DeMOTTE — The eighth annual Kankakee Valley area Back-to-School Fair will again take a turn this year, so to speak.
Like everything else, the event was modified last year in this COVID-19-era. Instead of the hundreds of parents and students gathering together and going tent to tent and table to table in Spencer Park like the first six incarnations of the fair, the event will again be a drive-thru only affair with limited interaction to help stem the possible spread of the virus.
The distribution plan worked fairly seamlessly last year with parents driving their students through a predetermined course around KVMS before being guided into the bus drop-off area to receive school supplies and other items such as socks.
The fair will be held on Saturday, Aug. 7 and is scheduled to occur at the Kankakee Valley Middle School parking lot. Instead of receiving supplies one at a time, prepacked backpacks will again be distributed beginning at 9 a.m. and continuing to noon or until supplies are exhausted.
Proof or residence within the KV school district boundaries will be required and backpacks of supplies will only be distributed if the student is present in the vehicle.
Members of local churches and of the Kankakee Valley Teachers Association from throughout the district have volunteered to not only distribute the backpacks on that Saturday but will meet on the previous Friday to pack the satchels. Last year, the Jasper County Fair Queen and her court even showed up to help out, much to the delight of the students.
“We are doing everything we can to continue this event in a safe and healthy manner,” said Jan DeYoung, who is on the event committee.
The Back to School Fair exists to give assistance to those families who need it by distributing free school supplies donated by local churches and businesses. Area churches and businesses, as always, have banded together to provide this opportunity.
The committee has a Facebook page called Back to School Fair-DeMotte/Wheatfield for further information or to contact the committee.