Five-Day Event Begins Saturday, September 8
By Brad Galvan, American Red Cross Volunteer
Each year, dozens of nurses, medics and physicians donate their precious time (sometimes vacation hours!) to provide first aid services at the Red Cross First Aid Station at the Wayne County Fair. The fair runs September 8th – 13th, and during the hours of operation, the first aid station is open and ready to care for anyone in need of unexpected medical care. The station, which is housed in a permanent, air-conditioned facility, will care for over 200 fair-goers dealing with injuries and illnesses ranging from blisters and bee stings to serious, complex medical conditions that tend to arise due to warm temperatures and extensive walking.
Lara Kiefer, the Executive Director of the Lake Erie/Heartland Chapter of the American Red Cross, shared that the volunteers have provided the first aid services at the fair for at least the last 40 years. This year, the first aid operation will be coordinated by Mike Priest, a retired Wooster firefighter. He and his team will be on duty for a total of about 1,000 total hours, to ensure the health and well-being of those who attend the five-day event.
The volunteers meet well in advance to ensure they have ample coverage. Their station is stocked with supplies and the three medical bays are ready for those who get sick or injured. The team is ready with band-aids and gauze for minor cuts and scrapes, but also are truly ready for anything that comes their way. In fact, in 2016 a fair-goer had a life-threatening heart attack. The team gave CPR, used an AED and prepared the victim for transport by Wooster EMS. Read more about their lifesaving action here.
Similar first-aid services are offered by the Red Cross at other events in Northeast Ohio, like the Pro Football Hall of Fame activities in Canton and the Canfield Fair in Mahoning County. The need for volunteers to help provide such valuable services never ends. Visit redcross.org/neo and click Volunteer at the top of the page to learn more about the volunteer opportunities available.
The need for blood donors is also constant. Those who are able to donate are encouraged to visit the Red Cross bloodmobile at the Wayne County Fair Sunday and Monday, September 9 and 10, from noon to 7:00 pm.
And if you are one of the 100,000+ attendees of this year’s Wayne County Fair, please make sure to thank the volunteers who are working at the Red Cross first aid booth. You will make their vacation!