Sunday, July 3, 2016

2016 Emergency Service Meals

It all started 5 years ago, in 2011, with one fire station.

My husband John and I heard a story about how hard it was for a firefighter to sit down and eat a meal on July 4th and making a meal was out of the question. They were too busy running from call to call. We always try to support our neighborhood fire station any way we can, so we decided to make them a nice BBQ dinner and deliver it on July 4th.

Anne McEnerny-Ogle's Profile Photo
When Anne McEnerny-Ogle heard about our plan, she loved the idea so much she said, "Let's feed every firefighter in Vancouver!". #AnneFan So, that's what we did. She paid for the entire endeavor out of her own pocket that year, and every year since. She baked the cobblers and cornbread. John smoked pork butts for pulled pork sandwiches and made baked beans. I made the coleslaw. Anne and her husband Terry delivered to 5 stations on the west side of town and we did five on the east side of town.

It got larger every year.

This year, we will feed over 200 firefighters and police officers on July 4th. Over 30 people showed up to help package food for delivery and multiple people will deliver to the stations. (I insist that John and I get to deliver to Station 6 - no matter what.)

Wonderful things have happened! Our community is learning how hard our first responders work to keep us safe. My neighbors know that there is something they can do to show their appreciation and support. In my neighborhood, we do this all year and hope it spreads everywhere in the city!

John Gentry's Profile PhotoJohn and Joyce Gentry have been involved for a few years now as well. They have arranged for the professional kitchen for all the packaging. John is also an excellent photographer and took several pictures of all the volunteers this morning. The photos can be seen here.

John and Mary Elkin - Friends of Fire Station 6

Mary McDowell Elkin's photo.
This is Vancouver (not BC) Washington (not DC) USA
We support our first responders every day!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Chili Cook-Off 2013

Friends of Fire Station 6 didn't win any awards at the 5th Annual Fire in the Park Chili Cook-Off held on July 20th. It was our first year entering the competition and we had a amazing time!

2013 Chili Cook-Off Team Left to R1ght: John Elkin, Mary Elkin, Jeff Zurschmeide, Anne McEnerny-Ogle

 We arrived at Esther Short Park at 7am and began setting up the booth and firing up the grill. John was our Pit Master and Jeff was his sous chef. Those guys can grill and smoke some amazing things and by 8am the park smelled heavenly.
20lbs of smoked tri tip

We decorated the booth with red and yellow tablecloths, pin-wheels, signs to promote fire protection and pictures of firefighters in action. We hung up our Friends of Fire Station 6 sign and were ready to serve chili by 10:45am. We even posted our recipe for all to see and handed out a few hundred copies.

 Just like its namesake, this delightful chili is made up of 13 brave and unique ingredients that blend together to complete the perfect bowl of chili.

Chili is a lot like staffing in the fire department.  If you were to delete ingredients to save money, the quality of your chili would suffer. A mediocre bowl of chili may not cause loss of life or property, but an inadequately staffed fire department can.
1.   1 ½ lbs smoked beef tri tip            8.  6 oz chicken broth
2.    12 oz beef broth                             9.  2 cups diced tomatoes
3.    ¼ cup chilies (of your choice)    10.  2 Tbsp chili powder
4.    1 Tbsp powdered onion              11.  1 Tbsp cumin
5.    2 Tbsp crushed garlic                   12.   1 Tbsp Sazon Goya
6.   1 Tbsp Buffalo Sauce                                 13.   ¼ tsp brown sugar 
7.   1/8 tsp kosher salt

  Stir well with a long tail-feather from a Phoenix for at least 2.5 minutes 

10 gallons of SAFER 13 Chili

We started serving up chili and people kept coming back for seconds and thirds! Anne was great at letting the people know what was in the chili and why it was so special! We ran out of chili just before the voting ended.

Congratulations to all the teams that participated and made this such a fun and rewarding experience! You can see a list of winners and participants here:

Thank you to the IAFF Local 452 for putting on the event for the past years! It gets better every single year and so many people are touched by the generous donations raised at the event. Thank you to the organizers and Mark Dodd,  who was so helpful and made sure we had everything we needed to make this a successful event.

We will definitely be back in 2014!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Fire in the Park

Tomorrow is Fire in the Park! Friends of Fire Station 6 is very excited to be in the Chili Cook-Off this year. It will be our first year competing and we really think we've got a shot at taking the People's Choice Award. Our chili isn't too spicy and has many "special" ingredients that we will post online after the competition.

We hope you can come to Esther Short Park tomorrow from 11 - 5 and check out all the fun activities that Fire in the Park has to offer. Chili tasting starts at 11am and will run to at least 3 pm. It's $1 a taste and all proceeds go to SHARE.

 For more information check out their website:

Thanks to the IAFF Local 452 for putting this event on! This will be the 5th year and it just gets better every year.

We will be posting pictures and our recipe after the competition, so check back!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Endorsement: Anne McEnerny-Ogle

July 17, 2013

For Immediate Release

Friends of Fire Station 6 is proud to announce its endorsement of Anne McEnerny-Ogle for Vancouver City Council. Anne has a long history of working with citizens in our neighborhoods and supporting public safety issues in the City of Vancouver. Anne is the only candidate in this election that has a proven record of voicing protest when our local government contemplates eliminating firefighters or police from our streets.  Friends of Fire Station 6 and Anne share the vision of making our city a place where citizen’s voices are heard and protecting our community is a priority.

We are proud to add our endorsement to the growing list of those supporting Anne’s campaign and her vision for our community. Along with our local firefighters, we believe Anne is the best person to lead us into the future.  


Mary Elkin
Friends of Fire Station 6

Friends of Fire Station 6, a non-profit political action committee
(FEIN 27-3361360), was formed by citizens, workers, business owners and visitors to the City of Vancouver, WA. Our mission is to protect the fire and police services provided to citizens and to promote public awareness of what staffing and equipment police and fire departments need to accomplish the task of keeping citizens and our first responders safe.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

How We Got to Today...In Pictures

November 2011 -The residents of Creekside Mobile Estates, a 55+ community, host a potluck dinner Thanksgiving Dinner to celebrate Fire Station 6's return to service
11/6/13 - Engine 6 rolls out on its first call for service

11/6/13 -The City of Vancouver and the neighborhoods hold a re-opening ceremony. Local business, Simply Sweets donates a fire helmet cake and Mayor Tim Leavitt declares the station open as Engine 6 rolls through the tape. Fire Department staff Station 6 with an Engine instead of a Truck this time around.
Summer 2011 - The "SAFER 13" get sworn into duty
The "SAFER 13" T-Shirt logo with the symbolic phoenix rising from the ashes

8/30/11 - The Vancouver City Council votes to approve accepting the SAFER grant that will hire 13 firefighters for 2 years. The 13 recruits, called the "SAFER 13" make shirts for the class.
Summer 2011 - The City begins painting and working on repairs to Station 6 - even though the station remains closed and the City Council has yet to accept the SAFER grant awarded in March.

Fall 2010 - Sign in front of Fire Station 6 telling residents that the station will no longer be in service
February 2011 - "Advertisement" placed on milk carton and delivered to the City Council retreat. Along with the milk, doughnut holes are sent to symbolize the "doughnut hole" of response time created by the closure of station 6.
12/30/2010 - Friends of Fire Station 6 President Mary Elkin stands in front of crowd on a very cold night at the Farewell Candlelight Tribute - photo by Steven Lane
City Council Member, Bart Hansen, addresses a crowd rallied in front of the station to oppose its closing. Councilman Hansen would be the only member of the Council to vote "No" on the budget that closed the station
Friends of Fire Station 6 President, Mary Elkin, speaks with the media at the rally to keep the station open


9/18/2010 - A rally to protest the closure of Fire Station 6 is held in front of the station.