Annual ZTA Carnival supports awareness of breast cancer within community

By Maegan White

Elm Staff Writer

The sisters of Zeta Tau Alpha banded together to host their second annual carnival event on Saturday, April 15, raising funds for breast cancer education and awareness.

ZTA celebrated their Pink Out Week leading up the carnival, hosting numerous tabling events in Hodson Hall to sell items and educate passersby on breast cancer awareness. A few days included activities like spinning a wheel to win a prize, putting tickets in for raffle baskets, and selling small, hand-made carnival bags.

The end of the week culminated in the ZTA Carnival on the Hodson Green. 

All of the donations from Pink Out Week went toward the Zeta Tau Alpha Foundation, which funds breast cancer research and education. Purchases from the carnival go toward running the event again in 2024.

ZTA President junior Delaney Runge emphasized the importance of ZTA’s philanthropy on the sorority and community in general. 

“As a women’s organization, it is so important that we are working towards helping women and funding research for a type of cancer that largely affects women,” Runge said. “Not only providing funding for this, but also raising awareness for this is extremely important so that more people know and can try and detect things early, which can be a game changer.”

The ZTA Carnival had a wide variety of activities that participants could play, including water ball toss, magnet fishing, balloon darts, an inflatable slide, and more. Sisters also set up an educational table for participants to learn more about breast cancer. 

They sold traditional carnival food like popcorn and cotton candy. Attendees could also enter a raffle to win baskets of local goods and treats. Prizes included baskets of books, tea, and Squishmallows.

ZTA partnered with the Student Government Association Service Committee, who hosted a face painting and friendship bracelet-making station. Members of the Service Committee gave out War on the Shore-inspired tattoos and face paint to prepare for the Shoremen’s Lacrosse game that afternoon. 

The most popular station at the carnival was the dunk tank. Students and staff from all different campus groups volunteered to be dunked to support the ZTA carnival. The dunkees included members of other Greek life organizations, members of the SGA, and administrators like Provost and Dean and John S. Toll Professor of Business Management Dr. Michael Harvey and Dean of Student Engagement and Success Tricia Biles. 

Alpha Chi Omega President junior Abigail Collins volunteered to be in the dunk tank to support her fellow Greek life organizations.

“I think it’s really important to show up and support other Greek life on campus as much as I can,” Collins said. “It’s a small campus, we all have to be here for each other for Greek life to continue to survive and prosper. We each have extremely important philanthropies, so it’s good to show up for each of them.”

ZTA Director of Philanthropy and Service sophomore Riley Johnson coordinated and planned the event with the help of her committee and the executive council. According to Johnson, all the games and activities were created and led by sisters at the event. 

Going into the carnival, Johnson was most looking forward to seeing the community participate in the event. 

“[It’s exciting] seeing all of the hard work that has been put into this event come together and see sisters work together to put on a fun event for a good cause,” Johnson said. “It’s also always nice to see everyone let loose and have fun, even professors. The dunk tank is a fan favorite, so I was looking forward to seeing everyone come to dunk their friends and staff members.”

Johnson wanted to thank all her sisters, advisors, and committee members for all their hard work. The amount the sorority raised will be announced in the coming week.

Photo courtesy of Laurel Krause

Photo Caption: Inflatable activities included blow-up ax throwing and a slide.

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