The Somerset Valley YMCA in Bridgewater was alive with a carnival Wednesday as the Y celebrated the kickoff of its 2012 Strong Kids Campaign, with a goal of raising $250,000.
The hit of the night was the dunk tank, as swim coaches Matt Donovan and Brian Greene were on hand to be dunked throughout the night. A line of 10 kids were always waiting for the opportunity to put the coaches in the tank.
Other activities included face painting, tossing games and a variety of food and treats.
The Strong Kid Campaign is designed to raise money to provide funds for those families who cannot afford to send their kids to the YMCA. The fundraiser helps pay for scholarships and other means.
On hand at the event was Venita Martin, a Bridgewater YMCA member and success story. Martin had an illness and realized she was in a very unhealthy state, so she started by changing her eating habits.
"I stopped with the chips and soda and replaced them with fruits and vegetables," she said.
Martin began to walk and lift weights, working at the YMCA, and had soon "melted away" 70 pounds. Her success story drew the attention of TV's Dr. Oz and she was asked to appear on his show to share her story.