Category Archives: News and Events - Page 2

Carousels, A Brief History

Carousels…a magical, memorable ride full of laughter, fun, and music!
Carousels date back hundreds of years, rising in popularity in America during the 19th and 20th centuries. Did you know that the elaborate decoration of the carved horses was originally found only on the ‘audience’ side of the animals? Early carousel horses hung from chains which ‘flew out’ when the carousel turned. Today they are attached to poles that move, giving the rider the traditional up/down motion. Music continues to be a central part of the carousel ride, with tunes that evoke memories of fairgrounds, festivities, and fun. Carousels bring a smile to anyone’s face and are remembered for their beauty, their delightful music, and the laughter and joy of the riders.

So the next time you take a ride on a carousel, be sure to let your inner child come out to play but remember to take it easy on that rollicking noble steed beneath you – it could be a rare antique. While more than 7,000 carousels once existed, just 300 remain.

Image by:

18th Anniversary of Autumn at Oz, Oct. 1 – 2

If you couldn’t attend the Oz Convention in Banner Elk, NC, don’t worry….just follow the Yellow Brick Road to the 18th Anniversary of Autumn at Oz, October 1st & 2nd at Beech Mountain!

Guests will take a tour of Auntie Em’s and Uncle Henry’s farm and meet Dorothy and friends along the Yellow Brick Road. You may choose your guided tour session times when you purchase your ticket.

Everyone is encouraged to wear something “Ozzie” and bring their photos and treasures to add to the event. There will be a mini-museum to visit and artifacts to share. Bluegrass bands, local dancers, and a small petting zoo will add more fun at the Farm.
There will also be face painting, food treats, and special Oz concessions in “Kansas”! New and old trivia will be available for purchase, with part of the proceeds going back into upkeep and restoration.

Arrival times and day-of ticket sales are on Saturday and Sunday from 10 to noon, noon to 2, and 2 to 4pm. Saturday and Sunday are broken down into 3 sessions to accommodate our visitors. It does not mean that you can only spend 2 hours at the OZ Party.

The ticket price is $16.50 in advance, $20.00 the day of the party. Children 2 and under are admitted free. There are a limited number of tickets for each session. Each ticket will include a 10% discount coupon for participating Beech Mountain lodging and dining. Each ticket will also include a discount coupon from Grandfather Mountain good for $2 off each adult ticket and $1 off child’s ticket. More information about participating locations coming soon.

Click Here For Discount Information.

The International Wizard of Oz Club’s National Oz Convention

August 5-7, 2011: The International Wizard of Oz Club’s National Oz Convention, Banner Elk, North Carolina.

Co-chairmen Sean Barrett and Karen Owens welcome Oz fans to the Beech Mountain site of The Land of Oz Park for a weekend of fan-focused fun.

Join us for a weekend in the marvelous Land of Oz where you can…

• Follow the Yellow Brick Road, encountering Oz characters along the way

• Meet Munchkin Margaret Pellegrini

• See Judy Garland gowns from Michael Siewert’s private collection

• Find Oz treasures in the IWOC auction of collectibles, toys, books & ephemera

• See Oz film projects, including “L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”

• Show off of your own Oz-wear in our Oz Fashion Show

• Programs and displays include Oz jewelry, Oz tattoos, Oz-theme cakes and parties, Oz in personal art and on public display, Oz home decor and much more.

The Land of Oz was North Carolina’s No. 1 tourist attraction throughout the 1970s. Today Dorothy’s house and the Yellow Brick Road remain, drawing loyal fans to one annual event and exclusive private parties. But we won’t just tour the grounds; our Friday evening program first celebrates the park with past cast and crew members. Stories, songs, pictures and costumes will set the stage for our own Saturday morning on-site Oz adventure — including lunch and a stop at the Oz Museum where authentic MGM screen-used park artifacts are on display.

Download our registration form here.