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B-ball, races, safety showcased in fest
KidsFest Logo

For the people in Liberty County who say there is nothing for children to do, they might want to check out the Community Kids Fest and Tiger Run on Saturday at Bradwell Park.
The event is a multi-agency collaborative that showcases activities, which are either free or low-cost, in which children can participate.
Community Kids Fest also hopes to bring awareness to the leading killer of children across the globe — accidental injuries.
Every year, more than one million children and many more are injured by accidents that could have been prevented.
At Community Kids Fest, many local agencies will assist parents and children with things such as: fingerprinting, bicycle safety, drunk driving information, car-seat installation, Neighborhood Watch, fire safety, outdoors safety, hunting safety and gunlock and gun safety.
The event is free and open to all.
One of the event’s organizers Hinesville Police Department officer Michael Trombley said he wants to make people aware of the programs offered in the community and prevent accidents. He’s also looking forward to having a little fun at Bradwell Park.
In addition to the child safety lessons, there will be games, coloring contests, pony rides, a dunking booth, basketball, races and an up close view of the Georgia State Patrol’s helicopter.
Last year, the event was called Safe Kids Day and was held in May with  more than 700 people attending. This year, Leah Poole of the United Way — another sponsoring agency — expects 1,500 people to attend.
She explained that the event was moved to March to coincide with the annual Tiger Run sponsored by Bradwell Institute. The Liberty County Recreation Department will provide information on spring and summer programs, as well as overseeing the 3-on-3-basketball tournament.
Bradwell track coach Emmett Watkins foresees Community Kids Fest growing into a big festival in the future.
“We want to grow the road race,” he said. “We used to have 30 to 40 people and now teaming up with Kids Fest, we can have a bigger race and grow the event. I have hopes of it being as big as the Rattlesnake Roundup in Claxton one day.

LCRD athletic supervisor Ricky Gilliard is proud to be a part of the event.
“It’s nice to bring different organizations together for this event and collaborate for children’s safety while highlighting the programs offered for the youth in the community.”
The event starts with a mile fun run or walk at 8 a.m., followed by the 5-K road race at 8:30 a.m. Registration is from 7-8 a.m. and BI cross country coach Jim Collins said several more runners are needed.
Each runner receives a T-shirt, the overall male and female winners receive a trophy and the best male and female times in each age group receive a medallion. Bradwell students who run the race will receive two hours of community service credit toward graduation.
The registration fee for the fun run is $12 and the fee for the 5-K is $17. Registration will be between the courthouse annex and the Liberty County Courthouse. The awards ceremony will be in Bradwell Park after the 5-K race.
Both races start in front of the courthouse.
Registration is still open for the 3-on-3-basketball tournament. The fee is $15 per team and the games start at 10 a.m. in the east square of Bradwell Park. To register, call Ricky Gilliard at 876-5358 or visit the LCRD booth before 9:30 a.m. First place trophies and T-shirts will go to the winning teams of each age group. Age groups are 9-10, 11-12, 13-14, 15-18 and 19 and up.
Trombley encourages people to come out and play basketball, while issuing an open challenge, saying that the Hinesville Police Department is coming home with the trophy. Officers DeWitt, Shaver and Guy will represent the HPD.

8 a.m. - Mile Fun Run/Walk
8:30 a.m. - 5-K Road Race
9 a.m - Downtown festival opens
9:30 a.m. - Hispanic dancers
10 a.m. - 3-on-3-basketball tourney
11 a.m - YMCA gymnastics team
11:30 a.m. - Jenkins and Tumaa USA Karate Team
noon - Step show competition
1 p.m. - Orgullo Panama Dancers
             3-on-3 basketball finals
1:45 p.m - Awards presentation
2 p.m. - Festival ends

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