Members of the Town of Elon gathered on Saturday Sept. 14 in Beth Schmidt Park to celebrate the fifth annual Autumn Bash. The fair allows community members to meet local firefighters and police officers. Attendees learned safety tips and also were able to take part in festivities at the event.
Former Town of Elon Mayor Beth Schmidt was at the event, which was hosted at the park named after her. She said there were only two police officers in the Town of Elon when she began working as a clerk in 1972.
" We certainly didn't have any fire departments or building or anything like we have now," Schmidt said.
Community members spoke to first responders who help keep the Elon community safe.
"We're here just to show the community that we are here to support them. We are not all about stopping you and writing you tickets. We are here to help you out in any way we can," State Trooper Mitch Mann said.
Mann says one of the most important safety tips college students can learn, is to not text while driving.
"Texting while driving is the number one thing that is killing teens and hurting people at this day and time in collisions." Mann said.
Elon town firefighter Tyler Shockley stressed the importance of microwave safety.
"Whenever you make Easy Mac, put water in it, please. Please, put water in it, please. That is all, I can't stress it enough" Shockley said.
But the lessons were not just for college students. The Burlington Fire Department spent time teaching younger children important safety tips they should know.
"So if it does happen one day, you will be prepared and you won't be stuck." Dylan Coleman said.
While the main attractions at the Autumn Bash were the different emergency response vehicles, features like a rock climbing wall, a moon bounce and live music were also at the event.
"It [the Autumn Bash] offers a bonding opportunity not just for the Town of Elon, but for everyone in general. They get, you know, they get to know their first responders on a personal level," Shockley said.