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Santa Cruz carousel turns 100

The Looff Carousel at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk is a National Historic Landmark and has been spinning in circles for a century.

A girl rides the Looff Carousel on June 29 at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk in Santa Cruz, Calif. The carousel made its debut in August 1911 and was built by Charles I.D. Looff, a master woodcarver from Denmark. Back then, rides cost a nickel. Today, it's $3 a spin. Eric Risberg / AP
The carousel building is shown in the foreground at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. The Boardwalk also is home to other rides, including the Giant Dipper wooden roller coaster. Eric Risberg / AP
A painted face is seen on a wall of the Looff Carousel. The carousel has been featured in films including "The Lost Boys," "The King of Love" and 'Sudden Impact." Eric Risberg / AP
Ride manager Ellen Maruska looks over a ring machine that retrieves and returns rings to a dispenser beneath the gaping mouth of a clown at the Looff Carousel. Rings were once handed out by "ring boys," but since 1950, the process has been mechanized. Eric Risberg / AP
A sign is shown on the ground outside the Looff Carousel, which has been designated a National Historic Landmark. Eric Risberg / AP
Monica Prasad and her son Shaan of Cocoa Beach, Fla., ride the Looff Carousel. Eric Risberg / AP
There are 73 horses on the Looff Carousel as well as two chariots decorated with the heads of rams and cherubs. Eric Risberg / AP
A horse displays a toothy smile on the Looff Carousel. The horses have real horsehair tails and details ranging from swords to flashing jewels. Some have items strapped behind the saddles, including a sheep and a pheasant. Eric Risberg / AP