Condom carnival embraces luau motif’s ambiance

Written By Matt Petras

The twist to this year’s Condom Carnival will be immediately evident upon entering the event on Wednesday, Feb. 10.

“Everyone gets ‘leid’ when they walk in,” said Eva Smith, junior marketing major and head of the event this year, via phone interview Jan. 27. 

The fun-focused event hosted by the Campus Activities Board (CAB) still exists to provide sexual education and promote safe sex, but this time around it will be covered in a luau atmosphere, from leis given at the door to tropical-flavored drinks. 

“I just thought it would be fun,” Smith said.

The Condom Carnival will be held from 9-11 p.m. in the Lawrence Hall Ballroom. 

Several Point Park groups including Her Campus, Title IX and Student Development are involved in the event. Guests can engage in a variety of games at these booths to claim condoms to take with them. These games mix goofy competition with information about sexual health. 

Sophomore advertising and public relations major and CAB’s Public Relations Coordinator Nicole Miller discussed the variety of games that will take place at the carnival in a phone interview Jan. 26. Miller said that one game hosted by Student Development tasks students with answering trivia questions while playing limbo. 

Her Campus is hosting a few games, including a version of Twister that uses spots denoting anatomy instead of colors, Smith said. CAB hopes students learn something about sexual health in their efforts to nab as many condoms as they can. 

It’s not just groups already invested in safe sex advocacy that participate, but also seemingly unrelated groups like Point Park’s Rugby Club, which has helped out with the Condom Carnival for years. 

“I can remember even [during my] freshman year we would go,” said senior multimedia major and Rugby Club Captain Jakob Como via phone interview Feb. 1.

The Rugby Club had to be creative in deciding how to incorporate the essence of their club into a game that fits the event, Como said. The result is wrapping a garbage bag over a hula hoop to create something that looks like a giant condom. Attendees are offered the chance to throw rugby balls into the mock condom to score some real ones. 

“It’s a good chance to interact with students,” Como said. “It’s a light-hearted event.”

Como maintains the Rugby Club’s involvement in the event because he sees the event as a good way to bring awareness to the issues involved with safe sex advocacy. 

“It’s a fun way to have a sex education event,” Miller said. 

The organizers acknowledge the awkward nature of talking about sex, but aren’t shying away from it. 

“I think if it was a more serious event, they would learn less and honestly not show up,” said Miller. 

According to the 2015 State Health Report from the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention, an estimated 1,419 adults and adolescents were diagnosed with HIV in Pennsylvania in 2013. Among the 50 states, Pennsylvania ranked 10th in the number of HIV diagnoses in 2013.

Fifty-three percent of the 115,000 pregnancies in Pennsylvania were unintended in 2010, according to the Guttmacher Institute. 

“Your sexual health is very important to talk about,” Miller said.