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KidsFest: Annual event Saturday at Jaycee Park

By Staff | Oct 24, 2013

Families can head to Jaycee Park on Saturday for a fun-filled day that will not break the bank.

The 16th annual KidsFest, hosted by the Kiwanis Club of Harney Point-Cape Coral and presented by the Gunterberg Charitable Foundation and FOX 4, will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The festival is free to the public, and parking is available. Organizers suggest a $2 donation per vehicle for parking.

Canned food donations are encouraged and will be collected for the Cape Coral Caring Center.

“We make it so attractive because there’s no admission fee,” Eric Feichthaler, event organizer and past president of the Kiwanis, said. “It’s basically the kind of event where anyone can come and enjoy.”

“We do suggest that everyone car pools,” he added, noting that it helps to reduce the traffic.

The event will feature health and safety information, family oriented vendors, give-away items and crafts. Approximately 120 participants will have booths, which is about the same as last year’s festival.

“We probably have a few more this year,” Feichthaler said.

The information available at KidFest will cover a variety of topics for all ages.

“It’s very educational for both children and adults,” he said.

Lee Memorial Health System will talk about health related issues, and another group will discuss hypothermia. The Cape police will be on hand, while the fire department does a puppet show.

“Which is my favorite part of the event,” Feichthaler said. “They talk about fire safety.”

A backpack giveaway, sponsored by the Junior League of Fort Myers, will take place during the opening ceremony at 10 a.m. Filled with supplies and goods, they will go to the first 200 children.

One vendor will hand out free goldfish, while another local Kiwanis club will give away books.

“As far as I know, they usually have books for every person who wants one,” he said.

The attractions on site will include pony rides, a bungee trampoline and rock climbing wall for the older children, three bounce houses and an inflatable slide. The activities are free for attendees.

“The most popular one, I’d say, are the pony rides,” Feichthaler said.

There will be a Halloween costume contests for the children at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

“It’s for kids 14 and under,” he said.

Prizes include tickets to “The Wizard of Oz” at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall, along with tickets to the Cape’s Cultural Park Theatre and the Broadway Palm Dinner Theatre in Fort Myers.

There will also be gift certificates awarded from stores like Walmart.

Because the festival is so close to Halloween, many participants get into the holiday spirit.

“A lot of the booths give away Halloween candy,” Feichthaler said.

Children can also take part in a coloring contest. The winner will receive a $100 savings bond.

Entertainment will be provided throughout the day, with more than a dozen performances by local dance groups and vocal ensembles, a karate dojo and more on the stage.