SummerStage emphasizes education and health along with fun and games
Some 200 parents and children let out a roar of applause at St. Mary’s Park in Mott Haven on June 28, for Bronx kids who had become magicians for a day.
The show was part of SummerStage Kids Bronx Family Day, which was launched by The Disney Corporation, three years ago at several city parks, including St. Mary’s, to encourage interaction between parents and kids.
At the third annual event in Mott Haven, the group Double Dutch Dreamz invited audience members to jump rope, regardless of their skill levels and others recited poetry critical of bullying.
With the help of LuckyBob, a magician from Boston, child volunteers made objects disappear and reappear, and spun inflatable balls on the tips of their fingers while he entertained the crowd with jokes, balanced objects on his chin, and juggled blocks, metal cups, and other objects.
Julius Wright, 6, from Mott Haven, exclaimed in excitement, “I’ve never seen anything like this before in my life,” while watching with his balloon dog in hand and his parents by his side. A clown took requests from children to make balloons shaped like hearts and animals while DJ Idlemind played records that families got up and danced to.
Promoters of healthy food took advantage of the event to promote their products, and the value of eating well. Representatives of Happy Family Organic Superfoods offered free samples of children’s snacks, baby foods, and smoothies made from organic fruits and vegetables.
“I think it is important to get the word out there about these healthier lifestyle options for families,” said Louisa Brown, a representative for the brand.
But not only Mott Haven residents attended the June event.
“I love the fact that this event was from 4-7 because the heat isn’t so intense” said Patricia Martinez, 40, who brought her three-year-old daughter Artemis from their home in Castle Hill.
Among the performers, juggling duo The Gizmo Guy showcased several tricks. One of them played Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy”, renaming it “Ode to Toy,” using a ball between his teeth to press notes on a toy xylophone.
The festivities wound down in the early evening, too soon for some.
“I bet my sister that this was gonna be awesome and it was,” said Joey Avilez, 8, of Port Morris. “But I really wish it was longer.”