It was all fun and games at the Calle Real Center Saturday as over 50 non-profits took part in the fifth Annual Caring & Sharing day. The sun shone brightly, the breeze blew and the children screamed with joy as the bounced away the afternoon in the four colorful bounce houses or rode round and round on the miniature John Deer tractors.
Parents, children, seniors and others strolled the center getting to know the various nonprofit agencies and enjoying the free food samples provided by restaurants like The India Club, Paloma’s, Cold Stones, Petrini’s, Sushi Teri and Papa John’s. While they strolled they were entertained by the musical stylings of Sloane Reali, her musical student Nicole Ferrel on the Ukulele and our own wandering minstrel Doug Giordani who always shows up with his guitar in hand and voice ready to please.
Merchant partnerships with nonprofits help to provide donations. For example The Baroness Jewelers partner each year with Rental Housing Mediation Programs donating Jewelry for sale and the Chocolate Gallery gives ½ of their sales for the day to Food from the Heart. “It’s a nice way to give back” one merchant said.
The kids also had a chance to get up close and personal with the first responders of SB County getting stickers and pencils and climbing in and around a Sheriffs Cruiser, AMR Ambulance and a County Fire Truck, that is until a call came in and the fire truck and Ambulance had to respond. They always are provided with a quick exit strategy for just such emergencies and they assured me no children went along for the ride, though I’m sure they would have loved it.
All in all it was a wonderful way to spend a couple of hours on a spring Saturday getting a chance to learn about the groups who care for us and help many of those in need while having a good time and sharing the experience with our neighbors.
Look forward to Caring & Sharing 6 at the Calle Real Center next spring.