When members of the Mahoning Valley Fire Company dedicate their 2013 KME pumper today, it won't be just about the firefighters.
It's also going to be a "Celebration of Community," said fire company committee member Jay Miholick, who added that it will be geared for the entire family.
Included will be an old-fashioned carnival featuring such events as a dunk tank, balloon bounce, and ring toss, tours of the old one-room school house that the fire company acquired and has converted into a meeting room, food, music, and even judging of out-of-town apparatus by the general public.
The carnival and informal events will be held 2-5 p.m. Daytime entertainment will be by "The Doctor," dee jay Layne Roberts of Penn's Peak Radio.
At 5 o'clock, former long-time fire chief David Pollock will dedicate the new pumper, a $467,217 vehicle bought to replace one that was 33 years old.
After the dedication, the housing of the pumper will take place during which firefighters push the new vehicle into its permanent bay.
At about 7 p.m., there will be free live entertainment from "The Brand", a band featuring Albie Coccio on drums.
Of course, throughout the day, there will be all types of fire safety events especially of interest to youngsters. "We'll have a lot of interaction in fire prevention, especially for kids," Miholick said.
He stated the members of Mahoning Valley Fire Company decided to call it "Celebration of Community" because "It's more than just about the fire company. It's more about what is good about this area. It's a big day for the fire company and the community."
Miholick noted that there are numerous other fire companies joining the Mahoning celebration. Visitors will be asked to view their apparatus and select their favorites to qualify for a special award.
Members of Boy Scout Troop 145 and their Venture Crew will have interactive displays. The Boy Scout Troop meets at the old school house.
The old school house is about 112 years old and is located across the parking lot from the fire company. The single-story, wooden structure was used as a school house until the early 1950s, then obtained by the fire company a few years later and utilized for storage.
Deterioration of the building occurred and with the help of donations from community members - and firms outside the community - the old school was fortified and now is the home of the Boy Scout troop.
The Boy Scout troop moved to the building after their former location in Lehighton became unavailable. The Boy Scouts had assisted in clean-up of the old school and even some of the work on making it habitable for them.
Miholick emphasized that the whole premise of tomorrow's events is to display what the fire company has to offer and to include the community.
The new lime yellow truck with blue stripes that is being dedicated is replacing a 1980 Pierce pumper.
It's the first new piece of apparatus the fire company purchased since it bought a brush truck - a Ford - in 2004.
Fire Chief Mark Ebbert said the decision to buy the KME pumper in Nesquehoning was because many township residents are employed there.
Lieutenant Rick Frey said another great thing about buying the truck locally is that members of he fire company could visit the manufacturing plant during the construction process and see the new truck being built.
The new apparatus has a 1,500 gallons-per-minute pump, a 1,000 gallon water tank, and 25 gallons of foam.
Other trucks the fire company has besides the new one and the brush truck are a 1999 Pierce pumper with an International rescue pump and a 1985 Pierce with a GMC tank.