A wide-ranging collection of information booths and performances marked the annual Columbia County Back to School Festival at Evans Middle School on Saturday.
Topics included immunizations, health-care options, nutrition and extra-curricular activities that are available in the county.
“We want to make sure that parents have what they need to get ready for back to school,” said Leila Lawson, University Health Care System’s community relations specialist, who gave Evans Middle School a special thanks for providing the location and support. “We’ve got a great turnout, which is not surprising.”
The festival was sponsored by University Hospital, the county school system and the Columbia County News-Times.
The Columbia County schools transportation department gave out information about individual children’s bus schedules, while Buster the Bus kept the young ones entertained.
The event was another avenue the county uses to get out bus schedule information.
“This is just one of the drives we do during the summer,” said Dewayne Porter, the transportation director. “We started by sending out 20,000 postcards to individual students with information about their schedules. This is a push to answer questions, on top of the 1,000 calls and e-mails we’ve gotten.”
Stephanie Gordon was at the event with her daughter Madison and son Mason.
“There was a lot more information than I thought,” Gordon said. “I found activities for them and I was able to get good information.”
Kevin White, an eighth-grader at Riverside Middle School, was enjoying the event.
“It’s cool,” he said. “I’m from New Jersey, and we don’t usually see things like this.”