More than 100 fathers from six different school districts took time away from their busy work schedules in order to spend time with their children at a special event in Robstown.
The gathering was held at the Richard M. Borchard Regional Fairgrounds as part of an annual event held by Fathers Active in Communities & Education. The community organization was founded eight years ago in Alice by longtime community advocate Alphonso Rincon. This is the third year the event has been held at the fairgrounds.
The organization's goal, he said, is to teach dads how to be more involved in their children's education.
"Here we do try to have an academic purpose," Rincon said. "This allows (fathers) to reflect on how much they've grown and also to spend some time with their kids in a memorable way."
At Friday's all-day event, children and their fathers were tasked with figuring out how to create and test wind turbines using kits provided by Iberdrola Renewables. Winning essays were also read aloud by students. In attendance at the event were the Alice, Brooks County, Corpus Christi, Kingsville, Mathis and Odem-Edroy independent school districts.
The lesson allowed the students, who were from grades seventh through 12, to work with their fathers in a whole new light, Rincon said.
"What we want is for the kids to see their dads as students," Rincon said. "It's a positive way to support the lessons in the classroom."
Arnold Carrillo Jr., a resident of Alice who has four children, said he has been a longtime participant in the program, which he feels allows fathers an opportunity to spend time with their children they might not otherwise have.
"It's an awesome way to give dads a chance to have time to spend with their (kids)," Carrillo said. "Dads hardly get a chance to spend time with their sons and daughters."
For more information about the FACE program, visit the organization's Web site at www.fathersactive.com.