Monday, June 19, 2017

Safety Village Grad

I mentioned Ben's Safety Village session a few times recently.  Friday was the last day after two weeks of mornings spent learning about all types of safety.  They had a graduation ceremony and it was actually very impressive.  The women who run the program are very experienced and one of them wrote all the music and played the piano for every song.  The kids didn't just get a graduation certificate.  They had a full concert with little songs and skits with costumes for every topic.  First they filed in and sang their graduation song.  ("We learned about safety, all kinds of safety...") 

Then the fun started.  Ben showed up in one of the first songs as the "R" in the word "germs". 

I thought that was his part but then he also showed up as a firefighter!

That's him at the end with his back to the camera.  It was cute.  They were supposed to keep their songs and parts a secret to surprise us. 

At the end the kids got their diplomas and then they were able to show off their bike safety skills out in the parking lot.

I tried to get a good picture of them.  Tessa was wearing her crazy best including a dress with pajama pants underneath and sparkly dress shoes. 

Milo was pretty good during the show.  It lasted 45 minutes so I was worried and snacks will only last so long.  He actually liked listening to the kids sing. 

Here is Ben and his friend Owen zooming around the bike safety course. 

It was a good two weeks for him.  As I said in a Facebook post last week, I'm glad there is a window of time where kids can remember this important information but don't yet think that a safety themed day camp is really lame and nerdy.  The program reminded me of a mid 1990's elementary school production we did when I was in 3rd or 4th grade that involved a whole score of music about being safe, saying NO to drugs and being a good friend.  It was called "Forever Free" and after searching the old Internets I found it.  It's still available! 

Forever Free (Musical)

It's by Roger Emerson who was a familiar name on music class compositions.  I had to check out the song list and saw a transcript of the title song complete with the spoken lines:

One Student:
"That’s right! We’re a new generation of kids who are doing positive things to keep drugs and alcohol out of our lives. We’re not gonna give in and we’re not gonna give up!"

I can't remember which star student got to say that premier line.  I'm sure many of the parents in the audience were thinking about Steak Night at the local bar that was starting soon after this program wrapped up that night and all the talk about alcohol probably had them impatient.  Also, like I said it was the 90's, a time when half the men (not my dad, lucky for me, even though often nonsmokers just joined to get the fresh air and talk) in the gym stood outside the side door smoking cigarettes during half time of basketball games and certain teachers not so discreetly tried to hide their tobacco habits so there were probably some cravings going on during the "Smoooooking is dumb...smoking is a terrible habit" song. 

It's so weird how some things just stay in your head forever.  I learned this program 25 years ago (approximately since I don't remember what grade I was in exactly) and I still remember the songs and some of the soloists (I wasn't one!).  I also must have had a small speaking part since I would have been part of the older grades (it would have been a K-6 show) but I don't remember it at all.  There aren't any pictures either because parents didn't feel a compulsive urge to document everything we did because there was no social media to share it on so what would have been the point.  School gym show photos never turned out good anyway.  They were always dark and the videos had such poor sound quality you couldn't even understand what was being said. 

Anyway, if you want to know what you should do if a tornado comes or if you come across a gun hidden in someone's attic or if you see a fallen power line you know who to ask. 

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