Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum ~ a must-see for carousel lovers!

Love carousels? Then you need to check out the Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum. It features a fully-restored Allan Herschell carousel and the admission cost includes a ride!

Love carousels? Then you need to check out the Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum. It features a fully-restored Allan Herschell carousel and the admission cost includes a ride!

 

This year’s Mother’s Day camping trip at East Harbor didn’t get off to the best start due to some ferry restrictions that left us unable to take our car out to South Bass Island.  We had intended to spend the day exploring Put-In-Bay, but instead had to scramble to find other things to do.  My mood brightened considerably when I learned about the carousel horse museum in Sandusky.

My favorite things to visit in our travels are lighthouses, waterfalls, national parks, and carousels.  Throw in a location that has pressed pennies, and I am a pretty happy girl.  So the Sandusky Ohio Merry-Go-Round Museum definitely helped salvage our trip.

About the Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum

The Sandusky carousel museum is housed in a round building that used to be the Post Office.

The carousel museum is located in the heart of downtown Sandusky just a few blocks from the Lake Erie shore.  The museum is housed in the old Sandusky Post Office, which is on the National Register of Historic Buildings.  The building is a unique piece of architecture that has a round entrance with several columns.

Ride a fully-restored Allan Herschell carousel

The fully-restored Allan Herschell carousel is the star of the Merry Go Round Museum in Sandusky, Ohio.

The star attraction at the Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum is a fully-restored Allan Herschell carousel.   It is the first thing you see as you look into the museum from the ticket booth.

Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum wooden nickel - good for a ride on their restored Allan Herschell carousel.

After you pay for your admission, you are given a wooden nickel which is good for a ride on the carousel.  I collect wooden nickels that I find on our geocaching adventures, so I decided to forego the ride and keep mine.  It was better that way as I got to take pictures of Kevin and the kids!

The Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum has a carousel full of unusual creatures including a frog, an ostrich, and WIlbur from Charlotte's Web.

Although the carousel has plenty of traditional horses, there are several unusual animals as well.  My middle daughter immediately went for the frog.  My youngest daughter chose the ostrich.

The unusual carousel animals at the Merry Go Round Museum in Sandusky, Ohio include the pig from Charlotte's Web and a sea monster.

Those weren’t the only unusual carousel animals though.  The carousel also had the pig from Charlotte’s Web and a sea monster that you could choose for your ride.

I was shocked at how fast the carousel went around.  A friendly museum employee informed us that the Merry Go Round Museum carousel goes around at twice the speed of a normal carousel!

Other Carousel Museum Exhibits

Rabbit carousel figure at the Sandusky Merry Go Round Museum.

Although the carousel is the centerpiece, there are plenty of other exhibits to check out at the carousel museum in Sandusky.  The museum foundation actively restores antique carousel horses and there are quite a lot of them on display.

Carousel horse stained glass that is on exhibit at the Sandusky carousel museum

In addition to the unique carousel figures, there is a wealth of carousel artwork lining the walls, including this beautiful piece of stained glass.

Dentzel shop carving tools at the Sandusky Ohio merry go round museum

The museum also houses an exhibit featuring Dentzel shop carving tools.  Gustav Dentzel was an early American carousel builder based in Philadelphia.

A set of 4 carousel horse postage stamps sparked the idea for the Sandusky Merry Go Round Museum.

Also on display is artwork depicting the carousel postage stamps that sparked the idea for the museum.  In October of 1988, the U.S. Postal Service issued four carousel stamps.  One of the carousel horses depicted was the King Horse from the nearby Cedar Point’s Kiddieland carousel. To celebrate the first day issue, a group of local residents put together a carousel display in the vacant post office building.  That celebration was a huge success and it sparked plans for the creation of a permanent carousel museum.  The old post office building was purchased and the Merry Go Round museum opened its doors in July of 1990.

We were told that the exhibits change about every 2 years.  So if you haven’t visited the Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum recently, there’s a good chance things will look completely different.

See a hand carved wooden carousel horse take shape

See a hand carved wooden carousel horse in progress at the Sandusky carousel museum

The Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum also has a unique exhibit.  In one corner of the museum, you can actually watch a carousel horse carver in action.  He was a friendly man who was happy to answer all our questions.

You could tell the carver was really passionate about carousel horses.  He informed us that a basic hand-carved wooden carousel horse takes about 400 hours to complete.  A more intricate design can take 1000+ hours to complete!

Plan your visit to the Sandusky carousel museum

Everything you need to know for planning your visit to the carousel museum in Sandusky, Ohio

Merry Go Round Museum Hours:

During the off-season, the Merry Go Round Museum is open 11 am to 4 pm on Saturdays and 12 pm to 4 pm on Sundays.  From Memorial Day to Labor Day, the museum is open Monday through Saturday 10 am to 4 pm and 12 pm to 4 pm on Sundays.

The carousel museum is closed during the month of January – which is probably a good thing because it is super cold and snowy on the lake in January!

Merry Go Round Museum Admission:

At the time of our visit, admission to the Merry Go Round Museum was $6 a person.  Senior citizens can get in for $5 and children between the ages of 4 and 14 can visit for $4.  Children under the age of 4 are free.  The price includes a ride on the carousel.

To learn more about planning a visit to the Sandusky carousel museum, be sure to check out their website.

Merry Go Round Museum Pressed Pennies

Love carousel horse pressed pennies? There are 4 Merry Go Round Museum Pressed Pennies available at this fun tourist attraction in Sandusky, Ohio.

If you love to collect smashed pennies, the Sandusky carousel museum has two machines, with a total of 4 elongated penny designs.  Be sure to check out my information on the Sandusky Merry Go Round Museum pressed pennies.

Love carousels?  Check out these great books…

Carousel Horses: A Photographic CelebrationCarousel Horses: A Photographic CelebrationCarousel Horses: A Photographic CelebrationCarousel Horse CarvingCarousel Horse CarvingCarousel Horse CarvingCarousel - Coloring Book for AdultsCarousel – Coloring Book for AdultsCarousel - Coloring Book for Adults

Pin this Sandusky Merry Go Round Museum post for later:

Love carousels? Then you need to check out the Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum. It features a fully-restored Allan Herschell carousel and the admission cost includes a ride!

While you are here, be sure to read about the rest of our adventures on Ohio’s Lake Erie shores and islands.

So tell us…  Have you ever visited the Sandusky Ohio Merry Go Round Museum?  How did you like it?  Be sure to leave a comment below.  We would love to hear from you!

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