Aisha Justilien, 8, and her siblings Daniel, 4, and Maya, 11, of Vienna, giggled as they sat in the Fairfax County police helicopter.
Photo by Donna Manz.
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Clear sunny skies and mild temperatures have a way of bringing out the families to community events. The Vienna Police Department could not have ordered a more perfect Sunday afternoon for the launch of a new Vienna tradition, Cops and Kids Fun Run --- and fun day.
From noon to 4 p.m., filling the grounds of Caffi Field and Vienna Elementary School, the town’s police department, with support from Vienna fire and rescue volunteers and Fairfax County police, held a crowded, fun-filled community get-together with a cops-and-kids run to kick the festivities off. A bounce house with slide, Officer McGruff, police vehicles, free food donated by area businesses, a DJ, a cop-dunk-tank, and a Fairfax County police helicopter provided entertainment for children and their parents. All the adults whipped out their phones to photograph the helicopter as it rose from the lawn and circled overhead. The pilot waved to the crowd below.
The fun-run was first done as a singular event several years ago, but Chief Jim Morris and his department decided it was time to renew the fun-run and expand and enhance the event. “It’s important to reach out to the community,” said VPD Chief Jim Morris. “Just about the whole police department is here today, volunteering to help make this a community project. We came up with the idea and our department just ran with it.”
Morris, along with a large volunteer contingent, wore their uniforms into the dunk tank. The kids lined up for a chance to hit the button that sank the chair into the water tank.
Asked if this could become a tradition, Morris looked around the smiling kids and parents taking photos of their children, and answered, “yes.”