Carousel Ponies Go Green

Tuesday, January 25, 2011 - 3:13pm

Historic Seattle zoo unleashes solar carousel ponies.

The painted ponies on the historic carousel at Seattle's Woodland Park Zoo are getting a little TLC.

Workers are sprucing up the hand-crafted figures for another big season and, when the ride reopens early next month, it will feature a different kind of horse power.

Forty-eight solar panels are being installed by Puget Sound Solar on the attraction's large roof.

When it's completed, it will pump a healthy 9.2 kilowatts into the Seattle City Light system and offset the cost of powering the carousel.

It's a much different power source than the one used to spin the horses back in 1918.

It was hand-built for the Cincinnati Zoo, which later sold it.

After making a few turns at other parks, the exhibit ended up in Seattle where it has become a Woodland Park favorite.

It is the latest edition to the zoo's assortment of alternative powered attractions, including the new penguin exhibit which features a geothermal heating system and recycled water.

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