Round & Round: The Rebirth of the Dentzel Carousel - Atlas Obscura
Win $15,000 for a once-in-a-lifetime experience »

Glen Echo, Maryland

Round & Round: The Rebirth of the Dentzel Carousel

A behind-the-scenes tour of Dentzel Carousel and Glen Echo Park's grounds with the National Carousel Association and a National Park Service Ranger.

The National Carousel Association says the Dentzel Carousel is one of the best-restored carousels in the country

Opened in 1891 as the National Chautauqua AssemblyGlen Echo Park evolved from an educational retreat to an amusement park—complete with bumper cars, a shooting gallery, and a Spanish ballroom—until its closing in 1968. The last of the operational rides is the Dentzel Carousel. Built in 1921 by the Dentzel Carousel Company of Germantown, Pennsylvania, this Philadelphia-style deluxe menagerie carousel features horses, rabbits, ostriches, chariots, and even a brass ring (if a rider managed to grab the ring they won a free ride). 

We will be joined by a National Park Service Ranger who will illuminate the remnants of the amusement park and share how the park and carousel served as a Civil Rights protest site in 1960. Then, historian and co-founder of the National Carousel Association Barbara Fahs Charles will discuss the creation and 20-year-long restoration of the Dentzel Carousel.  

Afterward, guests will be treated to a group ride and a small picnic!


  • The ticket price includes carousel admission, a small picnic and a donation to the National Park Service.
  • The park is accessible via car and bus
  • Check-in will commence outside the Cuddle Up Pavilion.
  • The majority of the tour will take place outside; please dress accordingly.
  • This is a family-friendly adventure! All kids 9 and under are free when accompanied by an adult!
  • If you are bringing a small child, please email us prior so we can have an accurate count.


Contact Julie Seigel at

Add wonder to your inbox! Sign up for Atlas Obscura newsletters and join our Atlas Obscura Society D.C. Facebook group to discover unexpected stories, amazing places, and remarkable events and trips around the world. 

Advance tickets only. All sales final. No refunds or exchanges.