Behind the Carnival — “Unseen Terrors”

For this report, we had a conversation with Mengjie Shen, the Director of Events Committee and sophomore at NYU Shanghai, about the whole process of preparing and organizing this year’s “Carnival of Terrors.”

As one of NYU Shanghai’s annual traditions, Student Government Events Committee hosted the “Carnival of Terrors” on October 31st –Halloween night. With a bloody “Butcher Shop” Haunted house, screaming room, movie screening, lip-sync battle, and costume contest, the two-hour event was a real blast, especially for many students in their mid or post-midterm funk. 

However, for the Events Committee members, this two-hour-long carnival had been a two-month-long “terror.” For this report, we had a conversation with Mengjie Shen, the Director of Events Committee and sophomore at NYU Shanghai, about the whole process of preparing and organizing this year’s “Carnival of Terrors.” 

Change of the Location

The Events Committee had started to plan for the carnival event from the beginning of September. One of the major challenges they met at first was the change of location. As the 15th floor was reserved for other school events, they had to come up with a new idea about where to host this year’s carnival. They initially considered using the public space on the second floor and third floor with several classrooms, but they ultimately chose the cafeteria area in B1 for two main reasons. First, the cafeteria would not only offer enough space for multiple event activities, but the entrance of cafeteria face directly to the gate of the biking parking place where the haunted house was designed. Additionally, hosting the event in the cafeteria would avoid conflict with the students’ daily activities. 

New Layout Map

Placing the “Carnival of Terrors” in the cafeteria seemed like the ideal decision, but there were more unexpected problems. The previous hosting experiences in cafeteria were not quite satisfactory because of the big space and limited event designs. However, through cooperating with other clubs under Student Government and Sprout-Works staff, the Events Committee finally decided the new layout of the carnival in B1. By dividing cafeteria into specific themes, they made full use of the space and increased the variety of carnival activities. 

Don’t Panic

When asked if there is anything that Events Committee wanted to improve or do in other ways,  Mengjie said that all obstacles they met in the process were cleared through teamwork and If they had the chance to do it again, she would tell herself and her team: “Don’t panic.” However, Mengjie mentioned at the end of the interview that, although they are happy to see the success of this year’s carnival event, there is still a lot more Student Government can do to improve NYU Shanghai community and students’ sense of belonging. 

This article was written by Yixuan Freya Cui. Please send an email to managing@oncenturyavenue.com to get in touch.
Photo Credit: Mengjie Shen

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