posttrib
PICTURESQUE 
Weather Updates

Hobart High School hosts National Night Out

Liam 2 Noah 4 Crawford check out Northwest Regional SWAT vehicle display during National Night Out Against Crime Hobart High

Liam, 2, and Noah, 4 Crawford check out the Northwest Regional SWAT vehicle on display during the National Night Out Against Crime at Hobart High School on August 5, 2014. | Jim Karczewski/Sun-Times Media

storyidforme: 69839235
tmspicid: 24782171
fileheaderid: 12424908
Article Extras
Story Image

Updated: September 7, 2014 6:09AM



HOBART — With their families close friends, Ryan Pimentel has been watching Zach Satterfield play football for a while.

On Tuesday night, Ryan was one of several youngsters seeking Zach’s autograph, along with the signatures of other incoming seniors on the Brickies team.

“We go to all the games. He’s a Brickie backer,” said Ryan’s mom, Traci Pimentel.

The players wore their traditional purple-and-gold uniform during the city’s annual National Night Out Event as they signed autographs and posed for photos with youngsters like Ryan, who’s going into the fourth grade, who dream of being a Brickie football player themselves one day.

The local celebrities were among many features offered at the annual event, held for the first time at Hobart High School. The event was held in conjunction with the Hobart Police Department, city of Hobart and School City of Hobart.

Demonstrations were put on by K-9s from the Hobart Police Department and some neighboring departments, the Northwest Indiana SWAT team and Hobart Fire Department. The public was introduced to the new School Resource Officer, Cpl. Simon Gresser and his K-9 Scout and children could have fun in bounce houses or have their faces painted, among other activities.

Hobart was just one of several cities in Northwest Indiana participating in the annual community-police awareness raising event, held across the nation the first Tuesday in August.

Gary’s was held in memory of fallen Gary police Officer Jeffrey Westerfield and included movies, K-9 demonstrations and fingerprinting. Merrillville’s event included a Battle of the Badges pie-eating contest between police officers and firefighters, and hula hoop and Double Dutch competitions for young residents.

Hobart Schools Superintendent Peggy Buffington said the school is looking to do more cooperative ventures with the city.

“We know there’s power in our partnership,” said Buffington, who pointed out recycling in the city increased once the kids became involved.

She said National Night Out provided a perfect time to introduce the newest school resource officer. The partnership also allowed the event to move to the school grounds, since it had outgrown its previous location at Hobart Community Pool.

“The night sends an important message; that safety is important for everyone,” Buffington said.

Police Chief Richard Zormier said the new location gives the annual program the chance to grow in the future, plus the school building allows a “Plan B” in the event of rain.

While National Night Out mostly is a day for crime awareness, the Hobart Fire Department also was on hand to talk about fire and driving safety, including doing an extrication demonstration, tearing doors and the roof off a minivan.

Cedric Ramos, 6, remembered fire prevention director Joshua Magner from Magner’s visit to his kindergarten class last year but was a little too shy to go up to the firefighter on his own.

His mom, Sarah Ramos, prodded him closer and Magner put his fire helmet on Cedric’s head, bringing a smile to his face. A paper fire truck, bracelet and other goodies made him smile even more.

Magner said he likes to let the youngsters hold his self-contained breathing apparatus to see how heavy it is. He lets them see the mask he wears when using the apparatus so they won’t be scared if they ever need to see a firefighter wearing one.

And Magner said he uses his helmet to get the youngsters, like Cedric, out of their shell.



© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.