‘Because You Loved Me’: Hands Across SP to salute parents, teachers
By Peggy Kelly
Santa Paula News
Published: September 18, 2013
By Peggy Kelly
Santa Paula Times
There are very few people who have more of an impact on a child’s life than their parents and teachers, and the theme of this year’s 3rd Annual Hands Across Santa Paula/Remembering the Spirit of Kindness will salute these special loving adults.
Event founder and organizer Samantha Frady said the September 29 “Because You Loved Me” honoring parents and teachers will be held at Veterans Memorial Park, starting at 3 p.m. She noted the event will feature a special tribute to beloved Santa Paula Police K-9 Evan, who retired and lived with his partner SPPD Sgt. Jimmy Fogata until the popular dog passed August 19.
Frady said she selected this year’s theme “because of all the loving and caring parents and teachers.... They are quite a dedicated team in a child’s life!”
Santa Paula is notable because of its support of others: “Yes, it takes a village to raise children, and in our Santa Paula village we are very lucky” because there are not only so many talented caring teachers, but also various “wonderful after school programs.” Families are also active in area schools: “We are blessed with hardworking devoted parents and volunteers from all walks of life, that go that extra mile daily.”
Sometimes, noted Frady, literally: “That includes many of our coaches and teachers that work with the children in various sports and activities and special projects and programs” such as FFA, Boys & Girls Clubs of Santa Clara Valley, girl and boy scouting programs as well as music studies, bands and choruses, just to name a few.
“Because You Loved Me” will feature Hector Sanchez singing the National Anthem, and remarks from Santa Paula Unified School District Superintendent Alfonso Gamino, City Manager Jaime Fontes, City Councilman Martin Hernandez, Police Chief Steve McLean, Fire Capt. Steve Lazenby and Sgt. Fogata.
Donna Nelson and the Isbell Condor Choir will perform, and SPPD K-9s and their partners will be on hand as well as MacGruff the Crime Fighting Dog and Sparky the Fire Dog. There will be a raffle, and Frady said KADYTV.net will again film the whole event for online viewing.
One of the most special aspects of the annual Hands Across Santa Paula are the wishes schoolchildren are asked to write, a friendly competition where everyone is a winner. This year children are asked to write wishes for parents and teachers. Frady said schools that participate will receive special certificates, including from Supervisor Kathy Long and the Board of Supervisors.
Everyone is invited to this free event to “return the love and respect for parents and teachers that they give so freely.” And to pay tribute to Evan, whose devotion to duty, friendliness and doggone good looks will be lauded, including with a bagpipe tribute. “I just loved that dog, everyone loved Evan,” said Frady, who wrote a letter to the editor upon the dog’s retirement several years ago.
For more information contact Frady at 525-7646.