Portage la Prairie School Division kindergarten students wrapped up their first year at Island Park on Friday.

Marking a tradition that spans over four decades, the division's youngest students commemorated their inaugural year of education with a unique blend of dance parties, games, and a captivating magic show.

École Arthur Meighen kindergarten teacher Laura Hordeski says that this event is something that staff and students look forward to.

"This is an end-of-year party for us," she smiled. "We get all the kindergarten classes in the Portage la Prairie School Division together at the island with tons of volunteers to help us keep an eye on them. Then we break them into little groups, and they mix with another school. They go through seven different activities: classic kindergarten stuff."

file photoLaura Hordeski

204 students participated in the year-end activity from 9 a.m. until noon. Hordeski is one of the event organizers and says it is nerve-wracking trying to get everything to come together right, but also very rewarding.

"Every kindergarten teacher does their part. A lot of resource teachers help, and parents step in to volunteer. It's a really good feeling, and we've been following the same formula for over 40 years now, so we know it works."

Hordeski shares the infectious excitement of the students, who eagerly anticipate the day, often proclaiming that the island party will be the highlight of their young lives.