110 W. New York Ave.
DeLand, FL 32720
posted Aug 12, 2013 - 1:42:09pm
Children and parents began to line up at 6 a.m. Aug. 3 outside the Walmart Supercenter in DeLand, hoping to be among those who would get around 1,000 free backpacks stuffed with school supplies.
The line of people wound around a bank next door, and the families waited patiently for hours in 94-degree heat.
Sponsors of the third annual Mayor's Backpack Giveaway handed out bottled water, soda and paper fans. The giveaway started at 10 a.m.
The main sponsor was the West Volusia Police Athletic League, but the organization was assisted by several local businesses that donated cash and school supplies.
The families weren't asked to prove financial need.
DeLand Mayor Bob Apgar said the event was important because the Police Athletic League was able to help so many kids in tough economic times. The people who need the help are more than likely working families that count every penny, Apgar said.
In addition to free school supplies, the Backpack Giveaway featured music, a petting zoo, police motorcycles, a Sheriff's Office helicopter, face-painting, and a tractor trailer decorated to highlight the "no-zone," where kids learned the importance of saying no to things that can harm them.
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