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Mahoning fire company to hold annual festival

Mahoning Valley Fire Company will hold its eighth annual “Community Day Festival” from 10 a.m. to dusk on Saturday.

Highlights include a 5K run, a fun walk, cornhole tournament, food trucks, games, free activities for children including a “firefighters’ challenge,” and a basket raffle.

Also included will be the dedication of a new brush truck that arrived at the station last week.

The truck, a 2020 Ford F550 brush truck, was bought at a cost of $343,000. The dedication will begin at 5 p.m.

Mahoning Township Fire Chief Mark Ebbert said the truck purchase was made possible with a $260,000 Federal Emergency Management Agency grant. He said the new vehicle replaces a 1968 military Jeep that was converted into a brush truck. The Jeep has been used as a brush truck by the fire department for well over 40 years.

FEMA requires that when a grant is used to purchase a new vehicle, the one being replaced must be taken out of service. As a result, the old Jeep is being sold to a local individual.

The new truck was manufactured by Firematic of Shirley, New York. It was sold through Glick Fire Equipment in Bird-in-Hand, Lancaster County.

Although the main purpose of the truck is for fighting brush fires, it has a larger size pump compatible with the fire department’s larger vehicles.

As a result, Ebbert said, it can be utilized for water supply at structure fires and especially on narrow lanes. It is a 4-wheel drive vehicle with a high wheel base, meaning it also will be useful during snowstorms or flooding incidents.

“We’ve tried to make it multifunctional,” Ebbert said.

Kaylyn Ahner, a member of the fire company fundraising committee, said registration for the 5K run will begin at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, with the race beginning at 10 a.m.

The fun walk begins at 11 a.m.

Registration for the cornhole tournament is at 11:30 a.m. with a 12:30 p.m. start for the event.

Rob Frey, left, and Kaylyn Ahner, members of the eighth annual Community Day Festival Committee at Mahoning Valley Fire Company, repack a hose on a new brush truck the fire company purchased. The vehicle will be dedicated during a program at the festival at 5 p.m. on Saturday. The festival, which includes a 5K run, fun walk, cornhole tournament and free children's games, will be held from 10 a.m. to dusk on Saturday at the fire company. RON GOWER/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS