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Athletic Edge to host carnival for kids with special needs

More than 300 local children will join in two days of fun March 5-6, as Athletic Edge Sports and Fitness Center hosts its fourth-annual Winter Carnival for Children with Special Needs.

The goal of the event is to provide the special needs children of eastern North Carolina a safe, fun environment filled with exciting games and activities to help build skills, self-esteem and friendships.

“As a former teacher in the Beaufort County Schools, I wanted to give back to the students and teachers in our community,” explained Athletic Edge Owner Laura Horton.

Assisting with the effort, 45 National Honor Society students from Washington High School will be there to lend a hand. As volunteers, they’ll help run the various activities and have a chance to interact with the participants.

Activities on the docket for the day include basketball, indoor soccer, inflatables, an estimation station, arts and crafts, corn hole, go fish, face painting and playing with a parachute. Snacks and popcorn will be provided, and a DJ dance party will cap off the festivities.

There will also be a raffle the week of the carnival. Several area businesses have donated goodies to be raffled off, ranging from gift cards and hot stone massages to jewelry and coolers. All proceeds from the raffle will benefit Accept & Excel, a local nonprofit that offers a variety of activities for exceptional children and their families.

Students from Martin County Schools will visit from 9 a.m. to noon March 5, while Beaufort County Schools students will visit during the same hours March 6.

“Seeing the kids’ faces when they walk in the door and see all the decorations, games and activities set up just for them — it’s priceless,” Horton said.

To learn more about Athletic Edge Sports and Fitness Center, visit www.athleticedge-nc.org.