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The north side of the square around the Hardin County Courthouse in Kenton will be a beehive of activities for young people of all ages Saturday morning.
Streets will be closed and the city will welcome the public to its first Kenton Kids Day.
Becky Potts, organizer for the event, said she hopes to make Kids Day an annual event and has been encouraged by the willingness of city officials and local businesses to make the day a memorable experience for all who attend.
“This is going to be a day of activity and fun,” said Potts. “It will be a great day for our kids.”
The Little Fun Run will kick things off at 8:45 a.m. Young people are invited to meet at the Schindewolf Stevens Stout Funeral Home parking lot on North Wayne Street for a run led by Ronald McDonald. The kids, said Potts, will go to the north side of the square, where they will find a variety of activities waiting for them.
Ronald McDonald will lead the children in an aerobics session and then sign autographs and pose for pictures as the day begins, said Potts.
One of the featured offerings will be the Amazing Portable Circus. The company invites young people to experience the thrills of swinging from a trapeze. The young people are secured on the trapeze with harnesses and belts and it sits only seven feet off the ground, said Potts.
The company requires the participants to be accompanied by a parent or guardian in order to experience the trapeze.
“This is totally safe,” said Potts, “and should be a lot of fun for the kids.”
At 10 a.m., a puppet show will be presented for children at the Mary Lou Johnson Hardin County Library. That will be followed at 10:30 a.m. by a program presented by the Columbus Zoo on the square.
“They will be bringing 6-8 animals including a cub of some kind born at the zoo,” said Potts. “They also plan to bring a sloth, a tortoise and reptiles. The kids will be able to pet the animals.”
That portion of the program goes until 11:30 a.m., but other animals will be available to children throughout Kids Day, Potts continued. Gypsy-Varner and mini-horses will be available for petting and Kenny Kearns will bring his horse-drawn wagons to town to make rides available.
The Kenton Fire Department will be bringing its ladder truck for children to see and the sheriff’s office is offering a look at their mobile SWAT control center, Potts said. A K-9 demonstration is also set on the square at 11:30 a.m.
The city is bringing a dump truck, Hensel’s Ready Mix is providing a concrete truck and BKP will bring an ambulance.
“These are toys for big boys,” said Potts. “Kids can get the feel of sitting behind the wheel of a big machine and have a good time.”
The Hardin County Wellness Center is offering the challenge to children of an obstacle course and the Hardin County YMCA will provide soccer drills for the older kids at Saturday’s event. The Kenton-Hardin Health Department will provide a parachute run for the young people.
Children will compete for prizes at the disc golf and cornhole contests.
Two large bounce houses will be set up on the square, along with a bounce obstacle course and a tiny bouncer for little ones, said Potts.
Games and food will be available throughout the event, including specials at Jitterz, Brunsons and Domino Pizza.
Ham’s Jams will provide music for the activities.
Everything at the Kids Day is free with the exception of popcorn and snow cones, but those charges are minimal, said Potts.
Kids Day will come to a close at noon with the making and sharing of a 30-foot banana split, said Potts.
“We hope to make this an annual event,” said Potts. “The idea is to get kids moving, bring them downtown and most of all to have fun.”
By DAN ROBINSON
Times staff writer