By GARY POPP
The normally quiet Jeffersonville Township Public Library Clarksville branch was transformed into a carnival atmosphere for its third-annual Family Fun Day Saturday.
The parking lot of the Eastern Boulevard library overflowed with children and parents for the event, which corresponds with the township’s library card sign-up month.
Local teen band Uncommon Sense played loudly for the crowd that enjoyed free hotdogs, popcorn, popsicles and bottles of water, which were purchased through private donation.
Members of the Clarksville Rotary Club were kept busy preparing and handing out the food.
Animal balloons were also handed out for free at the end of a long line of excited children. Nearby several games, including a ring toss, geared toward tots were set up between parking places.
Clarksville Library Branch Manager Pam Seabolt said the event is growing in popularity each year and she expected more than 700 people to participate.
“We just want to give back to the community and thank them for supporting us throughout the year,” Seabolt said.
While many of those who attended were already library members, Seabolt said organizers encouraged those who are not members to sign up for a library card.
“Library cards are very important,” Seabolt said. “We give free resources all year long to the community. We have databases that kids can come do research on for school. And adults can come in for business databases to find things to support their businesses.”
She said the library also offers other sources, such as of pleasure reading materials, movies and video games.
“People are looking for family fun and friendly activities and love coming to the library,” Seabolt said, adding a library is great location in a community to have positive, family-centered event.
Both the Clarksville Fire Department and Clarksville Police Department were at Family Fun Day to interact with community members.
Several Clarksville Firefighters huddled by a parked fire engine with its ladder extended and jutting into the sky, was a big attraction for children at Family Fun Day.
The firefighters lifted small children into the truck, who were ecstatic to sit behind the wheel of the monstrous vehicle.
“We let them put on our gear and jump in the truck and blow the horn and everything,” Clarksville Firefighter Lt. Jeff Bell said. “One of our biggest things is fire prevention and teaching the youth of the community fire safety and showing them what we work with, our trucks, and not to be afraid of us. We are normal people just like everybody else, we just happen to be firefighters.
He said the fire department tries to take advantage of events like Family Fun Day and recent ClarkFest to make a connection with the community.
“They are our customers, and we want to show them we are all for the community and we will do whatever it takes for the community,” Bell said.