Held under an American flag tied to a ladder truck, the California Fire Department held its Annual Barbecue Fundraiser in the Village Green Parking Lot Saturday, June 11. Ribs, pulled pork and pork steak sandwiches along with new menu item 1/2 chickens.
"We do the barbecue every year," Fire Chief Allen Smith said, "and have been for over 20 years now and we have had great success with it. Many in really like it and we get contacted all year long with people looking forward to it."
Something else the Smith and firefighters were getting contacted with as well were requests for chicken. He said they finally put it on the menu and it went over well with at least 60 chickens sold. They also sold 100 slabs of ribs and roughly 300 pounds of pork.
Barbecuing is a skill many of the local firefighters have and utilize to raise money during the fundraisers for the community according to Smith.
"We have guys who are really good cooks," he added. "It is a good time for the guys to come together. We work well as a team and this is something we can do to really get out in the community and for the community to be able to see all the guys in the department."
Smith said they display the equipment during the barbecue and interact with those who come out. He added the money goes back into the community through previous projects such as refurbishing the 1954 fire truck for local parades and giving out smoke detectors. With the money raised this year they hope to give away more smoke detectors and also canvas the community looking for elderly residents whom they can also install the detectors for.
"This is just one of the things we do," Smith said, "to invest back into the community. These types of projects take money and thankfully barbecuing is something we do very well and can do for a fundraiser. I just really appreciate all the people who come out every year and support us. The theme was 'Help Support Your Local Firefighters' and that is what the community has done. I think they appreciate what we do and how the firefighters do this for free as volunteers. This was their day off and it has just been a good way to get together and help each other out."
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