Lee County’s biggest back-to-school festival is almost here

The Multicultural Centre of Southwest Florida invites the Lee County community to the 18th annual Big Backpack Event, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Sunday, July 30 at Paul Laurence Dunbar Middle School, 4750 Winkler Ave., Fort Myers. This fun-filled, day-long family event will provide the first 2,000 children between ages 5 and 12 with free backpacks and school supplies while celebrating diversity in our community.

Multicultural Centre of Southwest Florida Executive Director Leonardo Garcia said, “Anyone needing a shot of community pride should join us for the Big Backpack Event. It’s a joyful, uplifting occasion we look forward to all year. Celebrating our diversity has become a unifying theme while we equip kids with the resources they need to begin a new year of learning and growing.”

Face painting, live entertainment and a giant inflatable slide are all part of the excitement at the largest back-to-school outreach program in Lee County. Thanks to the generous support of sponsors and vendors, students may also receive eye exams, haircuts and other giveaways at the event while supplies last. Children must be present with a parent or guardian to receive free supplies. The line typically begins to form as early as 7 a.m., but moves quickly once the doors open.

In advance of the Big Backpack Event, community members are invited to participate in the Adopt-A-Student fundraiser. Each $10 donation provides a student with a new backpack and school supplies that include notebook paper, folders, crayons, glue, pencils and pens.

This year’s sponsors include Title Sponsor Neal Communities, WINK TV, CONRIC PR & Marketing, News-Press Media Group, Estrella TV, Rumbera 97.3/97.5, 97.7 Latino,
MedExpress, Lee Family News, Jason’s Deli, Fuller Online Solutions, Hispanic American Business Alliance, City of Fort Myers and School District of Lee County.

For the past 17 years the Multicultural Centre of Southwest Florida has been hosting this popular community outreach event that to date has provided new backpacks and school supplies to more than 30,000 students. The event lends a helping hand to students and families in need, while celebrating the diversity in Southwest Florida with live multicultural entertainment on the main stage including hip-hop, Irish step dance, salsa and more.

For more information on Adopt-A-Student, vendor, volunteer or business sponsorship opportunities, visit www.multicultural-centre.org or email info@multicultural-centre.org.

Multicultural Centre of Southwest Florida
The Multicultural Centre of Southwest Florida is a private non-­profit 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization established in Fort Myers with the purpose of promoting programs aimed at bringing people of different cultures together and culturally linking Southwest Florida with other communities around the world. For more information visit www.multicultural-centre.org.