Mayor Pugh's annual back-to-school rally distributes around 3,200 free backpacks (Baltimore Sun)

Parents and children lined up to get free backpacks decorated with smiley faces, baseball bats and sharks, and filled with school supplies at Mayor Catherine Pugh’s annual back-to-school rally.

The event, hosted at the War Memorial Plaza downtown Saturday, distributed around 3,200 backpacks ahead of the Sept. 4 start date for city schools. Fewer than 100 backpacks were left over, which will be distributed next week, Pugh spokesman James E. Bentley II wrote via text message.

The rally also featured an array of sponsors, including the Baltimore Fire Department, which taught hands-on CPR; the Enoch Pratt Library; and the Baltimore City Health Department, which delivered immunizations to children in the War Memorial Building.

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