Young kite-fliers experience capricious moods of Mother Nature

In poems and whimsical stories, a teasing breeze is generally a good thing. Isn’t it charming! How sprightly and ticklish!

In real life, it’s not cute. It’s annoying.

Especially if kites are involved. A breeze kicks in, and it’s: Yay! Run! Get that thing up there!

But then the breeze dies, and the kite drops to the grass like a paralyzed bird. It’s one big meteorological tease, the equivalent of a driver pulling forward a foot or two when you’re trying to get in the car.

But it didn’t seem to bother several hundred participants Saturday morning in local radio station Magic 93.1’s Kite Day. Despite a fickle, mostly absent breeze, the sky was blue, the air was warm, and the kites were free. It was a good day, and with enormous reserves of pluck and energy, dozens of kids at any one time were running back and forth across the grass, trailing kites several feet in the air behind them. Momentum and slight wind resistance kept them up, and also optimism.

“Go, Jojo! Go, Jojo!” called Kim Smith to her 3-year-old grandson, Josiah Smith. He was running a serpentine path across the grass, clutching a string in his plump fist and trying his best to get the red, inflatable kite to stay up. He’d give the string a little jerk, and the kite would shoot up in a dizzy arc, to his great delight. Then, unfortunately, it followed by crashing to the ground, leaving Josiah to pull it behind him like a trout on a line.

Grandma Kim, as always, encouraged him to try again.

“I thought this would be a fun way to spend some time together,” she said.

When the wind wasn’t cooperating, there were bump-n-jumps, bean-bag tosses and other games, as well as live entertainment, to allay concerns about kites not staying in the air.

“They’re over on the bump-n-jump,” said Sherri Levesque, waving a casual hand in the direction of her three grandchildren.

Levesque was comfortably seated on the grass, surrounded by what looked like a battlefield strewn with kite carcasses.

“The kites don’t want to stay up, but they’re having fun anyway,” she said.

Jennie Peppelman and her children, Maylin, 8, and Aiden, 5, had heard about the event on the radio and come to the park Saturday morning because they enjoy kites. First, though, they had to find the tiny rubber band for Aiden’s inflatable kite. It had fallen somewhere in the grass, but they weren’t worried. They’d find it or not, then they’d get those kites up there in the blue, blue sky.


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