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Crestview Police Department plans ice cream pop-ups

Special to the News Bulletin
Crestview News Bulletin

CRESTVIEW — What’s blue and white, plays “Turkey in the Straw” and is coming soon to a neighborhood near you? It’s the Crestview Police Department’s Pop-Up Popsicles community outreach ice cream truck.

“We’re going to turn our crime scene vehicle into an ice cream truck,” said CPD Chief Stephen McCosker. “Instead of sirens, we’re going to have ice cream truck music.”

The pop-ups are impromptu community outreaches that suddenly show up in various locations around the city.

PHOTOS: Crestview Police Department open house

Pop-ups, including the upcoming Pop-Up Popsicles, are announced on the CPD’s social media anytime from the day before to the morning of the events.

Residents “will have to monitor our Facebook page to see where we’ll show up,” CPD Major Andrew Schneider said as he prepared the mobile crime scene unit vehicle for its service as an ice cream truck. “That’s the fun of a pop-up. It could be anywhere in the city.”

McCosker said the Pop-Up Popsicles will occur over the course of four days during the week of June 29, with ice cream giveaways happening in a different section of the city each day.

Unlike the CPD’s hotdog pop-ups, “we’ll start at one location, and move on to others inside the day’s zone,” he said.

“Moving around allows us to keep the crowd down at any one location,” Chief McCosker said. “We’ll be able to help the crowds maintain their social distancing.”

The pop-ups are funded by donations from residents, businesses and community organization as a way for police officers to mingle with residents.

“The more donations we have, the more ice cream we can give away,” the chief said.

To add variety, Mike Carroll, Hub City Smokehouse and Grill owner, is lending his snow-cone machine for Pop-Up Popsicles.

“The thing I’ve been really big on is, to be an effective police department, we have to interact with the community. Pop-ups are one way we can get out in the neighborhoods and parks and still observe social distancing,” McCosker said.