BINGHAMTON, NY – Giddy-up, the carousels are ready to go.

The City of Binghamton made good on annual tradition today with Mayor Jared Kraham taking the inaugural spin on the Rec Park merry-go-round with some young students from nearby Horace Mann Elementary.

The Rec Park and Ross Park carousels will open to the public on Saturday and remain open through Labor Day.

And, following the edict of donor George F. Johnson, founder of Endicott-Johnson Shoes, they are free to ride.

Kraham says he remembers riding the Rec Park carousel when he was a boy.

“It’s to show the kids that this is their park, and excite them about the summer vacation. Make sure they do some reading and don’t completely forget about school, but have fun with their friends. The carousel ride is a tradition that we do here at Rec Park and one that I’m really happy to continue. I had a blast riding with the kids,” he said.

Kraham also announced that fees at the city’s swimming pools will be dropped, as they have for the past 2 years.

Prior to the pandemic, it cost 50 cents to go swimming.

Meanwhile, the other 4 carousels located in Johnson City, Endwell, Endicott and West Endicott are expected to open this weekend as well.

Their schedules vary with most having limited hours between now and the end of the school year.