Six Facts About the Prince Charming Regal Carrousel
There is something magical about a carousel. No matter your age, you can feel young again simply by taking a spin on a carousel horse and losing yourself to the organ music. Add the magic of Disney and you have something altogether more wondrous.
The Prince Charming Regal Carrousel sits at the heart of Fantasyland in the Magic Kingdom. It was one of the original Attractions at the park, but had already lived a long life before arriving at Walt Disney World. Here’s a quick look at the Attraction’s history.
In a sense, the entire history of the Disney park system can be tied to a merry-go-round (a term more or less interchangeable with carousel. There’s some debate about the difference between the two, with some suggesting that European carousels go counterclockwise, while American merry-go-rounds spin clockwise. Others suggest that the difference is the type of animal on each, with a merry-go-round hosting many kinds of animals while a carousel simply has horses. Neither of these are hard and fast rules and exceptions can be found.) While watching his daughters ride on a merry-go-round at Griffith Park in Los Angeles, he came up with the idea for Disneyland.
The Philadelphia Toboggan Company
One of the oldest roller coaster companies in the world, the Philadelphia Toboggan Company built what would become the Prince Charming Regal in 1917 for the Belle Isle Park in Michigan.
As the 1920s drew to a close, the carousel moved from Michigan to Olympic Park in New Jersey. It was known as the Liberty Carousel. It was red, white, and blue and covered in patriotic symbols like the bald eagle and flags.
Walt Disney World
Disney purchased the Liberty in 1967 and began renovating it. Imagineers crafted the new carousel so that no two horses on the Attraction were alike. They decorated them with real gold, silver, and bronze. The refurbishment also included the addition of 18 hand painted scenes from the movie Cinderella.
Eight Inches Off
When the carousel was placed in the Magic Kingdom, Roy Disney stated that it sat off center in the Cinderella Breezeway. He had it moved eight inches, where it has remained ever since.
Cinderella’s Golden Carrousel
The Attraction’s original name was Cinderella’s Golden Carrousel (for those paying attention, you may have noticed that the spelling of Disney’s Attraction uses an extra “r” in the word carousel). It didn’t become the Prince Charming Regal Carrousel until June of 2010.