Volunteers build Safety Town in McHenry

McHENRY – Rain didn’t deter volunteers determined to build a miniature town in McHenry that teaches safety practices to children.

Construction for a new Safety Town started outside Friday morning but was moved into the McHenry Parks and Recreation Department maintenance facility to avoid the wet weather.

“It’s very generous of the volunteers to take the time to come out here and help us,” McHenry Recreation Supervisor Cindy Witt said. “Fortunately, we had an indoor location where we could get a lot of work done.”

Safety Town is a national program that helps teach children safe practices at home, school and within the community by simulating a small town. The local project was led by the city of McHenry in partnership with the McHenry Township Fire Protection District.

The new Safety Town will be located next to the McHenry Zone Skate and Bike Park and Knox Park. It will be made up of eight structures for future programs.

“From an economic development perspective, to work with local businesses in a manner that helps the community develop is great, particularly because it deals with education and safety,” Director of Economic Development Doug Martin said.

Volunteers used table saws, nail guns and other tools to build the miniature buildings. They also painted the buildings bright colors for the kids, such as red, orange, green and blue.

“We have managers from area CVS Pharmacy stores here helping, and it was coordinated by the McHenry store,” Witt said.

As for the cost, Witt said building materials and painting supplies were donated by businesses such as The Home Depot, Sherwin-Williams Paint Store, Behr, Big R and Jessup Manufacturing. Food and coffee to get the volunteers energized throughout the day were donated by Jimmy Johns, Dunkin’ Donuts and Riverside Bake…

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