At the front of this parade were LMS Principal Ruth White and the Carnival King and Queen George Monroe and Zoe Lusk. Kindergartener George and second-grader Zoe had earned their titles by being the top-selling boy and girl during the Hamilton County Kids First Coupon Book sales campaign this year. All of the LMS students worked hard to reach and exceed their sales goal, totaling over 1,000 books sold in all. The funds they raised will support technology needs throughout the school, and they earned a school-wide pajama day as a reward!
Heading up this year’s Carnival efforts were co-chairs May Burke and Anna Williams with wonderful support from assistant chairs April Goebeler, Hannah Harrell, and Kari Pollard. Their team began planning many weeks in advance to make sure that everything was ready to go once the students arrived, filing in behind their class banners starting with the fifth grade Carnival veterans and ending with the kindergarten first-timers. May commented, “As a child, it is a magical day, and you are unaware of all the work it entails. Now, as a parent and a member of the Carnival planning committee, you experience first-hand the efforts from all facets of the community - Lookout Mountain School, parents, volunteers, and local businesses.”
A festive balloon arrangement designed by PepperPot Party adorned the Commons gates, and booth after booth covered the field inside. Returning favorites like the Carnival Jail, bouncy houses, costume corner, jamboree jars, face painting, stuffed animals, hair-color spray, fake casts, and silly string tents were as popular as always, and there were several fun new additions to the booths, including a huge inflatable basketball game, as well as a Halloween-inspired bean bag toss designed by Greer Campbell of Cheers with Greer. Carnival goers feasted on Chick-fil-A, Mr. T’s pizza, Good Dog hotdogs, and Clumpies ice cream. May said she was surprised to see that despite the cold, the kids consumed just as much ice cream as always! And for future feasting, families took home selections of casseroles, soups, and baked goods from the Carnival Kitchen tent. Lynn Brown was in charge of it this year, and she spent weeks securing amazing food donations from parents and community members to ensure the success of this vital part of the Carnival fundraising!
There were pops of color throughout the Carnival, none more so than at the Marketplace and Spirit Wear tent. In the Marketplace, parents could buy mugs featuring beautiful murals created by each of their children’s classes under the direction of LMS art teacher Ryan Patterson. These mugs are highly sought after each year, as many parents add to their growing collection! This year’s Spirit Wear featured beautiful new designs from Tickled Ink’s Emily Johnson. You have probably already seen mountain goers sporting these stylish LMS shirts, hoodies, and hats - and if you look closely, you will see her new LMS stickers adorning laptops and water bottles around the community!
As Carnival day came to a close, freezing parents and somehow-unfazed-by-the-cold kids shuffled home tired, happy, and with new treasures in hand. Behind the scenes, the organizers were happy to see their efforts had panned out so successfully, knowing that the funds they had raised would help LMS continue to be the wonderful place it is for our children. As Burke puts it, “The Carnival is such a testament to our extraordinary community.” She and the whole Carnival team are thankful for the sponsors, volunteers, and the entire LMS community that made Carnival such a wonderful day.
by Meredith Brown