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Public Works Day draws more than 1,000 children to explore Eugene’s inner workings



The sun came out just in time for 1,300 students from 40 different schools to enjoy the 20th annual Public Works Day at the Eugene Public Works [email protected]@http://www.myeugene.org/2011/05/18/city-of-eugene-hosts-20th-annual-public-works-day-open-house-for-children/@@

The annual event showcases the people of Eugene who work to keep the city looking clean.

“A lot of our services are behind the scenes,” said Kelly Darnell, marketing and outreach manager for the city. “The people that mow the lawn and sweep the streets are all represented here.”@@http://www.myeugene.org/2011/03/17/work-begins-on-eugenes-largest-water-spray-park-fundraising-continues/@@

Public works includes maintenance, parks and open spaces, waste water, engineering and the airport.

Darnell said hundreds of people work in these departments and usually go unrecognized by the residents of Eugene.

The public works yard was transformed into a fun-filled family activity park with games for children, animals and a variety of vehicles children and adults alike were able to climb into.

The University’s Moss Street Children’s Center took a field trip to the Roosevelt Yard, as they have done for the past couple of years, to celebrate Public Works [email protected]@http://hr.uoregon.edu/jobs/[email protected]@

“The kids absolutely love it,” said Jen Ditmar, center director and lead mentor. “They love (that) everybody gets to wear hard hats.”@@http://moss.uoregon.edu/[email protected]@

The children’s center took the preschool-aged children to participate in the activities.

The fire and police department even showed up as special guests, because “even though they are not part of public works, the kids love it,” Darnell said.

There were lots of hands-on displays, games, characters and activities to make the learning experience more enjoyable.

“My daughter absolutely loves coming here,” Eugene resident Cindy Ray said. “We’ve been here the past two years, and it’s a blast.”

The event has grown since 1991, but in recent years the average amount of people in attendance has been around 1,300.


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