Police hosting annual event to bond with locals

Published 7:31 pm Monday, June 10, 2019


Washington Daily News

With a little help from video games, hot dogs and sunny weather, the city’s police department seeks to create lasting relationships with community members.

The Washington Police Department is hosting their annual Community Day at Havens Gardens from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday. The department hosts the function every year in an effort to bridge the gap between first responders and the community.

“People come out and intermingle with first responders,” said Kimberly Grimes, WPD’s community outreach coordinator. “It’s about being a positive setting so that they can be able to get to know the officers, as well as firemen and probation (officers), to get to know them a little bit better.”

The Community Day offers a full day of activities for families, including free food, face painting and music from DJ Heavy Hitters. There will also be a variety of vendors, such as the American Red Cross for blood donations and Level Up, a mobile game theater that offers free gaming for visitors.

The day is a rare opportunity for the community to form relationships with their local first responders. With Havens Gardens as the setting, WPD hopes the calm waterfront and newly remodeled playground will provide a safe space for families to do just that, according to Grimes.

“It’s about the community and getting them experiences with the responders,” Grimes said. “We’re trying to be in a more relaxed atmosphere where they can actually do a lot of games with the officers and firemen.”

Washington’s Community Day has been well received by the public since its start in 2014. Each year brings new activities and new chances for residents to interact with the first responders who protect the town.

“It has been a wonderful response (from the town),” Grimes said. “Whether it’s being on the slides, gaming or sitting down with a hot dog and talking with friends, it’s always a good time.”