A gift to the community

They say nothing in life is free. An event coming this Sunday, though, really is free – even lunch. It’s not only free – but fun.

Sunday is the annual Daily Press Children’s Back-to-School and Health Fair. It’s one of the ways the Daily Press gives back to the community throughout the year.

This year’s Children’s Back-to-School and Health Fair is in the Ruth Butler Building at the U.P. State Fairgrounds and surrounding area from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. It’s an event that combines learning and fun for children and their families. Dozens of groups and agencies participate each year.

Everything, with the exception of immunizations, is free – everything – even pizza, compliments of Papa Murphys.

The Daily Press started the Children’s Back-to-School and Health Fair five year ago as a way to inform the public on changes made to immunization rules in Michigan. It’s grown every year since then and more than 1,000 people attended last year. The event literally has something for everyone. In additional to informational booths with health and back-to-school information, there’s a full array of activities that combine fun and learning for children of all ages. For example, this year’s Children’s Back-to-School and Health Fair includes disc golf, putt-putt golf, AAA driver training simulators, an obstacle course, a fire safety smoke house, bus rides, emergency vehicle displays, and demonstrations by Dag the Dog of the Escanaba Public Safety K-9 Unit, YMCA Zumba and the Escanaba Robomos Team. Parents will be able to get a kit that records their child’s vital information through the Michigan Masons’ Michigan Child Identification Program. The Lions Club Project KidSight program will provide vision screenings.

Children will also have a chance to win an Apple iPad Mini or LeapFrog LeapPad, compliments of the Daily Press, along with numerous other prizes offered at individual booths. Each child will receive a goodie bag with school supplies and other back-to-school related items and there will be pizza for everyone.

The Daily Press offers this free event as our gift to the community. It wouldn’t be possible without the help of our major sponsors – The Eagle 107.3, Northern Lights YMCA, OSF St. Francis Hospital, Papa Murphy’s, EMP, and Super One – along with all the other groups, agencies, businesses and individuals, and volunteers who take part. They deserve our thanks.

There’s much, much more to the Daily Press Children’s Back-to-School and Health Fair than the word on this page can describe. The best way to find out about this worthwhile event is to see it yourself. We invited you to come to the fairgrounds this Sunday for some food and fun.

We think you’ll be glad you did.