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Kids get school supplies at Tulalip Bash

The Tulalip Tribes' Back To School Bash returns on Aug. 23 at the Don Hatch Youth Center


August 16, 2017 | View PDF

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Alexandria Morse, left, and mother Kathleen Morse, receive a free backpack and supplies as part of the Tulalip Tribes' Back to School Bash held last year on Aug. 24, 2016.

Tulalip Tribal members and other Marysville Native American students can come to Tulalip Youth Services' Back to School Bash for free backpacks, supplies and other services.

The Aug. 23 event also has many activities for children. It takes place at the Don Hatch Youth Center at 6700 Totem Beach Road from noon to 5 p.m.

"This has been going on for a long time, since I was little, and it's always put on because we want to get the children excited for the upcoming school year," said Jessica Bustad, education coordinator for the Tulalip Youth Services Education Department.

The bash signals the end of summer and helps Tulalip children look forward to September.

"They get their backpack and some supplies and that transitions them into school mode and helps them feel good about it," said Bustad.

A variety of free kids activities and outdoor games will also be at the event for local youth.

"The families like all the activities. They can come and hang out for the day," said Bustad.

Those activities include face painting, henna tattoos, a bouncy house and sports games going on at the field.

From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the skate park by the youth center there will be skate lessons provided by Seattle company Skate Like A Girl (the lessons are for both boys and girls).

Backpacks and a starter pack of supplies are available in one of the gyms of the youth center and are available to Tulalip Tribal members in kindergarten to 12th grade, other Native Americans enrolled in the Marysville School District or those ages three and up who are enrolled at the Betty J. Taylor Learning Academy.

Tribal ID or tribal verification is required.

Last year they gave out around 1,600 backpacks. "It seems to grow a little each year," said Bustad, and this year they are estimating about 1,650 backpacks being given away.

The funding for the backpacks comes from the Tulalip Tribes' nonprofit charitable organization Tulalip Cares.

Bustad said that a number of different backpacks are available.

"The kids can go in and choose from all the different varieties and brands that we have," she said.

The free backpacks and supplies help local families who need support.

"It's important because some of the families can't afford a new backpack," said Bustad.

"And the supplies are not the entire supply list, but it is some basic supplies for a good start," she said.

There are also a number of vendors and organizations at the event.

Most of them are informational, said Bustad.

"For example, the Marysville School District will be there providing information on kindergarten registration or how to apply for free or reduced lunch," she said.

Other groups like Rising Stars Gymnastics will be putting on demonstrations.

Free haircuts will also be available.

For more information about Tulalip Youth Services visit their website at


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