While most children have been educated on fire safety, including stop, drop and roll, Pam Pabian said many need to learn more about fire prevention.
“Fire prevention would have been, put the matches up high enough so your child can’t get a hold of them,” she said. “And our biggest goal was to try to educate people on what that difference was to try to eliminate more fires.”
The Fremont Rural Fire Department and East Central Nebraska Fire Prevention Co-op will host its annual Fire Prevention Fun Day at the Fremont Lakes State Recreation Area on Saturday, June 19.
The event will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Activity Center at Lake 16, located at 4349 W. State Lakes Road. A valid state park sticker is required to enter the park.
The family event will feature kids games and activities, firetruck rides, free food and educational opportunities for children to learn about fire prevention.
Additionally, Fire Prevention Fun Day will include the Omaha Public Power District’s RESPECT Trailer to teach kids about electric safety and the Union Pacific Railroad to teach crossing safety.
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“There’s tons of games for the kids, and they have to answer fire prevention questions and stuff to earn a prize,” Pabian said. “Just basically, we’ll have fire prevention stuff everywhere.”
Pabian, a member of the Morse Bluff Volunteer Fire Department, is chairperson for the event, which began in 2015 and will see a return after two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We’ve expanded it out from fire prevention to safety also, because the more we got into this, like year one, year two, year three, they kind of work together,” she said.
Children will also have the opportunity to go through a hazard house and smoke trailer, as well as meet with Smokey the Bear, Firepup and Sparky. Additionally, new for this year’s event is a suicide prevention booth.
Pabian said many of the kids’ favorite events include a fishing game and the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office and Nebraska State Patrol’s rollover seatbelt simulator.
“Some of the younger kids are kind of scared to get on there, but you get your 7- and 8-year-olds, and they’re ready to roll,” she said. “A lot of them also like going through the smoke house and the hazard house.”
Overall, Pabian said the event has resulted in a decrease of fires for area departments, which means less loss of lives and property.
“I’m in charge of fire prevention, and I want my firemen to come home safe if they have to go out,” she said. “So if I can prevent them going out, I’m doing it.”
Pabian said she was thankful for the support of the local community for Fire Prevention Fun Day.
“It’s just incredible, the people that help out,” she said. “It’s wonderful.”