The sixth annual St. Bernards Kidz Fun Fair has been scheduled for 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Aug 20, at St. Bernards Auditorium, 505 East Washington Ave.
The free event is designed for youngsters in Kindergarten through Grade 5 and will be a fun morning of entertainment and health education for parents and children. This year’s Kidz Fun Fair will have an emphasis on the importance of fitness and learning, with the theme being “Wild About Fitness and Learning.”
This year, Kidz Fun Fair will emphasize the importance of both fitness and learning,” says event cochairman Trish Chandler, a member of the sponsoring group, the Women’s Advisory Council of the St. Bernards Development Foundation. “Again this year, we are using the event to help youngsters get ready for going back to school by providing backpacks containing some basic school supplies.”
“A number of years ago we were overwhelmed by the need in Northeast Arkansas to help families supply their K through fifth grade students with some basic school supplies,” Chandler says. “So for the last couple of years … and again this year … we will help supply some basic back-to-school items. Backpacks and supplies will be distributed while supplies last.”
Co-chair Sophie Holland points out that a number of organizations and business from Jonesboro and Northeast Arkansas have joined the Women’s Advisory Council to help collect school supplies this year. “We appreciate the support we are receiving from businesses, organizations and individuals to help area children get off to a good start to the 2011-2012 school year. Included in those supporting the program were St. Bernards employees. As a part of Founders’ Month activities – which observed the 111th anniversary of the founding of St. Bernards by the Olivetan Benedictine sisters of Holy Angels Convent in 1900 – employees in the different departments at St. Bernards Medical Center collected school supplies in a friendly in-house competition, with all the supplies being donated to the Foundation for use in packing backpacks for distribution at this year’s Kidz Fun Fair.”
The doors will open at 8 a.m. on Aug. 20 to a health-fair setting, and K through 5 youngsters will be able to pick up school items, including backpacks while supplies last. Special Kidz Fun Fair T-shirts also will be available for children while supplies last. Each child will receive a book while supplies last, with books selected for appropriate grade-level reading. (Children must be present to receive backpacks, supplies, T-shirts and books.)
Special entertainment at this year’s Kidz Fun Fair will be a visit by Peter Gros with Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom. The original co-host of the Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom television program will bring with him some animal friends – an alligator, a python, a small kangaroo, a ring-tailed lemur and more – for a fun interactive presentation. Parents are urged to bring cameras so they can take advantage of photo opportunities.
Presentations are planned for 9, 10 and 11 a.m.
The Kidz Fun Fair will include a wide variety of activities – with booths set up both inside and outside the auditorium by groups and organizations that provide pediatric health-related and safety services and enrichment programs. Among outside booths and exhibits expected to attract attention are the Bill and Alice Nix Petting Zoo from Arkansas State University, DARE vehicles, a fire truck, a Medic One ambulance, an Air Evac helicopter, the Turner Dairy cow and more.
Among organizations with booths set up inside will be Children’s Clinic, Ocean Dental, Sylvan Learning, the Craighead County Jonesboro Pubic Library, Arkansas Game and Fish, the ASU A-Team, Howl, Spud the Clown, the Jonesboro School of Art face painting, Legacy Landfill and more. Special costumed characters also will be on hand. Jonesboro Radio Group will have a remote van on site, and Trey Stafford of The Fox will serve as emcee.
Winners of this year’s Kidz Fun Fair Art Contest will be recognized about 11:30 a.m., and first-place winners in Grades K through 5 will receive prizes. Art contest entries will be displayed at the events, with top entries designated by first-, second- and third-place and honorable mention medals. Deadline for submitting art entries is noon Monday, Aug. 15. They are to be turned in at the St. Bernards Development Foundation office at 400 East Street.
Kidz Fun Fair is the signature event sponsored annually by the Women’s Advisory Council of the St. Bernards Development Foundation. This year’s sponsors include Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield, Bancorp South, Bill and Alice Nix Petting Zoo, Children’s Clinic, Christ Life Fellowship, Dr. and Mrs. Brian Dickson, Fat City Apparel, First United Methodist Church, Mr. and Mrs. Harry Hutchison, JMS Metal Services, Jonesboro Neurosurgery Clinic, Kohls, Liberty Bank, Merrill Lynch, National Healing Corp., Ocean Dental, Office Depot, SHARP, Inc., Sharp Office Supply, St. Bernards Medical Center, Stuck Associates, Sylvan Learning, Turner Dairy, WalMart Parker Road.