Archive for Thursday, October 20, 2005

Activities are designed for children of all ages

October 20, 2005

Each year the Maple Leaf Festival tries to include more activities and ways for children to have fun amongst all of the arts and crafts, and this year was definitely no exception.

"We always wish that we could squeeze in more, but I think overall there was enough for kids," said Nancy Crisp, Maple Leaf Committee chairman.

This year's festival had the usual carnival, Kids Zone and the petting zoo, but it also included a few other activities for children.

Some of the additions this year were a rock-climbing wall and performances at the Kids Zone.

"The Kids Zone seemed to be fairly busy, but I know it was a little slow on Sunday," Crisp said. "The pony rides also tend to be popular with the kids."

The petting zoo also drew many visitors, as festival-goers were able to get up close to a camel, kangaroo, llamas, goats and other animals.

Curtis Wood, Baldwin City, visited the petting zoo Sunday with his daughter Lexie, 3-years-old, and had a good time.

"It's excellent," Wood said. "It's good interaction with all of the animals."

Many of the booths sold toys for the children to play with. Some of the popular toys this year were the bow-and-arrow and potato guns.

Crisp said some vendors tailor to the children at the festival.

"There was a very popular vendor this year where you could dip your hand in wax," Crisp said. "The kids loved that. Some of the local children also know vendors that come every year and where they are located."

The carnival was again a big hit for children as it ran all weekend.

Brian Coiner, Gardner, and his son Ian Coiner, 3-years-old, took time to enjoy the carnival Saturday.

"He loves the slide," Brian said of his son. "It's not that scary for him and he is used to slides. He likes the freedom."

Ian also said he enjoys the freedom.

"I like all of it. I can go by myself," Ian said.

Trudy and Greg Drum of Lawrence brought their daughter Skylar Drum, 7-years-old, to the festival. Skylar enjoyed all of the activities at the carnival.

"She likes all the rides and she also likes the games," Trudy said of her daughter. "We like to do all of the different things."

The Drums also had a very busy day Saturday.

"We went to the parade, then a soccer game and now we are back here," Trudy said. "She's been riding all of the rides."

This year it also sold wristbands so children could ride all the rides they wanted for one price. The wristbands were only good for a few hours Sunday, but were very popular in that short time.

"I think about every kid I know was down there Sunday afternoon," Crisp said. "It was definitely a local crowd on Sunday. It was a good success."

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