ITHACA, N.Y.—The usually $1 rides at the Stewart Park Carousel will be free throughout Memorial Day Weekend thanks to sponsorship from the Elizabeth Ann Clune Montessori School.

Open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. May 28, 29 and 30, the carousel is ranked one of the best in New York State, and 2022 is the carousel’s 70th anniversary. With more than 20,000 riders in 2021, the park sees 500,000 visitors each year and is seeking sponsors to allow free rides to be available all summer.

The Friends of Stewart Park is hosting a 70th birthday party for the carousel from 2 to 4 p.m. on June 25, where there will be crafts, cupcakes, free rides and performances by Nate the Great.

Zoë Freer-Hessler

Zoë Freer-Hessler is a general assignment reporter for the Ithaca Voice. She has covered a wide range of topics since joining the news organization in November 2021. She can be reached at