By Ensign Marina Nanartowich
USS Carney PAO

USS Carney (DDG 64) reached the half way mark in her Fifth Fleet deployment earlier this month. Carney warriors celebrated with a week-long "CARNEYVAL"- among other activities, the week was complete with talent shows, corn hole tournaments and a Mongolian-style barbeque. The various events provided a much appreciated break in Carney's rigorous daily routine, allowing the crew a few moments to unwind.

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CARNEYVAL kicked off with Carney's original version of culinary "Fear Factor." Culinary Specialist 2nd Class Salomon Mejia and other Culinary Specialists cooked up some interesting concoctions that were far from their normal delicious meals.

Clams, peanut butter, syrup and Cheerios were among the secret ingredients in the championship round of the event. Electronic's Mate 2nd Class Vladymir Odysse won the event, proving that fear was not a factor for him⦠and that he had the strongest stomach onboard. 

"Our Sailors work their tails off day in and day out," commented Command Master Chief Jon Lonsdale, "CARNEYVAL was about letting them blow off some steam and promote esprit de corps within the Carney Nation-mission accomplished!"

Other events during the week included "Carney's Got Talent," a talent show hosted on the mess decks by Carney's very own resident DJ, Electrician's Technician 3rd Class Brian Woosley. Fire Controlman 3rd Class Higinio Jimenezsegura earned first place in the talent show with his acoustic rendition of "Falling to Pieces" by The Script, complete with an original guitar solo to close the act. 

MWR ran an exciting game night and the Chief Petty Officer's hosted the Carney Nation favorite: MWR BINGO Night! Repair Division hosted "Damage Control Olympics," which proved to be fun and an excellent opportunity for quality training. Participants raced against the clock as they went through a damage control obstacle course. 

The course started by dressing out in firefighting gear and grabbing "Oscar," the heavy dummy figure used for man overboard drills. After carrying Oscar down to medical, participants heaved a fire hose down to the flight deck and put out a simulated fire. Senior Chief Damage Controlman Richard Simpson won the event, with Boatswain's Mate 2nd Class Matthew Klimek in a close second. 

Carney Nation kept the competitive spirit alive during the Carney 5K. More than half the crew, approximately 140 Sailors, participated in the event by either running, biking, walking or using the elliptical to complete the 5K race. Fire Controlman 2nd Class Kevin Neal won the event overall with a run time of 17:13. Neal and Gas Turbine Specialist (Mechanical) 2nd Class Joan Fanel, who finished with a time of 18:16, were the only two to defeat Command Master Chief Lonsdale, finishing with a time of 18:29, in the "Beat the CMC" Challenge. 

Ensign Katherine Bollino, Ensign Fallon Puppolo and Turbine Specialist (Mechanical) 3rd Class Mercedes Lopez were the top finishing females, Bollino winning the event with a 22:01 run time.

The Family Readiness Group (FRG) sent dozens of boxes filled with goodies for the "Shoebox Auction." Carney Sailors enjoyed the surprises inside the boxes, relishing a piece of home with each other. 

The week of festivities ended with an extravagant ice cream social and a gourmet Mongolian Barbeque. Carney's skilled Culinary Specialists worked their magic on the grill cooking up shrimp, chicken, scallops, beef, noodles and a variety of vegetables and sauces for the crew to enjoy. 

"Every day the crew put together a different event," Carney's Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Eddie Crossman commented, "It really mixed things up and engaged their competitive spirit. Four months into a deplopyment it can be difficult to maintain motivation. The CARNEYVAL week put on by the crew, for the crew was a great way to get over that motivational wall. The crew is motivational, in shape and meeting all mission tasking!" 

Carney continues to conduct Maritime Security Operations and stay trained and ready to answer the call to national tasking in the Arabian Gulf.