The City of Marathon’s Parks and Recreation Department will host the annual Family Fun Fest on Saturday, Feb. 14 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Marathon Community Park. (Originally scheduled for last month, the event was cancelled due to foul weather.)

Many non-profit organizations in the middle and lower Keys participate to provide a fun time for four hours where children can go from activity to activity and enjoy the day totally free of charge.

This year, more than 25 vendors are planning on participating in this event. What started as a small event with only a handful of vendors has grown into a full-fledged “kid event” which drew over 1,500 guests last year.  The stage line-up includes Jessica Richard Dancers, Body Language Studios, Melissa Hager and students, Linda Byars and students, Rosalia Parrado, and “Jack from England.”

The opening ceremony is at 11 a.m. and at 12:15 p.m. youngsters will be handed a list of scavenger hunt clues. Those who return with the right answers by 1 p.m. could win a kayak trip for four, an annual family membership to Crane Point, and Papa John’s pizzas.

A wide array of activities will be provided for children including arts and crafts, a woodwork shop, button-making and the chance to see the Monroe Marauders’ antique military vehicles. Organizations such as the Turtle Hospital, Marathon Wild Bird Center and others will have exhibits. And there will also be popcorn, cotton candy, sodas, water, sno-cones, and more. Local groceries, Publix and Winn-Dixie also support our cause and donate great things to eat and drink. The Marathon Booster Club and Louie Gonzales show up ever year to cook the ever-increasing number of served hot-dogs. Last year, they cooked 800.

Oh, and there will be a bounce house, of course.

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