Saturday, March 30, 2013

Policemen At The Easter Egg Hunt

I love the town I live in.

Our Easter Egg Hunt is always at the town's main park at 1PM on the day before Easter.  The local Recreation committee (of which I am currently the chair) puts this event on every spring.  This happens to be one of the events that I handle--we each have a few--so my home office has been mightily overrun with bags of prizes and candy and filled eggs for the last month or so.

13 bags of filled eggs on my kitchen table!

One of the traditions of this event is that the police chief always sends a patrolman in a squad car to the park shortly before the hunt starts.  We make our announcements through the police car's PA system and then the hunt is kicked off shortly thereafter with a blast from the siren.  Every year, I call up the chief and say, "Hey, Joe: the hunt is on [this date] this year.  Can you put us on the calendar for 12:45 or so?"  And every year, he says, "Sure."   How freaking cool is it to live in a town small enough to be able to do that??  At it happens, he has a son in Thing One's grade and I know him well.

This year, one of the patrolmen is actually on the Recreation committee.  He happened to be working today, so he was the one who came to help out.  Now, this guy has no kids himself (he's a young'un) but he came half an hour early and stayed half an hour afterward because he was having so much fun watching the kids and their families enjoying the event and the spring sunshine.

Bags of prizes in my car, waiting to be claimed after the hunt.  30 prizes in all!  

I knew the first guy was coming, but I was surprised when I noticed a second police car pulling into the park behind his.  The second policeman has a fourth-grade daughter, but she wasn't at the event: she was off riding her horse today.  He just came because he enjoys seeing everyone having fun as well.  We put him to work keeping people speeding into the park at the last minute from running over any of the kids waiting for the hunt to start.

Now, these were almost certainly the only two policemen on duty this afternoon.  Both stayed near their cars, and could have been gone in a second if need be.  (Last year, there happened to be a car accident during the Easter Egg Hunt, so the policeman was needed elsewhere and I started the event off with my car horn.)  But another great thing about life in this small town is that the only two policemen on duty in town today could both spend a full hour on a beautiful Saturday afternoon at the park with the community, chitchatting and showing their human sides and making friends with the kids without receiving a single call from dispatch.  There is a lot to be said for that.  It's a major reason why we live here.

I'll leave you on this Easter Saturday with a picture of the manicure The Girl gave me this morning.  Hers matches, by the way.

Happy Saturday evening, however you are celebrating it.

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