The annual Back to School Rodeo (BTSR) returns to the Yuma Civic Center, 1440 W. Desert Hills Drive, from 8 a.m. to noon on Sat., July 21, 2018. Attendees are asked to be aware of road construction on Avenue A, 32nd-36th streets, and to drive carefully.
The free, family-friendly event provides a one-stop-shop where parents and guardians can gather information and community resources pertaining to the education, health and lifestyle of Yuma students in preschool through 8th grade.
Road/traffic update: Please be aware that there is currently a construction project underway along Avenue A, between 32nd Street and 36th Street, along the direct route to get to the BTSR. Lane closures and traffic control devices are in place. Drivers are asked to please drive with caution and patience in an effort to keep children and the general public safe.
The Back to School Rodeo is hosted by the City of Yuma in collaboration with community sponsors. This year's Gold Star Sponsors include Arizona Complete Health, Cocopah Indian Tribe and First Things First of Arizona. Silver Star Sponsors include Arizona Public Service, Coca Cola, Caliber Screen Printing, KYMA-TV, Foothills' Walmart and Sun Graphics. More than 88 booth vendors will be at the Yuma Civic Center.
A total of 1,400 backpacks filled with school supplies will be given to students in preschool through 8th grade on a first come, first serve basis. *Child must be present to receive the free backpack, and there is a limit of one backpack per child.
Two hundred of those backpacks are specific to students in preschool and will include supplies and items for that initial school year, respectfully. The 1,200 other backpacks will be for students in kindergarten through 8th grade. Backpacks, school supplies, helmets, bicycles and raffle prizes given at the BTSR are made possible by our sponsors.
"We are eternally grateful for the outpour of support from local organizations, sponsors and vendors who see the direct benefit this event provides to children and their families," said City of Yuma Marketing Specialist Carrie Ring, who spearheads this event. "The Back to School Rodeo is now in its seventh year. This free, family-friendly event provides the opportunity to increase awareness and availability of education, health and social services for parents and children."
Yuma Mayor Douglas J. Nicholls and Yuma County School Super Intendent Thomas Tyree will be at the event to welcome the audience and say a few words on stage at approximately 8:30 a.m. about the importance of childhood education in the Yuma area.
From 8 a.m. to noon, the KYMA News 11 staff will be at the event to emcee on the stage, as multiple children's dance and extracurricular activity groups perform on the main stage of the Civic Center throughout the day.
The Yuma Civic Center's doors will open at 8 a.m. on Saturday, July 21. Staff and volunteers will be handing out vouchers for the free backpacks as children in preschool through 8th grade arrive, with a line forming around the backside of the Yuma Civic Center. The event will conclude at 12 p.m. the same day.