Record Setting Kids Day Rocks a Sports Theme

Rancho Cordova, CA (MPG)  |  By Shelly Blanchard
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Can you hear me now? One young Kids Day attendee makes sure he’s heard. -- Photo by Rick Sloan

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Facepaint lets boys and girls try out alternate looks, at least till it’s time to wash up. -- Photo by Jose Lopez

They came. They jumped. They giggled. And when it was all over, the 28th Annual Kids Day in the Park went into the record books as the largest ever.

With a record 140 exhibitors including 20 sports leagues and providers, children and their families, indeed, were able to “Get Your Game On” – this year’s theme. Attendance was set at more than 6,000 – the largest turnout ever.

Presented by the City of Rancho Cordova, Sacramento County Department of Health and Human Services, and a host of other sponsors, Kids Day showcased a wide range of youth sports and more than 150 free things to do. The event was produced by the Cordova Community Council.

The event also marked the Sacramento County kick-off for National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day.

With pennants rippling in the breeze of a picture perfect day, children tried their hand at rugby, soccer, cheerleading, gymnastics, martial arts, softball, baseball, basketball, football, golf, tennis – even French Parcours – all aimed at keeping kids healthy and active. Event partner Sports Stars Sports Jam led the way.

Among the other fun, free attractions were off-road ATV simulators, A US Air Force thrill exhibit, climbing wall, giant obstacle course, arts and crafts and more.

Kids learned about bike safety at the popular Police Activities League (PAL) Bike Rodeo during where 80 bicycles donated by the Sheriff’s Toy Project were given away to lucky children, along with hundreds of free bike safety helmets.

While Kids Day is all about fun, children’s health is the primary objective. Organizers worked with health providers from Sacramento County and the Folsom Cordova Unified School District to present free hearing, vision, dental and school readiness screenings to help get kids off to a healthy start. Parents received tips on how to prepare their children for school, how to obtain mental health resources, and how to access a wide range of public and private services for their kids.

“What an amazing day for the children of our community,” said Amy Hiramoto, the event chair person who has been active at Kids Day since its inception in 1989. “Rancho Cordova cares about its kids, and this is a special day to show it.”

Can you hear me now? One young Kids Day attendee makes sure he’s heard. 
-- Photo by Rick SloanFacepaint lets boys and girls try out alternate looks, at least till it’s time to wash up. 
-- Photo by Jose LopezOften raised on local ranches, this llama was a friendly visitor for children to meet. 
-- Photo by Rick SloanIcy deliciousness or brain freeze? These guys are finding out and having fun. 
-- Photo by Rick SloanHigh-flying girls show off their aerial maneuvers with skill, balance and an amazing amount of flexibility. 
-- Photo by Jose Lopez