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Top 5 Carousels

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Everyone knows about Central Park and Coney Island, but there are plenty of other places to take the kids—or yourself—for a spin on a painted pony (or frog, or spider). The seasonal ones will reopen this weekend, weather permitting; call ahead for hours or to book a birthday party.

1. Prospect Park

Charles Carmel, one of the twentieth century’s best carousel carvers, worked nearby and drew inspiration from the horses at a stable in the park. Forty-seven horses, plus a lion, a giraffe, and a deer. Wheelchair-accessible. (Willink entrance; 718-965-8999; $1.)

2. Bryant Park

The charming French-themed Le Carrousel, the newest of the bunch, opened just last spring and offers a touch of sophistication—ride to the music of Edith Piaf on fourteen classic carousel-horse replicas. (Sixth Avenue at 40th Street; 718-342-2419; $1.50.)

3. Forest Park

This gorgeously restored wooden carousel, one of just two remaining by Daniel C. Muller, turns 100 in June, and Queens residents are calling for their neighborhood baby to be granted landmark status. (Woodhaven Boulevard entrance; 718-235-4100; $1.)

4. Riverbank State Park

A relative newcomer, Harlem’s Totally Kid Carousel was designed by local artist Milo Mottola, with help from more than 1,000 drawings by schoolchildren whose names are carved beneath each of “their” animals (among them a T. rex and a blue-striped zebra). (Enter at Riverside Drive and 145th Street; 212-694-3632; 50 cents.)

5. Willowbrook Park

Fifty-two hand-painted horses, endangered species, and mythical beasts adorn Staten Island’s Carousel for All Children. (Eton Place entrance; 718-667-2165; $1.)


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