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National Night Out event a rousing
 success in Thurmont

Ingrid Mezo
The Gazette

National Night Out on Tuesday attracted larger crowds than ever in Thurmont despite the scorching heat.

Thurmont Police Department Chief Greg Eyler said about 100 people showed up for the event to learn about Thurmont police, the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office, the Guardian Hose Fire Company, the Thurmont Ambulance Company, and the Red Cross.

‘‘We were pleased with that," he said.

The event was geared toward children and adults, and children could bounce inside a Tigger moon bounce or throw a baseball and have it clocked by radar.

Face painting, informational packets about safety programs, and more was available inside the Guardian Hose Fire Co. building, where Thurmont Police operate.

Chad Brown, 12, of Thurmont was there with his father Charlie Brown, who volunteers for the Guardian Hose Fire Co., and is also a career officer.

‘‘We had about a dozen kids or more [look at the company’s new squad]," he added.

Chad, a rising seventh-grader at Thurmont Middle school, said he used to hang out at the fire house with his dad. ‘‘But there is no more fire house," he said.

His father said there will be, come fall or winter. The company is now building a new fire building.

‘‘A lot of times, I help him do the reports," Chad said. ‘‘Sometimes it can be fun. Sometimes when he yells at me it can be boring. When I grow, up I want to be a fire marshal."

Chad was there with his buddy Chris Kinnaird, named after his father, who is chief of the Guardian Hose.

Chris, 12, also a rising seventh-grader at Thurmont Middle, said he also helps out at the fire company. ‘‘Most times, just hanging around, help washing off the fire trucks," he said.

He does not tell his classmates to come to fire company events all the time, he said. When Chris grows up, he wants to be ‘‘chief, like my dad," he said.

‘‘Next year, we will have more games," Eyler said.

Eyler said that the event in Frederick city has five or six locations, ‘‘but we can’t do that here."

‘‘So, it’s kind of a trial for this year," he said.

In addition, Eyler said he had already talked to the Red Cross about getting more involved in Thurmont.

‘‘We think it’s a wonderful idea, because we want to focus on one town," said Judy Peterson, Red Cross spokeswoman. ‘‘If we’re successful here, which we know we will be, then we’ll take it to other areas of the county."

Vicky Angell, an EMT and driver for the Thurmont Ambulance Company, said several children had boarded the ambulance to look around.

‘‘It’s a little scary when there’s an emergency," she said. ‘‘Kids get a little frantic when they see they’re going to strap you to a bed. We let them know that there’s nothing in there that’s going to hurt them. If they’re really young, and they’re very scared, we usually let a family member ride with them."

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