Monday, August 17, 2009

Picnic with Police & Fire Departments 2009

Our Picnic with the Police and Fire Departments was a success with over 800 people signing in at the picnic. The day started out cloudy (which was nice while we worked to set up for the picnic). Once the clouds cleared and the sun came out it warmed up quickly.

Our first hour started out slow with only 30 families signing in. Word spread quickly and soon we could see the families with strollers coming our way. The food line grew longer as our volunteers worked fervently to keep up with the demand . Families were allowed to eat as much and as often as they wanted. Once parents fed their children it was off to participate in the numerous opportunities for fun. Families could cool down by walking through the sprinkler or by enjoying a free snow cone. Children received three tickets to play the games, winning a prize at each game. Children could get their face painted, bounce around in a bouncy tent or get their photo taken on the Fire Truck. We are still trying to cope with the loss of Polaroid film. It was so, convienant to snap a child's photo and instantly hand the photo to mom or dad. We are continuing our efforts to take photos, transfer the photos from memory sticks to the printer, print the photos and get them to parents in a timely mannor. We seem to generate a lot of frustration with parents over the time it takes. I think we will have to purchase another compact printer in order to speed the process up. Our other choice is to stop taking the photos with the Fire Trucks and with Santa at Christmas. I will have to think it over a bit more.

Chief Miguel and Deputy Chief Fowler came to the picnic for a visit and to thank our volunteers.
The pace throughout the day remained steady with families leaving once their bellies were full and their game tickets were gone, only to be replaced by new families who were just arriving. In all 236 families signed into the picnic. Families ranged from a single child to eight children. In addition many families brought along a relative or a neighbors child. It was a great time for all.

Thank you, to all of my volunteers who worked very hard in the heat all day long. I had no problem finding help to get meat or water from the refrigerated tractor trailer G&C Foods allowed us to use. Volunteers would jump up in the cool trailer and stay there for a few extra minutes.

And thank you, to all you folks who made donations to make the picnic possible. During these tough economic times we are finding our donations are down. I certinally understand why people cannot give right now. I am especially grateful for those of you who still manage to help us even though you could use a little extra help yourself. Times are tough. Thanks to you, we were able to put a lot of smiles on many little faces. Check out our Flickr site for more photos of our picnic. Click on the link below. I love looking at the photos over and over again.

God Bless,

Police Officer
James K. Clarke

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