Back-to-School bash at Westgate Park

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Messenger photos by Dedra Cordle
Siblings Cadence Hickman and Lincoln Wirth and their cousins Dorian Lawson and Damion Robinson model the brand new backpacks filled with supplies they received during the third annual Back-to-School celebration held at Westgate Park on Aug. 28. The community event was hosted by the local non-profit A Step in the Right Direction with the mission of giving children a fun day to play before getting back into the daily school grind while also offering free resources to their parents and guardians to lessen the financial burden of purchasing necessary school items. Approximately 400 backpacks and supplies were donated to the event courtesy of CareSource.
Liam Brandsted, 7, finds a new friend in Jasper, a Citron-crested cockatoo. A variety of exotic birds were on display at the celebration courtesy of locals Jan and Will. They often bring their rescue animals to community events as a way to bring avian awareness and education to the masses.
Danielle Parks showcases a very large cotton candy cloud. Her mother, Victoria Parks, is the owner of the local Valentine Events and was in charge of spinning the sugar to make these sweet treats.
Columbus firefighter Mike Thian gives a lesson on the proper use of a fire hose to Kaiden Davis.

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