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Touch A Truck rolls into town

 - Brad Camp/Staff Photo
— image credit: Brad Camp/Staff Photo

POULSBO — The Poulsbo Village parking lot will be bursting with kids of all ages who’ve revved their engines and strapped on their hard hats for the 19th annual Touch A Truck event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. today. Visitors both young and old can explore the ins and outs of various vehicles on display, including police cars, a tow truck, dump truck, cement mixer and Kitsap Transit bus. New to this year’s ranks is a monster Jeep and a mobile veterinarian clinic.

“It’s an opportunity for the children to visit the trucks they see on the highway every day,” said Poulsbo Village property manager Beverly Lyon. “They can get up close and personal with some of these trucks.”

Each vehicle will be accompanied by its operators, so kids can ask questions and learn about the equipment. Free giveaways have also been promised, including pencils, bracelets, stickers and hard hats.

“It’s a fun event that the Poulsbo Village has coordinated,” said Poulsbo Chamber of Commerce Stuart Leidner. “It’s an activity that families can bring their kids down and enjoy seeing the equipment and meeting the personnel that run it.”

The event will showcase three of the Poulsbo Fire Department’s rigs, including a 1918 American La France, an engine similar to one Poulsbo’s department had decades ago.

“It’s just quite a piece of equipment,” said Deputy Chief Thomas O’Donohue.

The PFD will also provide a modern fire engine and ambulance to Touch a Truck participants. O’Donohue said the chance to explore the equipment reminds kids of their own safety responsibilities. Subjects like wearing bike helmets and seatbelts, testing smoke detectors and planning a family meeting place in case of a fire are all brought up as the kids interact with department representatives.

“Firefighters are role models for children,” he said. “We’re just trying to build a safer community one child at a time.”

Lyons said offering something both fun and educational to the community is a way for the shopping center businesses to thank their customers.

“The Village looks at this as an opportunity to give back to the community in exchange for their loyalty to us,” she said. “It’s a family-friendly free event.”

The Poulsbo Lions Club will also be at Touch A Truck, offering free vision screening for kids 6 months and older.

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