Buffalo Township Family Day brings community, first responders together | TribLIVE.com
Valley News Dispatch

Buffalo Township Family Day brings community, first responders together

Emily Balser
Emily Balser | Tribune-Review
Orrin McConnell, 2, of the Cabot section of Winfield Township, plays with the handles of a Bobcat at the Buffalo Township Family Day on Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019.
Emily Balser | Tribune-Review
Julius Wick, 1, of Butler, hangs out in a fire truck at the Buffalo Township Family Day on Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019.
Emily Balser | Tribune-Review
Hunter Lowes, 6, of Freeport, adjusts his fireman’s hat while he checks out a fire truck at the Buffalo Township Family Day on Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019.

From turning on the sirens to climbing on the trucks, kids of all ages got to interact with local first responders up close and personal Sunday at the inaugural Buffalo Township Family Day.

The free event was hosted by the Buffalo Township parks and recreation committee and the Friends of Buffalo Township Foundation.

Buffalo Township police, Buffalo Township and Sarver fire departments and Buffalo Township EMS were all on site with their vehicles and representatives to talk to the kids about what it’s like to do their jobs.

Holbein Construction and True Value Hardware also brought construction and farm equipment for the kids to see.

John Haven, chairman of the parks and recreation committee, said they wanted to plan an event where the community could come together and give the kids something to do while also supporting the local emergency responders.

“This is for the families and this is for Buffalo Township,” he said.

Kelly Lowes said she is glad the town put on the event so her kids could interact with the police and firefighters and feel safe.

“It’s nice to get the kids out and get them to know their local firemen and policemen,” she said.

Her son Hunter Lowes, 6, donned a firefighter hat as he checked out the inside of a fire truck.

His favorite part was being able to “step in and jump out” of the truck.

Buffalo Township police Officer Jeff Sneddon said the turnout Sunday was “phenomenal,” as hundreds of people attended.

“It’s just good to have the community behind us,” he said. “I’ve never seen kids so excited to hang out in a police car.”

Misty McConnell brought her son Orrin McConnell, 2.

He wasn’t interested in the fire trucks or police cars, but he ran right to the farm and construction machinery.

“He loves the digger stuff,” she said. “This is awesome.”

Bob Wick traveled from the city of Butler to bring his son, Julius Wick, 1.

“He’s obsessed with fire trucks,” he said. “He has a lot of fire truck toys.”

Buffalo Township Volunteer Fire Department Chief Matt Cypher said the event was good for kids and adults alike. He said being able to show parents what their donations go to is just as important as the kids getting exposure to them.

“If we see 1,000 kids here and one becomes a volunteer firefighter, it’s a win,” he said.

Haven said they hope to make the family day an annual event and are already planning to make it bigger and better next year with more food vendors.

“We’re really happy,” he said of the turnout. “We needed to get back with the community again.”

Emily Balser is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Emily at 724-226-4680, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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