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Mission supplies parents, entertains kids before school session
Aug 03, 2006 12:00 am
With the first day of school less than a week away, a few events are aiming to supply parents with necessities and indulge children with final summer adventures this weekend.
Kicking off the weekend endeavors will be College Hills Church of Christ's annual "School Store," a free cache of school supplies for pre-kindergarten through eighth-grade students.
Former educators Jim and Annabelle Robinson started organizing the event about 10 years ago to furnish students who can't afford new school supplies with the necessities.
"We are trying to reach people on free- and reduced-price lunches, because they need help," said Annabelle Robinson, who noted parents with several foster children also gain extra goods for the upcoming school year.
Robinson explained the church's inventory comes directly from church members who donate cash or the items notated on "apple trees."
"We have apple trees like angel trees (during Christmas) and it has suggestions on it for the kids," she said Wednesday. " … We buy supplies form a warehouse in Memphis in bulk."
The former math teacher said a shipment is expected to deliver items such as spiral notebooks, pens and pencils to crayons, glue and first- and second-grade tablets today.
Congregation members also drop off used school clothing in "good condition" for the School Store, Robinson said.
"We were able to buy some new clothes this time," she said. "It's a good operation."
The inventory, however, is specifically for East Wilson County students enrolled at the five Lebanon Special School District institutions and Carroll-Oakland, Southside, Tuckers Crossroads and Watertown elementary schools.
The School Store will be open from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at the church at 1401 Leeville Pike. All items are first come, first serve, according to the flier for the event.
And if parents can't find clothes to fit their tiny preschoolers or growing eighth-graders, a local family clothing store is extending discounts to shoppers while entertaining their children Saturday.
The sixth annual Kid's Day will begin at 8 a.m. Saturday at all Goody's Family Clothing stores in the nation including Lebanon's location on South Cumberland Street.
While parents are searching for bargains armed with their scratch-off savings cards, store employees will entertain their children with a wide range of projects.
"Shopping is not the greatest thing for kids," Lebanon's Goody's Store Manager Brian Willoughby said Wednesday. "(The activity center) will occupy children's time with finger paints, and the moms and dads can go shopping."
Finger paints, coloring books and play dough are a few allurements for all children who stop in the store Saturday, but the first 100 children to cross the threshold of the store will get an added bonus. The first 50 children will receive a free T-shirt to decorate at the store while the first 100 will be handed a free baseball cap.
"We are going to give away hats and T-shirts and have refreshments," Willoughby said. "Anything to occupy the kids while the parents shop."
Parents shopping at the store will receive a bonus for shopping at Goody's
"We have a super sale and scratch off cards, and everyone gets a secret discount," the store manager said.
Willoughby explained every shopper will receive a scratch-off saving card with a discount ranging from 10- to 50-percent off any purchase storewide.
The annual Kid's Day will begin at 8 a.m. and end at 10 p.m. at the store.
Kids, however, can attend an action-filled event devoid of school supplies or shopping-oriented tasks on Market Street.
A Back to School Fun Day will be 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Market Street Community Center.
Favorite action-oriented adventures such as basketball games and inflatables for jumping will be on site. A basketball skills contest will happen during the event as well.
"It's just to try and make it an enjoyable day," Ward 2 Lebanon City Councilor Kevin Huddleston said.
The city councilor decided to sponsor the event after hearing a local church elected not to organize the Back to School bash this year.
"Basically it's a thing put together for the kids," he said Wednesday. "It's the last weekend before school starts."
Huddleston also noted the venture will help him connect more with his Ward 2 constituents.
"I'm trying to get more involved with the community and meet more constituents," he said.
Community members wanting to prepare their preschoolers for the upcoming year will have the opportunity to learn of programs available at the "Kicking up the Pre-K program" from 3-7 p.m. Friday at the Wilson County Fairgrounds.
All preschoolers between birth and 5 years old who live in the Wilson County school zones and their parents may learn about the new pre-kindergarten programs and other preschool services in the area. Free immunizations, physicals and screenings will be provided.
Night News Editor J.K. Devine can be reached at 444-3952 ext. 46 or by e-mail at email@example.com.