What kid hasn't said at one time in his or her childhood, “Mom and Dad, I want to be a firefighter when I grow up?”
Children and adults will get the chance to climb on fire trucks and spray water from a fire hose at the annual Maple Leaf Safety Fair scheduled for 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday at the Carthage Fire Department's parking lot on Garrison Avenue across from Central Park.
Firefighters and their equipment from eight area fire departments along with emergency medical personnel and equipment and the MedFlight Medical Helicopter from Mercy Joplin Hospital will all be on display in Carthage this Saturday.
Carthage Fire Marshall Tom Nixon said eight area fire departments are scheduled to send fire trucks and personnel to the event.
“It will be a show-and-tell of fire apparatus from the different fire departments,” Nixon said. “Their personnel will be here to explain how the apparatus works and how their departments work.”
Nixon said the MedFlight helicopter will land in the parking lot at 10:30 for those who want to watch that.
The Jasper County Sheriff's Office, Carthage Police Department, Missouri State Highway Patrol and M&M Wrecker will also have vehicles and people at the event.
Also on display will be the “Safe Kids Trailer,” a vehicle that helps teach kids how to be safe in case of a fire in a home.
The event kicks off the 2012 National Fire Prevention Week, the week in which fire departments across the country try to drive home the message of fire prevention and fire safety.
Nixon said the theme for this year's Fire Prevention Week is Have 2 Ways Out.
“We're stressing the importance of having two ways out of a home or building,” Nixon said. “You need to be able to get out a window if your door is blocked. Sometimes the fire gets in the hall outside your door and you need another way out of your room.
“Give yourself an alternative in case the main way out is blocked.”
Nixon said firefighters will go to area elementary schools during the week and talk to kindergartners and first graders.