A nonprofit arts & culture organization  •  Nederland, CO  •  303.258.3457


Carousel to Offer Free Rides this Weekend in Memory of Mary Wingate

The Carousel of Happiness will celebrate “Mary Wingate Days” this weekend, Aug. 14-15, with free carousel rides for all. Carousel hours are 10 am to 5 pm on Saturday and Sunday, and local residents as well as visitors are encouraged to come by for a spin. The event honors Mary Quinlan Wingate, a life-long summer resident of Nederland who was known for her kindness and generosity to others. Wingate worked with the Town of Nederland during her lifetime to create …

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Adopt a Carousel Animal to Support the Carousel

The Carousel is offering a discount on new animal adoptions during the months of August and September. You can adopt your favorite Carousel animal for just $600 for the initial year (regularly $750) if you make your donation by Sept. 30th.  Those who have adopted an animal in the past can re-adopt their animal for $500 per year.  Animal adoptions are a terrific gift for a birthday, anniversary or wedding, as well as a special way to honor and remember …

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Carousel Named as Top 3 Spot to Take Kids

The Carousel of Happiness has been named the #3 Top Spot to take kids in and around Denver for 2021, by readers of Kids Out and About Denver.  The Carousel ranked immediately behind the dual powerhouses, Denver Zoo and Denver Museum of Nature and Science, which puts us in good company! (See the complete Top 20 list here.) Make plans to bring your family to the Carousel today!

The Wonder Project Comes to Life

Carousel visitors are in for a treat! Artist Scott Harrison has carved a new carousel animal – only the second new rideable animal to join the platform since the Carousel’s opening 11 years ago. What is it, you may wonder? A giant, glorious, blue butterfly. The butterfly will only be mountable by small children. But its wings will soar higher than the Bear bench at its side. The carving was inspired by a new novel, On Wings of Wonder, by …

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The Moose Wins Carousel Mayoral Campaign

With more than 1,400 votes cast in the Carousel’s spring mayoral election, The Moose swept to a decisive victory, winning 59 percent of the final tally. The Peacock and The Mermaid trailed with 24 percent and 17 percent, respectively.  Voting was heavy in the final weekend as supporters took to the streets with their campaigns. Team Moose campaigned with the slogan, “He won’t spin the news or the truth. He’ll work to keep the Carousel spinning.” Nederland Mayor Kris Larsen …

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Sweetheart Ride – Feb. 14

Bring your sweetheart to the Carousel of Happiness on Valentine’s Day for a special Sweetheart Ride… Buy one ticket and your “sweetheart” rides for free. We’ve hosted numerous weddings and proposals. Your visit could be the start of something special!

Kids “Safari” Offered by Beanstalk

Join Mr. Josh of Beanstalk.com on a special safari as he visits Nederland’s own Carousel of Happiness! Thanks to Beanstalk for providing this free, one-hour recorded program for kids ages 3-6. https://vimeo.com/506278475/64d97bc8e9  

Exclusive for the Holiday Season

The Carousel of Happiness is excited to share our 2020 Holiday Exclusive “Bundles of Joy,” curated and specially wrapped for the holidays! Access the items in our online store for local pickup or shipment to your home. If you are ordering a book package, you can specify whether you would like your book signed and personalized, by entering the name and message in the order notes during checkout.   “The Stockings Were Hung from the Chimney with Care” – $25 …

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Holiday Animal Adoption Special

The Carousel is pleased to offer a Holiday Animal Adoption Special through the end of 2020. For a $179 donation (paid before the end of the year), you can adopt a Carousel animal through the first quarter of 2021. You will receive an adoption certificate for your animal and a Carousel of Happiness T-shirt in orange or burgundy (please specify size and preferred color). An animal adoption makes a great gift for someone you love—and helps us keep the Carousel …

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Support the Carousel on Colorado Gives Day

Colorado Gives Day is coming up quickly, on Tuesday, Dec. 8th. Schedule your donation to the Carousel of Happiness today and help us reach our goal of $80,000 by the end of the year to keep the Carousel spinning for years to come. Colorado Gives Day is an annual statewide movement to celebrate and increase philanthropy in Colorado through online giving. Donations are accepted for qualified nonprofits through ColoradoGives.org. Carousel donors of $150 and above will receive access to view …

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Carousel of Spookiness

Celebrate Halloween with us at the Carousel of Spookiness! We are excited that Halloween falls on a Saturday this year and can’t wait to see you!! Our event will be a little different this year as the Carousel animals will not be able to dress in costume, so we are looking to our guests to get creative and come dressed for some spooky fun. Buy one ride, get one free for all who come dressed up for Halloween! Open regular …

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Historic Carousel Goat Rocker on Display

This carving is beyond unique! Its scale is seldom seen for a rocking horse, goat or anything else that rocks. The design for this goat dates to the very early 1900’s with Robert Muller, a German immigrant who studied as a young man at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. According to the authoritative website CarouselHistory.com, “ A sample of fine early 1900 carousel horse (mostly) carvings all attributed to the talented Daniel Carl Muller. Muller’s figures are understandably some …

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Grandparents Day

“Nobody can do for little children what grandparents do. Grandparents sort of sprinkle stardust over the lives of little children.” Happy Grandparents Day on Sunday, Sept. 13th! All you grandparents, come take a ride with your grandchildren…Grandparents ride free on Sunday. Sprinkle a little of your magic. Masks required 3 years of age and up. Don’t Delay Joy!

Enjoy the Fall Colors in Nederland

Make plans to stop by the Carousel of Happiness this fall and see the aspen changing colors along the Peak to Peak Scenic Highway. Nederland is a prime viewing area for fall colors, which usually peak in late September/early October. We plan to continue our summer schedule through the “leaf peeping” season so you can enjoy a ride on your favorite carousel animal while visiting the area.

Carousel Named Top 3 Family Favorite

The Carousel of Happiness has been named a Top 3 Family Favorite by Colorado Parent magazine. And, the recognition comes in two categories — Family Day Trip and Birthday Party Spot. Make plans to visit us today!

Adopt a Carousel Animal

As part of the Carousel’s 10th Anniversary Campaign, we are discounting Carousel animal adoptions to $600 per year if you adopt an animal by August 31st. And, if you have adopted an animal in the past, you can re-adopt for $500 per year. Animal adoptions include a brass plate with a custom inscription of your choice, which is displayed at the base of your animal. Animal adoptions are a terrific gift for a birthday, anniversary or wedding; as well as …

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National Carousel Day – July 25

Celebrate National Carousel Day with a ride on our unique, hand-carved carousel! Experience simple joy, while taking a step back in time to ride this 110-year-old, magical machine. Hours are 10 am-6 pm on Saturday, July 25–and rides are still only $2.   

Shop in our Expanded Online Store

The Carousel has launched an expanded online store to better serve carousel fans during the pandemic. The online store includes more than 40 items from the Carousel Gift Shop, ranging from books to T-shirts to ride tickets. Items can be shipped to your home or arranged to be picked up curbside. Visit www.carouselofhappiness.org/shop/ to peruse the online shelves. Or just click on “Shop” in the menu bar of our webpage. Thank you for supporting the Carousel of Happiness!  

Covid-19 Impact on the Carousel

As summer approaches and some areas of the U.S. are relaxing stay-at-home restrictions, the Carousel is starting to get questions about when we will reopen. We have compiled the following Q&A for our visitors and will update it periodically as more information becomes available. Is the Carousel closed? Yes. Unfortunately, the Carousel was closed to the public on March 12 and remains closed until further notice. The Carousel Board of Directors decided to take this proactive measure after Colorado’s governor …

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Community Band Organ Concerts

On April 26, the Carousel launched a series of band organ concerts for the Nederland community so that residents can enjoy the old familiar sounds of the carousel, and we can continue to share the joy during the Covid-19 pandemic while the carousel is closed. The concerts will take place on Sunday afternoons from 2 to 3 pm in the shopping center parking lot, and feature our 1913 Wurlitzer band organ playing assorted old-time music. Local residents are encouraged to …

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Celebrate Valentine’s Day with a ‘Sweetheart Ride’

Bring your sweetheart into the Carousel on Valentines’ Day for a special Sweetheart Ride from 4 to 7 pm. Buy one ticket and your “sweetheart” rides for free. We’ll have this sweet hand-painted Looff carousel frame for your photo opps and Valentine’s stickers for the kids all day on Feb. 14. What better way to say “I love you” than a ride on the Carousel of Happiness!  

Support the Carousel with your Colorado Tax Refund

Starting this year, Colorado taxpayers will be able to designate the Carousel of Happiness to receive a portion of their state income tax refund. It’s simple, it’s fast, and it allows you to support what matters to you! To make a donation to the Carousel of Happiness, you will need to enter our name and CCSA registration number, #20083006569, on your Colorado Tax Form 0104. Learn more about this new program supporting our state’s nonprofit organizations by visiting ReFUND Colorado. 

Santa at the Carousel – Dec. 22

Spend your holiday break with us! The Carousel will be open every day through Jan. 6, except for Christmas Day. And we’re expecting a visit from Santa on Sunday, Dec. 22, from 12 to 2 pm. Bring your Christmas lists and enjoy a ride on our Christmas carousel!

Pretend to be a Time Traveler Day – Dec. 8

Come dressed as a time traveler and celebrate this fun holiday at the Carousel on Sunday, Dec. 8th! Take a time traveler photo with one of your favorite Carousel animals and tag us on social media. We will randomly select a winner to receive a special Carousel surprise! Looking forward to celebrating Pretend to be a Time Traveler Day with you!    

Support the Carousel on Colorado Gives Day – Dec. 10

Help us raise $15,000 to go toward sustaining carousel operations and sharing happiness for many years to come! Colorado Gives Day offers an easy and secure way to support your favorite nonprofits online. And the funds are boosted by the Colorado First Foundation so your donation goes even further! To donate, visit www.coloradogives.org/CarouselofHappiness to support the Carousel on this widely celebrated day of philanthropy. No need to wait until Dec. 10 either, as donations can also be scheduled early.  Your …

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Thanksgiving Holiday Schedule

The Carousel will be open daily from 11 am to 6 pm for the Thanksgiving school holiday again this year, allowing area families with children out of school to enjoy their days off at the Carousel of Happiness. We are normally closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays during the winter, but we make an exception for school holiday breaks. That means we will be open Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, Nov. 25-27, as well as Friday, Nov. 29, to help make the …

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Carousel of Spookiness

Trick-or-treaters! Join us on Oct. 31, Halloween night for $2 spooky rides and trick or treat surprises from 4-7 pm. We’ll also be offering hot dogs from 5-7 pm for a donation to the carousel. Our animals will be in costume starting Oct. 24, so be sure to make the Carousel of Happiness part of your Halloween plans. 

Carousel Joins King Soopers’ Rewards Program

The Carousel is thrilled to have been accepted as a participant in the King Soopers Community Rewards Program! King Soopers has dedicated more than $2.5 million per quarter for participating registered nonprofits. Now you can support the carousel while buying groceries! ☺️ To use the King Soopers Community Rewards Program: 1. Log into your King Soopers or City Market account*       For King Soopers – go to http://www.kingsoopers.com/       For City Market – go to http://www.citymarket.com/  2. …

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Boulder County Kids 25th Anniversary Party

On Saturday, Sept. 28, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Boulder County Kids will celebrate its 25th anniversary at the Carousel of Happiness!  Stop in for cake, door prizes and free rides to celebrate this fantastic quarterly guide for children and families in Boulder County.

Carousel Voted Among Top 3 Places to Take Kids in Denver Area

The Carousel of Happiness has been voted one of the most favored places to take kids in the Denver area! We are thrilled to have been awarded a top spot in the recent Kids Out and About contest. Our visitors ranked us with top attractions such as the Denver Zoo and Denver Museum of Science. Click on the  link below to see the full list.  > See Kids Out and About Denver ranking

Private Filming Event – Saturday, June 22, 9-10 am

Help the Reel Inspired Media Film Crew as they capture footage of joyful faces riding the Carousel of Happiness for the upcoming documentary, Carving Joy, an Independent Film about Scott Harrison’s decades long journey to bring this amazing work of art to Nederland. **Please Note**All riders and guardians for minors will be required to sign a waiver, as footage may be used in the actual film, promotions and social media. Please RSVP to [email protected] if interested in attending this FREE …

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Save the Date: Animals After Dark Annual Gala

See the update at: https://www.carouselofhappiness.org/2019gala/ Save the Date for the “Animals After Dark” Annual Gala!  Saturday, Sept. 7, from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Carousel of Happiness. Check back for more information as the event nears. Hope to see you there!

10th Annual Memorial Day Event

12 pm – 1 pm,  Monday, May 27, 2019 Each year we recognize veterans on Memorial Day in a unique way. Visitors are asked to remember a fallen veteran with his or her name, time of passing, and a meaningful story. A child gives a flower to each veteran and family member. Taps is played by Army Band member and Iraq War veteran, Dennis Kerr. Then we offer veterans and their families a ride on the carousel to remember veteran …

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Community Memorial Bench Dedication Ceremony

Sunday, April 28 6 pm – 8 pm Join us for an evening of celebrating memories and sharing stories while experiencing our Community Memorial Bench for the first time. Inspired by Brandon Bryk, the Community Memorial Bench is dedicated not only to him, but to all of those within our community who we have loved and lost. *Donations to our Community Memorial Bench Fund are greatly appreciated! To make a donation, go to https://www.gofundme.com/community-memorial-bench  

Earth Day Celebration

Saturday, April 20 11 am – 6 pm Take a spin on your favorite carousel animal as we celebrate Earth Day! Carousel animal coloring page activities and our puppet theater give your little ones the opportunity to express their creativity and make some new friends. Don’t delay joy!                  

Carousel Plans Ride Price Increase

The Carousel is planning to increase its price to $2 per ride, effective April 4, with the additional funds going toward ensuring the long-term sustainability of the carousel in the community.  This will be the first time in nine years of operations that the non-profit organization has raised its price, even while administrative costs have risen steadily. We are particularly concerned about the potential need for costly repairs to our antique carousel and band organ, and are committed to developing …

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Carousel Launches Storytelling Booth

“The Story Catcher” is a new program offering that allows visitors to share their own unique stories with family and friends in our professional quality sound booth. It’s a great idea for special occasions, or any day of the year! Tell your stories to the next generation so they won’t be forgotten — or ask your kids about their dreams for the future. Sing a song, read a poem, whatever you like! > Learn more

Vote for the Carousel!

The Carousel is moving ahead to Round #2 in First Western Trust’s #WealthIsAboutGrants Contest. The contest gives us a chance to win $7,000 for the Carousel of Happiness. But first, we have to get out the vote! You and your friends can vote for us once each day until Nov. 27. Click here to vote in favor of our mission to inspire happiness, well-being and service to others through stories and experiences:  https://fwt.wishpond.com/boulder/wealthisabout/  —and do it once every day for …

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Online Auction to Support the Carousel

We’ve made our Night at the Carousel Silent Auction available online!   Check out it out at  www.auctria.com/auction/NightAtTheCarousel. There is a Purple Ukulele donated by Brightwood Music. You could bid on adopting the Pig for 3 years. Then there are the horseback riding lessons, gift certificates to restaurants and services, and jewelry by local artists.  We’ll ship to you, (unless it says otherwise and if shipping is over $10, you’ll need to pay it) but it could be worth it!  

Black Tie: Night at the Carousel- Oct. 14, 2017

A Black Tie (Ned Style) Event to raise money for the Carousel of Happiness Saturday, October 14, 2017 7:00pm – 10:00pm Tickets – $35 Silent Auction, Wine & Beer, Appetizers! Purchase Tickets See You There! But…  if you can’t come you can still take part in our Online Auction live now! We will ship items to you if you can’t pick them up. (if it is over $10 you will need to pay shipping).  Bid on an item or buy outright using …

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Wild Earth Weekend 4/22 – 4/23

This weekend the Carousel of Happiness will be celebrating Wild Earth Weekend with our next door neighbor Wild Bear Nature Center. Once again, a portion of the proceeds from Carousel rides, all weekend, will go to Wild Bear to support their amazing programs. Get the whole schedule here.

Fundraiser & Reception for Eli & Zparkler

The Carousel of Happiness is celebrating that two of its most lovable celebrities have eloped!  Miss Zparkler, the alpaca and Eli Phant Jr., the elephant, were married at the Justice of the Peacetime sometime in June.   To mark the exciting occasion, the parents, Mr. and Mrs. Al Paca and Mr. and Mrs. Eli Phant Sr. are inviting all to a Ned-style black tie reception and Carousel fundraiser at the Carousel of Happiness, Saturday, July 23, from 7 to 1 …

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7th Annual Memorial Day Ceremony 5/29

The first official ride for the Carousel of Happiness, 7 years ago, was a silent ride in memory of 2 marines and an experience that would inspire Scott Harrison, U.S.M.C. (1966 – 1972) to create a menagerie of whimsical animals and restore a carousel for everyone to enjoy. Every year on Memorial Day the community of Nederland gathers, with Mr. Harrison, at the Carousel of Happiness to remember those who died serving in the armed forces around the world, in …

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A New Book! The Story of the Carousel

“Don’t Delay Joy, the story of the Carousel of Happiness” is the most in-depth narrative of the creation of the carousel yet published. The story starts in Salt Lake City, Utah in 1893 and continues to present day, introducing the key players who made the carousel happen: the designer, the engineer, the collector, the artist. Primarily you get to know the carver, visionary and primary mover behind the carousel, Scott Harrison. Told through poems, songs, stories and pictures, “Don’t Delay …

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Happy New Year!!

The Carousel is Turning 5 and Writing a Book Read all about it in the latest newsletter

The Carousel is Turning 5 and Writing a Book

This coming Memorial Day the Carousel will be celebrating 5 years. To mark this event we’ll have souvenir tickets, fun new gift shop merchandise and ‘the book’. A local author, and one of the people instrumental in bringing the Carousel to life, is writing the story of our Carousel. The book will cover its beginnings as a new Looff Carousel built for the Saltair Amusement Park, its journey to Nederland and include Scott’s story. The book will be available online …

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Last ride of the day at 4:45pm

Call (303) 258-3457 for more information


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We are a 501c3 Arts and Culture organization on a mission to promote happiness, well-being, and service to others through stories and experiences.  Your donation today will keep us spinning for another year!