START YOUR ENGINES: Touch A Truck returns as planners strive to diversify downtown offerings

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Children can climb into trucks and machines in the second annual Touch A Truck event this weekend in downtown Greenfield.

Submitted photo

GREENFIELD – Get up close and personal with trucks, machines, ambulances, and the people that drive them in Greenfield Main Street’s second annual event that brings all ages of motor enthusiasts downtown.

Touch A Truck returns this weekend in a family-friendly event for the young and the young at heart.

Jenn Wells, promotions committee chair and secretary of Greenfield Main Street, said the first event, in March 2021, was very popular. People came out in droves – maybe because it was one of the few outdoor activities during the pandemic – and she hopes for as much or more interest this year.

Moving Touch A Truck to the summer means a safer bet with weather, she added. It’s an opportunity for children to mingle with public safety officers, construction workers and more.

“I think the more socialized kids are in general is a good thing. It gives them an opportunity to see not only law enforcement, but first responders and big trucks in a comforting environment, and they can ask questions,” she said. “The more they can interact on their terms and their level is always a good thing for a child of any age.”

The free event runs noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 11. Tickets may be reserved ahead of time at greenfieldmainstreet.org but people may also just show up the day of the event and sign a waiver to enter the lot at 101 W. South St.

Children may climb into the seats of the vehicles and test out some of the switches, lights and sounds. A food truck will also be on site. The first hour of the event is a quiet hour where no lights or sirens will be used.

Wells said people like family-friendly events, but Greenfield Main Street also gets feedback that people want a variety of downtown happenings, including date nights for couples. The board is in the process of hiring a new director and will continue to create and design plans to bring people downtown.

Food Truck Friday will run this summer, but Wells said it has sometimes been a struggle to compete with the Indianapolis market to get food trucks to downtown Greenfield. People should check facebook.com/GreenfieldMainStreet for frequent updates on Food Truck Friday and which vendors will be there.

The group is also planning to host its Mutts on Main pet event 4-8 p.m. Sept. 2. The event, originally scheduled for May, was rescheduled due to weather.

Wells said the group welcomes community feedback as it continues to grow and change.

“Family-fun events are good but, to bring more people into Greenfield, that’s not everyone. So how do we balance everyone and maybe find multigenerational things,” Wells said. “Everyone wants something different and we just want to find that balance.”