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Games, food and music draw crowds to Commonwealth Honors College festival

Human bowling at the CHC Carnival Saturday afternoon. (Katherine Mayo/Daily Collegian)

The Commonwealth Honors College Area Government hosted its annual Carnival Saturday afternoon. Visiting family members and students took advantage of the fun and lively  atmosphere the week before final exams.

Attractions included inflatables, a dunk tank with residential assistants and volunteers to dunk, human bowling, a petting zoo and food for those attending.

“The event’s really fun, we’re really glad [the CHC Area Government] is doing this,” said Jacob Ong, a freshman chemical engineering major. “My favorite part is definitely the inflatable obstacle course.”

Tucked between the the Maple and Linden dormitories, the inflatable obstacle course was busy throughout the afternoon.

“We try to do one big event each semester,” said Jamie Downer, a sophomore biology major and secretary for the CHC Area Government. “I did come last year…it [was] exciting to plan it this year though.”

In the fall the CHC Area Government held a Harry Potter themed dance, according to Downer.

The festival offered a break to students as they geared up for this week’s coming finals. According to Downer, an increase in funding allowed for the area government to offer plenty of amenities to the students that were drawn in by the loud music and prospect of free food.

“This year we did ice cream sundae bars, which I don’t think they did last year,” Downer said. “We got a couple more inflatables and we got a caricature artist. Because of its success last year, we were able to get more money to do more.”

A major attraction to many at the festival was the petting zoo, complete with ducks, goats, a pig and an alpaca. Lines formed outside of the animal enclosure as small groups were allowed in for a few minutes at a time to pet the animals.

“[The festival] is really fun, it’s pretty cute,” said sophomore operations and information management major Lydia Phung. “I like the animals and the playlist.”

“This is my fourth one,” said senior economics and political science double major Sam Hockenbury. “The dunk tank is always entertaining to watch,” he added with a laugh.

With the success of this year’s festival, students can be assured that there is definitely more to come.

Will Soltero can be reached at wsoltero@umass.edu and followed on Twitter at @WillSoltero.

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