Fourth-grader Lily Esparza participates in the ring toss at the East Lincoln Elementary fall festival Thursday night. The objective was to stand behind a line and toss a ring onto one of the two-liter bottles. Lily made two out of her three tosses, winning a two-liter bottle of Cherry Sun Drop.

Approximately 500 students, family members and friends filled the halls of East Lincoln Elementary for games, activities and much more at the school’s fall festival Thursday night. Everyone was able to play games, win prizes and eat sweets as the school community for a family-friendly night of fun.

The fall festival is organized by the PTO as an annual fundraiser for the school. Students and their families can get tickets to play games just like they would at a carnival. With each game there are prizes to win. Each game not only provided fun for the kids, but also incorporated skills used in everyday life.

“The fall festival is a really great event for the community,” said PTO president Lisa Largin. “All the kids have fun and are able to play games in a safe environment.”

Largin helped organize the festival and could be found giving high-fives to the kids as she watched them walk around with smiles and prizes.

More than 30 games and activities filled the halls and class rooms of East Lincoln, including  cake, cookie and book walks; face painting; fishing for goldfish; a ring toss; penny drop; glow dance party; a photo booth and a yard sale.

A cake walk is a game similar to musical chairs. Squares are laid out on the floor equal to the number of participants. Each participant stands on a numbered square while music plays. If their number is called when the music stops, that person is out of the game – and the last person standing wins a cake.

At the fall festival, the cake walk ran out of cakes within the first hour because there were so many participants. However, students were able to participate in the cookie or book walks if they didn’t have the chance to win a cake.

Children and their parents lined up outside the classrooms waiting on their turn to win prizes. More than $2,000 worth of prizes were donated for the fall festival from local businesses. Most prizes consisted of candy, but there were two-liter bottled drinks, desserts, various gift certificates and live goldfish to be won.

“This is my favorite event of the year,” said East Lincoln Elementary Principal Scott Hargrove. “The fall festival is a fun night that we get to share with our students, their families and the public. It not only allows our students to come have a safe, fun night with us, but it also connects us to our community.”

Hargrove spent the night mingling with the visitors who made their way to the festival.

The kids and their families came for a fun night, and one student summed up the festival in just two words. “It’s great!” said East Lincoln fifth-grader Tristan Taylor with a smile on his face.

Faith Few can be reached at ffew@tullahomanews.com.