911 dispatchers invite families to Saturday open house

Tour the 911 center, meet K-9s, firefighters, police, paramedics, plus fun, learning for kids

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News Release from: Clark Regional Emergency Services (CRESA)

PUBLIC SAFETY WILL NOT FORGET: JOIN THE CRESA OPEN HOUSE ON SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 10TH

Vancouver, WA - Clark Regional Emergency Services Agency (CRESA) will open its doors to the public during our annual Open House on Saturday, September 10, 2011 from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. The event will take place at 710 W. 13th Street, Vancouver, Washington, 98660.

It was nearly 10 years ago that the world took on new meaning for public safety and emergency responders. Following the tragic events of September 11th, new regions and partnerships were formed, grant programs created and volunteers came forward to figure out how to improve and enhance our local communities. If you sit around a volunteer group very long, many of the volunteers will tell a story of how they got into public service because of September 11th.

But before 9/11/01, September has always held a special place for dispatchers as it contains the numbers 9-1-1 within the date and falls within National Preparedness Month for the emergency management profession. For these reasons, CRESA always hosts its annual party on the weekend closest to this date.

Some of the fun activities planned for children of all ages include a "thank you first responders" coloring station, face painting, creative button making, exploring homeland-security & emergency vehicles, meeting firefighters, police officers, search and rescue dogs and horses. Local businesses have donated hot dogs, pizza, chips and beverages available on a first-come, first-served basis.

The public will have the unique opportunity to tour the 9-1-1 center and see dispatchers in action taking emergency calls. Sneak a peek inside the workings of our Emergency Operations Center. Subject matter experts from throughout the region will be on hand to answer all of your questions. Interact with representatives from our Homeland Security Program, a National Weather Service Meteorologist, a county mapping expert and Amateur Radio technical experts. Parents can also pick up free Child ID Kits.

Enjoy lively demonstrations from police K-9 teams, SWAT, and many local skilled Search and Rescue Groups. Explore the latest in specialized public safety vehicles including an Armored Personnel Carrier, a Heavy Rescue Vehicle, Fire Engines, Ambulances, Police Command Vehicles, and much more.

There will even be a geocaching event this year which encourages participants to find certain markers throughout the event related to emergency preparedness. To participate in the geocache, we would like folks to pre-register so that we can share information with you in advance of this event. The pre-registration form for the geocaching is located at: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?hl=en_US&formkey=dHVpcUk2WmVaOE1JT2JzYUpDVmhkM0E6MQ#gid=0. This link will also be made available on our blog at www.cresa911.blogspot.com

CRESA and the participating agencies and volunteers are proud to offer this free and educational community event! We look forward to sharing our special day with our community.

Contact Info: Cheryl Bledsoe, cheryl.bledsoe@clark.wa.gov, 503-250-4882

Cindy Stanley, cindy.stanley@clark.wa.gov, 360-737-1911

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