Students often hear they can achieve anything they set their mind to but they won’t get very far without a good pair of shoes on their feet.

On Thursday and Friday, Kilgore Rotary Club members set up a table in the Kilgore Primary School cafeteria during One-Stop Registration to measure students’ shoe sizes, allowing them to pick up a free pair after the registration event. Students who receive free school supplies also qualify for free shoes.

The Rotarians had purchased hundreds of shoes to give out at the event.

“We’re right at 400 right now but we’re going to shop tonight and tomorrow night,” said Linda Sartor, estimating they would have 500 pairs when things were all said and done.

K Castles said the event was going “pretty good” so far as of 10 a.m. Thursday.

“She’s got a pretty good stack,” Castles said, referring to a stack of paper slips Sartor had collected with the name and shoe sizes of participating students.

Hundreds of students sign up to receive free shoes but Castles said many don’t return with their claim slip to pick up the new kicks.

“The sad part about last year was that we had 170 pairs not claimed. They didn’t come back and get them so we’re trying to really be sure that they will do this,” Castles said, adding she wanted everyone to claim the shoes they signed up to receive.

Also, anyone can pick up the shoes as long as they have the claim slip, not just the parents or guardians of students.

“When they don’t claim them, it’s the kids that go without. Anybody can bring them. As long as they have that slip of paper, anybody can bring them,” Castles said.

Shoe pickup will be today in the Fellowship Hall of the First Baptist Church at 501 E. North St. from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Azucena San Juan, who brought her children, sixth-grader Allison and second-grader Jose, to One-Stop for registration, picked up free school supplies as well as signing up for new shoes.

“They’re grateful to be able to get them,” San Juan said of her kids, adding they were excited to get the supplies and shoes.

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