Bonnyville RCMP are serving their own tricks and treat to encourage safety this Halloween.
The new RCMP Safe Halloween Program is the detachment’s first. On Oct. 31 parents are encouraged to bring their kids to the police station from 4-6pm to receive a safety pumpkin and pamphlet.
“I think a community outreach program like this really helps bridge the gap between the kids and the RCMP, and it’s to talk to them in a positive way,” said Constable Megan Letang who started the program.
Inside the pumpkins are a juice box, whistle, glow stick, healthy snack, candy, and safety pamphlet donated by community partners.
Odie the Victim Services dog and a firetruck from the Bonnyville Regional Fire Authority will also be there.
The message is staying the same it’s just being delivered differently this year, said Cpl. Kim Hillier.
“This is way that we can reach out to kids from all different schools, all different parts of the community, and it’s not just focused one classroom at a time,” said Cpl. Hillier.
In the past, the RCMP had visited schools to deliver their safety tips.
Tips include only approaching houses that have their outside lights on, carrying a flashlight, and to trick-or-treat in groups.
“My favourite tip,” said Cst. Letang, “is to not walk across lawns that you are not familiar with because it’s dark out and you don’t know what kind of things they have on their lawn. Use the sidewalk and street to walk up and down the pathways so you don’t hurt yourself.”
Cst. Letang came up with the idea while watching the police sitcom, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, where one of the officers tries to get everyone at the detachment to help stuff his pumpkins.
“We had to come up with it [a project] in month two, so I was like I don’t know what I’m going to do. I want to do something with kids, I wanted to do something. Then I saw that and I said ‘This is what I have to do,'” said Cst. Letang.
She says they hope to make it an annual event.