LEMONT – The Lemont Police Department will educate and entertain children during the annual Kops-N-Kidz Day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Centennial Park, 16028 127th St.
Lemont Police Commander Greg Smith said the police officers enjoy participating in the event each year.
"They're not dealing with kids in a bad light, like you're going to a domestic battery and you see a kid," he said. "You actually interact with them and show them that police officers are people, too."
The event starts with a bicycle parade at Lions Park, 60 W. Robert Drive.
There will be vehicles from local law enforcement and first responders for children to get a close look at, including a Chicago Police Department helicopter that will land. The Lemont police will be giving demonstrations with their amphibious vehicle, the ARGO.
Smith said children also like the OBIE train and the fatal vision goggles used to simulate drunk driving. Other demonstrations include a police scavenger hunt, Cook County K-9 and a crime scene demonstration.
"It's educational-based, but it's interactive with the kids," he said. "That's what makes it fun."
There will also be entertainment activities, such as pony rides, a petting zoo, face painting, inflatables, live DJ and games. There will be a home run derby at the Miracle Field, a raffle and a duck pond where children pull ducks for prizes.
The police department will provide free hot dogs and potato chips, along with pop, juice and water. There will also be businesses and community groups that run parts of the event, including making popcorn, snow cones and cotton candy.
"Businesses and the community have really gotten behind the day," said Lemont Police Chief Kevin Shaughnessy.
Smith said they are anticipating 500 to 600 kids and they usually attract children as old as 13 and 14.
"Every year, it seems like it's getting bigger and bigger," he said.