Program presents ‘stranger dangers’

Published 10:29 pm Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Two Suffolk businesses that normally operate in two different realms are teaming up to present a Thursday event that affects everybody.

Lake Prince Woods, a retirement community, and Main Street Day Care and Preschool are presenting “Stranger Danger: Teaching your children to be street smart” Thursday from 7 to 8 p.m. at Lake Prince Woods. Kim Wright, an FBI agent, will present the program.

“We just felt like there was a need to have it presented to the public,” said Michelle Laskey of Lake Prince Woods. “It’s kind of near and dear to my heart, because I have a little kid.”

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The program, which is not intended for people under 18, will include information on registered sex offenders, statistics on abductions and how victims are chosen. It will include a videotaped statement from a predator, as well as the story of a child victim.

Wright will present the information from her own experience of more than 15 years with the FBI, Laskey said.

“We wanted to make sure that parents are aware of good strategies and good ways to talk with their children about things that could be dangerous to them,” said Krista Riddick of Main Street Day Care. “I think it’s difficult for parents to know what kind of language to use with their kids. You don’t want to overexpose your kids, but it is important to talk with them.”

Staff from several local child care facilities, including Main Street, will be in attendance to learn, Riddick said. However, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, older siblings and other family members can all benefit from learning the most up-to-date information on the dangers.

“We want to make sure there are events like this available to families,” Riddick said.

More than four dozen people already are signed up to attend the event, Laskey said. If demand continues to be high, future events could be scheduled to accommodate everybody who wants to attend.

“Those ladies at the day care, they ran around promoting it,” Laskey said. “They’re the reason we have so many people coming.”

Riddick said Main Street appreciates Lake Prince Woods’ willingness to house the workshop and do a lot of the planning.

“We hope we can do it some more,” Riddick said.

Lake Prince Woods is located at 100 Anna Goode Way, about a quarter-mile east of U.S. Route 460 off King’s Fork Road. Registration is required, and can be made by calling 923-5500 or emailing