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Ghoulish education
CSU Stanislaus student spearheads Halloween event
ghoulish pic1
Caleb Monticalvo pauses for a moment at the fairgrounds in his Ghoulish Gala 13 t-shirt while setting up for the event Friday afternoon.


What: Halloween event that includes two stages of music, food vendors, hookah, palm readings, a haunted house and more for adults 18 and older.

When: 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. tonight

Where: Stanislaus County Fairgrounds, 900 N. Broadway, Turlock, Buildings E-1, E-4, E-5

Tickets: $15 with costume, $20 without costume — cash only; ladies half price before 9 p.m.

It is not unusual for a student to take out a loan during college, but it is unusual for that student to use the loan to finance an event for other young adults such as local student Caleb Monticalvo has done.

Monticalvo is a 24-year-old business administration student with a concentration in marketing at CSU Stanislaus. As a two time All American pole-vaulter at CSUS with a busy track schedule, Monticalvo had trouble obtaining an internship this past summer.  Wanting to utilize the information he learned in business classes, the dilemma spurred Monticalvo to produce an event himself.

Monticalvo spearheaded the “Ghoulish Gala 13.” The event is Halloween inspired for young adults at the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds that will include two stages of music, food vendors, hookah, palm readings, a haunted house and more.

Monticalvo felt that there was a lack of events in the area for young adults and thought that he could accomplish two goals at once by providing young adults a fun night as well as getting hands-on marketing experience.

“I knew the risks taking out the loan. But regardless of how successful the event is, this is a major learning experience for me,” Monticalvo said.

Monticalvo is not looking to profit off of the event, but ideally would like to break even. He said that he has been a sponge, gleaning as much as possible from the experience.

“I’m looking to gain new skills that will set me apart,” the young business professional said.

Monticalvo said he has enjoyed the executive decision making that an internship would not have afforded him.

Utilizing resources within the community, Monticalvo worked with people such as CSUS Marketing Professor Athinodoro Chronis to develop sponsorship proposals, a mission statement, and marketing strategies. Monticalvo also teamed up with fellow track mate Jessica Counts, who interned at the fairgrounds as well as CSUS students Gregory Hooker, Toby Stonelake, and Mandy Mejia.

51 Fifty Energy Drinks is sponsoring the event and Deathworkz, who assembled the haunted house for free from materials that Montecalvo purchased, is a partner.

Ghoulish Gala 13 is not affiliated with CSUS and is open to young adults 18 years of age or older.

The event will include food vendors such as Dale’s Kettle Corn, Lisa’s Cookie Jar, Sweet Cheeks Fair Treats, and Viva Taco Bus.

Ghoulish Gala 13 will take place from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. tonight and ladies are half price before 9 p.m. Tickets cost $15 with a costume and $20 general admission, cash only.