Children’s Carnival at Harvey Growing in Popularity

If the large turnout Saturday is any indication, the Children's Carnival for Charity at Harvey might now be an established winter tradition for families looking for a fun family outing.

A beautiful, sunny day with spring-like temperatures in the 50s Saturday helped make the 3rd Annual Children’s Carnival for Charity a big success for Harvey School students raising money for Make-A-Wish and Pencils of Promise. Over 200 children and their parents visited the Katonah campus which was decked throughout with balloons and streamers.

The carnival, with activities spread out through the upper campus, provided an afternoon of fun for children of all ages. Harvey’s new 22,000 sq. foot athletic center was the big draw as the gym was packed with carnival patrons enjoying the bouncy stations and slides, the games for prizes, the sand art and candy art creations, the air-brush tattoo tent, and the Westchester Circus Arts Center’s station with tight wire walks and juggling activities. One couple drove up from southern Westchester with their son and chose to stop by after searching on line for something fun for the family to do on the weekend. While her son sat for a caricature drawing by artist Rachael Penney, the mom said, “We’re really glad we chose the carnival for our family outing.” The Flynn sisters of Katonah, Olivia and Sophia, enjoyed bouncing in the inflatables and balancing on the tight wire. Jeff and Rachel Silva and their two children, Jadon and Addison returned to the carnival for another year. They spent a good part of the afternoon enjoying the inflatables and winning an armful of prizes from the carnival games before heading off to see the Harvey Teen Theater Company perform Winnie the Pooh in the Lasdon Theater on campus.

Each classroom in the lower level of Carter Hall in the Upper School housed such activities as a hair and nail salon, a fabric doll-making workshop, a cakewalk and cupcake decorating station, a workshop where a group of teens visiting Harvey from Japan this week offered origami, calligraphy, and Japanese music and dance demonstrations. The large study hall on the first floor was the home for all kinds of games for little children, including relay races and a piñata.

The school’s Mennan Library was a big hit with tots and toddlers. Teens offered “The Land of Oz,” entertaining the children with stories and helping them make crafts. In the gym lobby, children had a photo opportunity with Disney princesses played by some of the student organizers from the Community Service Club which sponsored the carnival.

Before the cast of Winnie the Pooh performed their show, the black box theater was the site of aerial artistry offered by Hilary Sweeney of Westchester Circus Arts. Children also enjoyed a demonstration by members of Black Belt Tae Kwon Do of Mt. Kisco.

And, what would a carnival be without food: hot dogs, chili, all kinds of baked goods, popcorn, and, of course, cotton candy. Chili dogs were a hot item in the cafeteria.

When the inflatables were packed away and the entire campus was clean, Susan Harris, the advisor of the Community Service Club announced that the carnival raised close to $2500 for the charities. One tired but enthusiastic student organizer was heard to say, “Can’t wait till next year.” Another one, perhaps a bit more exhausted, chimed in with, “Can we at least put off planning it for a few days.” Kudos go to the teens who organized the carnival and “a job well done” to the faculty, alumni, and parents who assisted them.

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