OPINION

News and notes from the GCC

Staff Writer
Story City Herald

—by Rick Schreier, GCC Board President

The first of October is here and the colors of the landscape are changing from green to vibrant reds, yellows, oranges and browns. Fall is upon us which means the end of the carousel season. As president of the Story City GCC I would like to personally thank everyone who had a part in the running of the carousel this year. The GCC staff of John and Shannon, the part time help of Megan, Mariah and Christopher, the carousel committee headed up by Karen and Bill, and the countless volunteers who not only staffed the carousel during open hours but those that help keep it running during non-open hours.

The carousel is a finicky piece of equipment that is over 100 years old. Maybe it has earned the right to be a little finicky. They don’t always make replacement parts that match exactly to something that is 100 years old, but we have a group that finds a way to keep it running. The paint may wear thin in places, but there is a group working to repaint and restore all the animals to near pristine condition. The building is subject to everything Iowa weather has to offer, but thanks to some great fundraising, there were major repairs completed on the carousel’s shelter this spring and summer. All-in-all the physical carousel is in great shape and ready to host riders for years to come.

Many thanks to those who staffed the carousel at any point this year. The more hours we can get staffed with volunteers means the more funds we have to maintain the carousel. Without your time, we would not be able to keep this icon of Story City running. Don’t worry if you have never done it before. Last Saturday on our final weekend of the year we had two new volunteers who have never visited the carousel before, let alone operated it. If you are willing to learn, we are willing to teach.

Since serving as president of the GCC I have been more in-tuned to what the carousel means to Story City. If you really listen, it is amazing how many people around the state recognize Story City as the town where “you have that antique carousel don’t you.” It is something the town can be proud to maintain. It is also extremely gratifying to work the carousel and watch the expressions of many young riders as they come through. Whether it is a toddler who needs to be held by their grandpa on their first ride or an older child who wants to ride in the tub until you’d swear they won’t be able to stand up when they are done, it makes the time fly by faster than the pigs, chickens and horses circling around you. We hope you had a good experience volunteering in 2014 and hope we can count on you again next year. Please bring a friend and we can expand the volunteer base even more.

Thank you and happy riding.