Carnival still a Glen Burnie tradition 88-year-old festival gets started Friday

July 24, 1996|By Consella A. Lee | Consella A. Lee,SUN STAFF

Crews from Shaw and Sons Amusements carefully snaked cable through the grounds behind the Glen Burnie Improvement Association building Monday, despite the constant drizzle, hustling to get ready for the opening Friday of the Big Glen Burnie Carnival.

"The rides will be ready to go by opening day," said Glenn Powell, an assistant supervisor with Shaw and Sons. "Always have, always will."

Since 1908, the carnival has been a summertime tradition residents could count on.

"My parents brought me here when I was a kid," said Powell, 38, who grew up in Glen Burnie. "So for me, it's actually a really big thing to be part of the carnival."

He remembers the Dragon Wagon roller coaster. "It's loud and noisy and really shakes the kids up," he said.

And The Zipper, a ride with cages around its sides to hold in passengers as it "flips around real quick," he said.

Powell joined Shaw and Sons 25 years ago, collecting tickets and making sure riders were safely strapped into their seats. On Monday, he was busy making sure his crew got more than 20 rides ready.

It is the last time he will work at the carnival for Shaw, he said. He has lined up a job with the state as a ride inspector.

That doesn't mean he will stop coming to the carnival. It's a family tradition, he explained.

Organizers of the carnival, which usually raises about 70 percent of the GBIA's annual budget, expect about 250,000 customers between Friday and closing day, Aug. 3.

Parking and admission to the grounds, at Crain Highway and Baltimore-Annapolis Boulevard, is free.

The food still is relatively cheap: A hot dog costs 75 cents, and a soda costs 25 cents.

A dollar will buy participants a chance to win a 1996 Plymouth Neon. The carnival pays all title, tax and license fees, so the winner can drive take the car home immediately.

For $8 a night, carnival-goers may board rides all night Monday through Thursday. Tickets are sold separately Friday and Saturday. The carnival is open from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 7 p.m. to 11: 30 p.m. Friday. On Saturday, it will operate from 5 p.m. to 11: 30 p.m. But just as it was in 1908, the carnival is closed Sunday.

Pub Date: 7/24/96

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