SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – For the past 24 years in Springfield, Kids Day has meant closer relations between police and their North End neighbors.
Kid’s Day at Kenefick Park in the North End of Springfield has always meant neighbors and their children interacting with members of the police department assigned to the neighborhood.
Kids Day founder, retired police officer Emilio Arroyo, told 22News how much this event means to the Latino community.
“It does a lot of good, we started in 1995, I even had the privilege of training a police officer who had come as a kid in 1995,” said Arroyo.
Mayor Domenic Sarno attended to voice support for the close ties between the community and the police. City Councilor Adam Gomez told 22News, he credits Kid’s Day, which he first attended at the age of 12, with helping shape the man he is today.
Gloria Acevedo had always attended with her children. Now that they’re grown, she takes her grandchildren to Kids Day. It has special significance.
“Oh my god, this is a great day bringing my grandchildren and my kids every year,” Acevedo told 22News.
And as always at Kids Day, young people interacting with police officers, building bridges to benefit both now and in the future.