This video shows the actual carousel when it was operational 15 years ago. Isn't it magnificent? To think that a single artist with a unwavering vision created this showpiece just to make his little girl happy and proud of her Dad.
When Lance Shinkle's daughter, Chelsea was just a little girl, he illustrated and wrote a book for her about a carousel horse named Jingle Bell. The father would take the daughter to visit and ride her favorite horse every week. One day a little boy beat the little girl to Jingle Bell and was too rough with the horse breaking off one of Jingle Bells wooden ears. The owner of the carousel was going to replace Jingle Bell and the father and daughter found Jingle Bell in a pile to be thrown away. They took Jingle Bell home and together worked on Jingle Bell so the horse was as beautiful as ever. The carousel owner was so thrilled with Jingle Bell he put the horse back on the carousel and gave the little girl a golden ring to wear so she could ride Jingle Bell whenever she wanted.
Chelsea loved the book so much that her Dad, a local Cape Cod sign carver and artist began to create his opus;The Carousel of Light. Lance’s shining masterpiece, is now a hand-crafted and
meticulously painted carousel, each piece lovingly carved from a block
of wood and transformed by a man’s vision, passion and gift into
elaborately decorated horses and other elaborate and colorful segments
of this beautiful orchestra of amusement.
Lance began the task of hand-carving each horse in 1988.
The creative process begins with an original drawing by Lance,which is transferred onto a set of wooden planks, each plank a cross section on the horse. Lance devised the carving system to achieve animated forms and greater strength.The planks are
laminated together to create hollow block of wood in the rough shape of a
horse. A chain saw is then used to carve out the contour. The figure is finished with hand chisels and sandpaper, and the horses were color-dyed and painted.
Lance has created 20 horses, two wheel chair accessible chariots and three ornamental sculptures. He has painted 12 colorful scenery panels to decorate the carousel. The nautical-themed carousel includes sea horses, mermaids and fishing nets in the same windblown style of the horses and chariots.
The carousel debuted in July 1993 at the Barnstable County Fair. After, it was displayed throughout Cape Cod to rave reviews from children and adults alike. Lance moved to California in 1999 to be with his ailing father and took the carousel with him. After his father died in 2009,Lance returned to his home in Falmouth.In February of 2013, Lance shipped the carousel back to Falmouth. Lance has donated his masterpiece to the Carousel of Light, Inc.
The non-profit corporation is hard at work to bring this dream into reality. We need funds to repair, restore and maintain the horses and the vintage 1947 Allen Herschell mechanism that makes the merry go round spin. The red and white canvas top needs to be replaced, and ten more horses need to be carved to make the carousel complete with a team of thirty galloping mares and stallions.
Our Mission Statement
Our mission is to bring joy to children of all ages and to support, protect, and preserve the carousel for future generations. It is our intention to find a permanent home for the carousel by the Summer of 2015 In the meantime we will operate the carousel temporarily in Falmouth Village or at a nearby location for the summer of 2014.
Risks and challenges
There are risks associated with any worthwhile project, we know. But, with our dynamic committee of government and business leaders behind this venture we won't fail. That being said there could be some setbacks after we get funded.
There will be ongoing repairs and maintenance on the Allen Herschall mechanism as time goes on. Most of these will be routine, however a major part may be need to be replaced as with any mechanical device.
Ideally, we will have 30 horses when the carousel is ready for prime time. But, Lance may not be able to complete the additional horses for some unforeseen reason. This would be a darn shame, but the carousel has always run fine with the twenty horses we have now.
Perhaps, these and other events may slow us down, but any challenges will not be insurmountable with you on our side.
Little Pony Award. You are a big help so we'll send you a photo of a hand carved horse suitable for framing, signed by the artist, Lance Shinkle. We'll even throw in two free rides on the merry-go-round!
Giddy up horsey. When you contribute with such gusto we have to tip our hats to ya, partner. So, your reward is a limited edition tee shirt designed by Cabo Cado. We would also love to give you two free rides on the carousel.
Ride 'em Cowboy! You will look fine in your limited edition Carousel of Light tee shirt designed by Cabo Cado when you donate $50 or more. You will also get five free rides on the carousel. But best of all, we will give you a shout out on our web page, too!
Pony up to this level and you get a signed copy of the artists' book entitled, "Jingle Bell". He created this book for his daughter, Chelsea and was the inspiration for the Carousel of Light. A shout out on our web page is the bow on top of this gift.
You will get the "checkered flag" when you pledge $250. You'll receive a special note of your generosity on our web site. Even better, the carousel will be yours for that special birthday party or corporate event for 3 hours on the day of your choice. Maybe you'll want to use the carousel for your wedding photos or baby shower? Use your imagination and have a root tootin' good time! Yahoo!
Bucking bronco! Your name will be placed on our sponsor board, web page and literature recognizing you as someone who cares enough to donate $500 or more. The carousel is yours for three hours and you will recieve a letter of appreciation signed by the artist, Lance Shinkle and the Board of Directors suitable for framing.
Triple Crown Winner! For your generous contribution you will be able to name one of these fine hand carved horses for one year. We will place a plaque at the base of the horse with the horse's name of your choosing imprinted on it recognizing you as the donor. We will also place your name on our "Post Positions" wall sign acknowledging your gift and put your name on literature and web page. A Carousel of Light tee shirt, three hour party, and a letter of appreciation signed by the artist, Lance Shinkle and the Board of Directors suitable for framing is also included.
You'll be as famous as Seabisquit when you pledge $5,000 to our campaign. Just like this underdog champion, your gift will help us beat the odds to save the carousel.
For your generous contribution you will be able to name one of these fine hand carved horses for five years. We will place a plaque at the base of the horse with the horse's name of your choosing imprinted on it recognizing you as the donor. We will also place your name on the top of our "Post Positions" wall sign acknowledging your gift and put your name on literature and web page. A Carousel of Light tee shirt, three hour party, and a letter of appreciation signed by the artist, Lance Shinkle and the Board of Directors suitable for framing is also included.