Located on Oak Bluffs Avenue, at the intersection of Oak Bluffs Avenue and Circuit Avenue across from Giordano’s Restaurant, the Flying Horses Carousel is the oldest operating platform carousel in the United States. It is one of two that were built by the Charles W. Dare Company of New York in 1876. The other carousel, the Flying Horse Carousel, is also still operating in Watch Hill, RI.
The Flying Horses Carousel was moved to Oak Bluffs from Coney Island in 1884. It was moved to its current location in 1889.
The Flying Horses Carousel has 22 carved wooden horses with and real horse hair tails and oxide eyes that each contain a tiny hand-carved animal. It became a National Historic Landmark in 1987.
The carousel is a very popular attraction, especially on cloudy or rainy days. Children and adults alike take great joy in trying to grab the brass ring that entitles you to another free ride. Two brass rings are available for each ride – one on an arm on the outside of the carousel, and another on an arm in the inside of the carousel. In an age where everything has become so high-tech, it is a joy to watch so many having so much fun on a low-tech ride from the 1800s.
There is also a small video arcade located with the carousel. Refreshments including popcorn, cotton candy, slush, and soft drinks are also available.
The carousel is owned and operated by the Martha’s Vineyard Preservation Trust.
The Flying Horses Carousel operates from Easter through Columbus Day.
Flying Horses Carousel
33 Oak Bluffs Avenue
Oak Bluffs, MA 02257