Block party to celebrate new Philippi police headquarters

To officially christen the new Philippi Police Department headquarters, the city of Philippi will host an open-house community block party and child safety day this weekend.

Mayor Jerry Mouser said everyone is invited to attend the celebration, which will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the back of the Hu Myers Center at 209 South Main St. in Philippi.

Attendees can mingle with and get to know their local officers; tour the new headquarters; learn about safety; and enjoy the displays, music, hot dogs and sodas available during the event.

“This is the police’s new home,” Mouser said. “We want the public to come and see where their police are and view the new headquarters, meet the police officers, look at the equipment that we have and then we’re going to have safety activities for the kids.”

The event will feature a bike safety and restoration demonstration, giveaways for children, a drunk driving simulator, and displays of police vehicles, drugs and equipment. Mouser said that bicycle helmets, donated by the Governor’s Highway Safety Program, will be available as part of a giveaway for children.

The open house’s aim is to formally introduce the new headquarters and the new police chief to the community. Although the new chief, Jeff Walters, already has been in office since early this year, Mouser said the block party still is a way for the public to get acquainted with Walters, if they haven’t already.

Philippi police officers have operated out of the new facility since early September.

Both Mouser and Walters said that the new facility provides a professional environment for the Philippi Police Department.

The facility features a private setting in which to conduct interviews, a larger parking area and an expanded evidence room.

The Philippi Police Department was formerly located in a residential building on Church Street near the Barbour County Courthouse. Officials have said the police department’s needs outgrew what was available at the old facility.