Bash sets the stage for excitement

Special to The Sun/Courtesy photo.
Juan Diego Aguilera, a Pahokee resident who will enter sixth grade at Pahokee Middle School in August, poses with the new bicycle that he won in the giveaway at the City of Pahokee’s Back-to-School Bash. From left are Gentaurus Washington, aka “Negotiator,” of Dem Muck Boyz, a motorcycle group (kneeling); Pahokee Mayor Keith W. Babb Jr. and Vice Mayor Nathaniel Holmes; Camella Slydell, assistant principal of Pahokee Middle School; and Janet Peeples, assistant principal of Pahokee High.

Special to The Sun/Courtesy photo.
Pahokee Mayor Keith W. Babb Jr. speaks to families in the Pahokee High gymnasium during the City of Pahokee’s Back-to-School Bash. “We hold this annual event to make sure that no child is left behind,” he told the students, parents and other guests.

Community-wide collaboration supports more than 1,100 students

PAHOKEE — Exciting giveaways, backpacks filled with supplies delivered by local firefighters, an educational exhibitors fair, deejay music and a hearty hot lunch – fresh off a smoking grill – provided a welcoming, fun backdrop for the City of Pahokee’s eighth annual “Putting Kids First” Back-to-School Bash. The event, providing new backpacks and school supplies for more than 1,100 Pahokee students ages 5–18, took place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, July 29, at Pahokee High School.

Special to The Sun/Courtesy photo.
Randy Arredondo, who will enter kindergarten at Kathryn E. Cunningham Canal Point Elementary School in August, shows off the new Hewlett-Packard Notebook he won in the free raffle during the City of Pahokee’s Back-to-School Bash. His father, Vicente Arredondo, is at right. Pahokee Mayor Keith W. Babb Jr. is at left. The Arrendondos live in Pahokee.

Each year, the City of Pahokee hosts the fun-filled event in support of the children and families who attend its neighborhood schools. The widespread community collaboration fosters a message of empowerment with helpful resources among a variety of generous sponsors and committed vendors. In addition to Palm Beach County Fire Rescue, a host of representatives from local agencies and organizations turned out with educational resources and information to bring their message of year-round support services available to the children and families of Pahokee. Among those filling the school gym were Bridges Palm Beach County, American Red Cross, Palm Beach County Library System, KidCare and Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County.

Leading the event with a warm welcome and distribution of giveaway items was Pahokee Mayor Keith W. Babb Jr. He was pleased to personally award many donated items, bicycles, laptop computers and gift cards to area family-friendly destinations such as the Science Center & Aquarium and Rapids Water Park. Other officials in attendance were Pahokee Vice Mayor Nathaniel Holmes and City Commissioner Felisia C. Hill. Serving as event emcee was Pahokee City Manager Chandler Williamson.

The city is appreciative of the many generous private and business donors who made this year’s Back-to-School Bash successful. Among its top supporters are Florida Crystals, TrustBridge, Q81 Foundation and Xfinity.

Pahokee’s Back-to-School Bash supports students and families who attend public and private schools in Palm Beach County. Some are Pahokee Elementary School, Pahokee Middle School, Pahokee High School, Glades Academy, among others. An average of 92 percent of Pahokee students are enrolled in the free or reduced-price lunch program.

Special to The Sun/Courtesy photo.
PBC Fire Rescue turned out at the City of Pahokee’s Back-to-School Bash, which took place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, July 29, at Pahokee High School, to hand-deliver backpacks and give kids in attendance the chance to be up close and personal with firefighters who work in their community.

Special to The Sun/Courtesy photo. Pahokee Mayor Keith W. Babb Jr. escorts Jatavious Walker, 7, to the Palm Beach County Fire Rescue table at the City of Pahokee’s Back-to-School Bash. Jatavious, who will start second grade in August at Pahokee Elementary School, wanted to get a bright-red firefighter’s hat, which fire rescue personnel were handing out to students. Jatavious and his family live in Pahokee.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.

Facebook Comment