WEST SENECA, N.Y. (WKBW) — It is the weekend of what would have been the 39th annual Queen of Heaven carnival. Organizers said the event helped raise money for the students and church members of Queen of Heaven.
“It’s a huge weekend for us at Queen of Heaven. It is our single biggest fundraiser,” Queen of Heaven carnival committee member Katie Crowley said.
Due to COVID 19, the traditional festival was canceled. But, that didn't stop organizers from offering a taste of the traditional festival fare.
“We felt we wanted to do something and we needed to adapt with the times," Crowley said. "So a drive-through dinner seemed the safest way in the current condition to accomplish our goals.”
“This would have been carnival weekend anyway," carnival volunteer Kim Ifkovich adds. "We would have had the chicken dinner anyways. So, we just went ahead with it.”
Andrew’s BBQ is a staple at the Queen of Heaven carnival, so the committee decided to bring a piece of that carnival experience through food.
“Our response has been bigger than expected actually,” Crowley said.
“I'm so glad seeing everyone coming out and supporting the church,” Ifkovich adds.
The goal was to sell out of all 700 chicken dinners bringing in thousands for the students at Queen of Heaven.
“Just in the last 24 hours we had over 200 orders alone.”
And despite not having a carnival, organizers said it still felt good to bring the people of Western New York together.
“It’s nice to be able to fill that gap that the carnival is leaving this year,” Crowley said.
“Especially at a time like this," carnival volunteer Jillina Kwiatkowski adds. "We all need to be a community and to be able to know that we can all depend on each other."