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King Arthur Carrousel

To a degree, King Arthur Carrousel actually predates Disneyland. The core structure of the carousel was built in 1876, though many pieces were changed or replaced over the years before Walt Disney purchased it for installation at Disneyland in 1955. Aware of the competition for the "best" horse on a merry-go-round, King Arthur Carrousel is designed with white horses all around so that everybody can be on the "best." Around the interior of the carrousel are images from Sleeping Beauty. The easy accessibility of the ride means that if you're lucky, you may find yourself riding with one of the characters that wander Fantasyland.

General Information - Hide Section
  • Location: Right behind Sleeping Beauty Castle as you enter Fantasyland from Main Street.
  • Date Opened: 7/17/1955
  • # of Ride Units: 68 horses and one bench.
  • Ride Capacity: With parents standing next to riding children, the number of people on each ride can approach 100, give the ride a capacity of more than 1,200 people per hour.
  • Restraint Method: Seatbelt
  • Ticket Rating: A Ticket
  • Ride Photo: No
 
Time Commitment Information - Hide Section
  • Open/Close: Opens and closes with the park. Open during Magic Mornings. Closed during fireworks.
  • Wait Times: It is extremely unusual to have to wait more than two cycles before getting onto the carrousel, about 5 minutes.
  • Length of Ride: 2 minutes
  • FastPass: No
  • Single Rider: No
  • Queue Description: No real themed queue, just a corral that wraps around the attraction.
Access Information - Hide Section
  • Health Restriction: Should be safe for all health conditions.
  • Ride Access: There is a wheelchair ramp to the left of the regular entrance, do not wait at the exit. The attraction only will accommodate one chair at a time. Guests may remain in their chair on the carousel with the exception of a park-rented ECV.
  • Wheelchair Transfer: It is not necessary to transfer and the carrousel can accommodate two wheelchairs or ECVs per trip.
  • Service Animals: Yes
  • Audio: No assistive devices are available and sound only plays an atmospheric role in the attraction.
  • Weight and Size Issues: The horses on the carrousel are very strong and should be able to accommodate just about anybody. If you are uncertain feel free to speak to a cast member, simply stand next to a horse, or take one of the bench seats.
Parenting Information - Hide Section
  • Height Restriction: No
  • Child Swap: No
  • Other Issues: All children should use the seatbelts provided at each horse, and small children should be accompanied by a standing adult.
History and Trivia - Hide Section
  • At this location: The carrousel has been here since the park opened in 1955, though it was moved several feet towards the back of Fantasyland during the 1984 redesign of Fantasyland.
  • This attraction's history: The carrousel platform and mechanism was built in 1921 by Dentzel Carrousels and was installed at Sunnyside Park in Toronto, Canada. Disney purchased it from that park and moved it to Disneyland during the park's construction in 1954. The original carrousel contained many creatures, not just horses, as well as train cars. The train cars were removed and used in the Casey Jr. Circus Train attraction. Walt Disney wanted the carrousel to consist entirely of horses and purchased them from various locations, mostly from a Coney Island amusement park and a fourth ring of horses was added. In the original carrousel, not all the horses were "jumpers" and their legs were removed and reattached to convert them into a jumping position.

    In the original configuration there were 72 horses of various colors. The single white horse proved very popular and in 1976 all the horses were repainted to be white as well.

    Once it got started and the full extend of deterioration was found, a 2003 refurbishment expanded to almost completely rebuild the carrousel. As part of that refurbishment, scenes from Sleeping Beauty were added to the inside ring, one row of horses was removed so that a bench and wheelchair access could be added, and a new computer control system was installed to ensure the ride would stop where in exactly the same position as it began, allowing for the addition of a wheelchair ramp.

    On April 8, 2008, the lead horse on the carrousel, "Jingles," was dedicated to Disney Legend Julie Andrews in a morning ceremony. In preparation for the dedication, Jingles was decorated with elements appropriate to Andrews' Disney career.
  • Other Trivia:
    • 50 Years: As part of Disneyland's 50th Anniversary, ride vehicles for most of the original 1955 attractions were painted gold, for King Arthur's Carrousel it was the lead horse, Jingles, that was painted.
    • Symbols of Dedication: To represent that Jingles is a horse that has been dedicated to Julie Andrews, several changes were main in the decorations and paint job. On the saddle and saddle blanket were added the letters JA, an umbrella, a 50 (representing her work as the ambassador for the park's 50th Anniversary celebration), and a silhouette of Mary Poppins. Also, Jingles hooves have been painted gold.
Links of Interest - Hide Section
MousePlanet Links
  • Carrousel Rededication Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix looks at the carrousel at its re-dedication following a full refurbishment in 2003.
  • Jingles for Julie Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix's coverage of the dedication of Jingles to the Disney career of Julie Andrews.

Offsite Links (we can not vouch for their accuracy or timeliness)


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