City of Kentwood to Host Family Open House in Celebration of National Public Works Week
Event to Include Complimentary Food, Family-Friendly Activities and Giveaways
All are invited to interact with public works employees and equipment that keep the community safe, clean and functioning smoothly during the fourth annual Family Open House on Wednesday, May 15.
The Kentwood Department of Public Works will host the event in partnership with the Kent County Road Commission and the American Public Works Association in anticipation of National Public Works Week, which is slated for May 19-25. Families will have the opportunity to go behind the scenes at the Kentwood Public Works Facility, located at 5068 Breton Ave. SE, from 4 to 7 p.m.
“We look forward to this open house every year as it’s a great opportunity to connect with residents of all ages about the work we do in a family-friendly environment,” said John Gorney, Kentwood director of public works. “It’s a fun way to learn how public works agencies touch the many aspects of our day-to-day lives.
“In West Michigan, we maintain thousands of miles of pipes and streets, in addition to keeping parks maintained and servicing municipal vehicles, such as police cruisers and fire trucks.”
The open house will feature giveaways, hands-on activities for kids and an up-close look at a fleet of vehicles and other equipment. Live maintenance and repair demonstrations will allow residents to learn about road improvements as well as the safe disposal of household waste. Complimentary food and refreshments will be provided. Attendees will also receive a native Michigan red maple sapling.
Additionally, the 20 semifinalists and finalists of the Work Zone Safety Poster competition will be honored at 5:30 p.m. Sponsored by Kent County Road Commission and the City of Kentwood, the poster contest invited third-grade students from across the county to design a “caution sign” focusing on safety tips for driving through a work zone. A gallery of more than 300 entries will be displayed during the event.
“Community support is critical to maintaining safe work zones for our workers and the motorists driving through them,” said Steve Warren, Kent County Road Commission managing director. “We hope that, by instilling these safety messages early, good habits become second nature by the time these students are ready to drive.”
Prior to the open house, Kentwood Mayor Stephen Kepley will provide a proclamation for National Public Works Week during the City Commission meeting on Monday, May 13.