Who’s ready for the fair?

The Western Montana Fair returns to Missoula next week, and at 9 and 11 years old, my kids have high hopes that this year they will be big enough to ride all the rides. They’re already plotting a plan to spend an entire day at the fair riding all the rides, seeing all the exhibits and of course, eating all the food.

This morning I got an email concerning one food vendor in particular. I’m copying it below in its entirety so you too can include it in your fair planning:

BASKIN-ROBBINS AND A CAROUSEL FOR MISSOULA TEAM UP AT THE FAIR!

Continuing a tradition started in 2012, A Carousel for Missoula will be a food vendor at the Western Montana Fair.  From August 9-14, volunteers from the Carousel will join with staff from Baskin-Robbins Ice Cream to sell Baskin-Robbins ice cream scoops, milkshakes, Cappuccino Blasts, Root Beer Floats, Iced Lattes, Homemade Waffle Cones, Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches, and more.  The location of the new Baskin-Robbins trailer will be on the East end of the food concession midway.

A Carousel for Missoula and Missoula’s locally-owned Baskin-Robbins have been partners since before the Carousel’s inception in 1995, through birthday parties, donations, and sponsorships.  As always, Baskin-Robbins will donate a percentage of their sales at the Western Montana Fair to A Carousel for Missoula, in addition to their 17% contribution to the Western Montana Fair.

A Carousel for Missoula invites all carousel supporters and ice cream lovers to stop by the Carousel’s ice cream trailer at this year’s fair; Support a Carousel for Missoula by buying some of the world’s greatest ice cream!

ABOUT A CAROUSEL FOR MISSOULA

Built to provide the community of Missoula a new option for good, old-fashioned fun, the Carousel continues to entertain children (and adults) in Missoula with rides on the beautifully-crafted horses, as well as with family-friendly events.  Whether helping children celebrate their special day or seeing families come together for a little playtime, A Carousel for Missoula is happy to be a strong part of Missoula’s rich history.

ABOUT BASKIN-ROBBINS

Baskin-Robbins was founded in 1945 by two ice cream enthusiasts (and brothers-in-law) whose passion led to the creation of more than 1,200 ice cream flavors and a wide variety of delicious treats.  In Missoula, Baskin-Robbins has been owned by Big Sky High School and University of Montana graduate Matt Loomis, along with David and Beverly Loomis, since 2001.  Each year, thousands of dollars and hundreds of volunteer hours are given back to Missoula nonprofits.

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Thankful for free carousel rides

The days surrounding Thanksgiving are usually slow ones for me at the office, so a message from Theresa Cox, executive director of A Carousel for Missoula, stood out when it landed in my inbox this morning.

It says that the carousel will be up and running on Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. – and that during that time, all rides are free!

Oh, and just so you don’t think the anyone is being made to work when they’d rather be at home with their families: the carousel will be staffed entirely by volunteers.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Missoula Carousel collecting items for silent auction

There are many ways to support A Carousel for Missoula. One way – the most fun way – is by riding the carousel a lot. Introduce it to out-of-town visitors, spent time with friends and family there, plan birthday parties at the carousel.

Another fun way to support the carousel is coming up next month, on Sept. 19, when the carousel will “celebrate its 19th year of going in circles” with a benefit dinner.

Sponsored by Missoula Textile Services, the dinner will start at 6 p.m. in the Caras Park pavilion and include entertainment provided by Headwaters, food provided by Taco Sano and a bar provided by the Badlander.

The dinner will also include a silent auction – but first, the carousel needs some items to put in the auction. Which brings up yet another fun way to support the carousel.

Clean out those basements, attics and storage units and if you find anything that would make a good donation item, give Carousel Director Theresa Cox a call at 549-8382 or send an email to ponykeepr@gmail.com.

You can also call that same number – or just stop by the Carousel – for tickets to the dinner; $10 for kids and $20 for adults.

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Not even the Carousel

We’re having a real blizzard. The schools are closed, many roads are closed and – and a sign things are really truly serious outside – even A Carousel For Missoula is closed.

Usually when we have a day off of school we spend some time down at the carousel. Since our short road is completely impassable, I’m glad I can tell the kids there’s no use in trying to get out.

Here’s the short note Theresa Cox (executive director of the carousel) sent out early this morning:

Good morning, all:

For those of you who are able to let people know of immediate happenings, please let them know the Carousel will not be open today, Friday, Feb. 28. If the weather is too bad for people to go to school, it’s too bad for them to risk a trip to the Carousel.
Thank you,
Theresa

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A Christmas present from the Carousel: free rides!

Theresa Cox, executive director of A Carousel for Missoula, just sent out the news that the Carousel will be offering free rides on Christmas Day – that’s tomorrow, folks! – from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. as its “Christmas gift to the community.”

 

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Thanksgiving Day plans go ’round and ’round

That’s right! A Carousel for Missoula is OPEN on Thanksgiving! And from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., rides are free for everyone!

 

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Make Children’s Museum part of post Turkey Day plans PLUS a great gift idea for kids: all-day pass to Museum, Carousel

There’s no school on Thanksgiving, or the day after. Thanksgiving Day might be taken care of, but what to do with the kids on Friday?

Well, the Children’s Museum will be hosting a holiday open house, with free admission from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. That’s one idea, and thanks go to the Plum Creek Foundation for making it possible.

Another reason to stop by the Children’s Museum might be to pick up an all day pass or two for the little ones on your holiday shopping list.

Both the Children’s Museum and A Carousel for Missoula are offering the Play All Day Pass, which comes in the form of a $7 wristband. It gets the wearer unlimited rides on the carousel for one day plus admission to the museum.

The carousel and the Children’s Museum are located just across a parking lot from each other, so the pairing makes sense on a number of levels. You can buy the passes at either venue.

“Kids love the carousel and they love the museum!” Children’s Museum manager Heidi Kendall said. “Since we’re so close together in downtown Missoula, we thought it would be a great way to make it extra easy for families to enjoy both attractions at once! Happy holidays, Missoula!”

 

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Ride-a-Thon this week at A Carousel for Missoula

November, where have you gone?

I’d meant to post something before today’s big Griz for Kids Toy Drive – in which folks are asked to bring a toy to donate at Washington-Grizzly Stadium during the Griz football game against Weber State.

The toys will be given to local nonprofits like Youth Homes to hand out to kids as Christmas presents.

I may be late on that post but I’m not going to let this one get away from me: the upcoming Ride-a-Thon at A Carousel for Missoula. That’s happening on Nov. 20 starting at 5:30 p.m.

It’s the first time the Carousel’s directors have hosted this kind of event. They’re asking 30 riders to saddle up and ride until each has raised at least $200. The money will be used to support the Carousel and the adjacent Dragon Hollow playground.

Folks are invited to come and watch and cheer – or better yet, to make a donation or offer a pledge. To call in a pledge, the number is 549-8382. To fill out a donation form, go to http://carouselformissoula.com/shop/ride-thon-donation/.

“In addition to our everyday operations, for which we are best-known, the Foundation also maintains Dragon Hollow at its expense, provides more than 10,000 free tokens each year to agencies providing direct services to disadvantaged children and youth, and welcomes anyone with a physical or mental disability to ride free at any time,” says Theresa Cox, executive director of the Carousel, in a news release announcing the Ride-a-Thon. “The Carousel provides free or low-cost entertainment by hosting a Fairy Tale and Super Hero Festival in July, which is free to all participants; Haunted Hollow in October and Santa’s Breakfast in December, at very low cost to attendees.

“We support 75% of our annual budget through operations, but to keep ride prices low and accessible to all, we engage in numerous fundraising activities throughout the year. The Ride-a-Thon is a fun way for local celebrities and other Carousel fans to encourage the public to support to these beloved community landmarks.”

 

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Take a flashlight tour through ‘Haunted Hollow’

This Thursday, Oct. 18, the little playground in downtown Missoula will be haunted.
How do I know? A Carousel for Missoula told me so. In fact, they’re looking for volunteers to help with the haunting.
That involves turning Dragon Hollow into Haunted Hollow and giving guided flashlight tours through spooky mad science labs, an obstacle course and a dragon’s lair (apparently the dragons of Dragon Hollow are sticking around for this!).
The transformation promises to be good fun, and it’s for a good cause – a fundraiser for A Carousel for Missoula. Kids 12 and younger can get in for $4 and older kids can check it out for $6.
The haunted flashlight tours will take place on Oct. 18-20, and Oct. 25-29. Each evening will be broken into two segments, with the earlier one (from 6-8 p.m.) offering a less-spooky version of Haunted Hollow for younger kiddos to enjoy, and the later time (from 8-10 p.m.) getting full-on scary!
Interested in volunteering to help out? Call volunteer coordinator Ray Davis at 523-9803.
For more information about A Carousel for Missoula, go to www.carouselformissoula.com or call 549-8382.

This Thursday, Oct. 18, the little playground in downtown Missoula will be haunted.

How do I know? A Carousel for Missoula told me so. In fact, they’re looking for volunteers to help with the haunting.

That involves turning Dragon Hollow into Haunted Hollow and giving guided flashlight tours through spooky mad science labs, an obstacle course and a dragon’s lair (apparently the dragons of Dragon Hollow are sticking around for this!).

The transformation promises to be good fun, and it’s for a good cause – a fundraiser for A Carousel for Missoula. Kids 12 and younger can get in for $4 and older kids can check it out for $6.

The haunted flashlight tours will take place on Oct. 18-20, and Oct. 25-29. Each evening will be broken into two segments, with the earlier one (from 6-8 p.m.) offering a less-spooky version of Haunted Hollow for younger kiddos to enjoy, and the later time (from 8-10 p.m.) getting full-on scary!

Interested in volunteering to help out? Call volunteer coordinator Ray Davis at 523-9803.

For more information about A Carousel for Missoula, go to www.carouselformissoula.com or call 549-8382.

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Free carousel rides in Missoula all day Saturday

Here’s the press release from A Carousel for Missoula:

Happy Birthday to the Carousel, Dragon Hollow AND YOU!

A Carousel for Missoula is celebrating its 17th birthday, and the 11th birthday of Dragon Hollow Playarea, by giving free rides to all this Saturday, May 26, from 11am to 7pm.

Each year, the Carousel gives free rides on Kids’ Day, the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, to memorialize the wonderful gifts this community gave to itself by creating the Carousel and Dragon Hollow. The free rides are a thank you for the support and generosity enjoyed by these two community-built treasures.

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