National Night Out features superheros, safety, fun

| October 21, 2015 | 0 Comments
Military child Lopeti Filo tries on firefighting gear with assistance from the Federal Fire Department.

Military child Lopeti Filo tries on firefighting gear with assistance from the Federal Fire Department.

Story and photos by
Don Robbins
Contributing Writer
ALIAMANU MILITARY RESERVATION — A “super” event packed with safety-themed activities took place at Island Palm Communities’ National Night Out celebration, here, Friday, at the community center.

The festivities included kids and adults dressed as superheroes, activities for the whole family and the movie “Big Hero 6” on the lawn in the evening.

U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii and IPC partnered to bring the annual event, which promotes safety and strengthening neighborhood bonds, to the U.S. Army-Hawaii community.

Family oriented
Interactive exhibits, demonstrations and activities promoting safety within homes and in the community were showcased by IPC, USAG-HI’s Directorate of Emergency Services, Federal Fire Department Hawaii, police officers, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Coast Guard, and other agencies and organizations.

The K-9 unit put on a demonstration, and kids had a chance to see the unit’s four-legged heroes in action.

Event-goers enjoyed complimentary pizza, cotton candy, popcorn and shaved ice.
Children found fun with a 16-foot inflatable slide, face painting and balloon twisting booths. Also, mechanical stuffed animals were part of the mix, giving kids of all ages a chance to ride them.

Young bikers are schooled with National Night Out bicycle safety activities including a bike rodeo.

Young bikers are schooled with National Night Out bicycle safety activities including a bike rodeo.

Focus on safety
Kids rode bikes at the event to test their skills navigating a bike rodeo course, and they tried on bike helmets. Plus, parents got their keiki fingerprinted.

“It’s a great time for the children to come out with their families and get familiar with the first-line services like police and FFD. It’s also a good time to be involved with safety activities. For example, we provide (children) with a bike rodeo, remind them to wear their helmets, to walk their bikes across crosswalks and look both ways when they cross,” said Sgt. Dan Hernandez, Fort Shafter Bike Section noncommissioned officer in charge.

Staff Sgt. Siniva Filo’s son, Lopeti, tried on a firefighter’s heavy protective gear in front of a bright red FFD truck at the National Night Out event. Filo, who works in the U.S. Army-Pacific command group at Fort Shafter, said, “It was a great experience, to teach him (her son) the daily duties of the firefighters who protect us.”

Safety first
Fire Inspector Angela Sanders of FFD Hawaii, said, “We’re getting out to our community to teach children and families about fire safety.”

Sanders provided information to adults about how often to check their smoke detectors, when to change the batteries and when to replace the detector unit. In addition, fire officials taught children about 911 calls, what to do if their clothes catch fire and how to create fire evacuation plans with their families.

Aliamanu-National-Night-Out_001JPGAngela Jones, a park ranger for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, staffed a booth with fellow ranger Samantha Vazquez.

“We’re promoting water safety,” she explained. “Never swim alone, always take a buddy with you, know how deep the water is before you dive in.”

They taught children and their families about the proper way to wear lifejackets, gave them activity books and demonstrations.

The mascot, “Bobber the Water Safety Dog,”  even made an appearance and greeted keiki.

More Online
National Night Out has been held across the country for 32 years to heighten safety awareness and promote police-community partnerships, crime prevention and bring communities together.
Visit www.islandpalmcommunities.com.

Tags: , , ,

Category: Community, Safety

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *