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Calumet event prepares students for school

The first day of school is only 16 days away but hundreds of children are much more prepared to head back after receiving backpacks and school supplies Saturday at the 2017 Community Fest in Calumet Village.

Family and Children Educational Services hosted the 2017 Community Fest and despite the heat, hundreds came out for the event which provided food, entertainment, information on community groups and free school supplies to families.

“We are revitalizing Calumet Park for a family event,” Dr. Tara Scott said. “We give away free school supplies, about 500 school bags with supplies in it.”

FACES is a nonprofit organization that provides education and community programs in the region. While the program was held in the Calumet Village, people from all over the county showed up to take part in the community event.

“This is what it is about, to bring wholesome events to the park, and they have done that here,” said Dr. Robert Tucker, a community leader in the Calumet neighborhood. “The variety and the diversity of the activities that we have here (are great). We are pleased with that and proud to be a part of that (event).”

The event also gave the community a chance to get out and socialize while learning about community resources before the new school year starts in August.

“First it is a social event, so they get to come and interact with people,” Troup County Schools Superintendent Cole Pugh said. “There are a lot of community agencies, so in a way it is a way to show the parents of the students what is available in the community.”

An event like the one held Saturday would have been hard to imagine having at the park a few years ago, but the commitment of the Calumet neighbors, along with some assistance from the city, has helped improve the neighborhood. The result has been a cleaner, more community focused neighborhood that hopes to continue to improve in years to come.

“There are more and greater things to come in Calumet Village,” Tucker said. “We rolled out our new revitalization plan for phase 5 — and that is housing development — and we are working on that now. That will come soon, but it is an evolving program, and it will take years.”

Troup County Schools registration dates and times can be found at www.troup.k12.ga.us, and parents are reminded that registering before school starts and having up to date immunizations will guarantee the easiest transition for students into their first day of school on Aug. 10.