Three children got the ride of their lifetime Friday morning after winning a contest for the annual Police Chief for a Day event with Waterloo Regional Police Service (WRPS).

The local students were selected from dozens of applicants to visit WRPS headquarter after entering a contest in April.

The three kids acting as chief and two deputies for the day got to experience the various sectors surrounding policing, and even had the opportunity to ride in the tactical response vehicle.

“My favourite thing is probably is this because I like all the drones, and the robots, and the trucks and the dogs. And we’ve been to the traffic control area and we’ve seen the chief,” said 12-year-old Dara.

Dara said she won the contest after writing an essay about what she would do if she were police chief for a day.

“I looked into it and decided it looked fun,” Dara said.

Police Chief Mark Crowell said this day is important as young people are the future of policing, and building a positive connection with them is the goal.