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Last updateWed, 19 Nov 2014 8pm

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Mayor gets wet at National Night Out

National Night Out began in 1984, to allow citizens and law enforcement to get together to help fight crime. Activities are designed to engage both young and old, educating the public on current laws and raising awareness on how law enforcement protects citizens.

National Night Out now involves over 37 million people and 15,000 communities from all fifty states, U.S. Territories, Canadian cities, and military bases worldwide.

This year, Colonial Beach celebrated the event on Aug. 6 at the Colonial Beach Volunteer Fire Department with law enforcement from Colonial Beach, Westmoreland County and the Virginia State Police.

Westmoreland Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Davis introduced the crowds to Zena, his K-9 partner, explaining that she is trained to sniff out drugs from marijuana to methamphetamine. He also warned the crowd to be careful whom they let into their vehicles, because the smell of some illegal drugs lingers for a long time, and Zena is trained to sniff out even the faintest smell of these drugs.

Wondering if the demonstration from Davis and Zena made children more comfortable with police dogs, this reporter asked two young girls, Ryleigh and Avery Garrison, if they would be afraid if Deputy Davis stopped their mom and searched their truck? Ryleigh replied, “No, because there is nothing in it!”

The agencies had educational coloring books for the kids. The Colonial Beach Volunteer Fire Department demonstrated extrication techniques by using the hydraulic cutter (“jaws of life”) to cut and spread various parts of a car recently involved in an accident.

Several children had the opportunity to dunk the Town Mayor Mike Ham, and he enjoyed getting soaked for a good cause.

Linda Farneth

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