The City of Victoria Fire and Library departments are celebrating Fire Prevention Week and Fire Safety Month in October by hosting events that involve trying on some fire gear, touring the fire safety house and participating in craft-making.

Fire Prevention Week takes place Oct. 6 -12. The Victoria Public Library and Victoria Fire Department will participate by hosting Fire Safety Day from 10-11:30 a.m. Thursday at the Victoria Public Library, 302 N. Main St. During the event, the library will host a children’s workshop involving arts and crafts, and a uniform try-on station. In the overflow parking lot at the library, visitors will be able to see fire trucks and ambulances, and even meet Sparky the Fire Dog. The event is free and open to the public.

Victoria Fire Marshal Tom Legler said children are the natural target for fire prevention education because they go home and tell their parents what they should be doing.

“We’ve heard some stories about children telling their parents to put out candles or to pull over to the right when they hear a siren,” he said.

A story now debunked but commonly referenced in fire prevention education is of Mrs. O’Leary’s cow, said to have kicked over a lamp in the owner’s barn, resulting the 1871 Great Chicago Fire, bringing more attention to fire safety and changing the way firefighters and public officials approached it. On the 40th anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire, the Fire Marshals Association of North America (known today as the International Fire Marshals Association) decided that the anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire should be observed to keep the public informed about the importance of fire prevention.

Last week, Oct. 1-3 Victoria firefighters staged their annual fire safety program for schoolchildren. Woody and the gang from “Toy Story” entertained and sent this year’s message of “Plan and Practice your Escape.” Along with the practice of testing the smoke alarms in your house, the National Fire Protection Association has plenty of tips to prevent fires.

For more information about Fire Safety Day, contact the Victoria Public Library at 361-485-3302 or visit victoriatx.org/departments/library.

Sara Hendricks is the communications assistant for the City of Victoria’s Public Information Office. If you have questions about the city, please email them to Sara Hendricks at shendricks@victoriatx.org.

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