In our fast-paced lives filled with balancing work, school and all the activities our children are involved in, it seems that finding enough time to spend is becoming increasing difficult for most families.
With parents working hard to make ends meet, often working overtime hours, and children busy with school, extracurricular activities, sports and other groups, there just aren’t enough hours in the day for many families to sit down and catch up.
That’s why the City of Summerside and Downtown Summerside Inc. are to be commended for offering activities such as Nature Fest and Witches on Water.
These two events, both held in recent weeks within the city, were offered free of charge and allowed families to come together to enjoy time together on a Saturday afternoon while taking part in fun family-friendly activities.
Nature Fest featured face painting, pumpkin decorating, hayrides around Heather Moyse Park, a bouncy playhouse and various other activities aimed at getting locals and their families outside and spending time together.
Although it was a little chilly and overcast, the event drew hundreds milling about the park, a gem in the city’s centre, all having fun and at no cost to them, something welcome by families on a tight budget.
And this past weekend’s Witches on Water event, held by Downtown Summerside Inc. for the second consecutive year, is being deemed a huge success by organizers.
The event allowed parents and their youngsters to dress up early in their Halloween costumes and visit downtown merchants who gave out candy to the little ghouls and goblins.
It included a ‘witch hunt’ — a scavenger hunt that allowed parents and children to find clues and, at the end, be eligible for a prize — apple bobbing, a painting station and a costume contest. And, that, too, was also free to those who participated.
Events like these are welcome by families in the city who find it hard to both find the time to come together for some fun and especially find it difficult to find extra money to pay for a family outing.
These events also provide exposure for the city and, with Witches on Water especially, the participating merchants who, on Saturday, were visited by hundreds of locals, some of whom many not have been inside their doors before.
Not all families in the city can afford a night at the movies or to head to Credit Union Place to take in a hockey game, go swimming or to hit the bowling lanes.
Let’s hope that there are more family-friendly events to come in the future.