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SCC to honor first responders at dinner

By Staff | Feb 7, 2019

SHEPHERDSTOWN — On Feb. 23, the Shepherdstown Community Club will be holding its first potluck dinner to honor the first responders in our community at the War Memorial Building.

The dinner, which is open to all community members, will begin at 5:30 p.m. and feature the music of Steve Werner. First responders who attend the event are requested to wear their uniforms to the event, so they can be easily recognized and thanked for their service.

According to SCC Secretary Jennifer Wabnitz, the event’s goal is to allow the community to share stories of how they have been helped by local first responders.

“This is strictly going to be come and enjoy a good evening and get to meet your first responders, or come and share a story about the first responders who have already helped you. It doesn’t have to be an award-winning documentary, just stand up and tell your story about how much you appreciate people,” Wabnitz said, mentioning she herself has a couple of stories she may tell of the times her family has been helped by first responders.

“So many times people don’t really even think about it, until they’re in need. How many times do you think, ‘hooray, we have a 911 service’? I would not want to go to car accidents, or got to fires. I would not want to do that job, so I am very thankful they are doing this for us. They need to be thanked,” Wabnitz said. “They have a really hard job, and if you can offer them a warm evening with appreciative people, maybe that will help them get up that ladder the next time.”

In previous years, the Shepherdstown Police Department has hosted an annual event called Coffee with a Cop, in which community members could meet and show their appreciation to policemen at the Shepherdstown Visitors Center. The Shepherdstown First Responders Appreciation Dinner was inspired by the popularity of Coffee with a Cop, although Wabnitz said this dinner is not replacing the Coffee with a Cop event.

“We thought we’d go one step further and open it up to all first responders,” Wabnitz said. “I just know that was a very popular event, but it went to the visitor’s center and it was so popular the SVC was stuffed. We may continue doing those some other time.

“Our idea behind the potluck was to keep it as inexpensive as we could. The Shepherdstown Community Club’s going to bring fried chicken and a homemade cake, but everyone can bring a side dish to share – if you bring two people, make a dish for four,” Wabnitz said, mentioning she anticipates about 25 first responders attending the event from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, the Shepherdstown Volunteer Fire Department, the Shepherd University Police Department and the Shepherdstown Police Department.

To attend the event, call or text 304-995-6689 by Feb. 18. The event will be cancelled in the case of inclement weather.