The Portland Chamber of Commerce has announced the seventh annual Back to School Bash will be held on Saturday, July 30 at Richland Park.
The event will be from 8 a.m. until 11 a.m. and is free to the public. It will be held near the Portland swimming pool.
The first 700 kids (grades pre-k through 12) that come through will receive a backpack full of school supplies. The kids must be present and attend a Portland school grades Pre K and up. And the water slide inflatables are sure to be a hit again this year. Students from North Sumner Elementary and Oakmont Elementary Schools are also eligible to participate.
Last year 600 backpacks were given away with age-appropriate school supplies inside them.
This year, Chamber Director Sherri Ferguson anticipates giving away another 700 backpacks.
“This year I plan on us giving away another 700 backpacks,” Ferguson said. “But with all the help we’ll receive from area churches and businesses, I’m hoping that once the Back to School Bash is over and we’ve given out the backpacks, we’ll have extra supplies that we can take to the local schools for the kids who were unable to attend for one reason or another.
“We’d love to see the schools have enough of a surplus to get them through the school year.”
Ferguson has ordered extra backpacks to be filled and distributed amongst the area schools.
In addition to the school supplies, there will be twelve bicycles with protective helmets given away via raffle.
Upon registration, children will be given a raffle ticket and will choose which bicycle they wish to have a chance to win.
Games and prizes will be available for children to play, and free water and lemonade will also be available.
“I’m excited about allowing the community to step in and be involved,” Ferguson added. “People in the community are always looking for the opportunity to contribute. It makes people feel good and it’s exciting everyone can participate. No matter how little time you have to give, everyone can help.”
Items can be dropped off at the Chamber office, or at a local church in the community.
The school supplies will be distributed at the Back to School Bash based on the ages of the children. For instance, students in kindergarten and first grade will receive a different pack of supplies than students in second grade through middle school.
Students ages from kindergarten through the eighth grade must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. All students must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.