Local fire departments team up for recruitment, COVID-safe Halloween event

Emily Putnam
Updated: October 31, 2020 06:20 PM
Created: October 31, 2020 05:43 PM

PERINTON, N.Y. (WHEC) — Families have had to get creative with trick-or-treating this year. 

Saturday afternoon, three local fire departments swung in to help, as Bushnell's Basin, Egypt, and Fairport fire departments hosted a drive-through trick-or-treat event at Perinton Square Mall. 

It served as an alternative for families who may be opting out of trick or treating this year for COVID-related health reasons or to avoid large gatherings. 

The safe and socially distanced event doubled as an opportunity for the three fire departments to generate interest in recruitment. Cars drove up alongside two fire trucks with ladders extended, and volunteers handed kids a bag of candy and adults received membership information. 

"We've hit the point now where we all need members. We average about 10-11 members a call, but we need to increase that, we need 16, 20," said Fairport firefighter and event organizer Dan Riordan. 

The three departments work closely to fight fires, and now they’re working closely to get new members. 

"It makes sense for all of us to do something like this, so we said why have three separate events? we can do one, pool our resources," said Bushnell’s Basin firefighter and event organizer Bill Morris. 

Typically, many recruits come from interactions with fire departments at community events like Fairport Canal Days. Because of the pandemic, a lot of those important events for recruitment have been canceled. Over the two-hour event, about 60 cars drove through, and a few people filled out initial recruitment paperwork on the spot. 

 “Whether it's COVID or whether we have canal days next year, we're in this together and we're gonna do what we can to really build up our membership." Riordan said
 


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