Kaleidoscope Activity Day to Benefit the Gabriel Project

People of the Ohio Valley rejoice: Kaleidoscope Activity Day is back, with a new home at West Liberty University’s Gary E. West Event Center …and this year, it’s not just the kids who get to have all the fun- special events and vendor shopping has been set up for parents as well!

Registration begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 5, and the event itself is from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. All elementary school-aged children, Pre-K up to 6th grade, and their parents, are invited to this community event, jam-packed with activities, crafts, and interactive games so fun, the kids won’t even realize it’s educational. And while your child (or niece, nephew, cousin, grandchild, neighbor’s kid, etc.) is busy learning about fossil imprinting, making the ocean appear in a bottle, creating sun catchers, meeting animals from the Good Zoo, or another great activity, you have four glorious hours of ‘me time’ to enjoy a vendor fair, auction, presentations, and adult craft activities.

West Events Center WLU Site Pic
The Gary E. West Events Center in West Liberty

Photo Courtesy of westliberty.edu

The cost is $20 for the first child, and $10 for each additional child in the same family, with proceeds benefiting the Gabriel Project.

There are eight total activities for the kids to choose from; each child can pick five activities that interest them the most. All those attending will receive a free lunch and t-shirt, and get to meet Santa and a variety of family-friendly animals from the Good Zoo. Kids are split up into age groups for activities, and come together to enjoy a free lunch, courtesy of Riesbeck’s. The activity list your kiddo can choose from is:

  • Paper Mache World: each child will make a replica of the globe.
  • Snowflakes: a fun activity for everyone. Make a snowflake from recycled paper.
  • Tea Light Candle Holders: make a Christmas gift for someone special.
  • Fossil Imprinting: make a Christmas ornament by using clay and imprinting shapes into it.
  • Discovery Bottle: make the ocean and waves in a bottle.
  • Web of Life: a fun interactive nature game for students of all ages; learn how organisms transport and obtain energy.
  • Sun Catchers: make a gift that shows how light is captured through colors.
  • Marble Run: an interactive game between participants to see which team can build the best marble run out of recycled items.

Paper Snowflakes

While the kids learn and play, adults can get some Christmas shopping done at the vendor fair where local small businesses will be selling their products, participate in a luxury purse auction, and attend special presentations from experts in the field. Presentations are on the following subjects:

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  • Autism
  • Technology
  • Hands-on Art and Literacy Activities to do at Home
  • Understanding Food Allergies and Special Diets for Children
  • What is Community Education?
  • Good Zoo Animal Meet & Greet for Parents

Kaleidoscope Activity Day began when a West Liberty graduate student, Leah Starkey, wanted to find a way to support the community through charity, learning, and engagement. She partnered with Faith Hicks, chapter coordinator of the Gabriel Project, to create an event that benefits college students, parents, and their children from all walks of life in our community.

West Liberty University has been very involved, playing a big role in the success of Kaleidoscope Day. Students from WLU’s Community Education Program, which aims to rediscover and reconnect to the community, created many of the events for the children, and will be acting as volunteers. Dr. Miriam Roth-Douglas, Director of Community Education, recognizes that this event “is a perfect opportunity for the students to engage with the community, build partnerships with local non-profit organizations, and develop non-formal/community learning spaces.”

While Kaleidoscope Day is focused on educating kids through engaging activities, the proceeds benefit infants and toddlers who are in need. Chapter Coordinator, Faith Hicks, says, “I love my job. The Gabriel Project is such a wonderful mission.  It is so rewarding to work with parents and provide tangible, emotional and educational support in raising a family.  But the best part is holding babies.”

The Gabriel Project serves single mothers, homeless women, families without jobs or with low income jobs, women and children who are victims of domestic violence. The Gabriel Project provides them with emotional support, as well as necessary items for infants and toddlers, such as new cribs, new car seats, diapers, formula, clothing, and hygiene products at no or low cost.

Gabriel Project Website Pic
The Gabriel Project of West Virginia benefits families without adequate financial resources to meet the tangible needs of a new baby.

Photo courtesy of gabrielwv.org

So please, come join your local vendors, college students, and community members. By supporting the Kaleidoscope Activity Day, you are encouraging college students to engage with our community, children to grow their knowledge of the world around them, and most importantly, you are supporting infants and toddlers in need, via the Gabriel Project.

To register, click here, or go to http://gabrielwv.org/kaleidoscope-registration. Additional information can be found on the Gabriel Project website, www.gabrielwv.org. If you have any additional questions or concerns, please call 304.639.5039.