By Megan ’14
Caught up in the action with all of the games, rides, and fun that is Punahou Carnival, most don't think about the amount of work it takes to make it happen. Daryl Almeida, the assistant director of Physical Plant, on the other hand, knows Punahou Carnival like the back of his hand. This will be Daryl’s 18th Carnival, which makes him a qualified candidate to give us the inside scoop of what happens before, during, and after Carnival.
The intensive setup begins weeks before Carnival. Tents, booths, sinks, grills, lights, signs and other things are set up during the three weeks before Carnival. The tents, booths, sinks, grills, and lights are re-used year after year. The painted signs for each booth, incorporating the theme of Carnival, are new every year. The creatively named signs are proudly handpainted by student booth chairs and will be hung above their respective booths. The rides started coming in on January 13 and are looking awesome!
During Carnival, Almeida has four people from the maintenance team on call, just in case something breaks or is in need of repair. All of the custodial team is on call to constantly clean bathrooms, sweep and clean.
Did you know the huge canopy enveloping the White Elephant tent is made up of smaller pieces hand sewn together? Or that one of the most popular carnival games is Strongman? John Field ’72, Punahou’s vice president of administration and finance, sure does. According to Almeida, Strongman is Field’s favorite game to play with his son.
Although it takes three weeks to set up Carnival, it takes only three days to break it down. The rides are hauled away, the signs and booths come down and are sent to storage, and Punahou returns to its normal campus life.
With all the extra work to put on the Punahou Carnival, why do it every year? When asked this question, Almeida responded: “For the maintenance guys, to see kids smiling while playing the games they made is very rewarding.”
Carnival is not only a highly anticipated event, it is also an important fundraiser, helping to fund the School’s need-based financial aid program.
See you at the Punahou Carnival, Feb. 1 – 2, 2013, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. each day!