Kicking off a three-year partnership with St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Carnival Cruise Lines presented the organization with a $50,000 check following a waterslide christening ceremony on the new Carnival Dream during which nine-year-old Hailee Steberger inaugurated the vessel’s 303-foot-long Twister slide, the longest in cruising. 

The monies were raised through Carnival’s Big Book of Dream’s contest that asked children ages seven to 12 to share their dreams, along with a hand-drawn illustration, via a special web site.  Carnival donated $1 per vote to St. Jude and Steberger garnered the most votes to earn the distinction as the cruise industry’s first waterslide godchild.

Pictured here at a check presentation ceremony aboard the Carnival Dream are (from left):  John Heald, Carnival’s senior cruise director; John Remington, senior vice president - corporate alliances for ALSAC, the fundraising arm of St. Jude;  Hailee Steberger; and Jim Berra, Carnival’s chief marketing officer.

As part of its three-year partnership with St. Jude, Carnival aims to raise $3 million to help achieve the hospital’s mission of finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic illnesses. To support the hospital, under the theme “Care to Play,” Carnival is creating fun, interactive on-board fundraising activities that will involve guest participation.

Carnival Dream, the line’s newest and largest ship, launches year-round Caribbean service from Port Canaveral, Fla. Dec. 3.