The Lebanon Community Festival will be much like a giant touch-a-truck program, with lots of interesting vehicles for kids to see, touch and interact with. With vehicles such as a monster mud truck, a police cruiser and a LifeFlight helicopter, the adults may want to climb up and in for a fun and educational experience as well.

“We will have an ambulance, fire truck, police car and the emergency management mobile command post. Kids can go in and see what’s inside all of these vehicles,” said Jason Cole, assistant chief of Lebanon Rescue.

“The command post has big satellite TVs and other equipment, so people can learn how things work when there is a large-scale emergency.”

Other vehicles at the event will include large construction equipment, race cars and lots of antique vehicles. The warden service will also be bringing along its Operation Game Thief educational trailer.

The LifeFlight helicopter plans to make a touchdown on the soccer field. This depends, of course, on other assignments, but organizers hope it will return to the event this year.

“I think every single one of the thousand visitors toured LifeFlight at last year’s event,” said Cole.

Most visitors will arrive by car but there will be a few from Sky Dive New England dropping from the sky to entertain the crowd.

“The skydivers love flying in and the kids love to watch them,” said Cole, who hopes the weather cooperates for the jump on event day.

A police dog and an arson-detection dog will offer demonstrations with their handlers. These working dogs won’t be the only animals at the event. A petting zoo will be set up as well.

“Last year we had a petting farm that was really popular, so we’re doing it again this year. We have also added a bounce house and some field games to the festival’s list of activities,” said Cole.

This community festival is not all about trucks, animals and games, though. The Lebanon Recreation annual Cancer 5K Road Race will help raise funds for 4-year-old Nicole Purington, who is being treated for cancer. Registration is at 8:30 a.m. and open to all ages. It’s $15 to register in advance or $20 on the day of the race.

A benefit barbecue will help cover the festival’s costs as well as help Purington’s family. A hamburger, chips and soda will sell for $4. (Or, get a hot dog meal instead for $3.)

Cole is looking forward to another great festival.

“The most exciting thing for me during this event is to see the hundreds of families that show up. Last year, a thousand people came and it truly brought the community together,” he said. “So much planning goes into this event, but it’s worth it when you see all the happy faces of the kids.”

Staff Writer Wendy Almeida can be contacted at 791-6334 or at:

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