The South Pigeon Lake Fire Department (SPLFD) wants to thank the community for their gracious support. For years County of Wetaskiwin residents have been incredibly supportive of their local volunteer fire departments.
Through support with fundraisers and more, SPLFD Chief Wayne Benson says, “it has allowed us to go so much further.”
One big fundraiser, The Taste of Summer, takes place every summer at Pigeon Lake has raised invaluable money for the community, multiple years in which they contributed funds to the SPLFD which allowed them to purchase important fire equipment and PPE.
In 2014 the Taste of Summer donated $16,200 to SPLFD for a new Jaws of Life, in 2015 and 2016, $18,383 and $11,330 were donated respectfully, for the department to purchase necessary equipment for water rescues including much needed wet suits and dry suits.
In 2017 the event donated $8,445 and $15,301 in 2018 to SPLFD for the purchase of an ATV side by side which the department regularly uses to help fight grass and bush fires. In 2019, $19,505 was donated towards a new water pumping unit.
Following the 2021 Taste of Summer, $18,529 was donated to SPLFD for a Paratech Strut Package, which cost around $20,000. These rescue struts assist firefighters to stabilize rollovers involving semis or big trucks as well as stabilizing buildings or unstable structures during a rescue.
This year $25,143 has been donated for the department to buy new PPE including bunker gear, boots, bush fire coveralls and more. A pair of firefighting boots usually costs $550 per pair.
In addition to Taste of Summer, Benson says that the Falun Co-op has been a big contributor to the department with their donations and support. Even community kids get in on the action – this year the Lakedell 4-H beef Club sold their club calf and all the proceeds were split between SPLFD and Mulhurst and District Fire & Rescue.
Benson says that without these donations the local departments would not be able to afford this kind of rescue equipment.
“The support from our community is beyond.”