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Families share time together at Bagley Elementary School

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Families share time together at Bagley Elementary School
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

BAGELY -- An abundance of colorful school projects lined the halls of Bagley Elementary School last week for the school's family fun night, academic fair and book fair.


Hundreds of students and their family members gathered at the school Thursday night to eat dinner in the cafeteria, shop at the book fair in the gym and browse the student work brightly decorating the halls.

Even Curious George stopped by the school to pose for photos with the children.

"It's a complete family affair," Principal Don Nordlund said.

While the school has held family fun nights, academic fairs and book fairs in the past, Thursday night was the first time it held all three at once.

Nordlund said the school's parent and community task force came up with the idea to combine the three activities.

"I thought it's a wonderful idea, and it's worked out tremendously," he said.

The Scholastic Book Fair had already begun earlier in the week at the school. Nordlund said the school plans to use the proceeds to buy books and other materials for its accelerated reader program.

Tim and Jandi Theis stopped by the book fair with their daughter Alexandra, who is in the fifth grade.

"We come every year," said Jandi Theis as her daughter picked up "The Chronicles of Narnia." "She likes books."

The Theises also walked through the school's halls to look at the students' projects on display - including Alexandra's model airplane - and had dinner at the school.

Sally Maruska said she also attends every year with her daughter Allison, who is in the fourth grade, and son Klae, who is in the school's learning readiness program.

"It's kind of one of their treats," she said as Klae picked out an "I Spy" book. "Those are his absolute favorites."

Maruska and her children also looked at the projects displayed in the school's halls - including a book about oceans that Allison made. Allison also had done projects on passports and constellations.

Richard Fox Jr. stopped by the school with his daughter Hannah, who is in the first grade, and 2-year-old son Noah.

"This is one of the best years," he said while looking at the projects on display.

Fox said he and his children had already hit the book fair and picked out a book for him to read to them in the evenings.

Down the hall, third-grader Mark Lundsten showed one of his projects to his mother, Sonya, and brother Scott, who is a kindergartener.

"It took me a while to do it," Mark said.

His wetland ecosystem in a shoebox featured the animals and plants that would live in that environment.

"He's just starting to build his beaver dam," Mark explained as he pointed to the beaver in the scene.

He moved down the hall, pointing out two other projects he created - a book illustrating different types of clouds and a model of the solar system.

Also making their way down the school's halls were Stuart and Kathryn Lien and their daughters Lauren and Faith. Lauren is a fifth-grader and Faith is a kindergartener.

"In science, I made an airplane," said Lauren, who had essays and artwork on display at the school, as well.

Faith also had a couple projects decorating the halls - including a cotton ball igloo and her recipe for a "far-out" ice cream flavor, Super Strawberry.

"It's just fun to see all the projects the kids have done," Kathryn Lien said. "They work hard all year."

"I like to see everybody else's work," Lauren added.

And, the fifth-grader said, she enjoyed seeing how many people came out Thursday night to support the school.

Nordlund noted that some of the students, along with their parents and siblings, were joined by grandparents, aunts and uncles, and others.

"It's always fun to see families come," he said. "That's what we're all about."