It was a beautiful summer day on Saturday, July 15 for the HOPE Center’s 2017 Community Carnival, an annual fun-filled event for families throughout Denver’s northeast neighborhood.

The highlight this year was a visit from several Denver Fire Dept. firefighters from the neighborhood’s Engine No. 10 firehouse parked outside the non-profit office on 3400 N. Elizabeth Street in Denver.

Kids and teens enjoyed learning about the equipment, controls and even had time to sit in the fire truck driver’s seat. Each year the event attracts local families and businesses and hosts a half a dozen booths with representatives from local health & family non-profit groups and city government agencies.

President/CEO Gerie Grimes has led the organization for some 10 years, but has been with HOPE Center since 1982. Every year she and her extended family of children and grandkids host local families at the carnival which features bouncy castles, games, ring tosses, and, of course, some face painting, cotton candy and snow cone booths.

Established in the 1960s, HOPE Center is a community-based non-profit agency focusing on Early Childhood Education and Care and Vocational Training for adults with developmental disabilities. The Center also provides education for at-risk and gifted children, and kids with developmental disabilities for Denver families. This year the organization celebrates more than 50 years of service and serves some 200 students, of which 79 percent are African- American and 10 percent Hispanic.

Among the non-profit info booths this year were the Denver Preschool Program, The Center for African American Health, Mental Health Center of Denver, Kids Choice Dental, Clothes to Kids of Denver, Denver Human Services, and Healthy Communities of Denver. For more information visit www.hopecenterinc.orgĀ or email Gerie Grimes at gghope@comcast.net