About 50 kids got free new backpacks Wednesday evening at the St. Francis Connection Center in K.I. Sawyer. The kids, who were all grade schoolers and middle schoolers, were able to select the backpack of their choice once their number was drawn by one of the center’s leaders, Father Al Mott.
“Today was about getting kids excited about going back to school and helping parents to do that,” Father Mott said.
It certainly worked on Scott McConnell. The Gwinn Middle School 7th grader was proudly showing off his backpack, which was camouflage.
“It does actually bring out the school spirit in me,” he said. “Go Gwinn!"
McConnell says getting enthused about returning to school can be a challenge for both students and teachers.
“Sometimes school can actually be hard on the student and the teacher,” he said. “Therefore, it makes it harder for both to actually get happy to go back to school."
The backpacks were made possible by donations from parishioners and the American Legion, as well as a generous grant from the Community Foundation of Marquette County. All in all, Father Mott feels the mission of the event was accomplished.
“Well, it was great, we had lots of volunteers, and we had good food, and root beer floats, which everybody seemed to love,” Mott said, laughing. “So it was a great success."