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Showing some leg for a good cause

New Richmond Police Chief Craig Yehlik, Mayor Fred Horne and City Administrator Mike Darrow honored their promise to wear kilts during the Fun Fest parade — while Yehlik wore his tactical kilt for a week — after the NRPD reached its goal of raising $50,000 to fund its K-9 unit. Jordan Willi / RiverTown Multimedia

New Richmond Police Chief Craig Yehilk honored his commitment to don a tactical kilt for a week — and wear it while walking in the Fun Fest parade — after the New Richmond Police Department was able to reach its fundraising goal of $50,000 for the department's new K-9 program.

"It kind of started as a tongue-in-cheek silly thing. I said to Lt. Veronica Koehler, who's been doing a great job fundraising for the new K-9 addition to our department, 'If you can reach our $50,000 goal, I'll wear a tactical kilt for one week and one special event,'" Yehlik said.

In addition to the police chief wearing a kilt for a week, New Richmond Mayor Fred Horne and City Administrator Mike Darrow both threw on kilts of their own and joined Yehlik on the parade route to show their thanks for the community coming together to raise the money for the K-9 program.

The money raised through donations will be needed to pay for a specially equipped squad car ($25,000), the dog that is bred in Europe ($8,500), building a kennel at the station, as well as training, certification and additional equipment. The department is also anticipating annual costs of $5,000-$7,000 for food and veterinary care.

Initially, the department had targeted the program to start in 2018, but because more than $35,000 had already been raised when the deal was struck, getting it started this year became a real possibility if the community could rally and raise the remaining funds.