Kappa Kappa Gamma hosts annual philanthropy event ‘Kappa Karnival’

Sydney Sierota of Echosmith performs at the Kappa Karnival in the Texas Sports Hall of Fame. Kenneth Prabhakar | Photo Editor

By Shelby Peck | Copy Editor

Kappa Kappa Gamma hosted its annual Kappa Karnival Thursday night, complete with an extensive lineup of vendors, carnival food, caricature artists, face painting, fraternity-run carnival games and more. The event concluded with the inaugural Karnival Afterparty featuring “Cool Kids” artist Echosmith.

All proceeds from the event will be given to Kappa’s philanthropy, the Jed Foundation, which was founded in 2000 by the parents of Jed Satow — a college student who lost his life to suicide. The Jed Foundation serves to promote mental health and suicide prevention awareness among teenagers and young adults.

“Our goal this year is how much can we raise for our philanthropy, and [we] really wanted to promote that on campus this year,” Tyler senior and Kappa Kappa Gamma president Ellen Ferguson said. “We love Karnival. It really is our favorite time of the year, and it’s so fun seeing members of our sorority together, hanging out with each other and meeting new people and engaging with the university.”

Ferguson said planning for the event began in March and continued throughout the summer, when Kappa’s university event chairs contracted vendors and coordinated details. Karnival was held on Fountain Mall, and the afterparty — featuring Echosmith — was held in the Texas Sports Hall of Fame.

“Every year, it’s really fun because we try to get all the fraternities also involved too,” Ferguson said. “Every year, they run the Karnival games. … They’ll all dress up. They always end up having a blast.”

Girls from Kappa Kappa Gamma jumping in a bounce house during the Kappa Karnival. Lilly Yablon | Photographer
Members of Kappa Kappa Gamma jump in a bounce house during the Kappa Karnival. Lilly Yablon | Photographer

The fraternity-run carnival games included bounce house obstacle courses, a dunk tank and ax throwing sponsored by Phi Kappa Chi.

“Kappa reached out to us to … volunteer and just pick up the axes and be a general servant for the community,” Huntington senior and Phi Kappa Chi member Reece Modisette said.

Pipe Creek junior Luke Gostomski said the event was an opportunity for him to have fun and “serve the Lord,” while Mission Viejo, Calif., junior Ryan Karn said he appreciated the way Karnival allowed everyone to have fun with the Baylor community.

“Karnival I feel like perfectly characterizes Kappa,” Ferguson said. “It’s such a fun night, very carefree. You’re able to just walk around and do anything you want to do, but it also is such a sweet time too. [Karnival] creates that space where you can take a break from school and just come and enjoy just being with people and eating fun food and hanging out and just playing games and things that promote mental health rather than things that add onto your plate.”