First responders helping kids be active in run around Vickie Powers Park

RAPID CITY, S.D. — With all this nice weather, any excuse to get outside is a good one and some area fourth and fifth graders have seized the opportunity.

Some 120 kids tightened their laces on Monday night for a 1000 meter run around Vickie Powers Park in Rapid City.

A few city cops and firefighters strapped on their running shoes to join in. This was all part of a second in a four-part cross country running series put on by the YMCA and the Rapid City Police Activities League.

The run was a great way to motivate kids to be active, but also allowed them to see first responders in a positive light.

“So critical for kids to see the positive role models that our first responders can be and for them to develop really healthy relationships with them and they see them as somebody in the community they can really count on,” said Seth Keene, the Sports Coordinator of the YMCA.

“Sometimes people call the police when something’s wrong, they don’t usually call us when something’s good,” said Lt. Brian Blenner of the RCPD. “So we want to let kids know ‘hey we are real people, we’ll run with you. You know if you’re ever in trouble we want you to know that you can feel safe coming to us.”

There are still two more weeks left in the cross-country series, so if you have a fourth of fifth-grader who would like to participate, click on the registration link here.

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