The board of directors of the Spirit of Columbia Gardens Carousel Association is pleased to announce it has reached a final agreement to locate the Gardens’ carousel at Stodden Park.
The Board met with Butte-Silver Bow (BSB) Parks and Recreation Director, E. Jay Ellington, at their regular monthly meeting Tuesday night. Final lease terms, several months in the making, were approved unanimously after tweaking the last details. The agreement will now be submitted to BSB for final approval and signing.
The group has worked for over sixteen years, with thousands of hours of volunteer time and tens of thousands of dollars in donations, to re-create the colorful carousel and its horses. The original carousel tragically burned after Columbia Gardens was closed. The last of the horses and seating are nearing completion, the mechanism is restored, and the basic building has been purchased. Plans include additions to include concessions and a group activity area. There is sufficient area included adjacent to the building site for future additions of complementary attractions.
After considerable discussion of alternate proposals, Stodden Park was selected as the site for the rebirth of one of Butte’s most beloved attractions. The location will be near the present swimming pool, in an area which includes room for other attractions to be located nearby. It is hoped that the swimming pool reconstruction will be approved, but the carousel project will proceed independently in any event.
Engineering testing and design will begin as soon as the lease is officially in effect. Construction discussions will be started with local contractors once the specifications are finalized.
It will still take a great deal of community support to complete the rebirth of the historic attraction. However, the group has the initial funding and momentum to have the children of Butte once again riding colorful wooden ponies very soon!
Donations are essential to the success of the project and may be made to The Carousel Association, P.O. Box 782 , Butte, MT 59701. For further information, please call the Carousel office, 406-494-7775, or stop in at the Butte Plaza Mall and see the beautiful horses.