Glen Burnie prepares for big carnival time Tradition of event dates back to 1908 GLEN BURNIE

July 28, 1993|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,Staff Writer

Mountains of cartons are everywhere, jungle gyms with brightly colored tops create a small city and everyone thinks the traffic cones should stand somewhere else. Teen-agers are running all over; the adults have walkie-talkies so they don't have to.

Welcome to the Big Glen Burnie Carnival in the making. Friday, the cartons, which contain everything from thousands of napkins to thousands of stuffed toys, will be unpacked, the booths will be stocked, rides will be running and 1,200 volunteers will start taking money.

The carnival, a tradition since 1908, continues through Aug. 7.

This fund-raiser for the Glen Burnie Improvement Association (GBIA) will feature 46 booths -- some with food, some with games -- 21 midway-style rides, pony rides, raffles to win a boat and a car, bingo and more.

"I love a carnival," said Cindy Rios of Pasadena, who serves as co-chairman of the event with Roger Little of Glen Burnie. They began planning a year ago, Ms. Rios said, and she has taken three weeks of vacation from her nursing job to manage the carnival.

This year, for the first time, the carnival will open at 5 p.m., instead of the customary 7 p.m. on its two Saturdays and scrap the Saturday matinee for young children.

The organization had started the matinee in 1990 in response to parents who said the carnival got started too late, GBIA President Muriel Carter said. But while the early hours brought youngsters, they also brought long lines of too many people, and tempers and the temperature grew hot.

"The first few years, everybody loved it. Last year, nobody loved it," Mrs. Carter said.

She said the group does not expect the change to cost it any proceeds.

Last year, the civic association netted $124,691 from the carnival. Nearly all of that was pumped into community institutions and events, association projects and the GBIA building, which community groups may use free.

Some of the kiddie games have been changed for this year to give everyone, not just the winners, a prize.

For the third year, Tuesday morning is being set aside as free carnival time for physically and mentally disabled people and their families -- people who ordinarily would find the going too rough during the packed evening hours.

Ring toss, break-the-plate, pick-a-ticket and wheel stands will be among the booths. Prizes will run from pinatas to potato chips to dolls, Ms. Rios said.

Organizations selling food include a candy stand run by the Glen Burnie High School Band and pizza from the Glen Burnie Civitan Club.

Ralph Shaw, president of Shaw & Sons Inc., a Severn amusement rides company, said rides vary from a tame merry-go-round to the carnival's insignia Ferris wheel to the much wilder Round Up, which plasters riders against a huge ring as they are spun around. Rides will be $1 apiece or $7 for the evening. Tickets will go on sale one-half hour before the carnival opens.

Severn Stables is supplying the ponies, $1 a ride, Ms. Rios said.

The first Saturday night typically is the biggest night of the carnival. Crowds shrink on Monday, then build during the week, Mrs. Carter said.

The Big Glen Burnie Carnival

Where: Carnival Grounds, behind the Glen Burnie Improvement Association hall, 19 S. Crain Highway.

Parking: Free, in county garage or on nearby streets.

Friday: 7 p.m. - 11:30 p.m.

Saturday: 5 p.m. - 11:30 p.m.

Sunday: closed.

Monday: 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Tuesday: 10 a.m. - noon, disabled only; 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Wednesday: 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Thursday: 1 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Friday: 7 p.m. - 11:30 p.m.

Saturday: 5 p.m. - 11:30 p.m.

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