FARMINGTON — The Franklin County Children’s Task Force drew hundreds of families to its 36th annual Children’s Festival at Mt. Blue High School on Saturday.

Kids took part in varied indoor activities prepared by participating groups.
A packed audience in one of the school’s auditoriums laughed and danced along to the performance by Mr. Magic, and the Go Noodle Dance Party was big hit, too.
“The kids get here and get some energy out, play with kids their own age, have a little fun, watch the magic show,” said Heather Hallman, who brought her family to the event from Industry.
In the gymnasium, kids visited booths where they could make crafts, play games, and jump around.
“It’s a nice break in the wintertime, because we’ve got so much snow, and they can only do so much,” said Holly Anne Harrison, coordinator for the Franklin County Children’s Task Force’s after-school program. “We’re trying to promote wellness and things that kids can do in the wintertime.”
One of the many local groups who came out to support the event was the Western Maine Play Museum, a new space set to open in the summer, and which promises to be a year-round indoor play and educational space for children from infants to middle school age.
“There will be different exhibits within the museum, and this will be one of the first ones there,” said Jesse Potts, an assistant professor of art at the University of Maine at Farmington and a Play Museum board member, pointing to a play area he designed with different parts and pegs.
The Children’s Festival displayed a wide variety of resources available to the community, from libraries and churches to child care, which the community can find through the Franklin County Children’s Task Force.

 

Marlene Thomas tries to identify a mystery food while her mother, Janessa Thomas of Phillips, and Meghan Parker-Crockett, Child & Adult Care Food Program coordinator, look on. Jenny Johnson photo