MARVIN – Students and families from Marvin Elementary School will fuse fun, education and fundraising at the school’s next annual Marvin Elementary Fall Festival.
The festival will take place Nov. 16, a Saturday, from noon to 4 p.m. at the school, 9700 Marvin School Road. Admission will cost $15 for students and children ages 3 and older and $5 for adults.
Festival organizer Denise Joy said the event is a “traditional fall festival,” with much of the focus being on educational activities.
“We want this to be a community event where the community learns about the school, and where kids learn about cultures and everything around them,” she said.
This year’s festival will feature the Waxhaw Woodturners, who’ll make wooden tops and host a demonstration for children. Einstein’s Lab will host science experiments for children, while representatives from Waxhaw-based art studio Belle and Bean will do their own demonstrations.
Home Depot will lead an activity, where kids can to build a birdhouse they can take home, and representatives from the Carolina Raptor Center will have several birds on hand for children to view. Character appearances will include Smokey the Bear and Woodsy the Owl, and there also will be a booth focusing on embryology where kids can view and interact with baby chicks.
Another point of interest will include an inflatable movie dome, where kids can view 17-minute education films on the earth, space and other science-related topics.
“When we do (this festival), we try to fill it with some really fun stuff,” Joy said.
Bluegrass musicians Tim Emore and Cane Creek will return to the festival for the second time. Joy calls their music “traditional bluegrass” and said it gives kids a chance to experience some of their own cultural heritage they might never have been exposed to previously.
“It’s interesting to see the kids sit down and watch (a) bluegrass (band perform),” Joy said. “We had a blast knowing this new generation is listening to traditional music from the area.”
A unique scavenger hunt also will take place during the festival. Rather than have the kids simply travel from game to game to complete the activity, Joy and fellow organizers will distribute a “passport” to guide the children to various destinations, alternating between games and educational activities. Children will have their passports stamped at each location before advancing to the next.
“Instead of going to a game and getting a prize, a lot of the stops are educational points of interest,” Joy said. “To get there, they have to learn something.”
Tickets to the festival can be purchased at the door and cover admission to all games and activities, as well as the chance to win one of multiple raffle baskets. Food also will be sold at an additional cost during the event, and parents and community members will have a chance to bid on prizes in a silent auction and purchase items from a kid-run produce stand.
Joy said the festival is Marvin Elementary’s largest yearly fundraiser, with all of the money benefitting school projects.
While the annual fundraiser benefits Marvin Elementary students, Joy said, it’s also good for the community. Members of Marvin Ridge High School’s Future Business Leaders of America club volunteer during the event, and parents and community members have a chance to help children receive a better education, she said.
“(Marvin Elementary) is not just a school on some road; it’s the future of our community,” Joy said.