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A new carnival is coming to this Hall County park
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Kayden Speed, 3, of Gainesville, smiles at his mother Brittany as he plays in an inflatable playhouse before the start of the fireworks show at the American Legion Fourth of July celebration in Gainesville, Wednesday, July 4, 2018, at Laurel Park on Lake Lanier. - photo by David Barnes

The carnival will be coming to town in June at Laurel Park, a new event for Hall County Parks and Leisure.

Becky Ruffner, who works in marketing for the county’s parks department, said a carnival was a top request at meetings the county held in 2018 asking for ideas from the community.

“We heard several comments from people who mentioned the fairs that used to be in town and out in South Hall at the fairgrounds and how they missed those types of events,” Ruffner said.

Laurel Park carnival

When: 5-10 p.m. Thursday, June 13; 5-11 p.m. Friday, June 14; 1-11 p.m. Saturday, June 15; 1-10 p.m. Sunday, June 15

Where: Laurel Park, 3100 Old Cleveland Highway, Gainesville

How much: Free admission; unlimited rides $20 in advance or $25 at event; individual rides $1.50

Magic Midways, a Florida-based carnival company, will host the carnival June 13-16. Admission is free, and ride tickets can either be purchased at the event or online ahead of time for a discount.

Ruffner said typical fair foods like funnel cakes will be sold at the event by Magic Midways vendors, and there will be a variety of rides and activities.

“There will be everything from the fun kiddie rides for the little ones all the way up to the more thrilling rides for adults,” she said.

Magic Midways’ website advertises classic carnival rides like the Tilt-a-Whirl, bumper cars and the Ferris wheel, as well as others like the Drop Zone, a drop tower.


Laurel Park was chosen for its lake setting and large size, leaving room for parking, rides and vendors, Ruffner said.

“There will be plenty of room and a beautiful surrounding for folks that want to come and picnic or spend an evening under the stars at the carnival on the shore of the lake,” she said. “We think it will be just a beautiful environment for an event like that.”

Presale tickets are now available online. A family pack with unlimited rides for two adults and two kids is $60, while a wristband for unlimited rides for one person is $20. Tickets purchased at the event will be $25 per person for unlimited rides. Individual rides will cost $1.50.

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