dr martens 1919 Tapestry fair connects kids and nonprofits
A young Tapestry student is intrigued by the equipment at the Rutland City Fire Department table during the Tapestry Community Fair on Wednesday at the Rutland Intermediate School. (Robert Layman / Staff Photo)
Hundreds of children from the Rutland Tapestry program came to the Rutland Intermediate School gym Wednesday to get their faces painted, pet a friendly dog, speak to firefighters, get free toothpaste and jump ropes and learn something about what happens in their community.
The Tapestry Community Fair has been a biennial event for more than five years. A second session for Tapestry students, who are in kindergarten through sixth grade, will take place in the summer.
Tapestry offers after school activities that are appropriate and can include homework assistance in addition to the fun stuff.
“The whole goal of the fair is to invite agencies from the community, many of whom we partner with and many we don to give kids an opportunity to see what out there in the community which they are a part of,” said Margaret O administrative assistant for Tapestry.
The community fair, as its name implies, is more about showing kids agencies like the Rutland County Humane Society, the Rutland City Fire Department and NeighborWorks of Western Vermont, rather than a sort of “job fair” for students, O said.
Students at the Leo F. Keefe Gymnasium on Wednesday were from three Rutland City Schools the Rutland Intermediate School,
the Northeast School and the Northwest School and from Rutland Town, West Rutland and Proctor schools.
Through the course of the event, O said she expected about 250 students would come through the gym visiting representatives at 20 tables.
Charmaine Murrell, of Brooklyn, was in the gym with her two daughters, because her son is a Tapestry student.
“He loves it,” she said, adding that while her children were happy to see the face painting, they were still getting used to all the events and exhibits.
Clyde Pelkey, 10, of Rutland Intermediate, couldn choose a favorite from the tables he visited.
“I think they really all cool,” he said.
Another Rutland Intermediate student,
Nick Callahan, 11, said his favorite table was the one where students could get free toothpaste “because you could get stuff for hygienity.”
Christina Sweet, a dental hygienist for Rutland City Public Schools who was in charge of Callahan favorite table, said students could play with dental models that help teach good dental health and what can happen when it neglected.
She said she not only had the free toothpaste but a stuffed animal, Sammy the Snake, because even students who didn remember Sweet will remember Sammy.
Students who wanted to play “Pin the Nose on the Snowman” or “Snowman Toss” could visit the table run by Cecile Howland, an educator from the Rutland Town School. Even though the school has a Tapestry program, Howland said most of the kids on Wednesday were students she was meeting for the first time.
Howland, who is a group leader for teachers of second and third grade students, said the fair was a good way to show students they could have fun as well as learn at Tapestry.
Mike Delehanty, a firefighter with the Rutland City Fire Department, said the fair was a way for the department to get to know local children and provide them information about fire safety.
“We had a ton of kids,
he said. love coming to see the firefighters. They love coming to see the police. It been great. Feurtado, 7, a student at Northwest, was proudly displaying the face painting on her forehead. She said she liked visiting the Rutland City Police Department table, where Chief Brian Kilcullen was greeting students, because she wants to be a cop.
At a table for Rutland Intermediate School, Josanvel Torres Alomar, a sixth grader, was painting a snowflake on the cheek of a young girl. He said he already enjoyed art, but Wednesday was his first time painting faces, which he enjoyed because it was almost like creating tattoos.
After the event was in full swing, O said she thought the winter 2018 fair had gone well.
“It all about the kids and they had a fabulous time, she said. an opportunity for them to be with the other Tapestry sites. Some of them have siblings in the other programs so parents come. It just an all out wonderful thing.”