PORTVILLE — The Portville Police Department is out to make friends this summer — with the children in the village.
With the aid of an anonymous donor, the village of Portville and Scoops ice cream, police officers are giving out stickers and coupons for a free scoop of ice cream to village children.
“It’s for kids who are riding their bike and wearing their helmet,” said Officer Justin Hatzell. “We’re trying to do it for everyone,” explaining that he, Officer Justin Smith and Officer-in-Charge Shawn Recktenwald will also be on the lookout for kids who are seen helping out in the yard or doing good deeds as well.
“It’s a nice little thing the village is doing,” said Vickie Blessing, owner of Scoops, who sold the coupons to the village of Portville at a discounted rate.
Hatzell’s police car was fully stocked with stickers Tuesday while he was on the streets patrolling but the coupons weren’t available yet.
Ahnah Baer-Chaffee, 7, was riding her bike in front of her grandparent, Brad and Karen Chaffee’s house on Finch Street when she spotted Hatzel’s car.
A little shy and a little nervous of police, Ahnah jumped off her bike and ran behind the barn. Her mom, Meghan Chaffee, got in touch with Chief Justin Hatzell and asked if he would talk to Ahnah — Hatzell was on it.
By the time he left, Ahnah had made a new friend, and was feeling better about policemen — the ice cream turns out to be a good ice breaker.
“It was super awesome to finally meet a cop,” Ahnah said. “and I’m very thankful to Mr. Hatzell. I want to do it again.”
Although she didn’t get a coupon that day, Mayor Tony Evans told Chaffee he’d make sure little Ahnah got her ice cream before the summer was out.