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Honking of horns and ringing of sirens heard at Touch a Truck event

Nora Mae Conway, aged 18 months, got behind the wheel of a farm tractor for the first time at the Touch a Truck fundraiser.
Nora Mae Conway, aged 18 months, got behind the wheel of a farm tractor for the first time at the Touch a Truck fundraiser.

Excited youngsters and parents alike raced from truck to truck at the third annual P.E.I. Touch a Truck fundraiser.

The fun, educational, hands-on experience raised funds for Books for Babies. An initiative designed to encourage parents and caregivers to engage in early literacy activities with their infants, as well as build language, literacy, and social-emotional skills while strengthening parent-child relationships.

Laura Quinn Graham, the executive director of Family Place and organizer of the event, says in the past they have raised around $8,000 to $10,000 from the event.

“All proceeds from the event benefit Books for Babies that’s run out of Prince County Hospital,” she said.

Books for Babies provide parents with the resources and information to encourage them to read to their children on a daily basis. The program gives every parent with an infant born at Prince County Hospital a bag that contains helpful books and resources.

A Books for Babies bag costs from $20 to $25.

Family Place, located at 75 Central Street in Summerside, administers the program and funds it entirely through fundraising initiatives.

Liam Veilleux, 11, in the middle, and his brother’s Griffin, 4, and Emmit, 5, are almost too excited to stand still in the army truck. Four members of the P.E.I. Regiment of the Royal Canadian Armoured Core (RCAC) participated in the event to showcase their Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen, which was a huge hit with all the youngsters.

The recent Touch a Truck fundraiser at Slemon Park included an ambulance, police car, hummer, army truck, crane truck, fire truck, farm equipment, to name but a few vehicles on show for families to enjoy.

“We have 43 vehicles registered,” noted Graham. “At the end of the day we will probably reach around 2,000 people. And it’s a phenomenal educational experience for the kids, and I notice a lot of dads also like to get in the vehicles and pretend they’re driving, so it’s an event for everyone.”

Ronan Burke aged 6, and his brother, Brenden aged 2, excitedly clamoured up a John Deere farm tractor to hear the sounds of the horn and steer the wheel.

Alicia Burke, from Summerside, who came with her two boys, Ronan, 6, and his brother Brenden, 2, as well as her sister, says it was their third time attending the annual event, and they had a great time.

“We come every year since they’ve had it, and we just love that the boys have so much fun,” said Burke.

Children clamoured up vehicles, some they had never seen before, delighted to get behind the wheel and hear the sounds of the sirens and honking of the horns.

Newsroom@journalpioneer.com

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