Pasco County back-to-school events: supply drives, giveaways, orientations and more

Orientations like this one at Lake Myrtle Elementary are among the events on tap in Pasco County before the start of the 2018-19 school year. [Times (2011)]
Orientations like this one at Lake Myrtle Elementary are among the events on tap in Pasco County before the start of the 2018-19 school year. [Times (2011)]
Published June 25 2018
Updated July 26 2018

From on-campus activities to supply drives and fun, here is a look some back-to-school events in Pasco County:

Back-to-School Bash, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. July 28 at Veterans Memorial Park, 14333 Hicks Road, Hudson. There will be inflatables, music, games and door prizes. Every student will receive a raffle ticket which will enter them into a drawing for the school supplies giveaway. A minimum of 150 students will receive free school supplies. Students must be present to receive school supplies, while supplies last. While the school supplies given away are geared for ages 5-13, kids of all ages are encouraged to attend.

•Towne Square Mall fifth annual Operation Backpack event will be from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. July 28 at the mall, 3021 Commercial Way, Spring Hill. Bounce house, hot dogs, balloon art, haircut vouchers and more. Open to all elementary and middle school students from Pasco and Hernando counties while supplies last. Students must be present with an adult and adults must be present with a student.

Back-to-School Supply Drive, through the month of July at Pasco Tax Collector Mike Fasano’s five offices. Schools in each community will receive the supplies soon after the promotional campaign ends. Cash donations are preferred and can be made at any of the five tax collector locations in Pasco County. For more information about the drive, contact Assistant Tax Collector Greg Giordano at (727) 847-8179 or visit Donations may also be mailed to the tax collector’s office at: Tax Collector Mike Fasano, P.O. Box 276, Dade City, Fla., 33526. Please note on the memo line "Back-to-School Backpack Promotion."

United Way 8th annual Stuff the Bus for Teachers, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Aug. 3-5 at various locations. Donations of school supplies will be taken at school buses located in the parking lots of Walmart stores at the following locations: 1575 Land O Lakes Blvd, Lutz; 8601 U.S. 19, Port Richey; 28500 State Road 54, Wesley Chapel; and 745 State Road 54, New Port Richey. For more information, visit

• Volunteers for the nonprofit organization Marjorie’s Hope are welcome to fill backpacks on Aug. 4 at River Ridge High School, 11646 Town Center Road, New Port Richey. The backpacks will then be delivered to Pasco school and nonprofit help agency representatives for children in grades K-12. The radio station 106 HITS FM will conduct a live on-set remote and serve barbecue to volunteers. Register to volunteer by July 27 at No walk-in volunteers.

• Exchange gently used clothing, shows and accessories at the Back to School Swap, from 12-4 p.m. Aug. 10 and 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Aug. 11 at the New Port Richey Public Library, 5939 Main St. Items will be accepted for babies, elementary school children and teens. Check in donated items prior to the event with a staff member in youth services. Those who do not have anything to donate are welcome to shop at the swap. For more information, visit or call (727) 853-1279.

Back-To-School Celebration, sponsored by Bank of the Ozarks, 4/One The Gentlemen’s Quarters and Goin’ Postal, will be held from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Aug. 12 at 38435 5th Ave., Zephyrhills. Students will receive a free haircut, compliments of 4/One The Gentlemen’s Quarters, and a bag of school supplies while they last. On-site activities will include a bounce house, giant games and puzzles, corn hole, a baseball pitching contest, hockey and soccer goal contests, chalk art, hula hoop contests and more. School supply donations will be accepted through Aug. 10th at 4/One The Gentlemen’s Quarters, 38435 Fifth Ave., and at the Bank of the Ozarks branch, 7435 Gall Blvd. All supplies donated will be distributed to local schoolchildren.

School orientations

Some schools hold special orientations for students making the transition to elementary, middle and high school, as well as those entering a specific educational program such as Cambridge, AVID or International Baccalaureate. Don’t see your school listed here? Contact the school or check out the calendar on the school website.

• Bayonet Point Middle: Sixth Grade Academy orientation, 8 a.m.-noon Aug. 2.

Charles S. Rushe Middle: Sixth Grade University: 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Aug. 2. $10 includes lunch. Sign-up is first come, first served.

• Hudson High: Freshman Orientation, 8 a.m.-12 noon Aug. 2 (student ONLY session); parents pick up schedules and pay fees from noon-2 p.m. Students will tour the campus, meet with counselors, teachers and administration, and learn about student organizations.

J.W. Mitchell High: Mustang U Orientation, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Aug. 2.

Land O’Lakes High: International Baccalaureate Freshman Orientation and Induction ceremony, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Aug. 9.

Paul R. Smith Middle: Sixth Grade Orientation, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Aug. 2.

Pasco High: Class of 2022 Registration/Orientation, Aug. 3. Registration will be from 8 a.m.-12 noon; Orientation from 12:30-3 p.m. Lunch provided. Parents are welcome. Cambridge Program registration, 5- 7 p.m. Aug. 6 for grades 10-12. Class of 2019 parent meeting, 3:30-5 p.m. Aug. 7.

Pine View Middle: "All Paws In," 9 a.m.-noon Aug. 2 for incoming sixth-grade students and students new to the school. Students and parents will attend interactive sessions, separately, to learn more about the IB MYP programme and to assist in making the transition into middle school. Students will receive their 2018-19 school year schedule, after students and parents attend all sessions.

River Ridge High: Early registration for freshmen and seniors, 4-6 p.m. Aug. 2. Seniors can pay senior fees, pick up class schedules, order a yearbook, rent a locker, obtain and select a parking space, order cap and gown for commencement. Freshmen can tour the campus, rent a locker, meet some teachers, pick up class schedules and order a yearbook. Students new to the school must attend the secondary schools orientation day held at the school from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Aug. 7, or call (727) 774-7200 to set up an appointment with the guidance office.

River Ridge Middle: "Storm the Castle," 8:30 a.m.- 1 p.m. Aug. 2, for sixth-graders and students new to the school. There will be a Parent University session for sixth-grade parents from 8:30-9 a.m. in the theater. Students who attend will receive their schedule early and do not need to attend the secondary schools orientation day on Aug. 7.

Seven Springs Middle: "Welcome to the Jungle" sixth-grade orientation and open house, 8 a.m.-noon Aug. 2. Schedules can be picked up in our cafeteria and myStudent parent sessions will take place in the media center throughout the day. Students who attend will receive their schedule and be given a free SSMS T-Shirt. They do not need to attend the Secondary Registration Day on Aug. 7.

Sunlake High: Freshman Orientation, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Aug. 3.

Wesley Chapel High: Freshman Orientation, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Aug. 2.

• Wiregrass Ranch High: Senior registration, Aug. 6.

Zephyrhills High: Senior Orientation, 8 a.m. Aug. 2. Freshman Orientation, 1 p.m. Aug. 2.

Charter schools

Academy at the Farm: Preschool Open House/Meet the Teacher, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Aug. 9.

Athenian Academy: Registration Day, 2-7 p.m. Aug. 1. Meet the Teacher, Aug. 10.

Day Spring Academy Elementary: Registration Night, Aug. 8. Kindergarten Meet the Teacher, 2-3 p.m. Aug. 10.

Day Spring Academy Secondary: Registration Night, Aug. 8.

Plato Academy: Curriculum Night, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Aug. 20.

Open houses

Schools typically put out the welcome mat a few weeks into the school year so parents and family members can meet teachers, tour the classroom and learn about expectations and curriculum for the coming year. Don’t see your school listed here? Check out the calendar on the school website or call the school.

• Elementary schools

Cotee River: 5:15 p.m. Aug. 30

Double Branch: 5 p.m. Aug. 28 for pre-k, 5:30 p.m. for grades K-2; 7 p.m. Aug. 28 for grades 3-5

Gulf Trace: 6 p.m. Sept. 6 for primary grades; 7:15 p.m. sept 6 for intermediate grades.

Lake Myrtle: Primary grades 5:30-6:15 p.m. Aug. 30; intermediate grades 6:30-7:15 p.m. Aug. 30

James M. Marlowe: Aug. 23

Longleaf: 5:45 p.m. Sept. 6 for grades pre-K-2; 7 p.m. Sept. 6 for grades 3-5.

Oakstead: Aug. 28

San Antonio: 5:30 p.m. Aug. 30 for primary students; 6:30 p.m. Aug. 30 for intermediate students.

Seven Oaks: Aug. 21.

Shady Hills: Aug. 29.

Sunray: 6-7:30 p.m. Sept. 13.

Veterans: 5:30 p.m. Aug. 28 for primary students; 6 p.m. Aug 28 for intermediate students.

• Middle schools

Bayonet Point: 5-7:30 p.m. Aug. 29

Centennial: 6-7:30 p.m. Aug. 9 for sixth-grade students; 6-7:30 p.m. Aug. 28 for grades 7-8.

Charles S. Rushe: Aug. 23.

Cypress Creek Middle/High: 6-8 p.m. Aug. 20

Dr. John Long: 9-10:30 a.m. Aug. 10

Gulf: 6 p.m. Aug. 30

Paul R. Smith: 5:30-7 p.m. Aug. 28

River Ridge: 6-8 p.m. Aug. 28

Seven Springs: 6-7:30 p.m. Aug. 30 for grades 7-8

• High schools

Anclote: 5:30-6:30 p.m. Aug. 24

Pasco: Open House/Title One meeting, 1:30-3:30 p.m. Aug. 7

River Ridge: Open house and financial aid presentation, 5-6 p.m. Aug. 24.

Wiregrass Ranch: 6-8 p.m. Aug. 27.

Zephyrhills: Open House/Title 1 meeting, 6 p.m. Aug. 27.