We are working closely with Geisser Engineering and Todd Goings of Carousels and Carvings to correct this issue. Repairing this is vital to the health and survival of the Carousel, so please be patient as we take every precaution possible to preserve our beautiful slice of history for future generations. We will remain closed as we undertake this important project. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this process.
Six horses were sent to the New England Carousel Museum in November for restoration. The experienced and dedicated staff at the museum remove all the paint and jewels from the horses by hand, repair any cracked or damaged wood, prime and hand paint back to the original colors followed by a clear protective coating and reattaching the jewels. This project had its own delays. A few of the horses were found to have mold in the wood hidden under the paint. Don't be alarmed! The mold has been removed, but the horses required a lot of extra care and time to dry out completely before they could be primed and painted.
Ed Serowik Sr. and Oliver Barrett have been hard at work! They have installed the new shim ring and have reattached the crank shafts. Next up is to lower the upper gear and reinstall the 6 horses that went out for restoration in November. Once those horses are back in place the normal spring work will begin. Reinstalling the belt, uncovering and reinstalling the figurines for the organ. General maintenance and inspections will be completed by Ed Serowik Sr. which will determine if our balance issue has once again been corrected. We will then schedule our 3rd party Electrical Inspection, 3rd Party Ride Inspection, City Building Inspection, City Electrical and Fire Inspection and finally the State Ride Inspection. Once these inspections are complete we will open for the 2018 Season!
The Carousel was awarded the State Preservation Grant funded by the Creative & Cultural Economy Bonds administered by RI Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission. This is a matching grant that has allowed us to address some issues the carousel building has been experiencing, such as water and snow infiltration through the windows and doors, repairs to areas of the floor that needed to be replaced and reinforced. This really is Phase One of a multi-phase project. This matching grant opportunity will allow us to address the most severe areas, but we will need to search for additional funding to complete some much needed work, including restoring all of the doors, painting the interior and exterior of the building, reinforcing and painting the carousel deck, just to name a few. The current schedule of repairs will continue through the spring, summer and possibly fall. They are willing and able to work around our operating schedule and we are willing to work around their repairs. Please be patient and excuse our appearance when you visit this season.
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