Event to honor first responders

A new event to honor first responders needs your help.

The Social of Greenwood is planning a first responders community recognition and appreciation event July 30.

The event was planned to allow the community to get a different look at police and firefighters outside their duties, said Linda Gibson, a board member at the Social of Greenwood.

Often people see those workers when they are in distress, such as when their home has had a fire, they were in a traffic accident or they have been victimized or are being arrested, Gibson said. The event is meant to show first responders in a different way, she said.

“A lot of times, people don’t get to see first responders up close and personal,” Gibson said.

The day will focus on education and fundraising, too.

Police will give out materials, such as cards where elderly patients can detail their prescription medications and information on GPS technology that helps track and find Alzheimer’s patients and autistic children, who wander away. Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers also will be handed out.

The idea is to show appreciation to police officers and firefighters for what they do, she said.

“First responders are constantly putting their lives on the line,” she said.

The event, which will be in the parking lots of Our Lady of the Greenwood Church and Greenwood Community Middle School, is free. A tethered hot-air balloon ride will cost $10, with the money going to police and fire departments, and people can buy food from restaurant vendors. People should bring a blanket or lawn chair.

The group is looking for donations to pay for portable restrooms and an emcee to keep the event moving. To donate or to emcee the event, call Liz McKinley, interim executive director of the Social of Greenwood at 882-4810.

If you go

What: First Responders Community and Recognition Event

When: 5 to 8 p.m. July 30

Where: Our Lady of the Greenwood and Greenwood Community Middle School

Cost: Free. Tickets for a hot air balloon ride are $10 and vendors will be selling food.

Magen Kritsch is an editorial assistant at the Daily Journal. She can be reached at mkritsch@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2770.