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Valentino was surprised at the Harmony Picnic, an annual police and community event, with an award for his years of service in the precinct, he said."This is wonderful," he said. "It's a great honor and a nice way to leave. It feels good to know that your work is appreciated."Valentino was among four community affairs officers who were honored for their work in south Queens precincts at the 14th annual Harmony Picnic held by Patrol Borough Queens South Tuesday afternoon. Police officers and hundreds of children filled Cunningham Park for games, concerts, food, entertainment and more."Our police are so important to our security," said Borough President Helen Marshall. "It's wonderful we can relax and come out here with them."Patrol Borough Queens South, which includes the 100th, 101st, 102nd, 103rd, 105th, 106th, 107th and 113th precincts, holds the picnic every year as a way for the community to get to know the police officers who patrol their streets. This year the picnic featured games such as the dunk tank, obstacle course and a sack race as well as rides, face painting and horse rides from the Federation of Black Cowboys.Radio stations Power 105.1, Hot 97.1 and CD 101.9 were on hand to provide music for the festivities, but the highlight of the day for many of the kids swooped down from above when a police helicopter landed in the middle of the park. Children raced toward the aircraft to get a look inside.Representatives from Con Edison were on hand to present awards to four community affairs officers for their work in the community. The officers act as liaisons between the police precincts and the neighborhood to field complaints or concerns and organize community events such as the picnic."We work closely with the Police Department on activities and daily operations and functions," said Carol Conslato of Con Edison. "We wanted to thank the commanding officers and officers for what they do for us and the community."Valentino, Detective Victor Logan of the 103rd Precinct in Jamaica, Police Officer Jovoda Cooper of South Jamaica's 113th Precinct and Officer Donald Barto of Patrol Borough Queens South were honored with the awards and were picked by their commanding officers and the top brass in Borough South, said Carl Lee, Queens specialist with Con Ed.Cooper was pleased to receive the award."It's good. It's for all the work that I do in the community." But the day truly is for the neighborhood residents and the children, said Assistant Chief Thomas Dale, commanding officer for Patrol Borough Queens South."The kids are having a great time and that's all that matters."Reach reporter Courtney Dentch by e-mail at email@example.com, or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 138.
©2004 Community Newspaper Group
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