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Annual Spring Palooza’s fun for the entire family

PONY RIDE: A youngster enjoys a pony ride provided by Kirkland Farms during the 2015 Spring Palooza at Jack Read Park on Saturday. Photo by Ashley Collins.

PONY RIDE: A youngster enjoys a pony ride provided by Kirkland Farms during the 2015 Spring Palooza at Jack Read Park on Saturday. Photo by Ashley Collins.

The Greater Picayune Arts Council’s 2015 Spring Palooza celebrated the start of springtime and provided fun outdoor activities for the entire family.

Saturday, the palooza began with a little luck from the Irish. The Rotary Club of Picayune held their annual St. Patrick’s Day 5K Run/Walk and One-Mile Fun Run at Jack Read Park.

At 8 a.m., several children participated in the one-mile fun run. One of the participants, McKenzie Pollitz, won first place.

“I feel good about it,” Pollitz said.

Her mother, Elisha Pollitz, added that McKenzie plans on polishing her medal every day.

At 8:30 a.m., several participants ran the 5K around downtown Picayune. Afterwards, an award ceremony was held where every participant was given a medal.

Stewart Huey, Rotary Club fundraising chair, said this is the fourth year they’ve held the run at Jack Read Park.

“I’d like to thank everybody for coming out today,” he said. “But it’s not the turnout we expected.”

Rotary member Suzan Wilson said the money they raised will go towards community projects throughout the year.

At 10 a.m., families came out to Jack Read Park to enjoy the outdoor activities sponsored by the Greater Picayune Arts Council. The activities included face painting, a petting zoo, putt putt golf, bounce houses, minnow racing, pony rides from Kirkland Farms, pictures with the Easter Bunny and the Lincoln Express train ride.

Donna Aguilard, president of the arts council, said this event is great for the community.

“The palooza is an activity for kids of all ages. We do this annually and it’s actually our third year doing this,” Aguilard said.

Also at the event, members from the Picayune On Stage theater group were raising money for a children’s theater in Picayune.

“Our goal is to bring theater back for our children,” Gladys Hughes said. “The city tore down the previous building to make room for a soccer field, so it’s time we build a new one.”

Hughes said the goal is to raise $50,000 for a new theater.

The outdoor festivities concluded with the silly hat parade, where children and adults walked around the park wearing brightly colored hats and making music with tambourines and drums.