Fighting fire with fine artPublished 2:40pm Tuesday, June 11, 2013
Union VFD raises $3,000 from Lil’ Calypso
“The Union Volunteer Fire Department raised more than $3,000,” said Jane Garrett Harris, event organizer and owner of Chuck’s Marina. “I think we had a lot bigger crowd this year.”
Harris said emphasizing the fundraising nature of the event was a factor. Admission to the event is a donation to the VFD, and Harris said in the past firefighters had to ask attendees for their donation.
This year was a little different.
“This year people were approaching (the firefighters), and they knew what the purpose of the show was,” Harris said. “They said, ‘Where are we supposed to give our donation?’”
Chief Tracey Johnson said the fire department always looks forward to helping with the show.
“We doubled our voluntary entry fee from last time,” Johnson said. “It is very beneficial to us.”
And Harris said supporting the fire department has also benefited the show – Union VFD supplies manpower for the event, helping to make it a success.
“We have always supported a charity, but the last five years we have supported Union Volunteer Fire Department,” said Harris. “They cook hotdogs, set up tents and shuttle people to and from their cars.”
Johnson said the department will put this year’s donations toward paying for their recent purchase of a thermal imaging camera, which is used in search and rescue.
“It actually picks up body heat so we can search a room,” Johnson said.
This was the 11th year for the art festival, which drew out a number of artists to display and sell their creative works – like Barbara Drescher, who has been a part of the festival every year.
“I meet such great people, and it is such a fun time,” Drescher said.
Drescher brought her handmade pottery to the show this year, and Lil’ Calypso features a variety of art that is nearly unlimited.
“We have all kinds of artists,” Harris said. “It is not just visual arts. Of course we have the pastels and the oils, but now we have people that hand make soap, wood products, metal products and all kinds of folk art. We try to keep everything hand-crafted.
“I think everybody had a great time.”
Lynden Blake, Outlook staff writer, contributed to this report.