Back to school giveaways at Visalia Mall

A family resource fair is being held at the Visalia Mall to give away free school supplies to start off the upcoming school year

VISALIA—With the return of the school year at a time when inflation prices are at an all-time high, the Visalia Mall will be hosting a resource fair with various activities, giveaways and presentations as a way to give back to the community.

Community members from law enforcement, to librarians, healthcare, food services and more are coming together to bring a variety of activities for families to enjoy before the 2022-23 school year kicks off. Students and adults can benefit from the Kids Expo family resource fair on Saturday, Aug. 6, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

“I just think it’s needed in the community. With the economy the way it is and COVID being over, it’s a perfect opportunity to bring this type of event to the community,” Rick Feder, senior general manager of Visalia Mall, said. “It’s also our way of giving back to the community for showing all their support over the years.”

The resource fair will have a variety of activities for participants, along with demonstrations, giveaways and some parking lot events with police cars, fire trucks, ambulances and food trucks. Preschoolers, kindergarteners and children grades one through six can receive a free backpack, while adults can take advantage of CPR classes as well as free fingerprinting. To receive a backpack, children must be present and only one backpack will be available for each child. 

There will be giveaways from local participants and stage events in the food court starting at 10:30 a.m. One of the stage activities includes the Tulare County Library hosting a reading event for the Cat in the Hat at 11:30 a.m. Other local vendors will set up tables with free giveaways items and information. There will also be free face painting and balloon art.

“The goal is to ensure that families with young children are provided with safety resources, food and school supplies,” Michele Eaton, executive director of First 5 Tulare County  said. 

The mall will also participate in a partial food drive by giving away free Visalia Rawhide tickets to the first 200 participants to donate four canned food items. Only one ticket is available per person.

Towards the end of the event, there will be a fashion show hosted by Macy’s in the Visalia Mall food court. The fashion show will have kids of all ages presenting their preferred outfits for when they return to school, according to store manager Stephanie Angel.

Macy’s is also raffling away free gift baskets to interested participants. No purchase is required prior to entering the raffle.

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