The Harker Heights Activities Center was packed Saturday afternoon when it hosted the annual Family Valentine’s Dance, which was sponsored by the city of Harker Heights.

There, people of all ages from toddlers to seniors got to dance the afternoon away in the “Enchanted Forest.”

Activities coordinator Sara Gibbs said, “The ... annual Valentine’s Dance started back in 2010; this is our eleventh year we have held it …We’re excited to host it this year, and we’re happy to provide a family dance where families can be with their kids.”

Kelly Eisbacher of Fort Hood was there with her husband and three children.

“We love to go out (as a family), and being military we’re always trying to find free activities.”

The Activities Center was a crush of individuals and families who were there to celebrate the upcoming Valentine’s Day at the free event.

With the theme of the dance being the “Enchanted Forest,” the Activities Center was decked out with brown butcher paper on the tables (much like tree bark), garlands and tea lights as table centerpieces, and balloons.

There was even a large inflatable dragon in the lobby to greet visitors as they entered the dance space.

In addition to the live deejay providing family-friendly music, there were crayons for younger children to color on the butcher paperwith, face painting (provided by the Eastern Hills Middle School Builder’s Club), and the lobby’s dragon provided fun photo opportunities for everyone.

Light refreshments were also available in the form of crackers, pretzels, cookies, juice and water.

Evelyn Garcia-Rivera of Harker Heights said, “I enjoy coming (here). I enjoy the people ... (and) I like to see the kids have fun.”

Killeen resident Melody Hunter brought her two daughters to the event.

“We come anytime there is an event on Saturday,” Hunter said. “We’ve been coming here since about five years ago. The programs are just amazing. I can’t say enough positive things about them.”

Hunter said she and her daughters had a good time. “I danced the YMCA!” she said.

People were also given the opportunity to vote on next year’s dance theme.

“The past couple of years we started having different themes; we ask the public to vote on what they’d like to see in the coming year ...We are excited to see the voting results for next year’s theme,” Gibbs said.

Voting choices for next year’s event included a space theme and a sock hop.

Even after the lights were turned up, people were still milling around, visiting and enjoying each other’s company, a sure sign of success.

“Our events like this on can’t be held without the help of our adult and teen volunteers,” Gibbs said. “They are a tremendous help at all of our events.”

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.