WADDINGTON – The Bass Tournament Committee in Waddington is supporting its local firefighters and rescue workers by hosting a Help the Heroes Summer Bash Saturday.
The event will be held rain or shine from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Island View Park will feature several acoustic musical acts, fireman’s poker, Texas horseshoes, frosty beer and barbecue.
“We wanted to thank our local firefighters for their unwavering dedication to the village and to the Bassmaster tournament,” Mayor and committee member Janet M. Otto-Cassada said. “Without our local firefighters and EMTs, the event would not have run as smoothly as it did. They worked around the clock to control traffic, make sure the public was safe and that the event went off without a hitch.”
The fundraiser will help support the cost of emergency equipment in the wake of tougher state mandates, Ms. Otto-Cassada said.
“With the cost of equipment being so exorbitant, we need to think outside the box and do more events to make sure the fire department has the up-to-date equipment it needs to assist them and keep them safe,” Ms. Otto-Cassada said.
Fire Chief Matthew G. Mayette said that the cost of equipment is rising and becoming a burden to small town fire departments.
“It’s an everyday thing for us to maintain gloves, pagers, turnout gear and all of the little stuff. For a decent pair of protective gloves, each set can run somewhere between $35 to $45,” Mr. Mayette said. “People don’t realize that our flame retardant, Nomex hoods probably run between $15 and $25. It’s little things like that most people don’t realize adds up.”
This year the department is hoping to purchase a new set of hydraulic tools or Jaws of Life, which can be used to rescue victims trapped in or beneath vehicles.
“A complete set can run somewhere around $20,000,” Mr. Mayette said. “We also need a set of air bags. We did farm training last year. With a lot of these bigger farms popping up, air bags are more user- friendly in the case of roll overs. You can slide them under the tractors to create room to rescue someone who is pinned beneath. Time is crucial in situations like that and it’s that kind of equipment that can save lives.”
Mr. Mayette said the fire department thanks the village’s Bass Tournament committee for its support.