On Saturday, families will have plenty of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, save the environment and make life a little sweeter for some special children. The 13th Annual Earth 1st Expo and the 18th Annual Kids Day in the Park will have simultaneous activities going on downtown and at Central Park.

Take a look at the possibilities.

On Saturday, families will have plenty of opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, save the environment and make life a little sweeter for some special children. The 13th Annual Earth 1st Expo and the 18th Annual Kids Day in the Park will have simultaneous activities going on downtown and at Central Park.

Take a look at the possibilities.

Earth 1st Expo

This year, the Earth 1st Expo, will emphasize things relating to “being green.” Five diverse venues will offer something to interest every age group. This is the 13th year for this family-oriented environmental fair that is sponsored by BancFirst, KICM, OG&E and the Ardmore Beautification Council. 

The Expo will be at BancFirst Plaza, 310 W. Main St. in Ardmore, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Barbara Zink, ABC coordinator of the project, said, “It is important we show our concern and care for our planet so our natural resources can be preserved. The Earth 1st Expo is a fun way to learn things about recycling and how to help preserve the Earth.”

Sally Reser, BancFirst senior vice president and customer service officer, said, “The employees of BancFirst are excited about hosting Earth 1st Expo again this year. We hope everyone will take advantage of the recycling opportunities, get educational material about taking care of our planet and have a little fun with ecology-related crafts. We will have something for everyone.”
Sears is sponsoring a gas grill for the grand-prize giveaway and the winner does not have to be present to win. Mike Laird, KICM, will emcee the event and announce youth and adult prize winners throughout the event.

Recycling that will be accepted that day includes resalable clothing and household items, which will be collected by Sunshine Industries Inc.; and aluminum cans, which will be collected by Habitat for Humanity, using the proceeds to underwrite projects. Newspaper, plastics, tires, ink cartridges and toner, liquor bottles, batteries, cell phones, computers and computer parts will also be accepted.

Everyone is encouraged to participate in the plant swap by bringing a couple of potted starter plants along with the name and requirements of the plant, such as sun or shade, annual or perennial. Everyone bringing plants to share will have the opportunity to select plants in return.

Environmental display highlights will feature the OSU Insect Adventure, which will showcase millipedes, spiders as big as the palm of a hand, four species of walkingsticks, strange arachnids most people have never seen, the popular Madagascar hissing cockroaches and much more.

Critter Tales Inc., a nonprofit outreach, is designed to promote awareness of wildlife and conservation through exciting hands-on learning experiences for children. Llamas and goats will also be on display.

There will be information on tree care, free City of Ardmore compost, an exhibit creating awareness of clever ways to reuse, plus much more.

Sales will include food, found-metal yard art, bedding plants, trees, recycled glass, cotton recyclable totes, hanging baskets, herbs, vegetables, soaps and other items. Earth Day T-shirts will be on sale at the registration area.

The children’s craft area will feature leaf printing, face painting and newspaper hats. Children will have the opportunity to plant seeds in peat pots, make an edible landfill, color pages of endangered species, plus many more things to add fun to their day.

Several groups will provide entertainment throughout the event. There will be Indian dancing, tumbling, jump rope teams, singing and much more.

Exhibitors do not pay to participate. However, only limited space is still available. To ask questions about the Expo, potential vendors should call (580) 223-2230 or visit www.forabc.org.

Kids Day in the Park

Kids Day in the Park began in 1991, the only activity of its kind in the state of Oklahoma.

The Carter County Child Abuse Task Force will again present the event on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Central Park to recognize Child Abuse Prevention Month and to educate the community as to the great agencies and services available in the county to assist children and families. The program is designed for children, but everyone is welcome.

Most of the activities for the event are free and include face painting, games, basketball hoop shot, space jump, rock wall and obstacle course. And there will be drawings all day for children and adult prizes. The drawing for a $200 gift certificate from Walmart will take place at 2 p.m.

In conjunction with Kids Day in the Park, there will be a Biker Fun Run and Bike Show in the First National Bank parking lot. To enter the Biker Run, registration will begin at 10 a.m. and the cost is $10. To enter the Fun Run & Bike Show, the cost is $15 per person. To ask questions about the Bike Run, call Stephanie Hacker at (580) 224-1649.

Continuous entertainment will take place on the stage at Central Park, emceed this year by Tim Stolfa. Performing will be Dickson Showcase, Jump n Jive, Kippers Gymnastics, Cheer Connection Outlaws, Ardmore fourth- and fifth-grade show choir, Shannon Crites dancers Zack Aman and Katelyn Moore and singers Monica Seawright and Logan Russell.
KKAJ will have a remote at the park from 10 a.m. to noon and GTO will have a remote from 1:30 to 3 p.m.

Kids Day in the Park organizers are still looking for sponsorships. There are three levels of sponsorship available. Donor sponsors agree to provide a financial contribution of at least $20 or products or services of equal value. Corporations are asked to provide a contribution of at least $50 or more. Platinum sponsors are businesses that donate at least $100 or more.

All sponsors will be recognized on boards displayed at the park and will also receive some publicity from the radio stations. All donations will benefit the Carter County Child Abuse Prevention Fund. Anyone interested in becoming a sponsor can call coordinator Shirley Barrick or co-coordinator Debbie Stamper at (580) 490-6060.

For a fun-filled day with children, families should plan to attend this event at Central Park. All proceeds from this event will remain in the local area and will benefit many children. This event is possible only through contributors. Approximately 2,000 children attended last year.

More information on child abuse or neglect can be obtained from the local Department of Human Services Child Welfare Office at (580) 490-606, from the Carter County Health Department or local youth services agency.

Help is needed to do everything possible within the available resources by promoting public awareness and by implementing preventive and educational programs in local communities to reduce the chances of children being abused or neglected.