Adults can be a kid again and support Five Counties Children's Centre at upcoming summer fundraiser

Adults can throw an axe, joust, and pet animals during an upcoming fundraiser for Five Counties Children's Centre.

The organization — which supports children with special needs in Peterborough, Northumberland, Haliburton, Hastings, and Kawartha Lakes — invites community members to attend its backyard summer social event for a chance to "be a kid again."

Five Counties Children's Centre's summer social is back for its third installment and runs from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 22. The centre's signature fundraising event takes place at Five Counties' Peterborough location at 872 Dutton Road.

Each ticket purchased to the backyard summer social includes food from a variety of local vendors, one drink ticket, live music, access to all activities and games, and a chance to win great prizes.

"The added benefit is that by joining us to celebrate the start of summer, it lets you be a kid again — at least for the afternoon — with the proceeds of your ticket going directly to support treatment for our kids and their families," said Lyn Giles, director of fund development at Five Counties, in a media release.

Tickets to the backyard summer social are $125 each. A ticket purchase includes a $75 charitable tax receipt.

In each of the past two years, the backyard summer social has raised more than $40,000, Five Counties noted. Money raised goes directly to Five Counties' "Building Abilities for Life" campaign, which funds high-priority and high-demand services like speech therapy and occupational therapy in an effort to reduce long wait times.

Anyone who buys a ticket before May 20 will be entered into a draw to win a FujiFilm Instax Mini 12 camera. A winner will be selected and notified during the week of May 21.

Seven local Canadian Tire stores — two in Peterborough and one each in Lindsay, Cobourg, Campbellford, Fenelon Falls and Minden — are the event's lead sponsor.

"The backyard summer social is a fun way to welcome the start of summer, while supporting the incredibly important work being done by Five Counties," said Ralph Moulton, owner of Canadian Tire Peterborough South.

"Canadian Tire is pleased to be able to assist a great community event and organization like Five Counties, which does such great work in our own backyard."

The backyard summer social takes place in the outdoor backyard space created almost five years ago at the Five Counties site in Peterborough. Used for outdoor treatment and therapy for kids and clients, the backyard space will be transformed for this event.

"Our backyard summer social is an adults-only gala event that lets you swap out the tux, gown and heels for T-shirt, shorts and sandals, all the while supporting a great cause," Giles added. "The backyard summer social promises to be an entertaining, high-end experience with equally high-end impact."

The social features food from La Mesita, Gangers of Cheese, and Hanoi House, sweet treats from Central Smith and the Kawartha Butter Tart Factory, musical performances by Nicholas Campbell and the Boogie Time Ramblers, a live auction, and door prizes.

Activities include axe throwing, a petting zoo, inflatable jousting, old-fashioned picnic games and more.

Tickets are available online or through Five Counties by emailing development@fivecounties.on.ca or calling 1-888-779-9916 ext. 300.

Natalie Hamilton, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, KawarthaNOW