State Senator Larry Obhof (R-Medina) will join community leaders Saturday, January 9, 2016 to help kick off an effort aimed at improving community-police relations and to demonstrate support for all public safety professionals who put their lives on the line to protect and serve communities in Richland County. 

Richland County's "Spread the Light" campaign builds on state and national efforts to improve relations between public safety professionals and the communities they serve through increased dialogue and outreach. 

"Events like this help to foster attitudes of mutual respect among residents and law enforcement and other public safety professionals," said State Senator Larry Obhof (R-Medina), who will serve as a guest speaker during Saturday's kick off event. "This week will emphasize positive community relations built on open dialogue and appreciation for those who put their lives on the line to protect us everyday."

Event organizers hope that the weeklong event will be a morale boost for local public safety officials and develop a greater sense of appreciation for these men and women who serve our communities every day. 

Volunteers will be on hand during a kick off event beginning 6 p.m. Saturday, January 9 at Graham Automall to pass out blue lights and hot chocolate. The event will feature Obhof as a keynote speaker along with State Representative Mark Romanchuk (R-Ontario). Law enforcement vehicles from Mansfield and surrounding cities will turn their lights blue in support of “Spread the Light” Week. 

Below is a full list of "Spread the Light" Week events showcasing local public safety officials beginning January 9 through 16:

Saturday, January 9: Kick off event at Graham Automall, 1515 W. 4th St., Mansfield

Sunday, January 10: Preachers and police “spread the light” sermons

Monday, January 11: First responders, Firefighters, Law Enforcement Appreciation Day 

Tuesday, January 12: Mansfield Gazebo turns blue at dusk. Also police officer memorial across from the Richland County Prosecutor’s office is spotlighted in blue

Wednesday, January 13: Downtown Mansfield businesses “Spread the Light” by turning lights at their businesses blue

Thursday, January 14: PAL After-School Program. Handing out blue glow-in-the-dark bracelets to kids, light bulbs to parents & promo information

Friday, January 15: Mansfield Urban Minority Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Outreach  Facility turns blue in honor of their open house, peace and living drug free

Saturday, January 16: Mansfield Senior vs. Lexington basketball game. Gym will go blue during half time; law enforcement & first responders from around the county will be recognized. We ACT will read a paragraph about the meaning of Richland County Spread the Light

For more event details, contact Angel N. Ross-Taylor of We ACT at 567-307-0042

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