NEW KNOXVILLE — Area residents will flock to New Knoxville’s Community Park this weekend for a day full of activities at an annual fire department fundraiser.
The Fireman’s Picnic will start at 2 p.m. Saturday, when food and beverage stands open in New Knoxville Community Park. The corn hole tournament will also begin at 2 p.m., with sign up starting at 1:30 p.m. A chicken dinner will be served at 4 p.m. and will cost $6. The sixth annual Extrication Competition kicks off at 5 p.m. Firefighter Matt Neuman said the competition is one of the largest draws of the event.
“We bring in area fire departments and use the jaws-of-life and see who can cut off the doors of a car the quickest,” Neuman said.
He noted that the competition also serves as a training opportunity for the firefighters.
“We do the competition and have fun with it but at the same time it’s training for everybody,” Neuman said. “We don’t always get a chance to have cars to cut on. It’s also a chance to see how other departments operate and how they do things. It’s always a fun way to learn something.”
Neuman said New Knoxville–Washington Township fire trucks will be on display at the Fireman’s Picnic.
“We’ll have our trucks out there so people can see some of the trucks, and if they wanted to see some of the equipment we use,” he said. “We’ll show them the trucks and some of our gear.”
Two helicopters are scheduled to touch down at the event.
“Life Flight and Care Flight are both supposed to land,” Neuman said, noting that Care Flight is scheduled to land at 3:30 p.m., while Life Flight will land at 5 p.m.
He noted that the helicopter appearances are not a guarantee.
“If they get a run or a call they have to go to that,” Neuman said.
New this year, a reverse raffle will be held in which 250 tickets will be sold for $10 each. The top prize is $300, and several smaller prizes will also be given away. Drawings for the raffle begin at 6 p.m. The Ohio State University football game against Nebraska, which kicks off at 7 p.m., will be showing on several screens at the festival. The Endorphins will wrap up the night with live entertainment starting at 8 p.m.
Money raised during the Fireman’s Picnic is used to keep up with expenses for the New Knoxville–Washington Township Fire Department and to purchase new equipment.
“We just purchased gloves for everybody — both extrication gloves and firefighting gloves,” Neuman said. “About a year ago we finally got radios purchased for everybody on the department, so everybody on the department now has a radio and gets every call. We’re just doing things like that.”
For more information on the Fireman’s Picnic, visit NKFire.net.