By Ty Snowden | Fire trucks, food, games and fun brought what must’ve been every kid in Beaufort out to Cross Creek Shopping Center to enjoy the 21st Annual KidFest. Celebrated annually in April to spread awareness of National Child Abuse Prevention Month. vendors and volunteers welcomed guests to the party with a live DJ blasting pop, oldies, and party tunes all day long.
There was no time to waste as the morning kicked off with a dance battle and demonstration of how to boogie like the old timers. Stepping away from the stage and dance floor, there was a gallivant of fun including: bounce houses, inflatable slides and basketball, hula hoop and jump rope stations, ring tosses, corn hole, magnetic fishing booths, and face painting.
For some adult-only fun, Little Caesar’s sponsored a pizza eating contest, granting the champ a year of free pizza. Contestants had 6 minutes to eat as many slices as they could handle (and couldn’t upchuck). The winner managed to stomach 14 pieces in the allocated time. Speaking of time, taking the prize for the longest line was the promise of free wings provided by the folks at Buffalo Wild Wings.
The Sheriff’s bloodhound was there dishing out big ‘ol doggie kisses, Beaufort County EMS had ambulances on deck, sharing information on water, road, and bike safety and several local fire departments were working as one to share fire safety and give awesome tours of the engines.
Aside from all the games there were countless sponsors and organizations on hand providing awesome information on how to keep our local kids safe. Several including The Most Club, MCCS, and Hopeful Horizons provided information about child safety programs and there was a huge educational presence from several local educational organizations including the Jasper County Head Start, The Beaufort County School District Traveling Preschool Bus and the Battery Creek High School SADD Club.
Friends of Hunting Island was there with some very good news. They shared that the Parks Department is aiming for the State Park to open back to the public, bandaged from the damage of Hurricane Matthew, on Memorial Day Weekend. Groups gathered around to view images of the damage Hurricane Matthew laid to our beaches, walkways, pavilions, roads, and buildings. Reminders were also given to kids on keeping our Loggerhead Turtles and other sea life safe.
The South Carolina Farm Bureau had a hand cranked mill that had the capacity to convert corn-on- the-cob into chicken feed, grits, or cornmeal. Kids were given the opportunity to give the machine a spin and see that with no farmers, there is no food. Adjacent, the 4H Club had pens for guests to chat and check out their hens.
It was a day for children. And, the children sure enjoyed it.
For dozens more photos of the day of fun, visit our KidFest Beaufort Photo Gallery. Photos by ESPB/Jessica Miller.