FUN! That’s the word Jagger and B (and probably the other 75 kids that attended) chose to describe yesterday’s Graco Summer Carnival. IMPRESSIVE. That’s the word I would choose to describe yesterday’s event.
First, let me tell you why all the kids, and actually the adults too, had such a blast.
- A Petting zoo! I know. You think just because we’re in Pennsylvania we see farm animals every day- you’d be wrong about that. I can’t remember the last time I saw a goat. Now I do. It was yesterday!
- Pony Rides! This was awesome. Every fair I’ve ever been to, I’ve either been too cheap to pay for my kids to ride the pony or too impatient to wait in the long lines – no worries on either side here. Free, on-demand, pony rides for all the kids (and some adults actually)!
- Clowns! Depending on who you ask this might not be as fun, but these clowns painted faces and made balloon animals! Jagger left with a balloon sword I didn’t mind him beating B over the head with!
- Moonbounce! There was one for the kids and one for the adults! Actually the one for the adults was an inflatable boxing ring with oversized gloves. Employees and their boss were seen duking it out – all in fun, of course!
- Games! There were so many great games for everyone to play- complete with prizes. The kids got cute little toys for every try (no winners necessary) and winning adults received “Carnie Cash” which we used to enter into a gift card raffle (apparently I won the iTunes gift card but came inside too soon to claim it!)
- Food, ice cream and even cotton candy! Good, ol-fashioned BBQ food never disappoints (and rarely have I met a kid who didn’t like a hot-dog), all you can eat ice-cream (very good but melted in 3 seconds flat) and what carnival is complete without cotton candy??
I’m going to breakdown a list here about why I thought the summer carnival was so impressive (and I think you’ll quickly agree). First of all, the folks who put the carnival together, thought of EVERYTHING. Here is what I mean by that:
- Balloons for each child (pre-tied and ready to slip right on your wrist or belt loop)
- Hand-sanitizer and wipes strategically placed next to the farm animals and near the food tent
- A sunscreen station (that yours truly had to hit up for the kids)
- Small tents to put over the most of the smaller games to keep eveyone out of the sun and a HUGE tent that kept everyone shady while eating their lunch and watching some of the group games
- Prizes for all ages (and little baggies for each child after they racked up said prizes)
- Another hugely impressive part of the carnival were the games. Not just the fact that there was something for everyone, but people MADE these carnival games by hand. If for some reason Graco gets out of the baby gear engineering business [*note: this is NOT happening], we could jump right into engineering carnival games! I’m not sure which was more impressive – the Frog Flip catapult engineered by Lena (pictured here) or the Spray Gun game engineered by Tom. I was also impressed by all the good sports who participated in the pie-eating contest ($100 gas cards get people to do funny things these days!)- Congrats to Greg on his victory. (hope you got all of the pie out of your ears)
- Lastly, I was just impressed by the sheer number of folks who attended the carnival. With the weather ordered up from our good friend Mother Nature, and the posters around the building promising a great time for all, I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised. Who would miss a day like that??
And of course, none of this would have been possible without the GREAT work of the “Carnie Crew.” Here’s a list of the folks that pulled together the very fun and very memorable, Graco Summer Carnival: Melissa Landis, Tom Pollack, Dan Mare, Jason Carpenter, Andrew Schlosser, Liz Grasing, Kristen DiGilio, Amanda Martin, Miranda West, Karen Hartzell, Nancy Breitenstein, Allyson Malizia, Christina Cipoletti, Lena Hunter, and Brand Burkholder.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!