The Carson City Sheriff’s Office will throw open wide its doors to the city’s youth and to the public at large for Saturday’s Cops and Kids Open House.
“It’s called an open house but it’s also a safety fair,” said Lisa Davis, Juvenile Programs coordinator.
The event runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Sheriff’s Office at 911 East Musser St. A small part of Musser Street will be closed in front of the sheriff’s office from Harbin to Pratt avenues as a staging ground for various units, including the SWAT team.
The event’s open house portion will allow the public to see what operations, such as the detectives, call the office.
The Nevada Highway Patrol has been moving into the Carson City Sheriff’s Office and will be at the street fair.
“They’ll get a really good feel for what we do here in the community,” Sheriff Ken Furlong said.
Grocery Outlet donated 1,500 hot dogs, buns, and drinks while the Kiwanis Club will be donning the aprons to keep the public fed, until they run out. To serenade appetites, a disc jockey will be playing music for the safety fair. A multitude of other business have also donated to help fund the fair and open house.
When it comes to being a fair, a wide swath of local organizations will have booths set up, especially with information for parents about this upcoming summer and how to keep Carson City’s youths safely entertained.
“Parents can find out about different services available during summer,” Davis said.
The local agencies range from Partnership Carson City and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Western Nevada to the Mentor Center and the Ron Wood Family Resource Center, in addition to others.
“People really love coming to this event. They feel bonded to it,” she said.
For Deputy Dean Williams, the event is about youths and the public seeing the peace officers for who they are: human beings who can be trusted.
“They see we’re not bad. When they come here, they get to see is and talk to us in person,” he said.
Davis jumped in: “We have to tell people we’re not the bogeyman, quite literally. It’s all about that positive relationship.”
One of the goals for the sheriff’s office is to develop a first-name report between deputies and students.
“Every student should know at least one officer by first name. We want to break down those barriers,” she said.
Furlong agreed with the sentiment. “We can create a better force by creating relationships,” he said.
The open house and fair is a springboard for the next big event, National Night Out on Aug. 6 in Mills Park from 5 to 8 p.m.
The open house and safety fair will be in its tenth year.
Before the first street fair, officials realized the need to swing open the doors to the community, Furlong said.
“Before (the first fair) kicked off, people decided we needed to bring kids into it,” turning it into a street fair for the community’s youths, Furlong said.