For starters, every booth is getting its own pop-up striped tent, a generous gift from the Redberg family.
“The wooden booths we’ve had for years were great but were starting to show their age,” explains Melinda Redberg, who is chairing this year along with Paula Plating. “We think the new tents will give the whole event a festive, circus vibe.”
But the tents aren’t the only upgrade. This year the Carnival will move to wristbands instead of tickets. Sold in denominations of 5, 10 and 20, the wristbands will feature empty stars that workers will check off at each booth. One star equals one ticket. The new system will help younger children who can’t count out tickets, and prevent lost or stolen tickets.
One exception will be Children’s Corner, which will continue to operate on tickets because of the volume they sell. A ticket exchange booth will be located adjacent to the ever popular booth. When kids want to buy silly string, bomb bags or other Carnival classics, they will visit the exchange booth where workers will mark off their stars and hand them the equivalent in tickets.
New games this year include the Pirate Boat Race, Spider Toss, an inflatable Gladiator Joust and a NERF gun “Galactic Blast” shooting gallery. Children 48” and taller can see if they have what it takes to complete the new Ninja Warrior course set up on the Commons playground.
Perhaps the most exciting addition will be a drawing, featuring prizes such as a new iPad, bike and other fun prizes. Children can enter to win before and during the Carnival.
Parents can find their own prizes at Carnival Kitchen, where you can get everything you need for a dinner you don’t have to cook. Co-chairs Heather Naggar and Anne Carr are already hard at work stocking the popular booth. In addition to homemade casseroles they are encouraging donations such enchiladas, lasagna, soups and other original goodies.
The Carnival’s 30-plus booths are staffed by parents and friends of LMS. In fact, virtually every parent is needed to contribute in some way in order for Carnival to be a success.
“It truly couldn’t happen without parent and community volunteers,” says Plating. “We are always so grateful and a little awestruck at how it comes together every year. It’s like Lookout Mountain magic.”