Children from across the Coastal Bend attended the third annual Dia de los Ninos event at the Richard M. Borchard Regional Fairgrounds on Saturday.
The event serves as a way to promote literacy, disseminate information about the dangers of diabetes and provide information on healthy eating within the Hispanic community. The Nueces County Keach Family library and the National Latino Children's Institute sponsored the event.
Nueces County Library Director Ida Garza said when they first moved into the Keach Family Library in 2008, library officials wanted to do something locally for the community to help promote the cause of literacy.
"We brought in other agencies as well, such as the Nueces County Extension Office, who brought in activities to promote awareness when it comes to healthy eating," Garza said. "The celebration has just gotten bigger over the years."
Anna Villarreal brought her daughter to the event from Corpus Christi because she felt it was a great way to get her into reading. The event also proved to be a fun opportunity to get everyone together for the afternoon, she said.
"I wasn't sure if I was going to like it," Villarreal's daughter, sixth grade student Brandi, said. "I like the horses. I don't ride, so it was fun."
Children and parents received treats, such as "ladybugs," which were apple halves covered in peanut butter and raisins, with pretzel sticks for legs. At the petting zoo, kids got to know animals such as pigmy goats, Malaysian chickens and turkens first hand. Turkens are a breed of chicken that have no feathers around their neck or back, giving them the appearance of a small turkey. Also at the zoo were "Easter egg" chickens, which lay blue, green, pink or off-brown colored eggs.