The Mandan Progress Organization is bringing back its Touch a Truck event this spring, for curious children and job-seeking teens and adults.
Last year's event was reconfigured to a coloring book activity for children due to the coronavirus pandemic.
This year, heavy equipment, emergency service vehicles, construction trucks and more will line Main Street again, on Saturday, May 15. Much of the equipment on display will be accompanied by operators who will tell children about the vehicles and help them explore the rigs.
“Touch a Truck was created by a group of MPO members who recognized an opportunity to bring big machines and little kids together,” Board President Layn Mudder said. “Last year we were able to combat a COVID-driven cancellation by creating a coloring book, but nothing beats an up-close encounter with heavy equipment.”
Touch a Truck is set from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The first 1 ½ hours is a dedicated “Quiet Time” when no horns or sirens will be used, to accommodate children who have noise sensitivities.
The first 1,500 children who attend the event will receive a Touch a Truck cinch sack. There also will be coloring books while supplies last. Attendees are encouraged to bring a nonperishable food item for the AID Inc. food pantry.
Job-seeking teens and adults are encouraged to attend to learn about career options.
“We have an incredible opportunity to connect the trades industry to prospective employees,” MPO Executive Director Dot Frank said. “A meeting with local high school students highlighted their desire to meet with employers who can put them to work this summer and beyond, so we decided to act.”
Operators wearing buttons that say “Ask Me About a Job" are seeking workers. People interested in information about jobs are advised to attend during the last hour of the event, from 2-3 p.m.