Retro Rides Add Magic to 75th Annual Dogwood Festival

Posted on: Apr 13th, 2011 By:

Atlanta’s quintessential weekend in the park, the Dogwood Festival at Piedmont Park has always been a crowded but laidback affair with bands, art vendors, food, kids’ activities and dogs who chase Frisbees. So when organizers looked for something to make its 75th anniversary year even more memorable, ATLRetro is jazzed that they decided to think backwards to a ride that has been the signature of world’s fairs, expositions and festivals of bygone days—a Ferris wheel.

And what a Ferris wheel they found—the Seattle Wheel. The largest traveling Ferris wheel in the nation at nine stories high, it seats four abreast in each car and was built in 1963 for the Seattle World’s Fair. That’s big for most Ferris wheels of today with the exception of stationary giants such as the London Eye. To put it into perspective, the first Big Wheel, designed to rival the Eiffel Tower in its mechanical wonder, was built for the legendary Chicago World’s Fair in 1893. Its cars were 24 feet wide and carried up to 60 people!

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