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SARS Inaugural Carnival to Usher in the Summer Season

Second Alarmers Rescue Squad wants to be the first carnival of the summer season for a number of reasons.

The Second Alarmers Rescue Squad (SARS) will hold its inaugural carnival event from May 8 – 12.

The carnival will feature thrill rides for all ages, carnival games, as well as food and live entertainment.

Such family-friendly attractions include a merry-go-round to more thrilling "Gravitron" and "Ring of Fire."

According to a related press release, a new ride, called the "Cloud Buster," will be a helicopter ride that combines high-flying fun and technology.

And, while the carnival is set to provide fun for the entire family, it is also a valuable outreach event for the EMS organization.

“Second Alarmers is hosting the first carnival of the summer season for a number of reasons,” Renee Bates, SARS newly appointed executive director, said in an e-mail. “One of the most important is to educate the community about exactly what EMS is, and how we provide emergency service.”

Bates said, amid the rides and attractions, informational booths about SARS and its life-saving services will be spread throughout the carnival, which will be located at Cresmont Park in Abington.

Bates, who has been a SARS member since 1992, said that the general public  has often had misconceptions of the services SARS provides.

Such misconceptions include that SARS is a part of the fire department or that EMS services simply means ambulance services. Although, Bates adds, ambulance tours will also be available at the carnival.

Bates wants the carnival to help further educate the public on the variety of services SARS employs on a daily basis, including information booths on the SARS dog rescue team, as well as provide blood pressure screening booths and an informational booth on the youth group.

According to Bates, funds raised during the carnival will go toward purchasing Life Pack heart-monitor equipment and defibrillators, as well as supporting much needed station renovations at the SARS main station in Willow Grove.

“Our current heart monitors are slowly becoming old and outdated, and are in need of replacement,” Bates said. “It has been proven that EMS can and does make a difference in saving lives.”

According to the release, SARS is one of the largest private, nonprofit EMS providers in the region, responding to over 12,000 emergency 911 incidents each year. Its 100 volunteer and 123 career members deliver services to over 130,000 residents in a 56.68 sqaure mile area of Abington Upper Dublin, Upper Moreland and Whitpain townships, as well as the boroughs of Hatboro, Jenkintown and Rockledge.

Bates said that the carnival is a way for the public to help the EMS mission of SARS, as their participation may one day save the lives of their neighbors – or even their own.

“People should bring their families to the carnival simply to have a good time and enjoy time with their family and community,” Bates said. “By coming to the carnival, they could become a ‘link’ in the chain of survival and help us save lives!”

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If you’re heading off to the SARS Carnival:

  • Where: Crestmont Park, Reservoir Ave. and Old Welsh Road in Abington. Free parking is available at the Willow Grove Park Mall, across Welsh Road.
  • When: May 8 – 12
  • Time:  6 - 10 p.m. on Tuesday; 6 - 11 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday;  2 - 11 p.m. on Saturday.
  • Admission: Special pricing for select days. Tuesday through Thursday and Saturday afternoon will offer a $20 wristband, giving unlimited rides. A free coupon worth up to $20 in savings, valid on these days is available on the carnival website or by visiting one of the many area eateries and businesses. In honor of Mother's Day, all moms will ride free with their children on Saturday, May 12, from 2 - 6 p.m., and will receive a free gift while suplies last.

For more information, visit www.sars.org/carnival.

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