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19th Annual Emergency Fest – Having Fun While Learning About Safety

Saturday, May 20, promises to be a busy day in the High Country with  a full calendar of events for local fundraisers and family fun.

None, however, will be more exciting for the younger generation, especially, than the 19thannual Emergency Fest to be held on the campus of Appalachian State University in Boone.

For one big day, the Peacock parking lot, known to many as the former Raley Lot on Rivers Street, will be transformed into an educational, but fun festival atmosphere as the Watauga County Firefighters Association, area emergency services organizations, New River Tire and others team up to sponsor this event.

For three full hours — from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m., youngsters and their young-at-heart parents, grandparents and/or other adult chaperones, are invited to attend this free event to meet with local emergency service heroes and to learn all about what they do, how they do it and how emergency situations can be prevented. 

On display at Emergency Fest will be an impressive line-up of  local fire trucks, police cars, ambulances, rescue vehicles, forestry vehicles and helicopters. Also present will be representatives of the Watauga chapter of the American Red Cross, New River Light & Power Company, and other related organizations.

According to the sponsors, participants will have the opportunity to learn the proper use of fire extinguishers and how to use a fire hose; kids will be able to sit inside a helicopter, learn about (child) car seat safety, take bike safety course and more.

Several area agencies will also be demonstrating vehicle extrication, which we all know is necessary during many motor vehicle accidents and must be accomplished with great precision and skill.

Local Scout Troops will be collecting old American Flags at the bike safety course for a flag retirement ceremony, which will be conducted at a later date. Make sure to bring older, worn flags from home, your organization or business, for proper disposal as you prepare to raise your new flag for the summer.

Kids will also have a chance to compete in a scavenger hunt, learning about all the area’s emergency services, while winning prizes. There will also be face painting and bounce houses available for tons of fun, as well as popcorn and cotton candy available, with donations going toward the Firefighter’s Burned Children Fund.

A spokesperson for the host groups said, “We are excited to offer this fun learning event for the youth of Watauga County. We hope to see you there.” 

Free parking will be available in ASU parking decks on Rivers Street and Stadium Heights Drive.