September 22, 2014

Medina
Cloudy
53°F

Safety target of night out in Wadsworth

Dressed like a firefighter, Aiden Meisterics, 5, of Wadsworth, explores a fire truck Tuesday evening during the eighth annual National Night Out in Target’s parking lot in Wadsworth. (KATIE ANDERSON / GAZETTE)

Dressed like a firefighter, Aiden Meisterics, 5, of Wadsworth, explores a fire truck Tuesday evening during the eighth annual National Night Out in Target’s parking lot in Wadsworth. (KATIE ANDERSON / GAZETTE)

Wearing his firefighting helmet, Aiden Meisterics inspected a fire truck. The Wadsworth resident said he’s going to be a firefighter when he’s old enough. Aiden is 5.

Aiden was among the children and adults who attended the eighth annual National Night Out, a crime and safety awareness campaign sponsored by Target on Tuesday night in Wadsworth.

Three Wadsworth fire trucks, a city police patrol car and an ambulance were featured at National Night Out in the Target parking lot at 1183 Williams Blvd.

“We ask the community to come out and get a better understanding of what we do,” Fire Chief Carl Rommel said.

The Fire Department showcased a tanker truck, a heavy rescue truck and a 100-foot aerial platform truck. Children were able to climb into the trucks and learn about how the equipment works.

Aiden’s mother, Brooke Meisterics, took her son to National Night Out, where he blended in with firefighters. Besides his helmet, Aiden wore a firefighting costume.

“He wears it all day every day,” Aiden’s mom said. “I didn’t even tell him where we were going and that’s what he wanted to wear.”

Also at National Night Out:
• The Fire Department displayed its new fire prevention education trailer with a smoke room to teach people how to react to a home fire.

• Children were able to experience being strapped into a gurney in the back of an ambulance.

• Using hydraulic rescue tools, firefighters showed how to extract a victim of a crash. A crowd gathered around as firefighters used large cutters to remove the doors, hood and roof of a vehicle.

• The Medina County SWAT team showcased a vehicle with gear and guns.

• Police allowed children to sit in the front or back of a patrol car. They also put on a demonstration with an electronic stun device.

National Night Out is “a great opportunity to see some of the equipment that the safety forces have to offer,” Police Chief Randy Reinke said.

Guardians Advocating Child Safety and Protection also did fingerprinting just inside the Target store.

Sarah Namsick, assets protection leader at Target, said that even though the event’s attendance was down from previous years due to rainy weather, it was still a success.

“Retailers want to support the community and helping people be safe is one of the best ways to do that,” she said.

Contact reporter Katie Anderson at (330) 721-4012 or kanderson@medina-gazette.com.