- This event has passed.
Aug 30, 2013 @ 10:30 am - 6:30 pm
This summer, Fête Paradiso, the world’s first traveling festival of vintage carnival rides and carousels, will make its American debut on Governors Island in New York City. The rare, museum-quality collection, which includes a diverse array of attractions from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, such as carousels, flying swings and a pipe organ, will be available for the public to ride and enjoy every weekend from July 6 – September 29.
The extraordinary festival of artisan-crafted, vintage carousels and carnival rides – like a French film miraculously come to life – is the first of its kind to appear in the United States. Among the attractions, which come from the collections of Francis Staub and Regis Masclet, is a bicycle carousel from the late 19th century – one of only two in the world that were created in Paris to encourage the use of what was then the new mode of transportation – the bicycle. (The only other bicycle carousel can be seen in the feature film Midnight in Paris.) Fête Paradiso will also include an early 20th century Music-Hall Ball Guzzler, a carnival game that features life-size caricatures of Josephine Baker, Charlie Chaplin and other celebrities of the time.
To further enhance the nostalgic, dreamlike experience, a bumper car pavilion from 1900 has been transformed into a beer garden and special event space, and food reminiscent of a French carnival will be served by New York’s legendary French bistro Le Gamin. In addition, a 1930 children’s carousel has been repurposed into a music kiosk, where performers will entertain visitors with period music and side show performances to heighten the Fellini-inspired environment.
All of Fête Paradiso’s historic amusements will be painstakingly constructed by a French family of artisans who specialize in repairing and constructing museum-quality carousels. The group has been flown to New York to build the attraction, which will be enjoyed by visitors of all ages.