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Thousands Ring In 2004 In Forest Park

By Matt Sepic, KWMU

St. Louis, MO – Thousands gathered in Forest Park Wednesday night to celebrate the new year.

The museums and zoo extended their hours, and revelers enjoyed free concerts and other performances.

The main attraction was a 120-foot Ferris Wheel. Though about half the size of the one that graced the 1904 World's Fair, Linda Ressler, a volunteer at the wheel, says it still drew quite a crowd.

"We've had the maximum capacity," Ressler said. "Some people said they came to pick up their tickets for six o'clock (Wednesday evening), and we've had a line that's probably been a mile long at times, waiting to get a ticket to ride."

The Ferris wheel's owners overhauled it and replaced all of its 37,000 light bulbs for the New Year's party.

It was brought in from California for the celebration and will be reassembled in Forest Park in May.