Press Release: Waveland, Mississippi gets the Carousel of the Olympic Sea
Date: August 17, 2007
Re: Port Townsend Carousel Association Donation
Contact Person: Bill Dentzel 360-531-2812 or firstname.lastname@example.org
John Thomas Longo, mayor of Waveland, Mississippi, adjacent to Bay Saint Louis, has informed Bill Dentzel, President of the Port Townsend Carousel Association, that their community will officially receive the donation of the Carousel of the Olympic Sea. The Port Townsend, Washington/Bay Saint Louis, Mississippi Sister City [Katrina Relief] Project and Ruth Thompson, Hancock County Chamber of Commerce Arts Recovery Coordinator activated this community connection. In 1984 a group of Port Townsendites formed the PTCA as a non-profit corporation to teach carousel history and build a carousel locally with students and volunteers. From 1991 to 2001 the carousel was made and painted in Port Townsend School District classes ranging from the Vocational Education Department at the high school to the elementary schools.
Several times during the 90’s the carousel was operated inside the Festival of Wooden Boats; for the summer of 2000 the PTCA operated the Sausalito Carousel, sister to the Carousel of the Olympic Sea, inside Pope Marine Park. The City of Port Townsend decided it did not want that park used for this service and curtailed the establishment of the carousel there. Shortly after this notice the Sausalito Carousel was sold and the Carousel of the Olympic Sea was put away. After seven sad storage locker years with no local site identified, the PTCA launched a nationwide appeal seeking an appropriate recipient for this historic antique style “flying horses” carousel.
For eight years Bill Dentzel did carousel work with high school shop students as a teaching assistant for the late and legendary Jim Toyne, and Jim Guthrie. The carousel was painted throughout classrooms from Kindergarten to the 12th grade. The Woodring College of Education honored Dentzel for this work with their Excellence in Education award. Many of the students that worked with this project are now adults with children of their own. All donor names will remain on the carousel’s identification placard; the city of Waveland has also agreed to preserve the name of the carousel. With the reconstruction and recovery work in their city a carousel housing will be prepared. Some new sponsors, from Port Townsend or Waveland, can still come onboard as several animals and other components remain unsponsored (visit http://www.dentzel.com/cos/ptcah-2.htm ). Any money received from now on will go toward getting the carousel completely finished and properly set-up in its new Waveland home. The PTCA is a federally recognized 501c-3 non-profit corporation; all donations are tax deductible.
Port Townsend children can still ride Dentzel’s Galloping Buffalo located inside of Elevated Ice Cream. His original dream was to have an operating carousel and an antique carousel museum in the same place. Although neither occurred in Port Townsend; during the past several years Dentzel has been working with the city of Albany, Oregon to establish the Dentzel American Carousel Museum, now open. With the Carousel of the Olympic Sea operating in Waveland the essence of the dream will actually come true. Visit http://www.dentzel.com/census.htm for a look at other Dentzel carousel projects; if you would like to participate in this carousel relocation contact Bill Dentzel (360-531-2812). The Bay Saint Louis/Port Townsend Sister City Project continues to send volunteers and other assistance to our friends in Bay Saint Louis, Mississippi. If you have an interest in volunteering or contributing to this work, please contact Carla Main (360-344-4163) or Judy Alexander (360-385- 5794).
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