By Everett Brazil, III
The Newkirk Herald Journal
NEWKIRK — Many communities host Boots and Badges activities, including Newkirk, Ponca City and Blackwell where fire, police and EMS personnel go head-to-head to see who is the toughest first responder organization in the community. First responders across Kay County are offered an opportunity to compete against one another, as Newkirk Main Street is sponsoring the Kay County program to celebrate all first responders across the county.
The event will start at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 30 at the Kay County Courthouse parking lot, also known as the Government Square. The Courthouse is located at 201 S. Main.
All first responder organizations in the county are invited to attend, including police, EMS and fire departments, both full time and volunteer. Other organizations invited include the Kay County Sheriff’s Office, tribal police, Oklahoma Highway Patrol and Oklahoma Corporation Commission.
First responders outside Kay County may also compete, provided they have a vested interest in protecting Kay County, such as the Otoe-Missouria tribal police.
Teams of five made up of police, fire and EMS technicians will compete in cornhole, three-on-three basketball free throws,, tug-of-war, gun belt relays and fire hose control, with the top three teams in each division earning a trophy. Each team can also be a hybrid of the services, and include dispatchers or other direct support individuals.
Team fees are $100 each, and fifty percent of funds raised will benefit NMS, while the other 50 percent will be donated to a 501c3 charity of the winners’ choice.
While bragging rights are certainly up for grabs, Newkirk Main Street is hoping to provide first responders the opportunity to “cut loose” from the pressures of the job, while encouraging some friendly competition and a chance to raise money for two great organizations.
There will also be plenty of activities for the whole family, with numerous craft booths offering goods to participants, ranging from food booths to clothing, jewelry and other collectibles. Vendors will pay a small fee for their booth, which will be located in front of the Kay County Courthouse.
Mean Mow’s food tuck will also be on site for lunch, however Capone’s Hoagies will be closed for the day.
The Kay County Courthouse is closed to the public due to renovations, however bathroom facilities will still be available.
“We’d like to thank Troy Brower Of Brower’s Portables for providing the facilities,” NMS Director Alyssa McCleery said.
While the focus of the activity will be first responders, it is also a chance for community members across the county to get out of the house and enjoy the spring weather.
For more information, including to enter a team, vendor or food truck, or to simply volunteer, visit Newkirk Main Street, 116 N. Main, firstname.lastname@example.org call (580) 362-2377.