During my carousel research, I discovered the existence of a Dentzel carousel located in the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. I started saving my pennies, nickels, and dimes so our adventure crew could take a ride on the merry-go-round before we ended the year 2021. A visit to this museum comes with a heavy price tag existing on the other side of our income range. Since retirement, Rooster and I have lived on a fixed income. This facility claims to be the biggest children’s museum in the world; however, the cost still exceeded our budget. I managed to scrimp together a hundred dollars. Rooster had to dig deep into his pockets for an extra twenty-five before receiving permission to enter the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.
History of the Denzel Carousel at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
Since our main objective for our visit centered around riding the carousel, I plan to provide its interesting history. This carousel is over one hundred years old. It made its home in a Broad Ripple Amusement park until they tore the merry-go-round apart and stored it. The restoration process started in 1966 and ended when the museum opened its new building in 1976. The carousel was given the name Carousel Wishes and Dreams, and for a dollar, a person can take a ride on one of the colorful wooden animals.
Our Experience at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
We started on the fourth floor. When I walked off the elevator, the first thing I noticed was the Fireworks of Glass Tower and Ceiling sculpture that spanned from the ground floor. This colorful blown glass sculpture, created by Dale Chihuly, made of 3.200 red, yellow, and blue pieces, is impressive.
The thing which caught the girl’s eyes was a collection of miniature houses similar to the ones we saw at the Museum of Miniature Houses we visited earlier in the summer. A section dedicated to natural science took up most of our visit to this floor. We stopped to watch fish being fed their dinner. Farming is important in the Hoosier state. The girls became fascinated by the farming machinery replica, pretending to drive it through a cornfield. Indiana isn’t known as a mountain state, but we have a range in the south with several impressive caves. The rock climbing section of this exhibit provided some fun. We also found a lab where everything soybean could be explored.
Then it was time to ride the carousel. We waited in line and paid our dollars. It was a nice ride, but I thought the girls looked uninterested. I think this might be where we end our carousel riding craze. The best part of the ride was the unique musical apparatus in the middle of the ride.
We spent time in, ‘The Power of Children: Making a difference’ exhibit on the third floor. The stories of Anne Frank, Ruby Bridges, and Ryan White are told to show how a child can change the world. Our oldest granddaughter became fascinated with the story of how Anne Frank wrote in her diary while she and her family hid from the Nazis.
Somewhere along the way, as we wandered through this massive building, we discovered an area with tiny houses and games from a not-so-distant past. We visited Greece and explored a Barbie exhibition. Rooster seemed intimidated by all the pink. A problem occurred on the first floor when we strolled past all the Barbies for sale. We couldn’t afford the prices they were asking for the fancy dolls. The girls left disappointed.
Why we didn’t pay extra for the season pass
The basic problem we found with the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis centered around many of the exhibitions not being open. I don’t know if they are closed due to COVID like everything seems to be these days. Still, we all left a little frustrated. I know they have a lot of sports-related activities behind a fence near the building. None of us wanted to spend time outside. Since we were looking for something to do away from the cold, this would defeat the purpose. Rooster and I both decided the hype didn’t live up to the cost. Neither one of us liked the feeling of getting our pockets picked around every corner. The display of Barbies for sale was way too much.
We did manage to ride our fourth carousel in the year 2021. We spent an interesting two hours at the museum. The girls were unhappy about not getting dolls, and Rooster and I had sore feet. I was ready to leave. Overall, we enjoyed the experience. The adventure might have turned out better if we’d visited the large sports center behind the fence. It appears that is where the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis has decided to invest money. It makes sense to invest in outside attractions due to COVID. Still, I would have preferred to see the exhibits inside the building expanded.
Who is Molly Shea?
Molly Shea is an accomplished fictional short story writer from Indiana who writes short stories and novels about a fictional town called Tecumseh. To read more of her short stories and adventures, click here.
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