Kite Flying Festival

Independent Perspective #1661

Guest:  Brenda Starks

Topic:  Free Kite Flying Festival from MHPC

Duration:  5:08

Published:  September 2, 2021

Host:  Welcome to Independent Perspective, a public affairs presentation of Western New York Independent Living (WNYIL). Our guest today is Brenda Starks, Certified Benefits Advisor and Certified Peer Specialist with Mental Health PEER Connection, and your host is yours truly Ernie Churchwell. Welcome back to the program Brenda.

Guest:  Thank you Ernie, it’s good to be here.

Host:  And we're delighted to have you. You're with us, because you have all the lowdown on a cool event, which is happening in the very near future, brought to us by MHPC, namely, a kite flying festival. And could you first, could you tell us what is the purpose of this event and who was it intended to serve?

Guest:  Well, the purpose of the event is to serve the community, in whole. It’s a fun-filled family event on the Niagara River. We provide kites, if you want you can bring your own. You can bring your family, you can have fun, we have pre-packed sandwiches, water, and it's just a fun day.

Host:  So, the main purpose of this I believe is to celebrate, mental health recovery from issues one might have and the resiliency of consumers of mental health services in general is that correct?

Guest:  That's correct.

Host:  That's wonderful. And this is not the first time that you've had this, what has taken place previously?

Guest:  Well over the years we started about three, four years ago, it’s a free event. It's a way to help us, consumers to be able to get out and enjoy ourselves. So, we came up with the idea of having a kite festival, and the kite festival it gives everybody the opportunity to come out, have fun, and just set it back away from your life for that day. So, it's a fun filled day for everybody.

Host:  That's terrific. Would you say that the bulk of people served by MHPC come from the greater Buffalo area?

Guest:  I would say, the majority of individuals come from the Buffalo area, and surroundings.

Host:  So, keeping that in mind, that's probably why the free transportation was set up the way it was, could you give us the detail?

Guest:  The transportation, to be on the on the bus, the bus comes at 10:00. And we are transporting individuals from 10:00 to 12:00. You have to come to 3108 Main Street in Buffalo, which is the WNYIL. We're right behind Jim’s SteakOut, that's where the transportation would be. I will be there to get everybody on the bus and help them get to the park which is just going to be at Gratwick Waterfront Park in North Tonawanda. So, anyone that wants to you know risk register, they contact Jillian Moss at 716-836-0822 extension 146. But the transportation is provided from the Buffalo area because majority, everybody it’s a central area for everybody to get to.

Host:  Is there just going to be one van going out at 10 o'clock or are there going to be vans going up periodically over the two-hour period?

Guest:  There's going to be vans going out periodically over the two-hour period.

Host:  And I gather is that it's on a first come first serve basis. Is it vital that somebody pre-register to be on the bus?

Guest:  It's not vital but we will like to have keep count of the numbers of people participating. If someone just shows up, they're not going to be denied transportation to the park.

Host:  Very good. But since it's a free event is it necessary to register in advance just to participate?

Guest:  It would be helpful. Yes.

Host:  All right, and I believe we're encouraging people to call event coordinator Jillian Moss, how do they do that?

Guest:  They can contact Jillian by email at or call 716-836-0822 extension 146

Host:  Terrific. And again, that's September 18 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Gatwick Waterfront Park, North Tonawanda. Thanks so much for being with us, Brenda.

Guest:  Thank you, Ernie for having me.

Host:  You've been listening to Independent Perspective, a public affairs presentation of WNYIL. Our guest today has been Brenda Starks, Certified Benefits Advisor and Certified Peer Specialist with MHPC, and your host has been yours truly, Ernie Churchwell.