The Ferris wheel at Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier is up for auction on eBay. It is to be replaced by an all-new, $1.5 million contemporary Ferris, with construction beginning May 5th and a grand opening community celebration scheduled for the evening of Thursday, May 22nd.

The ten-day auction started April 15th and runs through April 25th. It can be found by entering “Pacific Wheel Ferris Wheel” in the search box at www.ebay.com/.

The reserve is set at $50,000 with 50 percent of the winning bid being donated to Special Olympics Southern California.

“Where there is the Wheel, there is a way for Pacific Park to raise money for Special Olympics,” says Jeff Klocke, director of marketing and sales at Pacific Park. “We have partnered with the great organization for more than ten years and feel this is the grandest gift we could offer the organization.”

The Ferris wheel originally cost approximately $800,000, weighs 122,000 pounds, stands 90 feet tall and is 30 feet wide. It has become a Southern California icon over the past 12 years, says Klocke.

“Pacific Park and Special Olympics continue to strengthen their relationship and commitment to families, athletes and the community with this unique donation and auction on eBay,” says Maria Shriver of the Board of Governors Special Olympics Southern California. “The winning bidder will gain a historical piece of Santa Monica while making a difference in the lives of Special Olympics athletes.”

Chance Morgan, Inc. in Wichita, Kansas, is the manufacturer of both Ferris wheels and is offering the winning eBay bidder the Ferris wheel base that supports the wheel at cost of approximately $135,000.

Chance Morgan, Inc. will donate ten percent of the amount to Special Olympics Kansas.

The Pacific Wheel debuted in May 1996 with the opening of Pacific Park and was adapted as what was called the world’s first solar-powered Ferris wheel in November 1998. The nine-story Pacific Wheel was later selected “Best Solar System” in the Reader’s Digest Best in America 2006.

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