Berry Go Round is a small flatride manufactured by Sellner, a company better known for manufacturing the Tilt-a-Whirl. Berry Go Round is one of ten (TEN!) rides that are the same damn thing only themed differently. The ride, all ten of them, are made up of a center base that holds four arms, on each arm is a large pod that can be spun via a wheel in the center. The pods are enclosed and have a large opening for riders to enter. The door of the pod doubles as a set of stairs, allowing riders to board easily when down and prevents stupid people from exiting during mid-ride when up.
Riders enter one of the four pods; the inside is dark with no lighting and typically has a funky smell (some people just can’t take the spinning.) The ride operator will close the hatch/stairs prior to starting the ride; due to unforeseen circumstances, the ride op might forget to close one of them, in which case the stairs will loudly drag across the ground and cause alarm for the riders who cannot see what the hell is making the noise. Once everything and everyone are set to go, the ride will begin to slowly revolve…and that’s it for the mechanical aspect of the ride. It seems like the only reason it revolves is so that it can be billed as a ‘ride’ because the motion adds absolutely nothing to the ride experience. Although I guess it’s better then just four pods sitting around.
The pods revolving around the center is pretty much secondary as the manual spinning of the pods are what the ride is all about! Depending on how lubed up the bearings are, riders can either spin the crap out of these things or struggle to spin the pod while the rusted-over bearings crunch and squeak. When the ride is over, the operator brakes the cars; I believe this is done at the control panel (as opposed to a lever or something.)
As noted in the beginning, this ride has ten variations including the berry version. The first one to debut was “Spin the Apple” I believe; subsequent variations have become more and more ridiculous. Here they are as listed on the Sellner ‘Spin Rides’ page:
- Spin the Apple: The pods are apples…you spin them
- Martian Madness: The pods are Martians.
- Tons of Fun: I’m going to pass on the fat joke and simply say that they’re elephants…uh, the ride pods are…
- Monkey Mayhem: Giant crazy spinning monkey pods; rabies abound.
- Bear Affair: Attacking bear pods; riders are eaten and mauled.
- Berry Go Round: I talked about this enough already!
- Dizzy Dragunovs: Spin the Russian sniper…oh wait, I misread, it’s Dizzy Dragons!
- Chilly Willy: The pod is a penguin; they were running out of ideas by this point.
- Smashing Pumpkin Patch: I don’t even care to shake these zipper blues
- Barrel of Fun: The pods are barrels, the riders are the fish, and Dizzy Dragunov is nearby…
I think I’ve seen at least half of these in person and I know that I have been on Barrel of Fun and most likely another. They’re all the same ride so it’s tough to remember which variations I’ve ridden. I can’t imagine I’m missing much by not riding a certain one anyway! Also, if the whole ‘ride’ thing doesn’t interest the buyer, one can buy just the themed pod on a stand. People get in and spin the hell out of it…that’s it. I don’t even know if it can be considered a ride or just some sort of elaborate playground equipment.