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First Impressions of Carnival

I’m a freshman, so this year was my first experience with CMU Carnival. I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect, but I was very excited to go and see this Carnegie Mellon tradition for myself. So without further ado, here are my impressions of my first Carnival.


Alumni Presence

I was told that lots of alums like to come back for Carnival, but I wasn’t expecting so many! The crowds were full of CMU grads and their families. And their dogs!




I definitely knew a lot about buggy already. Some of my friends were on the teams, and, well, it’s kind of a big deal here. It’d be harder not to know anything about buggy. I’d even seen a few of the buggies before, but it was an entirely different experience to watch them race. The pushers were all incredibly strong, and it’s really impressive how fast they can make the buggies go. And I always knew that someone could fit inside a buggy, but this was the first time I was able to actually see a driver in there. Well, their arms at least. It’s so crazy, and insanely cool! Definitely one of the best parts of Carnival.



I went with a bunch of my friends to the Holi festival put on by CMU OM. The food was amazing, Fateh’s performance was great, and it was so, so much fun to run around and throw colors at everyone. Washing it all out after was certainly a challenge though, but worth it.




Even before Carnival officially started, it was really exciting to watch all the rides being brought in and set up. There’s something about seeing a half-assembled Ferris wheel on the lawn that makes walking to early classes a little more bearable. My friend and I bought the wristbands that let you go on as many rides as you want for one day, and we were determined to get our money’s worth out of those things. It was a struggle after some of the particularly dizzying ones, but we had a great time. It was funny too when I’d occasionally remember “wow, this is happening at school. Right next to the lecture halls and the library.”



It was real carnival food, in all its fried and sugary glory. Some long lines, but totally worth it.



I went to see Scotch’n’Soda’s production of Chicago, and they were amazing as always. Great singing, great dancing, great acting, great show.




I also knew about booths before Carnival, but I still wasn’t prepared for how extravagant they all were. It was amazing to see how much everyone could get done in such a short time.


Overall Atmosphere

It was really nice to see everyone so much more laid-back than normal. It reminded me of O-week in some ways, how everyone was just there to have a good time. Definitely a good break from school.


I hope everyone at CMU had as much fun at Carnival as I did, and I hope anyone not at CMU enjoyed reading about one of the many things that makes our university so special.

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