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Fest flips kids to sports

City event highlights the many activities available to children

Posted: August 19, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: August 19, 2012 2:00 a.m.

Bella Alcazar, 11, scales the rock-climbing wall at the Celebrating YOUth Sports Festival at the Santa Clarita Sports Complex on Saturday.

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As 12-year-old Michael Spell tried to balance on the large paddle board in the cool blue pool waters Saturday, he slipped and splashed into the water.

Gamely, Spell made it back onto the paddle board, now cooled off from Saturday’s hot temperatures in Santa Clarita.

Spell was one of hundreds of Santa Clarita Valley kids who attended the Celebrating YOUth Sports Festival, which is held by the city of Santa Clarita, along with several sponsors.

The free festival at the Santa Clarita Sports Complex was designed to bring the community together to raise awareness about the important role of physical fitness for youth, but many of the children said they were just there to have fun.

One 11-year-old said he really enjoyed the paddleboarding, because it was more fun than kayaking. Children were required to wear a lifevest and helmet while standing up on the board.

“I’ve never done it before and it was fun,” Skijler Hutson, of Valencia, said.

Activities ranged from kayaking to tennis to tricycle riding, with live performances from dance, gymnastics and martial arts, among many others.

One 6-year-old boy was guided by his father through the chalk-marked tricycle course, since he couldn’t reach the pedals on the oversized trike.

“I’m letting the kids do whatever they want,” Dan Collins, of Valencia, said, after guiding his son Faolan Collins through the course.

Many residents who attended the festival had been there before.

“We have come here for the last two years and came here because we wanted to have fun,” said Silvia Ramirez, of Valencia, who brought her son and daughter on Saturday.

For 11-year-old Bella Alcazar, of Canyon Country, the rock climb was one of her favorite activities from last year’s festival, so her mother made sure to bring both Bella and her brother Nicholas to the wall first.

“The fun part about it is you get to climb and you don’t have a risk of falling to your death like regular rock climbing,” Bella Alcazar said.



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