Grand opening of new learning trail held at Thompson Park in Barbourville

Published: Jun. 10, 2022 at 2:35 PM EDT
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HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - A new outdoor learning trail for kids was unveiled at Thompson Park in Barbourville Friday.

The grand opening celebration included Barbourville Mayor David Thompson and State Representative Tom O’Dell Smith, free food and slushies for the first 100 children in attendance and a bike raffle and free merchandise from local vendors.

“I think kids are having a great time. I see a lot of them laughing and playing and getting icees. So they all seem very happy.” Said Brittany Carnes, Early Childhood Community Coordinator for Knox County Schools.

The new Born Learning Trail will allow families in the area to engage in fun activities and games to encourage early learning.

Included in the trail is a series of interactive activities that adults can play with children in an effort to build foundational learning skills.

“So being able to come here to Knox county and open up this Born Learning Trail is just a great opportunity for this community and for years to come it’s going to make a great impact.” Said Chelsi Hinkle, Assistant Director of Kentucky Programs at Save the Children.

Other activities include hopscotch, letter recognition and social emotional activities.

Designed to boost language and literacy development, the learning trail helps caregivers understand how to best support early learning in everyday moments.

“They’re going to be able to come out and get exercise, get a healthy start in a safe place” said Hinkle, “but they are also going to be able to learn important skills to get them started and get them ready for kindergarten so they can succeed in life.”

The trail was developed through partnerships with Save the Children, Tri County Early Childhood Council and the city of Barbourville.

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