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      Thousands fill park for 12th Annual First Day Festival in Charleston

      CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP/WCIV) - Students are going back to school and that meant time for the annual First Day Festival in Charleston.

      The 12th annual festival was held Sunday at Liberty Square by the South Carolina Aquarium. Thousands of people showed up to the event. The festival is designed to get kids excited about returning to school and making sure they have the supplies and support they need.

      Dozens of vendors lined the walkways of Liberty Square Sunday afternoon, giving parents and kids a chance to have fun, play games, and kick off the school year. Charleston Mayor Joe Riley kicked off the event telling students they had the support of the city, the school system, and the community to excel in their studies.{}

      Each year, thousands of students and their families attend the festival, where they can get school supplies, learn about support services and healthy eating.

      The festival included free aquarium tours and boat rides as well as face painting and other activities.

      In North Charleston, families gathered at the Danny Jones Recreation Center for the third annual Blazin Cutz Back to School youth rally where they could get haircuts, manicures, and school supplies for the first day of school. Students also had a chance to hear from professionals on the options they have available to them through education.

      When do you go back to school?{}

      Charleston County, Colleton County, Dorchester Districts 2 and 4, and Orangeburg Consolidated Districts 3 and 4 start on Monday.{}

      Berkeley County schools go back to school on Tuesday.{}

      And on Wednesday, Georgetown and Orangeburg Consolidated District 5 go back to school.

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