Families flock to fun fair at Liberty Junior High
New Lenox School District 122’s Parent Teacher Organization brought a host of fun including face painting, a cakewalk and a jumper room, to Liberty Junior High School on Feb. 25.
The 15th annual event not only provided the village’s children and their families with entertainment, but also served as a school district fundraiser.
Tina Bauman, the event’s head committee chair and secretary for the PTO board, said they look forward to hosting the fun fair every year.
“I was here when it first started [in 2002],” she said. It’s always been here, at this school. We just decided to start a fun fair for the residents of New Lenox.”
Bauman said she saw new faces in attendance for the fun fair, and said she noted some familiar ones, too.
“I think they enjoy [it] because a lot people see a lot of their friends, and I think they just enjoy all the concessions, they enjoy the games,” she said. “I notice a lot of the same people.”
Attendee Chris Power, of New Lenox, said he heard about the fun fair through his daughter, a sixth-grade student enrolled in classes within the school district.
“It’s a cool place,” he said. “[We] get to see everybody and their parents. [It’s] something to do for the day, otherwise we’d be sitting at home playing video games or whatever. It’s something to get out of the house.”
Power said knowing that his daughter is having fun means that he’s having fun also.
“She won a gold fish,” he said.
Hope Cordova, also of New Lenox, said she regularly attends the fun fair with her family.
“[The] school was sponsoring it, and I grew up here,” she said. “I’ve been to them before. We just wanted to come take the kids out.”
Cordova said her children’s favorite part was “probably, the bouncy houses.”
Cordova had perused the concessions for food to try, and said she’s glad they decided to drop in.
“It lets you interact with other parents and also other people in the community, and it’s just overall a fun day for the family,” she said.
Patrice Foster, of New Lenox, was enjoying her time spent bonding with her children who are enrolled in the fourth and sixth grade at Caroline Bentley Intermediate School.
“They look forward to it every year,” she said. “They love playing games and then we get tickets and then they get to draw prizes.”
Patrice’s daughter, Brianne Foster shared that sentiment.
“It’s so much fun because [of] the bouncy houses and how much tickets you get,” she said. “I have 45 right now.
Brianne added that she was hoping to win “the little drum set.”
Bauman said this year’s turnout was pleasing to see.
“We’ve had like 5,000 student coming through [in previous years],” she said. “We’re a big district [with] 12 schools.”
On average, the fun fair raises $3,000 to 4,000.
“We have 12 schools in our district,” Bauman said. “We just raise money, and it gets distributed to all 12 schools.”
There are number of ways in which funds raised help to support schools in District 122.
“The schools do not get funds like they used to,” Bauman said. “They’re able to buy playground equipment, they’re able to buy electronics for the schools, whatever other media equipment they need, whatever they need extra funds for.”
“We do it more [to] give back to the community and give back to the kids,” Bauman said.