Celebrating Parents

Child smiling in mask and cape at the Parent Fair

By: Rhonda Kraenzel and Stacy Kilwein
Parent Literacy Liaison and West Dakota Parent and Family Resource Center/ Family Engagement Coordinator for DPS

The First Annual Parent Fair took place on April 27, 2024, at Dickinson High School with a focus on celebrating parents, building a strong community, and establishing safe schools.

The event was coordinated and hosted by West Dakota Parent and Family Resource Center, Dickinson Public Schools, and Lovin’ Literacy For Life in partnership with North Dakota Full-Service Community Schools Consortium.

Close to 400 children and adults enjoyed a time of free food and fun for the whole family.  A wind tube, flower planting, and fishing for prizes were just three of the many activities provided by vendors. No one went home empty-handed. Each family received a tote bag filled with fun freebies and had an opportunity to choose books from The Book Corral.

Children sitting in circle at the Parent Fair A variety of group activities were scheduled throughout the day.  We rounded em’ up for a Reading Rodeo. Miss Marisa and her friend, Trot Along Troy read aloud the book, I am Amazing, by Alissa Holder. The book presented a powerful message that anyone with a kind and caring heart is a superhero.  Kids were invited to the West Dakota Parent and Family Resource Center booth to make a “Why My Parent is a Superhero” card and take a Superhero Selfie together.

Greg Walter, author and illustrator of Amusing Animal Adventures, and RubyAnn Stiegelmeier, author of Sir Rupert and the Battle of the Squirrels took the stage to share their books.

“Get Fit Together” was a blast!  Brianna Baker, West River Community Center fitness instructor, energized the room with fun action songs like “The Floor is Lava” and “The Freeze Dance”.  Exercise is a positive way to interact at any time of the day.

Mascot for the Badland Big Sticks, Teddy, shared in the fun, stopping to pose for photos and playing games with kids.

The vision we strive for our parents, families, schools, and the community became a reality through twenty-three community agency partnerships, along with volunteers represented by DMS Honor Society, Girl Scouts, and DSU Student Education Association.  A special thank you to Prevent Child Abuse North Dakota, North Dakota Health and Human Services, Dickinson Public Schools Foundation, and Bakken BBQ for their generous financial support, and to Vizion Signs, Pepsi, and Cash Wise Foods for in kind donations.

The First Annual Parent Fair was a tremendous success, and we are looking forward to the Second Annual Parent Fair April 2025.