Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Family carnival at St. Camillus - Gazette

People and Places | Jeremy Arias and Jason Tomassini | Wednesday, Sept. 3, 2008

The annual St. Camillus family carnival will be held 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. Friday, noon to 11 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday at St. Camillus Church, 1600 St. Camillus Drive in Silver Spring.

It is the third year the church has held the event. Proceeds benefit the St. Camillus School, which serves pre-kindergarten to eighth-grade students at 1500 St. Camillus Drive. The event is open to the whole community, not just members of the church.

Ed Cook, chairman of the church's carnival committee, said there will be 12 to 14 rides, including a merry-go-round, moon bounce, haunted house and a "freefall," where riders drop from 100 feet in the air. There also will be multicultural food and drinks, including beer. Local amateur and professional craftspeople will have booths set up to sell their items. A disc jockey will play music and there will be a place to dance for attendees and professionals specializing in Irish dance.

Cook said the event is the church's signature non-religious event of the year and is a great opportunity for the congregation's many cultures to get together. Cook said the congregants come from more than 120 nations and called the carnival a "melting pot" of ethnicities.

"When you get a Latino from Argentina working with someone from the Czech Republic, it's fun," said Cook, who expects 4,000 attendees this year. "Very often, they are meeting people they would never get to meet without the carnival."

Admission is free, but a small fee will be charged for rides. From noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, patrons can buy a ticket granting unlimited access to any ride for $10 but those tickets must be purchased by Friday. Those tickets can be ordered at the church or the school. For more information call 301-434-8400.

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