Juniors and Parents Gear Up for Carnival 2023

By Greta Conlon ’24 and Rachel Breitweser ’03

Punahou is gearing up to welcome everyone to this year’s Punahou Carnival – Pun Prix ’23: Pedal to the Metal – on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 3 – 4, from 11 a.m. – 11 p.m., complete with kiddie rides, malasadas, games, Art Gallery, Variety Show and more.

The Punahou community has been working hard to get ready for the big event. Meet the Junior and parent Carnival Division leaders behind the many booths Carnival has to offer.

Visit punahoucarnival.com for more info about Carnival, including pricing, parking and EK Fernandez ride info.

The Juniors and parents leading the Carnival

We’re back! Carnival is open to the public after the pandemic, and we are offering kiddie rides, lots of food booths and games.

Lexi Namba ’24, student Carnival chair

Administrative Division

The Juniors and parents leading the Administrative Division

The Silent Auction, T-Shirts and Materials and the Sound Booth fall under the Administrative Division’s purview. Bidding for the Silent Auction will be online, from noon on Wednesday, Feb 1 through 4 p.m on Saturday, Feb. 4. Select items will be on display at Kirsch Gallery (adjacent to Cooke Learning Commons) during Carnival, with volunteers standing by to help with online bids. Carnival fabric, t-shirts and other items showcase this year’s colorful race car theme. The Sound Booth is gearing up with a playlist of favorite songs from the decades.

The thing I am most excited about for Carnival 2023 is that it is open to the public again. It has been really interesting to see how Carnival has changed over the pandemic. I am really proud of how the Junior class came together.

This year we had the most booth chairs out of any Junior class. This is a testament to the excitement we all feel to be able to bring back this tradition to the community. Some of my fondest memories are from attending Punahou Carnival when I was younger, and I’m grateful and excited that I can be a part of creating a memorable Carnival experience for others.

Crystina Young ’24, Administrative Division student head

Food Division

The Juniors and parents leading the Food Division

Malasadas, teri-burgers, gyros, Portuguese bean soup and more are on the menu for Carnival, with the addition of a new booth, Sugar Rush, serving up sweets and candies. Along with collecting over 7,000 pounds of donated sugar for Carnival’s famous malasadas, the Food Division team collected nearly 450 pounds of rice to donate to The Pantry for families in need.

I’m really excited for malasadas! They are always super popular. I’m also excited for people to see all the food booth signs that go with this year’s race car theme. Students worked hard on them and they are really well drawn.

Sean Jung ’24, Food Division student head

Skills and Games Division

The Juniors and parent leading the Skills and Games Division

Nearly 20 Skills and Games booths, such as Kiddie Basketball, Menehune Strongman and Mini Golf will add to the excitement of Carnival, along with fun prizes selected by students.

I’m so happy for all the kids, especially students who are new to Punahou, to experience the magic of Carnival through our many skills and games booths, such as Frogs in the Lily Pond and Bowling.

Kat Viola ’24, Skills and Games Division student head 

Specialties Division

The Juniors leading the Specialties Division

Meet the team behind the Art Gallery, Body Painting, Haku Lei, Jams and Jellies, Plants, Will Call and First Aid.

A pre-Carnival online jewelry sale kicked off the Art Gallery’s offerings this year. Shop the sale through Wednesday, Jan. 18 at 6 p.m. The online jewelry store featured hundreds of items from top Hawai‘i designers available for online purchase with pick-up on Punahou’s campus. The Art Gallery will be open for in-person viewing and purchases during Carnival, Friday and Saturday, Feb. 3 – 4. Shipping will be available. The public is also welcome to the pre-Carnival Opening Night on Tuesday, Jan. 31 from 5:30 – 8 p.m.

Items from the Art Gallery

Since last May, volunteers took part in picking, cooking, and labeling sessions for the famous mango chutney and lilikoi butter. Experienced lei makers and volunteers also are carrying on the long-standing tradition of creating beautiful haku lei from donated flowers and plants.

We made about 12,000 jars of jams and jellies! We had some pre-Carnival sales over the holidays, and will have them for sale again at Carnival. People should come early and get them while they last.

Shane Komeiji ’24, Specialties Division student head

White Elephant Division

The Juniors leading the White Elephant

The White Elephant booth boasts an array of second-hand clothing, housewares, toys and treasures. The team hosted three drive-through donation collections starting in June, amassing several thousand pounds of donations, which they sorted, boxed, priced and set up on 22 pallets.

All five sections of White Elephant are back – books, clothes, antiques, jewelry and more! There’s a lot of cool stuff for people to browse, all of which was donated.

Gabbie Gonzales ’24 and Seung Ham ’24, White Elephant Division student heads

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