Boys & Girls Club hosts National Kids Day party for 300 friends

Christian Senda, age 5, pounded nails into a flower box Sunday during National Kids Day at Ross Gold Park after his dad, Joel, started them.

Christian said his favorite part of the event, sponsored by the Boys & Girls Club of Western Nevada, was the hot dogs.

"This is the second year we've come," said his dad. "I think it's pretty cool for the kids. We didn't have anything like this when I was a kid."

He brought his other kids, too: Natalie, 5;, Andrea, 6; Armando, 10; and Joel Jr., 12.

They all made the flower boxes with wood, tools, instructions, certificates of achievement, flowers, potting soil and little orange aprons provided by Home Depot, a national sponsor of Kid's Day.

With a finished box of purple dianthus, marigolds and cosmos on his lap, 18-month-old Cyrus Fleming was wheeled away in a stroller. He didn't have much to say, but his mom, Brandi, said his favorite word is "cookie." They moved here from Wisconsin in April.

While National Kids Day has been celebrated for three years in Carson City by the Boys & Girls Club, Home Depot got on board for the first time this year.

"Last year, they were just opening, and this year they called and said they'd like to participate," said Diane McCoy of the club. Several groups helped out with the day, she said.

She pointed to the bubble station run by the Children's Museum of Northern Nevada, hair painting done by the Carson City Parks and Recreation Department, and an engine with kids crawling on it brought by the Carson City Fire Department. Everything was free, including a bouncing castle and a hot-dog-and-chips lunch provided by the Boys & Girls Club.

Last year, the event was at Mills Park, where it attracted larger numbers.

"This park is a little bit more out of the way," said McCoy. "At Mills Park, it's more of a visual draw -- people see the bounce castle and stop by."

She estimated more than 200 children had attended by 11:30 a.m. Last year's total was about 400.

The club will celebrate National Kid's Day again next year, she said.

"We're not exactly sure where yet. but it will always be the first Sunday in August."

Helping this year was hair painter Trudy Beard. She volunteered to help her friend Joyce Lancaster of Parks and Recreation with spray cans of nontoxic neon pink, green and yellow paint.

"We call it 'Caltrans,'" said Beard, holding up the yellow.

Sierra Sheppard, 7, chose blue to compliment her long blonde locks. She made a flower box, too, and gave it to her mom, Lisa, as a birthday gift.

"We just came out to support the Boys & Girls Club," said her mom, a board member at the Children's Museum. "I think everybody should get involved."

Employees of the museum brought buckets of their special bubble mix recipe.

"It's a mixture of Joy, glycerine and water," said Frieda Ford, sporting blue curls and a big grin.

She was excited about the museum's Kids Carnival on Saturday, Aug. 23.

"Both Mayor (Ray) Masayko and Sheriff (Kenny) Furlong will be in the dunk tank," she said with a laugh.

The museum's new executive director, Ken Beaton, will be there too, she added.


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