MARINE CORPS AIR STATION, Ariz. -- Station service members and their families had the opportunity to spend time together Saturday at the station’s Family Day Carnival in front of the 7-Day Store.
This was the first Family Day Carnival hosted by the station in order to provide an atmosphere for families and spend time to gather on the station.
“We decided to come to the carnival because my wife saw it advertised in the Desert Warrior,” said Sgt. Victor Juarez, Marine Attack Squadron 311 administration chief. “I thought this would be a good time to spend some time with the wife and children. The carnival was a little small, but it’s for the kids, so it’s not too bad for them. Overall, the carnival was a lot of fun.”
“I’m glad we decided to come,” said Blanca Juarez, wife of Sgt. Juarez. “I’ve been to carnivals before, but this was our first time attending a carnival on the station. The carnival was a lot better than I thought it was going to be. I thought there weren’t going to be that many rides here.”
“I think the carnival was nice for the kids,” said Staff Sgt. Maria Garcia, Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron Consolidated Personnel Administration Center Permanent Change of Station section staff noncommissioned officer-in-charge.
Garcia brought her children and the children of a fellow Marine who could not attend because of work commitments and said the children enjoyed the carnival very much.
The carnival was held in front of the Marine Corps Exchange and the 7-Day Store. Children had the opportunity to ride the Mind Winder, a miniature Ferris wheel, inflatable obstaclecourse, jump around in a bounce house and slide down the Super Slide.
“My son rode the (Mind Winder) twice, and after the second time, it broke,” said Garcia. “He has been standing next to the ride ever since wanting to get back on.”
Ian Giannettino, 7, said his favorite ride at the carnival was the Super Slide.
Vendors at the carnival sold snacks and last minute presents for Christmas.
Carnival attendees with a military identification cards also had the opportunity to enter for a raffle. The prizes for the winners included a Playstation Portable with a starter kit, a 20-inch television and a trip for four to Six Flags Magic Mountain theme park.
At 4 p.m., the carnival’s special guest Santa Claus arrived, escorted by a fire truck from the station’s fire department. Santa then stayed for the rest of the night to allow children to take pictures with him and take requests for Christmas presents.
Not only did attendees have the opportunity to win prizes, but parents also were able to let their children leave all their energy at the carnival.
“This is a good way to let the kids have a good time, and at the same time, get them tired,” said Garcia. “I brought them out here at eleven (a.m.), and we will probably leave around two (p.m.). This way, when we go home, they can take a nap.”
This was the first time Giannettino attended a carnival on the station and hopes they will continue.
“It would be nice if they had more of these throughout the year,” said Garcia. “I would continue to come and bring the kids because they really enjoyed themselves.”