Thursday, June 13, 2013

5th Annual Summer Kick-Off Carnival

So this year we hosted our 5th annual summer carnival at the library on June 1, 2013 from 9am-1pm.

In the past we gave 10 game tokens to each person who signed up for our summer reading program and those tokens could be spent on the games at the event.  We charge 25 cents for each additional token, not to make money, but to gauge traffic and encourage the kids to move around the carnival instead of spending all their tokens in one place.

We have never had a good way to estimate our attendance because we always hold it at the park next to the library and it can be entered on three sides and we allow pre-registration.

This year we had registration on the same day of the event, so we were able to track the attendance of kids via registrations and we counted adults with tally marks at the registration table. 

This was the first year we had rain.  And we had serious rain.  This didn't stop us though.  We moved the carnival inside and we parked the concession trailer in front of our main entrance.  We did have to cancel our three most popular stations: water balloon toss, jump house, and pony rides.  We were able to keep the petting zoo and move it inside.

Our attractions included: face painting, ring toss, go fish, petting zoo, musical chairs/book walk, crafts, concession stand, and pictures with the Berenstain Bears.We also sold summer reading program t-shirts and passed out summer event calendars.  

Our concession stand was stocked with donated items: hot dogs, nachos, popcorn, Grapette and Orangette Soda (the are manufactured in Malvern), and water.  All items were sold at a $1 or $0.50, primarily to ensure that food wasn't wasted.  

We staffed our event with library staff (that were not working the circulation desk) and volunteers.  It is always hard for us to get volunteers for events, but this year we had 12 volunteers, plus one volunteer who delivered the concession trailer that a local bank let us borrow.  We collected volunteer information via a google form sign-up sheet that can be found here.

My husband also helped us set up all our stations the morning of the event.  His help was extra special because he has been working 5 hours away on a night shift.  He left his job and drove straight to the library to meet me at 7:15 am (on no sleep!).

Considering the torrential downpour and the cancellation of the pony rides, I am very happy with out 191 people attendance!

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