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Cotton Candy & Popcorn

Carnival Booth Idea – Popcorn / Cotton Candy!


Cotton Candy is a sweet treat at your carnival!



Popcorn is always a favorite at a Carnival!



Below video/gif shows fresh cotton candy twirling around a paper cone.

Supplies for Popcorn / Cotton Candy Booth:

bullet point A rented or borrowed Popcorn and/or Cotton Candy Machine 
bullet point Supplies to make the carnival food – Cotton Candy Mix, Popcorn, Oil etc.
bullet point Supplies to serve the food including napkins, gloves for volunteers, popcorn bags, cotton candy cones etc.
bullet point Volunteers to make and serve the carnival food
bullet point Tablecloth and/or Table skirt for food table
bullet point "Food Court" with tables, chairs tablecloths and more! (see details below)
bullet point A small box or can to take carnival tickets

Booth Set Up:

Before the carnival, it is best to plan out all booth placement – especially food booth placement.

Remember, that most food booths need to be close to an electricity outlet. (Talk to your local health officials to find out specific requirements for your location.)

Your popcorn carnival booth can easily be set up inside, but consider placing the cotton candy machine outside, close to an outlet, but on a covered portion of the property. The cotton candy machine can make a sticky, sweet mess, but this is one of the kids favorite carnival food booths! Your volunteers will be especially sweet when they are done!! 

Our school rents a cotton candy machine every year for our school carnival – the children love it! Our teachers sign up to help with our carnival food booths and the carnival ticket booth. Children love seeing their teachers in a different role and parents enjoy getting to know the teachers in a more casual setting!  

It is a great idea to have a designated area for folks to sit down and eat at your carnival. So picnic tables outside with tablecloths. Some school choose to use their cafeteria to keep things simple for carnival goers. 

See the photo above to see how one school set up their tables with simple table decorations too!

How to Run the Popcorn / Cotton Candy Booth:

Generally, food booths are run just like game booths where carnival guests pay tickets for different food items.

Most of these booths are easy to run for volunteers, but allow a little bit of extra time to learn how to make popcorn and or cotton candy so you are ready to go when the carnival opens its doors.

Additional Hints & Tips:

It is a great idea to have a "food court" area at your school or church carnival. This Food Court will have tables, chairs and tablecloths 

Several years ago, our PTA purchased a popcorn machine and we use it annually for every carnival and for other PTA events throughout the year. If your school or church does not have a popcorn cart, consider talking to a local bank that serves popcorn on Fridays. See if they would be willing to loan out their popcorn machine for your carnival and donate some volunteers to help as well.

Note: most popcorn carts have wheels, but do have glass sides which are breakable. Use caution when moving this carnival booth item!