With the Punahou Carnival coming up this weekend, there are a lot of preparations happening on campus and around the Makiki neighborhood. As a 25+ year veteran of the Carnival, I have decided to share my top 5 best tips for maximizing your fun and enjoying everything!
#5 Parking & Traffic
Plan on traffic, and plan on looking for parking because on-campus parking is usually not available. There is street parking in the surrounding area, and most of the other schools & churches offer paid parking both days. My recommendation is saving yourself some time & headache and spending $10 at Maryknoll School or Central Union Church. It’s worth the peace of mind knowing your car won’t be towed, and usually those fees help support that organization.
#4 Sun Protection
This is, of course, assuming that you’re going to go during the day. Depending on the weather, plan on wearing lots of sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses. The majority of the Carnival is outdoors, and you’ll definitely spend time in the sun while you’re in line for rides or food. There’s plenty of bottled water available around the campus, but you’re more than welcome to bring your own from home.
#3 Early Bird Exclusives
There are certain things that sell out or take specific planning if you want to partake. The jams & jellies booth usually sells out fairly quickly on the first day, so line up before Carnival opens on Friday. The Portuguese bean soup comes in waves, so it’s best to plan ahead if you want a cup. White elephant, the thrift store, has things available throughout the weekend, but the good stuff goes early. And finally, lunch time is usually less crowded than night time.
#2 Experience Everything
As much as you can, enjoy what the Punahou Carnival has to offer. Living on an island, we don’t have very many opportunities to go to fairs and carnivals, so make sure you take advantage of everything! From eating malasadas to riding the Zipper, this is the kind of thing that makes great memories!
#1 Safety In Numbers
Finally, the biggest bummer would be if something bad happened at Carnival, so plan ahead to stay safe. There are plenty of police on-hand if something should happen, but it helps to be vigilant yourself. If you have kids, make a backup plan in case you get lost. Keep your wallets, purses, cameras, and phones secure. And don’t ever talk to strangers, unless it’s me, you can talk to me!