TOWANDA BOROUGH — It was Child Support Awareness Day on the Bradford County Courthouse lawn on Monday afternoon.

After the Bradford County Commissioners declared August Child Support Awareness Month on Thursday, a formal celebration was planned by the Bradford County Domestic Relations Office including a visit from Towanda Borough officer John Hennessy and K9 Hades, the Bradford County Bookmobile, the Bradford County Dairy Princess, Bradford County Conservation District, kids fingerprinting by the Sheriff’s Office, car seat checks by the Pennsylvania State Police, a fire truck from the Towanda Fire Department, face-painting, pizza, chances to win a back-to-school basket and movie ticket baskets and more.

“It’s geared for the children,” Director of the Bradford County Domestic Relations office Vonda Huffman said at the event. “We’re all here for the children, that’s our job.”

It’s the first year that the office has celebrated the day outside with a gathering. In years past the office would do something small just inside the office. According to Huffman, Governor Tom Wolf asked all of the child support offices in the state to do something extra in observation this year.

The office hopes to turn the good turnout and momentum from this year’s picnic into something bigger in the future, Huffman continued.

“Maybe a carnival theme in one of the county parks.”

Dozens of kids were on hand from groups from the YMCA, who partnered with the office for the picnic at the event that shut down Park Street, to see with K9 officer Hades, get a tour of Towanda Borough’s ladder truck or even read a book on the Bradford County Bookmobile.

Huffman iterated that the domestic relations office does not take sides in custody battles or whatever familial situation the office handles — they just want to see the kids thrive.

“We’re here to make sure they have that backpack when they go back to school, or play football or dance — whatever they need to help them.”

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