You may not know the name Allan Herschell, but if you have ever ridden a carousel as a kid or have fond nostalgic memories of your favorite fairground, odds are you have him to thank for all those childhood memories. As the founder of the Herschell-Spillman Company, he pioneered and led the manufacturing of all carousels in the United States well into the early 1900s. Today, you can still capture a glimmer of those fond childhood moments by taking a tour of the local carousel museum. Inside, you will find artifacts and working models, all fully functional for the all to ride.
Carnegie Art Center
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1995, this old building used to house the Carnegie Library for almost a century. Today, it has been retrofitted and renovated for a whole other community purpose. Since 1976, this building has served as the home to the Carnegie Art Center and Council of the Arts. They commonly have new work by local and traveling artists on display, and it is a great place to take a date and soak up some culture in the small town of Tonawanda. The best part is that it is free for visitors and locals alike.
Take an old vintage theatre from the early 1920s, an even older Wurlitzer Organ from the 1500s, and the care and attention of numerous craftsmen and laborers, and you get one amazing theater space. A complete renovation of the interior has produced a charming and historically accurate depiction of what the theatre must have been like in its heyday. Now, it is enjoyed by locals on a regular basis and frequently sells out to packed houses for shows and concerts. Make sure you get your tickets early to secure your seats. You will not be disappointed.