Troy Clarkson

Sometimes, when your eyes, ears and heart are open, amazing things happen. When I got this letter in an email a few days ago, I didn’t believe it myself. But then I read Denise Terry’s book “The Horses Took Flight: A Cape Cod Carousel Story” in which she tells the tale of the Carousel of Light’s colorful horses leaving their home at the Mullen-Hall School and visiting places throughout the community, highlighting some of our rich local history. I realized that just because I don’t see Santa when he comes each year, and just because I can’t see a gentle summer breeze when it rustles the leaves on the trees in my yard, doesn’t mean I can’t believe in them.

I believe. The horses can take flight. The horses did. They have come to love Falmouth as much as I do and wanted to share their love of our community with me. I’m so happy to share it with all of you now. Here’s the letter from the horses of the Carousel of Light:

Dear Mr. Clarkson:

Because you have been a friend to the Carousel of Light for so many years, we are writing to ask you to tell the children of Falmouth that we are thinking of them. We didn’t expect our winter home, Mass Maritime, to be our summer place too! But during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Carousel of Light was not set up at Mullen-Hall School. We miss everyone so much!

We, the horses, are doing well and have spent our time thinking and dreaming, remembering and planning. There is a lot to think about! Thunder and Lightning follow a weather app, so we know you had many great beach days. Sweet Caroline listens to the Red Sox on her radio and cheers every play, even though the team is in last place. Patriot wanted so badly to celebrate the Fourth of July—we all did!

Some of us have been going out for spa treatments with the restorative talents of Joseph Gregg. He did a lot of the interior work at beautiful Highfield Hall, so we feel like celebrities when he freshens our paint and smooths our rough edges. Lancelot is more handsome than ever, our shining knight. Karamel is golden, and Fireworks splashes with color. We didn’t think that Starlight Mist could be more beautiful, but she literally glows.

At night, we dream about the children, the laughter, the music and the sunshine. Shy Guy, who sometimes felt overwhelmed by all the company we had, now wishes he could be surrounded by the families and the noise. Bubbles just wants to dance!

When we are awake, we daydream about future summers in Falmouth.

We imagine the wooden building being planned by our board and their team of architects, engineers and community volunteers. We see the Carousel of Light set on the hill above Shivericks Pond, with a roof to protect our heads and a floor to prance upon. We picture a place where children don’t have to wait for Memorial Day to climb up and take a ride, a place where summer fun extends throughout the year, but only when school is not in session because we know the importance of learning time.

Imagine the children in their Halloween costumes riding on our backs! Cherokee wants the cowpokes, and Rosebud wants the princesses! We see birthday parties and family reunions. At Thanksgiving, a family might come with grandparents and babies, teenagers and aunties. And Christmas won’t stop talking about draping holly above us and giving us wreaths to wear around our necks. The holidays would be so exciting when they are celebrated on a carousel with Miss Beth playing “Jingle Bells” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.”

We dream about our permanent home. All we need, once this health crisis is history, is to move into the future with the help of the community. Their approval will open up the gate and we will gallop on to a new chapter and a happy new year!

Do the people of Falmouth want to make our dreams come true? In New England, at the Town Meeting, citizens can vote for ways to make their town a better and happier place. Would they listen to us? Will the children speak up? Do we have a vote? We hope so, and we are grateful for all the love supporters of all ages have given us over the years. Falmouth is our home, and we hope to keep it that way—always.

Thanks for listening!

With Love,

The Carousel Horses

It’s amazing what can happen when your eyes, ears and heart are open.

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