WOODS CROSS—Utah is known for its beautiful national parks. Last Friday fourth-graders at Woods Cross Elementary not only learned about the five parks, they were each presented with their own poster depicting a scene at a special assembly.
“SilverEagle helped fund the National Citizens Police Academy conference we held last year and we got about 200 posters from the Utah Travel Bureau to sell,” said Ron Titus, a Citizens Police Academy graduate and former president of the newly formed Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association. “We had some left over and we found out the fourth graders were learning about national parks so we thought we’d give them the posters.”
Woods Cross Principal Eric Holmes wanted to do more than just hand the posters out, so he suggested a little presentation, Titus said. “He wanted the kids to see that people are giving and volunteering together behind this.”
The Alumni Association started in 2015 as sort of an extension to the Citizens Police Academy that has been a big success in Davis County. Those who have graduated from that are eligible to become a member of the Alumni Association.
“We meet quarterly and do demonstrations and education like the academy,” said Titus. “We have activities that expose participants to law enforcement. We had a ride-along with AP&P (Adult Probation and Parole). It’s kind of an advanced academy with different topics of interest. We also want to help the community to focus on first responders and public servants and the good things they do.”
The group also takes part in fundraisers for law enforcement such as sending the Woods Cross Police K9, Ranger and his handler, Officer Corey Boyle to an extensive training back east recently.
“We are fully tax exempt,” Titus said. “All donations are tax deductible. There have been about 270 graduates from the academy and we have around 30 to 40 paid members in the Alumni Association.”
Woods Cross City Administrator Gary Uresk ask the children if they could name the parks then he went through each one and explained how it was formed. “Bryce Canyon is a big hole in the ground,” he said. “It has pinnacle spires that were created by wind and rain. The reason Capitol Reef is called that is because the domes look like the U.S. Capitol.”
He told them that Canyonlands was created by the Colorado River and Zion National Park by the Virgin River. “I can’t say enough about our national parks here in the state of Utah,” he said. “We live in a wonderful state.”
Jerry Lockie, General Manager, Refining at SilverEagle talked to the children about safety at the plant and praised the police department.
“We want SilverEagle to be a very, very safe place to work,” he said. “We want to continue to be safe in the community and have safe emissions. I think the police do the best job of keeping us safe and they don’t always get credit. They’re first to take care of us in an emergency. The more we can let people know they’re our friends like through the academy,” the better.
“I attended the Citizens Academy,” said Holmes. “It’s a very cool thing. It’s like school. We learned so many things. It’s the best thing I ever did. I found out how the police arrest people, how to fight fires and how they help people in trouble.”
After the presentation, the posters were unveiled and the children came by class by class to pick their favorites.
“You can choose which poster you want,” said Holmes. “You’re not all going to want the same thing and you’ll each get your own.”