Greenport Carousel Closed Due to Lead Paint

Antique carousel in Greenport's Mitchell Park
Grab the brass ring! Photo: Courtesy Greenport Village

The Village of Greenport has temporarily closed the antique carousel in Mitchell Park after lead paint was discovered on one of the horses affixed to the ride, which is over a century old.

Greenport village officials confirmed that the carousel is closed for restoration. Officials hope the horses will be repainted with non-toxic paint and the carousel will reopen in time for Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of beach season.

Children who ingest flaking lead paint chips can suffer nervous system damage, slowed development, behavioral problems and other medical issues, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. Lead paint was banned in 1978.

The antique carousel on Front Street is located inside of a striking contemporary glass, steel and wood structure known as the Jess Owen Carousel House, which was named for Jess Owen, the first operator of the ride.

The 1920s Herschell Spillman portable carousel — a gift from former owners Northrup-Grumman — features 36 horses (all jumpers) plus two sleighs, including 18 hand-carved Herschell steeds, four turn-of-the-century carved Dare horses and 12 cast-aluminum horses dating to the 1930s.

-With Brendan Manley