The Knox County Emergency Management Agency is hosting an American Red Cross Disaster Shelter Simulation training course as part of an initiative to train volunteers in each town in the county in community sheltering.

And, if there are enough new recruits, the event will follow with a basic shelter operations course. Many volunteers took that class in April (and their American Red Cross certificates of completion are now available).

The course will be held Saturday, Oct. 16 at the Hope Corner Fire Station. The shelter simulation class begins at 9 a.m., lunch will be provided at 12:30 p.m. and the basic shelter operations class will begin at 1:30 p.m.

The shelter simulation class is a table top exercise designed to allow participants a step-by-step education through the sheltering process — from opening to closing a Red Cross dormitory shelter. The instructor for the course is Andrew Eckman of the Pine Tree Chapter of the American Red Cross. An American Red Cross certificate of completion will be awarded to participants.

The simulation class builds upon the basic shelter operations class some volunteers have already completed. There is no prerequisite to take the course.

The community shelter open house is Nov. 7. Each participating town in the county will host an open house at the designated community shelter from 1 to 3 p.m. The open house is meant to introduce the community shelter to residents and to invite them to visit with their pets.

Please RSVP by return e-mail and indicate if one course or two courses will be taken, and call with any questions. RSVP to Eileen Wilkinson, planner, at 594-5155 or