Protectors of Elizabeth Tribute is thank-you to first responders

Family-friendly event is held at Running Creek Park

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The Elizabeth community came together on Aug. 17 to celebrate first responders in the fifth annual Protectors of Elizabeth Tribute. The event took place at Running Creek Park where hundreds of community members were present to support the Elizabeth Police Department, Elizabeth Fire Rescue, Elbert County Sheriff’s Office and Colorado State Patrol.
 
The event was fun-filled and family-oriented, bringing together local businesses and exciting activities for attendees. Catalina’s Diner provided pizza and street tacos while the Elizabeth Brewing Company provided beer. Small Town Mini Donuts was also on site to sell their tasty, sweet treats.
 
Several activities for kids were set up throughout the park including bounce houses, a face painter and balloon artists. A huge hit for kids was the large inflatable slide. The Castle Rock-based John Saunders Band highlighted the event with their country rock infused eclectic groove.
 
The annual free event is hosted by the Means Agency Inc. based in Elizabeth. Each year their goal is show appreciation for the Elizabeth-based first responders and to provide fun entertainment for the people of Elizabeth. Megan Vasquez, Elizabeth mayor and co-owner of the Means Agency, shared her thoughts about the event in an email correspondence from Aug. 18.
 
“The 5th annual Protectors of Elizabeth event was a huge success in honoring our first responders. This event is meant to recognize, celebrate, and thank those that protect and serve our community each and every day,” said Vasquez. “These men and women put their lives on the line, and this is just a small way to say thank you. This event brings our community and agencies together for a great night of food, fun and laughter.”
 
Eagle’s Nest Ranch, an Elizabeth-based 501(c)(3) organization, was present at the event to support and raise money for the first responders. The nonprofit has a long history of working with veterans and first responders, particularly in raising money for rehabilitation programs.
 
Eagle’s Nest Ranch provides a First Responders Program to support them and their families through individual or family sessions with horses. According to the flyer the nonprofit distributed at the event, their desire is to “help first responders and their families through the stresses they experience due to intense work.”
 
Chief Melvin Berghahn of the Elizabeth Police Department shared his thoughts on the yearly event during a phone interview from Aug. 22.
 
“It’s really wonderful to have the event put on by the Means Agency and Megan Vasquez. It’s great every year,” said Berghahn. “It’s an honor to be appreciated and really awesome to see the community to show up for us.”
 
Elizabeth, Colorado, Elbert County, first responders, protectors, police, fire

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