A sure sign of spring is the opening of Topeka’s Gage Park mini-train and carousel. The two classic attractions open March 6 and will be open daily through Spring Break week. They will then remain open on weekends through the remainder of the school year before resuming daily operation for the summer.
“The start of the train and carousel season is a signal that warm-weather fun has arrived,” said Riley Shafer, community events and amenities supervisor for Shawnee County Parks + Recreation. “People are always excited to get back outdoors and enjoy the rides.”
Engineer Bill Hollingshead took off this morning with the first passengers of the season on the Gage Park mini-train. The mini-train and carousel are open 10:30 am to 5 pm for Spring Break week and will be open weekends through the end of the school year. pic.twitter.com/0dj0ESFRUX
— Shawnee County Parks + Recreation (@SnCoParksRec) March 6, 2021
Hours are 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. with the last ride at 4:45 p.m. Admission is $2. COVID-19 safety precautions remain in place with social distancing in the waiting area, seating in every other row and the rides being disinfected between each run.
The train and carousel have been making memories for families for generations.Originally designed to last 20 years, the mini-train is entering its 54th year of following a one-mile course around Gage Park. The train carries around 100,000 passengers every year, while the engineer takes them through the park’s history.
The old-fashioned carousel is more than 100 years old. It was built in 1908 and houses a Wurlitzer style band organ.
Gage Park is part of Shawnee County Parks + Recreation, which includes nearly 60 miles of trails, 2,625 acres of parks and 320 annual days of sporting activities. In addition, the department offers recreation programs, educational programs and golf. A combination of tax dollars, user fees and private donations enables Shawnee County Parks and Recreation to offer parks, sporting and aquatic facilities with state-of-the art features, and beautiful, nationally recognized gardens.
–Lee Hartman | Metro Voice
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