Last year's Fire Fest was doused by rain and mud, but organizers have sparked plans for this year's event to include prayers for good weather.
"Good weather, everything else is good," said James Waldron, the chairman of the event.
The 10th annual Fire Fest will be Saturday at the Evans Town Center field, the lot behind the Kroger on Washington Road in Evans.
Firefighter muster events will highlight this year's Fire Fest put on by the Rotary Club of Columbia County and the Columbia County Fire Chiefs Association.
The muster competition, which is a sanctioned Southeastern Firefighters muster Association event, consists of several team and individual events in which firefighters compete in performing specific firefighting-related skills in the quickest time possible. The events will run from 10 a.m. to about 3 p.m.
"It is fun to watch and right there next to it ... the kids can go over there and they have a preset area where kids can blow down cones with a firehose," Waldron said.
The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and proceeds go to the Southeastern Firefighters Burn Foundation, participating fire departments and other Rotary charities.
The festivities will include live entertainment, 19 arts and crafts vendors, 13 food vendors, children's rides and games, clowns, raffles, a silent auction and demonstrations. The festival also includes a hot-air balloon launch, a Gold Cross helicopter demonstration and a silent auction featuring family rides in both.
Fire Fest was designed as a way to spread fire safety information to young people. The Grovetown Department of Public Safety will bring its fire-safety house for children to venture through. Fort Gordon plans to set up its decontamination unit. The Red Cross will open its disaster relief van, and Columbia County's Mobile Operations Center and dive team equipment will be on display.
"We've added in a few other things this year about other home safety areas," Waldron said.
Car seat inspections and the ID-A-Child program will be on site and the Columbia County Sheriff's Office Bicycle Unit will teach bicycle safety.
Waldron said Fire Fest is a drop-off location for the It's Spooky to Be Hungry food drive and is accepting a donation of a nonperishable food item for children to enter a 12:30 p.m. costume contest.
As Fire Fest gets bigger, Waldron said, a new corporate sponsor, Academy Sports and Outdoors, is helping grow the festival by adding sports games.
Representatives from the area's three semipro teams - the Spartans, the GreenJackets and the Lynx - also will be at the event.
For more information, call Waldron at (706) 589-8266.
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