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National Night Out in Hagerstown promotes child safety

August 06, 2008|By DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN -- Nearly 400 children and their parents gathered at Fairgrounds Park in Hagerstown on Tuesday to participate in National Night Out, an annual event that helps promote child safety.

Hagerstown resident Brittany Ferruzza, 8, said she learned a lot during the event, which not only taught children how to stay safe, but featured activities like face painting and a rock-climbing wall.

"I learned not to mess with matches, lighters and cigarettes," she said. "I learned not to smoke drugs."

Brittany's mother, Donna, said she recently heard about National Night Out and decided to bring her children.

"It's good for the kids," she said. "It gets everybody together. It's about good community."

Among the organizations that set up stations during the event were the Hagerstown Fire and Police departments.

Mike Weller of the Hagerstown Fire Department said the firefighters were there primarily to promote a program in which Hagerstown residents can register to receive free smoke alarms.

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"The goal is to talk to every adult to ensure they have a smoke alarm less than 10 years old on every level of their house," Weller said.

Although the smoke alarms were not issued on the spot, Weller said he intended to gather contact information so he could set up appointments to install the alarms at a later date.

National Night Out is funded by the Collaborative Supervision of Focused Enforcement program for Washington County, Target, the City of Hagerstown and the Hagerstown Housing Authority. The event also receives funding from the Governor's Office of Crime Control & Prevention.

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