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Thousands line up for Back to School Giveaway


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Deanne Coffin, KPVI

POCATELLO (KPVI) — Thousands lined up for the annual ‘Back to School Giveaway’ at the Mountain View Event Center in on Saturday.

The annual event is in its 13th year, and allows students of all ages to pick up a backpack at no cost and fill it full of school supplies based on their age group and classes.

After filling the backpack full of supplies, they can pick up some gently used clothing.

Dental, vision, health and social services were also available at the event.

Lunch and goodies were provided, along with bouncy houses and other activities.

The event has grown from 200 kids its first year, to averaging around 2,000 kids in the last couple of years.

“Financially it’s a big help, very big help, between all the bills and rent and everything, it’s a huge help,” says local parent Stephanie Garces.

“The price of school supplies has been a limiting factor for a lot of families and so if they have three or four kids, it can cost them two or three hundred dollars to get supplies every year and some families just can’t handle that,” event director
John Robinson said. “So we take some of that burden off their shoulders by doing this event and allowing them to get those supplies at no cost to them,”

The annual cost for the event runs anywhere from $23,000 to $25,000 dollars and everything is donated by local businesses and from the community.