Staff members at the Greater Carbondale YMCA are excited to announce that the Y’s annual Summer Carnival will take place on Thursday, August 3, from 5 to 7 p.m. in the YMCA building and parking lot at 82 N. Church St. in Carbondale. This year, the Summer Carnival will be combined with Healthy Kids Day, which was cancelled this past April due to the presence of carbon monoxide in the building.
“During the Fred Ciotti Memorial Race, renovations in the basement of the building caused us to evacuate the building and cancel Healthy Kids Day. We wanted to make sure we still offered it to the community, so we’re tagging on to the summer carnival,” explained Heather Murphy, one of the event organizers.
The Healthy Kids Fair will feature organizations that support healthy children and healthy families. Each organization will have a table set up where representatives will be available with free information, activities for kids, and giveaways.
Participating groups include health care organizations such as the Wright Center, ProCare Physical Therapy, the Wayne Memorial Health System, and Geisinger Health. Also scheduled to participate are the Children’s Advocacy Center, Families United Network, Lacawac Sanctuary, the Lackawanna County Parks and Recreation Department, Head Start, the Girl Scouts, and more.
It’s Ruff without a Roof, a non-profit dog rescue located in Union Dale, will be at Healthy Kids Day to talk about the benefits of having household pets. Several dogs from the rescue will be present as well.
The Summer Carnival portion of Thursday’s event will occur concurrently with the Healthy Kids Day activities. A summer favorite that is open both to YMCA members and non-members, this event is a great way for families with young children to spend the evening having fun at Y.
The Summer Carnival will feature bounce houses, a dunk tank with the YMCA Day Camp counselors, face painting, balloon animals, and music by Grubber, a local band. There will be plenty of games for kids to play and snacks such as cotton candy, sno-cones, hotdogs, and hamburgers. Games will cost 25 cents to play and food will be sold at reasonable prices. All proceeds will be used to enhance youth programming at the YMCA.
James Wiggins, one of the event organizers, expects to see a good turnout for the event. He has been helping with the Summer Carnival for 18 years and has seen it change and grow with each passing summer. YMCA Day Camp counselors help to run the stands at the event, while Day Campers helped to make some of the games and posters to advertise the event around town.
“We went from one gym with five games and grew it into using the whole facility with hundreds of kids. When we started we had six Day Camp counselors and a small number of participants. We have 16 counselors this year and last summer had about 300 participants. We’ve come a long way!” Mr. Wiggins remarked proudly.