The Niagara Parks Commission would like people to do more than just drive past the Festival of Lights exhibits. In an effort to expand their list of winter activities and try to get tourists to spend time outside of their cars, the commission has installed a carnival-type vintage carousel to anchor what it’s calling Victorian Candy Land.
“It allows people to not only stay in their cars, but get out and experience more of the parks up close. It’s about turning the park into a four-seasons destination,” said NPC director of communications Tony Baldinelli.
The vintage carousel, which was installed Thursday and will open to the public Saturday, is located in front of the Edgewater Tap & Grill at the bottom of Murray Hill. Rides on the carousel will be $3, and there will also be an open fire nearby where families can make their own s’mores. The carousel will be open until Jan. 8.
Baldinelli said “it’s all part of expanding the commission’s enhancement of the opportunities in the Winter Festival of Lights.” The NPC was a founding partner in the festival when it started 29 years ago.
The carousel could be somewhat controversial to some who think the commission should be focused on the natural aspect of the falls, but Baldinelli said it’s a family-oriented, winter-only attraction.
“Everything we do is a balance between our commercial operations and what we do as stewards over the lands that we protect. With the Winter Festival of Lights, it’s something we’re doing for families and for children,” he said.