Originally created 09/12/99

MCG carnival brings smiles



With a black bat painted on his forehead, 6-year-old Jacob Williams took his chances with the big pillowy green dice.

He rolled and they collectively showed seven. Cheering onlooker's let him know that another prize -- a miniature checker board game -- would be added to his bag of accolades he had already won: erasers, pencils, a ruler, a stencil board, crayons and adhesive bandages.

Not one of the children attending the Medical College of Georgia's Children's Medical Center Carnival lost a game Saturday.

"We wanted every child to walk away with a prize.,"said Pam Wilkins, chairwoman of the ninth annual event. "There are no losers, because we don't want to see any unhappy faces. "

Attendees purchased tickets to play games for prizes donated for the fund-raiser, Ms. Wilkins said. The event raised $5,800 last year and $2,000 in 1997 for the center.

On Saturday, more than 200 volunteers staffed the 40 stations.

Dr. Mark Lee, a pediatric neurosurgeon and a target for a pie-throwing station, said that he didn't know who nominated him for his post.

"But there are a number of (hospital) residents who would take advantage of the opportunity to put me on the receiving end," he said laughing.

Hundreds of children and their parents rushed from game to game set up in the parking lot. Youths wore 2-feet tall balloon hats and face painting and played putt-putt golf, bowling, and on a big wheels racing track until the afternoon.

"I went full blast," said big wheel rider Dusty Bryan, 7, who has been a cardiology patient at the center since 1996. "All the other kids ... I went right past them."

"He had so much fun," said Christie Bryan, Dusty's mother, who said this was the second year that her family has attended. "He couldn't wait to come back."

REACH

Clarissa J. Walker at (706) 828-3851 or cjwalker@augustachronicle.com.