Op-Ed: My Magical Night at the Mall Carnival


This is an opinion piece by CapeCod.com Intern Maggie Pedicini. 

When June rolls around I start thinking about the carnival that takes place in the Cape Cod Mall parking lot.

The smell of cigarettes coming from ride operators, the less-than-nice treatment of the so-called “carnies” who may be dentally-challenged, and the hope the rides won’t malfunction.

There is truly no other experience like attending the carnival held in the Cape Cod Mall parking lot.

I was lucky enough to attend this lavish event with my friends last week.

We were immediately cussed out and then pressured into buying one hundred dollars’ worth of wristbands by the ticket lady with an interesting tattoo on her face.

After acquiring unlimited rides to a carnival with only about seven rides to begin with, we went on the “The Rockstar.” During this ride, passengers sit on a platform with their feet dangling in the air and are lifted up to 55 feet in the air in a clock-wise motion.

Right before getting on the ride, I asked one of the men working it if it was safe to go on and he looked at me and laughed. But that may have been due to a language barrier between us. Nonetheless, it was still very disconcerting regardless. We ended up surviving the ride, and I only cried once.

Next we did “The Tornado,” which, as its title suggests, is essentially when the riders spin uncontrollably while being lifted and spun around in the air. I thought for sure I was going to be sick. However, fortunately and strategically I hadn’t eaten much that day so I got off the ride rather unscathed.

Next up was “Street Fighter,” another ride involving fast spinning and being lifted in the air except this time you were sitting with your feet dangling in a claw-like formation. This ride was, in my opinion, the scariest mostly because I could feel myself slipping out of harness seatbelt.

Lastly, we went on the Ferris Wheel, where we could see all of the beautiful sights of Hyannis such as Pufferbellies and even Fresh Holes Road.

After surviving the rides, my friends and I took a food break. One thing I will say about the carnival is that the fried dough they sell there is some of the best I’ve ever had. The dough was the perfect amount of softness and they offered powdered sugar and cinnamon as toppings. The hygiene of the people making the fried dough remains questionable.

Before I end this reflection piece, I would like to mention the heart of the entire operation— the carnies. Although most of them yelled vulgarities at my friends and I in an attempt to sway us into purchasing one of their games, a few shining stars were very friendly towards us and opened up to us about their lives and families.

For example, two men in particular, told us all about their countless grandchildren and great grandchildren, even though neither man looked old enough to have either. However, they were very kind to us and even provided advice on how to avoid decapitation while riding the rides. I’d like to consider them lifelong friends now.

I encourage everyone who reads this to attend one of the last remaining days of the carnival as it is an experience unlike any else. Personally, I can’t wait to go again next year and maybe even try my hand at “The Zipper”!

Maggie Pedicini is a CapeCod.com Intern and a College Student.  When not at school, Maggie is living it up on the Cape!


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