Local first responders to host Lights &
Sirens Parade Sunday
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[September 30, 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
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 fire prevention.
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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
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
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