A Red Cross Day at the Museum


Merlin, our Red Cross therapy dogs, makes new friends at the Museum

Story by Marjorie Steele

This past Saturday, March 8th, American Red Cross of Greater Grand Rapids and the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum partnered up to create a fun, engaging opportunity for local kids and their parents to learn more about disaster preparedness.

Red Cross volunteers Brandon Baird and Patricia Carnevale brought in an Emergency Response Vehicle and disaster therapy dogs, Merlin and Piper, to the Grand Rapids Children Museum during its busiest day of the week.


Families had the opportunity to win 4 tickets to the upcoming Wizard of Oz show through Broadway Grand Rapids

Coloring books, Red Cross Mickey Mouse stuffed animals and other informational resources for parents were available, and parents had the opportunity to enter to win a 4 pack of tickets to Wizard of Oz, which is touring through Broadway Grand Rapids at DeVos Performance Hall this April.

Children and parents of all ages had the opportunity to tour the inside of Red Cross Emergency Response Vehicle and learn about how the Red Cross provides critical canteening: water and food response to first aid workers and victims of natural disasters such as fires and floods.

With high flooding expected in West Michigan with the coming spring thaw, it was the perfect opportunity for families to learn how they can be prepared for natural disasters and how the Red Cross works to alleviate suffering here in our local counties.


Red Cross volunteer Brandon Baird, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, shows children the Emergency Response Vehicle (ERV)

In the ERV, kids could inspect supplies and try on a real firefighter’s uniform. As they toured the vehicle, emergency response volunteer Brandon taught kids about fire safety in the home, what to do in the event of a fire and how to recognize firefighters when they arrive to help.

Therapy dogs, Piper and Merlin, welcomed the affection of kids of all ages as they passed by the Red Cross booth.

Our thanks to the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum for their collaboration with American Red Cross, and to all the families who came out to participate in Red Cross day at the museum!


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