A ribbon-cutting ceremony for Chessie’s Carousel was held at the Lee District Family Recreation Area on Saturday, July 8, 2017 to mark the opening of Chessie’s Carousel. Modeled after the popular Clemyjontri Park carousel in McLean, this new addition to Lee District Park allows riders who use wheelchairs to transfer to a bench and move vertically, rather than riding in a fixed position. 

Go ’Round in Circles as Lee District Park Opens New Carousel
via the Fairfax County Park Authority

Chessie's Carousel Ribbon-Cutting

Get ready to take a ride on the new Lee District Park Carousel – a carousel that allows children of all abilities to go ‘round and ‘round, side by side. The carousel is modeled after the popular carousel at Clemyjontri Park in McLean and will allow children who use wheelchairs to transfer to a bench and move vertically, rather than riding in a fixed position.

The carousel has a Chesapeake Bay theme with animals such as a turtle, frog, hummingbird and swan, in addition to traditional horses. Park Authority officials have invited the public to take a spin when the ribbon is cut on the new carousel Saturday, July 8, 2017, at 10 a.m. In fact, following the brief ceremony, carousel rides are free all day courtesy of the Fairfax County Park Foundation.

This new carousel completes Phase III of the Family Recreation Area planned for Lee District Park. A tree house, Chessie’s BIG Backyard play area and the Our Special Harbor sprayground were completed in earlier stages of the plan. Picnic shelters are included in the final phase of construction.

The new carousel has a local flavor with its Virginia animals. Carousel animals were constructed in fiberglass for ease of lifetime maintenance and, in an effort to save on costs, the Fairfax County Park Authority acted as the general contractor who contracted, managed and coordinated all manufacturers, contracts and trades people. The total cost of the project was $1,065,000.

Donors who contribute $10,000 to the Fairfax County Park Foundation get the chance to “adopt” a carousel animal and give it a name. Adoptive parents will receive the first carousel ride at the ceremony.

Lee District Park is located at 6601 Telegraph Road, Franconia, VA. For more information, visit Lee District Park.

For more information about the ceremony, please contact the Public Information Office at 703-324-8662 or via Parkmail@fairfaxcounty.gov.