The event was so well received that it will take place again this year on Friday, August 9, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. You can have unlimited rides on our historic landmark for $10 or enjoy individual rides for $3. There will be face-painting and other entertainment for the children and raffles and prizes.
The event was the brainchild of Carol Lacks of Kew Gardens. The Forest Park Carousel has been a constant in her life. She's been a regular visitor and was very good friends with the late Marvin Sylvor, who managed the renovation of the carousel in the early 90s.
Lacks was thrilled when she heard the news that the Forest Park Carousel was back in business and made certain that she visited during its opening weekend.
At the same time, Lacks had been looking for ways to help raise money and awareness for the Alzheimer’s Association New York City Chapter. Her mother, Rose, has been living with Vascular Dementia since a stroke in 2003, and Lacks had recently begun doing volunteer work for the association.
While standing on line to ride the carousel, Lacks made a connection between the music that was playing and the devastating disease that strikes one in every eight elderly Americans. "Music is one of the last things that a person with dementia is able to hold onto," she explains. "There are so many centers of the human brain that are music-related."
An idea began to form. She reached out to Ami Abramson of NY Carousel Entertainment to broach the idea of holding a fundraiser there. "When I called Ami on the phone and told him what I wanted to do, right away he said 'Sure, let's do it,'" Lacks said.
"We have several fantastic supporters, volunteers and advocates in the community who take the initiative to put together and host events that raise awareness and funds for our cause," Candace Douglas, constituent events associate at the New York City Chapter, told us last year. "On average, there are approximately ten of these events each year. If someone wants to put together an event to fundraiser for our chapter, they can contact Sharon Lee at email@example.com."
In addition to raising money, this event will also provide you with an opportunity to learn more about the Alzheimer’s Association. There will be experts on hand to discuss the many ways that they provide assistance and support to patients, caregivers and professionals throughout the five boroughs of New York City.
Among the many programs sponsored by the New York Chapter you will find a 24-hour Helpline, Support Groups for Caregivers and Early Stage People, training and education for professionals, and a MedicAlert + Safe Return Program that helps locate patients who get lost.
"The money raised by this event will support the many programs and services that are offered by the Alzheimer’s Association at no cost to all New Yorkers, as well as funding vital research to fight and cure this devastating disease," Douglas explained.
There are plenty of people out there that love the Forest Park Carousel. Chances are that most of you know someone impacted by this disease. Perhaps, like Carol Lacks, someone very close to you is suffering from it. This is a wonderful opportunity to enjoy yourself and help an organization that works tirelessly to ease that suffering.
If you are unable to attend the event, but still wish to offer support to the fundraiser, you can always visit www.alznyc.org/carousel to make a donation.