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I'm in 5th grade, preparing a flyer for a fundraising fair. In the flyer, I need to call out an activity, coloring activity, which would be offered for free to all who purchased the coloring books. I would really appreciate your help getting this phrase grammar-proofing.

"Don’t have colors? – no problem! – participate in a free coloring during the event"

OR

"Don’t have colors? – no problem! – participate in free coloring during the event"

Should there be "a" before "free coloring" or not? I thought it should be because it's an activity = coloring. I couldn't get my teachers to agree on one vs. other. Please help!

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  • "participate in free coloring" = participate in a process of coloring. "participate in a free coloring" = participate in a coloring event that will be offered one time during the larger event, or participate in only one of multiple coloring events that will be offered during the larger event, or participate in as many coloring events as you want but only one of them will be free.
    – fixer1234
    Mar 6 '17 at 21:37
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It's free colouring if they have limitless t-shirt colouring.

It's a free colouring if they're only allowed to do it once.

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  • typically they would get one book and complete most of the coloring at once; so it would be one time thing, however they don't have to participate at all (choose to color at home) or kids can take a break to do something else then return to coloring. I'd better remove "a"! Thank you so much!
    – Lena
    Mar 6 '17 at 21:30
  • @Lena Yeah, I would if they're allowed to take a break and come back to it. Otherwise they might think that they've got to buy another book for the second colouring session.
    – Chris M
    Mar 6 '17 at 21:46

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