UTMB students started a new Galveston Halloween tradition three years ago in the direct aftermath of Hurricane Ike — a UTMB Halloween Carnival for Galveston families.
This year, the annual UTMB Halloween Carnival featured costume and pumpkin carving contests, face painting, balloon animals, games and prizes, a haunted bus and, of course, lots of candy.
The first UTMB Halloween Carnival, organized by the Osler Student Societies at UTMB, originated as a response by the medical students to the need for a safe and fun evening for the children of Galveston immediately following the devastation to the Island by Hurricane Ike.
The idea was conceived at an evening dinner of the Elizabeth Blackwell Osler Student Society on Oct. 21, 2008, a little more than a month after Hurricane Ike and just 10 days before Galveston’s first post-Ike Halloween. The medical students pulled together enough resources and volunteers to entertain several hundred children and families that first year, at a time when mountains of debris still lined Galveston’s streets and many homes were still uninhabitable.
“Since then the Halloween Carnival has become bigger and better and continues to offer the children and families of Galveston a safe and fun evening of entertainment,” said UTMB pediatrician Dr. Michael Malloy, who holds the John P. McGovern Chair in Oslerian Education and is the assistant dean for the Osler Student Societies.
This year, the UTMB Student Government Association
, along with a number of other UTMB student organizations, joined with the UTMB Osler Student Societies to put on the free event. About 100 UTMB students are involved.
Participants were asked to bring a canned food item to benefit local food pantries.