Some of the many people who filled Hannibal’s Central Park Thursday afternoon for the Board of Public Works’ Family Fun Day had heeded the weather report and wore heavy jackets.
They were the lucky ones, while other families - in short sleeves - were trying to see and do everything as quickly as possible. This was because the temperature was dropping. When the events began at 4 p.m. it was a chilly 57 degrees, and by 7 p.m. when the demonstrations and bucket truck rides were over, it had dropped to 49 degrees, with misty rain falling at times.
After departing with their large vehicles shortly after 7 p.m., some BPW crews were soon back at work, when power outages began being reported in the West Ely Road area at 8:30 p.m. during the evening rainstorm.
During Family Fun Day, the rides up high over the park in the BPW bucket trucks attracted lines, and three bucket trucks were kept moving as two or three people at a time were dressed in harnesses and taken aloft. Some of the young children rode with an older family member, while many were more independent. Cody Culp and Bradley Donovan were waiting patiently for their turn in late afternoon. Cody explained he was not nervous because “I’m not afraid of heights.”
Others were eager to go and get warmed up, such as Kenny Greathouse who said he might not stay and ride the bucket truck because “it’s pretty cold out.”
On the other side of Central Park, along Fifth Street, some of the large BPW trucks were being explained to families, with children trying out the driver’s seat and at times honking the horns.
One vacuum truck was demonstrating its powerful vacuum pipe, and children - and adults - were experiencing how powerful the truck was. Ron Lee, a BPW serviceman, explained that this truck is mainly used to clean sewers but also can dig holes.
Among the family members learning its vacuum strength were Aaron Paxton of New London and his young daughter, Alyvia. As he held her, he tried to persuade her to take hold of the red ribbon being vacuumed up and she was hesitant but finally tried it.
Another unique BPW machine was the EZ Hauler easement machine. Mark Salter, a BPW journeyman lineman, reported this piece of equipment, “can go through narrow gates” and is used to install poles in back yards. It can “dig a hole and lift up a 60-foot pole and set it,” he said.
This annual BPW family event included five drawings for $75 BPW utility gift certificates, free food such as hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy and cookies, and two bounce houses for the youngsters.
Page 2 of 2 - Face painting, balloon art and other entertainment was provided to the crowd that was also learning about the varied services provided by the BPW personnel.
For more photos, see photo gallery on hannibal.net.