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The Riverfront Park Carrousel, also known as the Looff Carrousel and the Natatorium Park carousel, is a carousel in Spokane, Washington, built in 1909 by Charles I. D. Looff as a gift for Looff's daughter Emma Vogel and her husband Louis Vogel, who owned Natatorium Park in Spokane.[1] It remained at the park until 1968 when the park closed. The carousel was relocated to its present location at Riverfront Park in 1975 where it continues to operate.[2][3] It was added to the National Register of Historic Places on September 19, 1977.[4]

Riverfront Park Carousel or Looff Carousel
Riverfront Park Carousel.JPG
Riverfront Park Carousel is located in Spokane riverfront area
Riverfront Park Carousel
Riverfront Park Carousel is located in Greater Spokane area
Riverfront Park Carousel
Riverfront Park Carousel is located in Washington (state)
Riverfront Park Carousel
LocationRiverfront Park
Spokane, Washington
Nearest citySpokane
Coordinates47°39′38.42″N 117°25′12.99″W / 47.6606722°N 117.4202750°W / 47.6606722; -117.4202750Coordinates: 47°39′38.42″N 117°25′12.99″W / 47.6606722°N 117.4202750°W / 47.6606722; -117.4202750
ArchitectCharles I. D. Looff
NRHP reference #77001362
Added to NRHPSeptember 19, 1977

The carousel still contains its original 1900 Ruth & Sohn band organ, which plays 87 key B.A.B. rolls, although due to deteriorating player rolls, a digitized recording is played during the carousel's operation.[3] The organ was manufactured in Waldkirch, Germany and imported by Looff around 1900.

The carousel contains 54 horses, 1 giraffe, 1 tiger, 1 goat and 2 chariots, all hand carved by Looff himself. It also has a ring dispenser that allows the outside riders to grab a ring during each pass and then toss the ring at a clown with a hole for his mouth. If the rider is successful in capturing the brass ring, he or she can turn it in to win a free ride on the carousel.[5]

Pop cultureEdit

The TV sitcom Frasier makes reference to the carousel, calling it simply "the Looff", in the season 9 episode "Frasier has Spokane".


  1. ^ Spokane's Natatorium Park - The 1909 Looff Carrousel
  2. ^ Rivefront Park - Attractions - Looff Carrousel
  3. ^ a b National Carousel Association - Census Entry
  4. ^ Patsy M. Garrett (1976). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory – Nomination Form: Natatorium Carousel" (PDF). National Park Service. Retrieved 2014-12-08.
  5. ^ The Spokane Antique Carrousel Society - Information

External linksEdit