Splash into Summer with local organizations and clubs

By Ken Kellar
Staff writer

Get ready to get wet as local organizations, groups and sports clubs come together to help kids and families Splash Into Summer.

The Splash Into Summer with ParticipAction event is scheduled to run next Thursday, June 8, 2023, from 5:00 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. at Fort Frances High School. The event is being offered in conjunction with the Northwestern Health Unit (NWHU), KidSport Fort Frances, and a whole host of other community partners. As NWHU event organizers Kassidy LeDrew, a public health nurse in family health, and Elaine Fischer, who is also a KidSport committee member, explained, the event is a great opportunity to find out what other opportunities are out there for getting involved during the summer months and in the fall, when registration for plenty of organizations opens up.

“The main idea, when we started, was to gather our community partners, recreational clubs and sports teams in one setting to bring awareness to everyone,” LeDrew explained.

“We’ve kind of been on a low since COVID with getting to do community events, so this is one way that we’re getting back into it. For the recreational clubs and the sports teams, it’s a great way to promote what they do, and can have families and kids look into sports and recreational activities come fall for what they want to sign up. So it’s a way for them to promote it as well as our community partners, their services that they might be able to provide to children.”

The event is similar in nature, but not a carbon copy, of previous events put on by the NWHU and KidSport, but where previous events have been focused more specifically on one area of offerings, like sports and recreation, this Splash Into Summer event will allow a multitude of different interests to be represented, including health and emergency services. Each participant will have their own area or booth to share more about what they do, or give children a taste of their sport or activity that could make them interested in registering for that particular program come the fall.

“The last couple of days have been really calling people and getting things organized,” LeDrew said.

“We’ll have people like the First Responders, CN Police, paramedics and Couchiching Fire. For sports teams I believe we have Border Skating Club, we have Youth Soccer.”

“For the sports clubs it’s a matter of getting volunteers together,” Fischer continued.

“Some of them haven’t sat down to discuss their pricing for the fall, so it’s a little early for them, but they still want to come out to the event and share information. We have some family services coming out, Make a Big Splash, Seven Generations. We have quite a variety of social services, recreation service. We’re even hoping the town might come out and promote their services.”

LeDrew noted a few of the different teams within the NWHU will also be out taking part, including the Speech team, Family Health, Dental Health and Sexual Health and Harm Reduction teams.

Families are invited to drop in to the event any time between 5:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The hope is that the weather will hold out and everything will be offered outside, but there are also backup plans to move inside the highschool gyms and cafeteria in the event of bad weather.

“Families can chat with different organizations, different clubs, and kids can try out all these different activities, have a bit of fun, maybe get a little wet,” Fischer said.

“We’ll have some food available, too,” LeDrew added.

“It’ll be first-come-first-served, once we’re out, we’re out,but we’ll have some great draw prizes and a lot of the organizations are bringing fun giveaways for the kids.”

There’s still time to have your organization or sports club take part. Fischer said that interested parties can call the Northwestern Health Unit at 274-9827 for more information or to register for the event.