Purdue University Northwest invited the community for a family-fun afternoon at its fifth annual Kids Day, sponsored by McDonald's. Before the women’s and men’s basketball games, activities and carnival games were set up for the attending children, like face painting and coloring areas, as well as a surprise visit from Ronald McDonald.
“We’ve been doing this for five years now. It’s just to engage the community and the little ones and it’s supposed to be a lot of fun. My favorite part is getting to see the smiles on the faces of the little ones. I know they’re excited about wearing the black and gold and wearing the little t-shirts with Leo the Lion on it. It’s just all about fun,” Athletic Director Rick Costello said.
The gymnasium was adorned with balloons and was filled with friendly-chatter, laughter, and the dribbling of the basketballs. This was also a special event for the women’s team, as this was their Senior Day.
“It’s our Senior Day and we’re going to honor three senior players that have been awesome representatives of the university, so it’s a special day for us. We try to get exposure with all the young kids, families and Northwest Indiana. Hopefully, they’ll come out and support athletics here and realize that Purdue Northwest is a family-friendly university and we are really proud of what we have to offer and we need to get the message out,” Coach Tom Megyesi said.
The size of the crowd also excited one first-time PNW athlete.
Dance team member Renn Arvanitis said, “This is my first year at Purdue Northwest and I’ve been on the dance team all season. I love that there’s a big crowd at this game. Usually, our crowds aren’t this big so I feel like there’s a different atmosphere with all the extra people here. It’s going to help the team have a better game.”
Whether it is to bond over sports or just spend an afternoon with friends and family, Purdue Northwest Kids Day had the attendees covered.
“I’m a Girl Scout leader so I was looking for more events to do for the girls and I looked into this actually on Purdue’s website. It’s a great outing with the kids and to show support for the team,” said mother, Milica Barron.
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