first responders to host Lights & Sirens Parade Sunday
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[September 29, 2014]
LINCOLN - This coming Sunday, October
5, the city of Lincoln Fire Department and the Lincoln Rural Fire Protection
District will host a Lights & Sirens Parade through the city of Lincoln. All
first responders within the county, and in general ďanything with lights,Ē
is invited to join in the parade according the Lincoln Fire Departmentís
Chief Mark Miller.
The event will begin with a line-up at the
Lincoln Knights of Columbus Hall on Limit Street at 11 a.m. The
parade will start at 11:30 a.m. and make its way to the new Big R
(old Wal-Mart) store on Woodlawn Road.
Miller recently said the event was developed as an additional
activity for local fire departments to help raise awareness for
National Fire Prevention Week.
National Fire Prevention Week has been observed since 1925. It takes
place each year during the week that contains October 9. The
specific date was chosen as a commemorative day for the Great
Chicago Fire of 1871. The blaze began on October 8th, but lasted
throughout the day of October 9. In the end, more than 250 lives
were lost, 100,000 residents were left homeless, and more than 2,000
acres of the city of Chicago were destroyed.
Coincidentally, there was another fire going on in another part of
the United States at the same time. A fire in northeast Wisconsin
destroyed 16 towns, took 1,152 lives, and ruined 1.2 million acres
of forest before it was extinguished.
In Chicago, Mrs. OíLeary and her cow get the blame for that
devastating blaze. In Wisconsin, it is believed that the fires were
started unintentionally by railroad workers clearing brush. There is
also a theory that flaming meteorites may be the culprits as there
were fires in a three state area including Illinois, Wisconsin and
Michigan on that date.
For the local event, Miller said the idea came up recently at a
Logan County Fire Protection Association meeting. The group wanted
to do something more to raise awareness for Fire Prevention week and
decided to do a parade.
Miller and Lincoln Rural Assistant Chief Nick Hanson contacted Matt
Grieme of Big R to see if they could use the parking lot of the new
Big R for their final destination. Miller said Grieme was happy to
have them come out and use the parking lot of what will be the new
The fire departments will have
their trucks on display for adults and kids to check out, and there
will be firefighters on hand to talk about the vehicles as well as
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The Lincoln Rural Explorers will be assisting
kids in using the fire hoses to put out flames in the windows of the
city departmentís burning house display. The Explorers is a youth
club for those interested in pursuing firefighting as a career.
For the city of Lincoln, this is just one activity that will go on
throughout the month of October. Each year the department hosts a
fire prevention and safety poster contest with local students of
Lincoln elementary schools.
Winners are selected by a team of judges, and the lucky students are
treated to a ride to school in a fire truck.
The department also holds a special breakfast at the firehouse each
year. At the breakfast, a third-grade class from one school is
invited to spend the morning at the Lincoln Fire Station. The kids
enjoy a meal of pancakes and sausage, a tour of the fire house
upstairs and down, and learn lessons about fire prevention and
The city department will continue their observance of Fire
Prevention Week throughout the month of October, making visits to
the local schools and doing talks and demonstrations about fire
October is also the time of the year when local businesses sponsor a
special fire safety and prevention coloring book published by
Lincoln Daily News. The coloring books are designed by LDN, and
printing is paid for through the sponsoring businesses. The coloring
books are then given to the Lincoln Fire Department for them to use
as they see fit throughout the year.