Downtown business, vendors and organizations get kids ready to go back to school

Haircuts, schools supplies, food and fun were part of a downtown back to school block party Sunday where members of the community helped send the children of Zephyrhills back to the classroom in style.

More than 200 hundred haircuts were done by the Gentlemen’s Quarters Barber Shop and Lavish Lox Beauty Lounge to get students looking sharp and pretty for the first day of school.

Julia Richards, owner of Gentlemen’s Quarters, knows that times are tough and the first day of school is just around the corner. “Being a child of the community on a budget, I know parents would buy their kids another outfit for school if they have an extra $20, so this is our way of giving back to the community making sure every kid goes back to school feeling confident with a new haircut.”

More than 20 barbers and hairdressers volunteered their talents to provide the haircuts as a line of parents of kids made its way down Fifth Avenue.

Richards and the Gentlemen’s Quarters started the free back-to-school haircuts five years ago and the event has grown to include other businesses and organizations.

Shaun Skilat of AOK Family Fun Center partnered in the back-to-school event last year and watched the event grow even further this year with the support of the Fraternal Order of Eagles and other businesses with the donation of quarters for children to play games at the AOK.

“This is huge,” Skilat said. “The way the world is today, times are tough. Being able to do this for the kids and adults is great. It’s amazing to see all the businesses down here really coming together.”

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