Harmony Free Will Baptist Church will host Back-to-School Bash July 29

Published 11:46 am Thursday, July 20, 2023

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Harmony Free Will Baptist Church will host its annual Back-to-School Bash Saturday, July 29, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Hampton High School. In addition to school supplies, which will be given on a first come, first serve basis, there will be food, activities, attractions, and more.
This year’s event is being held in honor of L.D. and Susie Berry.
The event is sponsored by area churches along with community volunteers, organizations, and businesses.
According to the church website, 16 years ago Pastor Brandon Young, who is also a school principal, had a dream.
Young has seen his dream come true and grow over the past 16 years, helping children obtain the school supplies they need for a new school year.
“I had a dream one night about helping children by giving them backpacks, notebooks, binders and other things they need for school,” Young said. The dream seemed so real and important that he immediately discussed it with the leaders of his church.
Over 1,500 backpacks filled with school supplies will be given out free to boys and girls on Saturday. The Back-to-School Bash has also grown into a fun day for the children, with many Disney characters attending and free inflatable rides, shows, a Water Wars game, free food and cotton candy, free clothes and lots of other attractions.
Young said for many children, who come from families who can’t afford to take their children to places like Dollywood, the Back-to-School Bash is one of the highlights of their year. “I remember one year that a single father brought his children here for the free backpacks,” Young said. “After they got the supplies, the children wanted to stay but the father told them they had to go. I overheard them and asked him why they had to leave so soon. He told me he didn’t have any money. I told him everything here is free. Then he told his children they could stay and they had a lot of fun. It was the first time they had ever had cotton candy.”
Young said the bash does not try to teach the children any church doctrine, just a simple message that Jesus loves them.

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