The Ferris wheel, tilt-a-whirl, round-up and scrambler rides, as well as Orange businessman Larry David’s famous hamburgers will be featured at the 69th annual Orange Lions Carnival, set for Oct. 7-10 and 14-17 in Orange Lions Park.

“We will have pork-a-bobs, corn dogs, nachos and turkey legs – the whole gambit,” said Carnival Committee Chairman Ed Freiberg.

New attractions this year include a photo booth sponsored by the Little Cypress-Mauriceville Leo Club, where families or individuals can have their pictures taken with club mascot Leo the Lion. 

Carnival admission is $2 for adults and $1 for children. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. and close around 10:30 or 11. 

“It depends,” Freiberg said. “As long as we have people on the rides we’re open. On weekends – a lot of people arrive late because of football games.”

A special “Kiddie Day” is set for Oct. 10. Gates open at 4 p.m. for children 12 and under. Games include the dime toss, ring toss, wheel of fortune, golf-putting and string pull. 

In addition to the Orange Lions and Leo clubs, other participating clubs include the Bridge City Lions and Lioness clubs, and the Little Cypress, Orange Noon, Pinehurst and Vidor Lions clubs.
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Unfortunately, the popular Flying Bobs ride won’t make it to the carnival this year. It suffered motor/electrical damage just before 2008’s carnival. It was already set up in the park when Hurricane Ike flooded the area.

“We got two to three feet of water in the park,” Freiberg said. “And we had lifted a lot of the motors off the ground but nobody was expecting the amount of water we had.”

The carnival eventually went on in 2008, with the club offering free admission and double the amount of usual tokens as a gift to the storm-stricken community.

In 2005, the carnival was postponed two months because of Hurricane Rita, which destroyed the 1930s Ferris wheel.
In 2006, club members traveled to Nashville and bought a wheel built in the 1960s. It was refurbished and repainted by the time of 2007’s carnival. 

The carnival has only been canceled once, during the World War II years.