Hemisfair’s Back to School Bash Enthralls Children of All Ages

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Anyda dances in the middle of a circle of Harlandale High School cheerleaders at the Back to School Bash in Hemisfair Park.

Anyda dances near a circle of Harlandale High School cheerleaders at the Back to School Bash in Hemisfair Park.

Families and children of all ages descended on Hemisfair Park Saturday to attend a “Back to School Bash” that featured food, beverages, interactive art experiences, and more.

Several City districts, educational institutions, and other organizations are hosting back to school celebrations of their own to mark the tax-free weekend, which takes place Aug. 11-13.

Music could be heard from a block away, and many vendors set up tents throughout the park. Local cheerleading and dance groups encouraged kids to join in and dance. Healthy snacks were served to all and children were seen playing on the jungle gym and cooling off in the splash pad.

Children run through the splash pad to escape the heat at the Back to School Bash in Hemisfair Park.

Children run through the splash pad to escape the heat at the Back to School Bash in Hemisfair Park.

“We came to cheer and dance to support the community and the kids,” said Mia Vasquez, 16, who attends Harlandale High School. “A lot of people look up to dancers so they come up to us and it’s really cute that they see us as role models.”

The event was hosted by the Hemisfair Coalition and sponsored by Whole Foods Market. Other community partners on site provided school supplies and tote bags on first come first serve basis. Teachers also had access to a raffle contest and treats.

“We are handing out complimentary snacks and healthier snacks for kids to build their lunches such as raisins, unsweetened apple sauce, and [crackers],” said Jennifer Molina, representing Whole Foods. “We do several different events with the school districts. Just recently Our Whole Kids Foundation provided a garden grant to Roosevelt High School, part of NEISD.

(From left) Emily, 5, and Kylie, 4, grab some snacks provided by Whole Foods Market at the Back to School Bash in Hemisfair Park.

(From left) Emily, 5, and Kylie, 4, grab some snacks provided by Whole Foods Market at the Back to School Bash in Hemisfair Park.

“We look for fun different ways to get involved with the school districts and give back. We also look for different ways to support our community and teachers.”

Author Jennifer Mendiola provided book readings for children and the NXG Dance Hip Hop Dan group busted some dance moves for all to enjoy.

Entertainment and food was provided by a variety of local organizations, including Squeezers, Drake’s Fun Foods, Sir Kingston, Our Kids Magazine, New York Life, San Antonio Art Therapy Association, Magik Theatre, Mix Fit SA, CRAVE, Methodist Healthcare Ministries, Texas Smiles Dental Center, San Antonio Dance Umbrella, Move.Fit.Live, and UNAM.

To read about other “Back to School” events, check out our guide here.

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