Blue Ribbon Kid's Day attracts over 1,100
Despite inclement wintery weather, the Blue Ribbons Kid's Day attracted nearly 1,100 visitors, a 10-fold increase since its inception 21 years ago, according to Jan Novak, general chairman, who is also the prevention coordinator for Waushara County Human Services.
"The Blue Ribbons Kid's Day is a chance for families to have a free family fun day and a way of getting information out about different resources available in our community," Novak shared.
"The idea (for the Blue Ribbons Kid's Day) was started when we first got a family resource center - this event is a way to let everyone know what's here. It's a place for everyone to come and pick up information, like what's available for health care," added Novak.
The event is held every April during Child Abuse Prevention Month and has generally attracted anywhere from 1,000-1,200 visitors. Even though a committee of 10 individuals help coordinate the event, it is well-supported by the community, Novak mentioned.
In addition to Novak, committee members include Pat Bero, Kim Dorsey, Whitney Golding, Angie Konieczki, Mary LeBlanc, Cynthia Loa, Tom Rheinheimer. Linda Steffen and Joan Voigt.
There were activities galore geared toward kids of all ages during the four-hour event. In addition, civic groups, area businesses and others sponsored a wide variety of door prizes and other services.
At the Waushara County Health Department exhibit, children could taste test the smoothies they created by pedaling a bike, which generated the power to whip the ingredients in the blender attached to the rear-end of the bike.
Three different kinds of fruit were offered at the LaClinica, WIC (Women Infant Children) and United Health booth. Children were then given a plate divided into five different food groups - dairy, grain, fruits, vegetables and protein, and were asked to find the appropriate play food for each section.
Kids had an opportunity to snag a fish using a fishing pole at the Wild Rose Fish Hatchery area, and had help identifying what kind of fish they caught.
Youth also had the opportunity to get "finger-printed" by the Waushara County Sherriff's Department. Approximately 200 children, ranging in age of 3 months-12 years, completed these Project Child ID Kits with the sheriff's department.
Community Health Network gave away a bag of carrots to kids willing to exercise their muscles via sit-ups or push-ups.
Chippy Express provided train rides and local fire and emergency services staff braved the weather outside, sharing their expertise with visitors.
Coloring, games, crafts, clowns, bouncy houses, finger painting and face painting were among the numerous events youths could choose from while browsing the many different areas offered.
It was sitting-room only when the main entertainment took center stage - Magician Rondini (Ron Lindberg of Appleton) and the "CRITTERrrr MAN" (Chris Langenfeld, Hancock).
The character "CRITTERrrr MAN" was developed during Langenfeld's time working with students in the area of environmental education. Using Multiple Intelligence strategies, he shares his love of nature in a unique and exciting way to captivate his audience.
Parents and children received fire safety training in the Coloma Fire Safety House, which simulates a house fire. Over 200 people received fire safety training and 114 carbon monoxide detectors were distributed to those completing the training.
Adults could also take advantage of learning about the many different programs available in the area regarding youth camps, after-school programs, church programs, health-care options and camps, just to name a few.
Other groups sponsoring exhibits were: Wildlife Natural Foods; Waushara County Dairy Promoters; A & W; the 4-H Ambassadors; Bug Tussel Wireless; Thrivent; WASD - Parents As Teachers, CAP Services Head Start; Cap Services; Big/Brothers/Big Sisters; Wautoma High School Key Club; Ice Age Trail; Quad-County FRCN (Family Resource Center Network); Waushara County Foster Care Association; LuWiSoMo; Grace United Methodist Church; Camp Lakota; Lake Lucerne Camp, which offers a horse mentoring program; Waushara Libraries; Village of Learning; Dizzy D. Clown; American Martial Arts Academy; A+ After School, and Montello Racing Pigeons.
The 22nd Annual Blue Ribbons Kid's Day is scheduled for Saturday, April 5, 2014.
For more information regarding the Blue Ribbons Kid's Day event, contact Novak at 920-787-6600 or firstname.lastname@example.org.