On Saturday, April 26, the twenty-first annual World Carnival took place on the Townhouse Greens as a sunny day of live music, games and countless other activities. Green and blue globes swaying from the branches of pink-blossomed trees marked this year’s theme in addition to the array of World Carnival favors offered under the iconic white tent.
The event has been traditionally held on Admissions Field, but a slight mishap prevented this from happening this year. A water-main was punctured during preparations for erecting the tent on Admissions Field, flooding the area. Hence, the event’s location was changed to the Townhouse Greens–but this in no way changed the spirit and scope of the event.
Each year, the program comes to life through the efforts of the SMCM SGA Programs Board and the Office of Student Activities, in addition to many student and faculty volunteers that are eager to help. Among these volunteers was sophomore Alia Abadir.
“I’ve been here since 7 this morning working because I really love World Carnival. I loved it freshman year, and I wanted to help out as much as I could,” said Abadir.
The performances at this year’s World Carnival featured dance troupes specializing in different cultural or folkoric styles. Mana Polynesia showcased dances from the Pacific islands (including Hawaii, Fiji, and New Zealand), the Wong Lion People performed an interactive Chinese dragon act (in which the human-operated dragon tried to eat bystander’s french fries), and the Nomad dancers introduced carnival-goers to a variety of Central Asian dances.
Much like the many World Carnivals before, there was no shortage of delicious food on the greens. To the side of the tent, tucked away in the back corner of the greens were several food stands serving up their famously craved gyros, barbecue sandwiches, Jamaican jerk chicken, and deep fried sweets. On the other side of the tent, guests could shop for jewelry, scarfs and colorful clothes.
Throughout the day, various student clubs such as Habitat for Humanity, Raices Hispanas and the Equestrian Club provided tables with activities to raise money and promote the interests of their groups. One notable club display was that of the Equestrian club, with their special guest appearance of Lil’ Sebastian the mini-pony, a real-life version of a beloved animal from the NBC television series Parks and Recreation. Sebastian quickly earned a VIP status among all World Carnival attendees, garnering his fair share of attention through affectionate petting and many photo opportunities.
One of Sebastian’s biggest fans was senior A.J Landy, who prided himself on his own photo with Sebastian.
“World Carnival was a really good time, I especially enjoyed hanging out with friends… and hanging out Sebastian,” said Landy.
As a first time World Carnival attendee, freshman Marissa Poudrier spent the day enjoying all that the event had to offer.
“It was really cool to see all the different clubs bring out things for the variety of the big crowd that we have here. It wasn’t just students but also kids and adults, and it was cool to see everyone be able to do something different,” said Poudrier.
In past World Carnivals, concerts by up-and-coming bands during the evening have drawn huge turnouts to end another successful day of spring fun, and this year was no exception. Carnival-goers were in for a surprise this year with not one, but two headlining bands during the event’s evening portion. Jessica Hernandez and the Deltas, a band from Detroit that sounds like an Amy Winehouse-esque combination of rock, Motown, soul, and blues, kicked off the night’s festivities and got the glow-sticked crowd dancing. Up next was rock and hip-hop fusion band RDGLDGRN (pronounced “red, gold, green”) from Washington, D.C., whose energy and repartee with the crowd cemented a satisfying night of live music.
The beautiful weather complimented the day’s many activities, and set the stage for yet another successful concert event that hundreds of SMCM community members enjoyed.