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Hartford Area Families Celebrate New School Year at Third Annual CREC Back-to-School Block Party

Backpacks filled with essential school supplies were given to 1,200 students, twice as many as the first year the block party was held.

(Hartford, CT) Hundreds of families from Hartford and surrounding areas attended the Third Annual CREC Back-to-School Block Party on Wednesday afternoon, a free community event hosted by the Capitol Region Education Council (CREC) and CREC Foundation to celebrate the upcoming school year and prepare students for class with a backpack and school supplies giveaway. The Hartford Fire and Police departments, My Brother’s Keeper, Girl Scouts of Connecticut, The Village for Families and Children, and Connecticut Children’s Medical Center were among more than 30 local organizations that offered information and resources to parents throughout the event. The block party kicked off at 3 p.m. with free face painting, hot dogs, music from Hot 93.7, field games, and ice cream provided by Ice Cream for a Dream. The Back-to-School Block Party’s main event was the giveaway with 1,200 backpacks filled with school supplies given to children from the Hartford area.

“It’s wonderful to see how the Back-to-School Block Party has grown in these few short years. I want to express our sincere gratitude to all of our sponsors because none of this would have been possible without their support. Thank you for joining CREC in our effort to make sure that kids in Greater Hartford are ready for school,” said CREC Executive Director Greg J. Florio.

“Having the basic supplies like pens, pencils and notepads can make a big difference and we want to make sure students get off to a good start,” said Superintendent of CREC Schools Tim Sullivan. “I’m grateful to everyone from the community, including CREC employees, who donated funds or supplies.”

Contributions from five sponsors, including Owens Realty, and CREC employees were used to purchase the backpacks and school supplies. The offices of Congressman John Larson and U.S. Senator Chris Murphy collected supplies from state employees. Members of the community also dropped off donations of school supplies at local restaurants, including Tangiers International Market, Bear’s Smokehouse Barbecue, Blind Pig Pizza Co., and Chango Rosa. The event was free and open to anyone from the Greater Hartford area.

A second back-to-school event focused on preparing parents for the school year is scheduled to take place in the afternoon on Thursday, August 17, 2017 at the Wilson-Gray YMCA. The “Parent & Student Back-to-School Fair” is a collaboration of the Wilson-Gray YMCA and the CREC Trude Mero Family Resource Center.

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