Spring Fling: Exciting rides, carnival games in town April 3-12

The 2015 Spring Fling begins Friday in the parking lot of the Columbus Civic Center. It runs through April 12.

Admission is free.

Besides the exciting rides and carnival games, this year's event will have exhibitions featuring wolves and bears.

The "Wolves of the World" show bills itself as the only traveling wolfpack in the world.

The show features demonstrations of natural wolf behavior with the animals performing several tricks.

Spectators will learn the history of wolves and other interesting facts.

The "Grizzly Experience" is an educational show and exhibit featuring Tonk, a 600-pound grizzly bear, as well as two cubs, Yogi and BooBoo.

Spectators will learn about proper interaction between humans and wild animals, including what to do if you meet a bear in the woods.

During the day, carnival patrons will watch the bears interact with their handler and learn how bears are trained for the movies.

Some will even get to feed a bear.

It is expected that each act will give three performances on the weekend and two during the week.

Among the many rides being brought here by Drew Exposition will be one making its carnival debut. It is the Black Forest Fun House, which is currently being constructed in Florida. Some familiar rides that are also expected are the Cyclops, Tornado, Himalaya and Tilt-A-Whirl.

An antique band organ, which was built by Ruth and Sons of Waldrich, Germany, in the 1800s, is also expected.

What are the times for the Spring Fling?

On opening day it will be open from 3 p.m. to midnight and on Friday, April 10 from 5 p.m. to midnight. It will be open both Saturdays from 11 a.m. to midnight. This Sunday it will open from noon to 10 p.m. and Sunday, April 12 from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday it will be open from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m.

Are there ride specials?

Yes. For example, opening day unlimited ride hand stamps will be $15. There will be free rides from 11 a.m. to noon on both Saturdays and the first Sunday. On both Saturdays, unlimited rides for $25 stamps will be offered from noon to 3 p.m. On both Sundays, unlimited ride stamps for $25 will be offered. On Monday through Thursday, unlimited ride stamps can be purchased for $20. On Friday, April 10, unlimited ride stamps will be offered for $25.

What about a parking fee?

Parking is free except on April 10. The R. Kelly concert is that evening in the Civic Center and parking will be $5 cash only.