Coast Guard's Expo and Safety Day is Saturday

Reported by Kristy Ondo - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WECT) - You will be able to find boats, helicopters, and canned goods at the 2009 Safety Day hosted by the Oak Island Coast Guard Saturday.

The event will bring groups from the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force alongside the local fire and law enforcement agencies, with the Coast Guard at the helm.

Expo attendees can take a look at five different helicopters, and Army skydiving team, and all of the boats.  Cost of admission?  Canned food for the food bank.

The Coast Guard Auxiliary is hard at work to kick-start the massive food drive.  According to BM1 Matthew Graziani, they have already collected 10,500 pounds of food, but that's only about half of what they hope to collect.

"We're seeing more new people, not just the working poor but people who are out of work, who may be your next door neighbor, who used to have a job in banking or wherever it may be, and now they're visiting pantries," said Sarah Cox with the food bank.  "It's really affecting all areas and no social class is left untouched."

As the economy and local families continue to struggle, the Coast Guard hopes a free event will lighten the load and help get families ready for summer by keeping their bellies full and keeping them safe on the water.

"I like to see the members of the community come out and see what the Coast Guard's all about, see what the station's all about, and it also allows us to get the word out about boating safety," said Graziani. "If we have one message to send it'd be make sure your safety gear is on board and up to date before you get underway."

The Coast Guard's Expo and Safety Day will take place Saturday, May 9 from 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM at the Oak Island Coast Guard Station in Caswell Beach.  All you need to get in the gate is a canned good to donate.

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