There’s something about a carousel that you can always love. The carousel at New Haven Lighthouse Point Park is like that, you’re going to love it as soon as you see it. The carousel was built in 1916 by the Murphy Brothers in their workshop in Savin Rock, West Haven. It is one of the unique and charming American folk art still exists. It used to be an outdoor carousel, but then when after years of effected by the sea water and weather, the carousel became deteriorating. In the 1980’s, the mayor of New Haven set up a community action organization to take care of the carousel. After it was cleaned, repaired and restored, the carousel was placed in the pavilion near the lighthouse. It is now among the National Register of Historic Places. There is a small fee of 50cents to ride the carousel. The music they play when the carousel moves is lovely and sweet to your ears.
The music is played on an organ made by Stinson Organ Company. A mini organ with a miniature of George Washington holding a baton can be seen as part of the carousel decorations. There are also paintings of beach scenery, mermaid, sail boat, lighthouse and some nature scenery in New Haven adorned the top part of the carousel. There are 72 figures on the carousel that are placed on 20 arrays on a 60-foot platform (about 18 meters high). Each horse is different. It has different color, character and details that make each of the horse unique. It also named and the name is posted on top of each horse. When you look up, you can see the name of the horse you ride. Maybe you ride Thunder, White Lightning, Ocean Light, Wild Heart, Jumpin Jack or Bella Vista. Public can rent the pavilion and also the carousel for private party, such as a wedding or prom. I would love to attend a party here at night, when the carousel lights glimmer while the whimsical music from the carousel plays and the sound of the ocean is heard outside the building. What a marvelous night it seems!
My state, Connecticut, is located in the east coast of United States and the Atlantic Ocean part that stretches along the southern part of the state, is known as Long Island Sound. Being located near the ocean, Connecticut has several lighthouses and one of them stands in the city of New Haven. I have visited this lighthouse which is called Five Mile Point Light, many times but mostly when the weather wasn’t as lovely as the last time I came there. Two weeks ago I came to the Light House Park because of religious reason. It was Eid-ul Adha and the prayer was held in a field there. A couple hundreds of people showed up to pray together. After the prayer, I walked about the park especially near the lighthouse. The scenery was marvelous!
The Five Mile Point Lighthouse is called that way due to its location, which is about 5 miles (8km) from the center of the city of New Haven. It has octagonal shape that becomes a trademark of Connecticut’s lighthouses. This lighthouse is the 2nd lighthouse built in New Haven. The first lighthouse was called Morris Point established during the Colonial period. In 1847, the Five Mile Point Lighthouse opened replacing Morris Point that thought to be too far north on the shore. The Five Mile Point was made of sandstone from the nearby town of East Haven, while its interior was lined with bricks made in New Haven. This lighthouse stands 97 feet (29,5 meters) above the sea level. Inside the lighthouse there’s circular staircase with 74 steps made of granite leading up to the lantern.
The Five Mile Point Lighthouse operated until 1877. There’s another lighthouse that was built closer to Long Island Sound replacing it that’s still active until today. If you see the 3rd and 5th pictures, you can see far away a minuscule object which is the Southwest Ledge Lighthouse. This lighthouse stands on the reef at the opening of New Haven harbor. New Haven Lighthouse Park is a beautiful place to visit. The park has nature trail, bird watching station, small water park – wonderful entertainment for children especially in summer. It also has an indoor antique carousel. The carousel is so beautiful. Each of the carousel horses has different feature that I will write about them next time. Meanwhile, if you happen to pass by New Haven or visiting Connecticut, come and see the Five Point Mile Lighthouse at New Haven Lighthouse Park.