The Good Carnival: Good Fun, Strong Families
CHCSA sets out to build good memories and strong relationships with The Good Carnival.
If you, like this writer, grew up in ‘90s, you would definitely remember Uncle Ringo and those old-school carnival games and the thrill of winning those crazy prizes.
City Harvest Community Services Association (CHCSA) brought back these good times with The Good Carnival. Held on the weekend of Feb 24 and 25 at Suntec Convention Centre, The Good Carnival was designed to maximise fun for families and friends and help them build good memories and share life moments. In addition, proceeds from The Good Carnival went towards funds for helping families in need.
“Good times and memories are valuable, that is why we created the Good Carnival,” says Kenny Low, Executive Director of CHCSA. “We specially curated these games so that you don’t play against the system, you play against each another.”
Occupying the high-ceilinged concourse on Level 3 of the convention centre, The Good Carnival featured games that both the young and old could enjoy. There was the Soccer Dart, where players had to hit the bullseye of a huge inflatable target with Velcro balls. Bungee Run, where two players had to race each other while strapped to bungee cords. Hangin’ Tough required a team effort where one player solves a maze puzzle while the other hangs onto a punching bag. There was also a large inflatable pool containing many colorful plastic balls, like a life-size Hungry Hippo game. Many had a chance to show off their hidden carnival games skills, with their families and friends cheering them on.
Unlike any other carnival you have been to, you could actually win more tokens to play games as you played games! Winners received a pay out in the form of tokens or instant prizes, ranging from snacks to Rubik’s cubes to cute plush toys inspired by Pokemon and Pusheen, among others. Tokens could then be used for more play or exchanged for prizes. The idea was to keep players playing and spending more time with one another.
A GOOD WAY TO PLAY AND SERVE
Kelvin Leong, 50, an executive assistant, visited The Good Carnival with his family. “The carnival was fun as we got to engage the games stations together as a family. The idea was great in terms of creating memories and having fun.
“Our favorite station was Hangin’ Tough! My daughter Katriel was trying her best to hang on as long as she could while I tried my best to complete the maze puzzle within the time given. We were surprised we could complete the task and get some tokens back!”
Daniel Teo, 12, said Hungry Hippo was his favorite game. “It’s a physical game and four people can get to play together. There was one round where my friend, Christian was playing against two other girls. Instead of fighting for the balls and getting individual goals, the girls collaborated: one passed the ball and another delivered the goal! I feel this game allows us to bond and reminds me of Psalms 133:1. ‘How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!’ Our tokens were well-spent for such fun and for a good cause.”
The Good Carnival did not just bring fun to its participants. Each station was supported by a team of volunteers, who spent their weekend in a meaningful way bringing joy to others.
Accounts executive Jeraine Chong, 25, was stationed at the Bouncy Castle area, containing four bouncy castles, a slide and a tunnel for kids to crawl through. “Being able to be part of The Good Carnival is indeed fulfilling. Not only did I get to do what I enjoy, I had plenty of fun moments with adorable children. Being around with them gives me so much joy and energy! Kids at this station were generally aged between 4 and 9. I believe both the kids and parents enjoyed themselves. While the kids are playing, happy and smiling, most parents are busy capturing those moments on their phone. As a helper, I enjoyed myself. The day was filled with joy and laughter of many individuals, couples, and families.”
Katherine Lek, 24, a preschool educator echoed similar sentiments. “It was my first time being a carnival volunteer, and I had loads of fun myself! It’s a good experience seeing people having fun with their friends and family—it made me excited to serve too! I was stationed at the Bungee Run and you can see how kids can get really competitive when it comes to games. The station masters also had to be creative to come up with various difficulty levels for the players, so that the adults would feel more challenged and attracted to play. What was extra heart-warming was that when my shift ended, I saw a little boy, who played at my station multiple times. He said ‘bye’ to me and told me ‘I really had a lot of fun there!’ while pointing at the Bungee Run station. This comment means a lot more when it comes from a child.”