Monthly Archives: August 2013

Hospitality Help Needed for Safety Day

img296Time Commitment: 5 hrs. on Sat. Oct. 19

Equipment: You!
Details: No prior knowledge necessary! Nothing to prepare! Lead a group of adults and children through short, hands-on sessions at Safety Day. Your main jobs are people-moving and being an enthusiastic participant.

If interested, please contact Amy Wissing 717-330-3149 or

If you’re not available on Saturday, but would like to help with preparation, setup, or cleanup, call Amy!

New Tanker Coming to Bird-in-Hand in Early 2014

  • A “tanker” is a fire truck that supplies water at a fire scene. It sends water to the fire trucks that actually attack the fire.
  • Our 1990 tanker is showing its age… but we have used it very successfully over the years to help squelch fires, so we are replicating its basic design!
  • The new tanker will feature 4,000 gallons of water, a completely enclosed cab for firefighter safety and comfort, and more horsepower to conquer the hills when we assist neighboring fire companies.

Watch for an informative brochure this fall that introduces this new piece of firefighting equipment!

Tips for Hurricane Preparedness

img289The destructive effects of hurricanes and tropical storms typically occur in our Mid-Atlantic region during the months of August, September, and October. “Much of the preparation for large storms in our area is good common sense,” says Safety Committee Member Ephraim Stoltzfus. “Being diligent about a few simple precautions can help avoid damage by water, trees, and wind.”

High Winds…

  • Bring in outdoor furniture, garbage cans, and other items that are not tied down
  • Have a tarp and 2x4s ready to temporarily fix roofs

Rainfall Flooding…

  • Move valuables up out of places that are flood-prone
  • Clean out debris from rain gutters & downspouts
  • Check condition of hoses, sump pumps and generators
  • Check fuel supplies
  • Do not drive around barricades and through high water

Fallen Trees…

  • Keep trees and bushes well trimmed to improve wind resistance
  • Remove dead trees & limbs before a major storm
  • Check chainsaws and fuel
  • Do not work on trees that touch electric wires

Loss of Power…

  • Collect a three-day food and water supply
  • Keep refrigerator and freezer closed as much as possible
  • Keep battery-powered lights and radio and extra batteries on hand

There are many common-sense safeguards that each family can put into place to deal
with a pending natural disaster. It is important to prepare your home and family. But
here in Bird-in-Hand it is equally as important to be prepared so that you can help your
neighbor be safe and recover from the storm’s effects too.

Community Contributions Add Up to Generous Totals

2016-01-16_15-23-41In the Bird-in-Hand community, many individuals step up to the plate and do their part. That is certainly true of the results of our 2013 Spring Fund Appeal. All gifts, no matter how large or small, are appreciated because they add up quickly and help us reach our financial goals. Your generous monetary contributions show your dedication to keeping our community strong. Thank you!

Total amount of fire dues received to date is $33,600. We are on pace to exceed donations from last year by over 15%. Please use the enclosed envelope to submit a contribution if you haven’t already done so this year.

2013 YTD Expenses $54,071
Utilities & Grounds, Insurance $20,720
Equipment – New, Repair, Maint. $18,231
Office & Administrative $6,374
Building Improvements & Repairs $3,054
Miscellaneous Expenses $3,151
Fuel (trucks) $1,733
Fire Prevention $512
Refreshments/Banquets $277
Training $20


2013 YTD Income $129,918*
Fire Dues Contributions & Donations $35,306
Carriage & Antique Auction $12,588
East Lampeter Twp $28,000
Fundraising Dinners $23,718
Grant Income $11,823
Meeting Room Rentals & Sign Lease $10,727
Interest & Miscellaneous Income $1,627
Merchandise Sales $333
Ladies Auxiliary Income $5,796

*All income over and above expenses goes towards the new tanker purchase.

A Note From the Chief…Being Safe

Recently a technician serviced the fire extinguishers at my day job. A coworker of mine remarked, “A number of the workers here are firefighters, and they’re picky about their fire extinguishers!”

My response was, “Fire can strike anywhere, anytime – it is common sense to be prepared.” A recent fire here in Bird-in-Hand is a prime example. A normal workday ended with a very large fire that was sparked by an electrical malfunction within a wall.

In everyday life we take many safety precautions. We wear seat belts while driving and helmets while playing baseball. We also need to take precautions in our homes, such as installing fire extinguishers and changing the batteries in our smoke detectors. Teaching our families how to call 911 and how to exit our homes safely during a fire is one of the most important safety precautions of all.

Got Blood?

Blood Drive @ BIHFC Wednesday, Oct 23 *
2:00-7:00pm (No appointment necessary. Just show up!)

  • While 50% of the population is eligible to donate blood, only 5% do so.
  • Lancaster General Health (LGH) uses 70-90 pints of blood every day.
  • When you donate w/ LGH blood donor center, the blood stays in Lancaster County and is never sold or taken out of the community.
  • One pint saves 3 lives.
  • LGH rarely has enough and must purchase blood every month.
  • LGH does not charge their patients for the blood no matter how much they use.
  • Every 3 seconds someone needs blood.
  • Every pint is spun down into 3 components: platelets, plasma & red blood cells.
  • It only takes 1 hour to donate & you can donate every 56 days.

* Can’t make this date? Donate @ LG Blood Donor Center – 2104 Harrisburg Pike, Lancaster PA, 717-544-0170 or see LGH’s blood drive schedule at

Family Safety Day

Saturday, October 19, 2013

INCLUDED: Lunch & dessert • Age-appropriate activities for children and youth • Special Junior Program for toddlers & preschoolers through 2nd grade) • Goody bags

img167 Grandparents, parents, children, and all those who care about safety in the Bird-in-Hand area – mark your calendars with a big red check for Saturday, October 19! Along with many hands-on educational experiences for children, there will be specific seminars for adults. For example, a session for grandparents and parents about the latest in car seat safety (including how to install them!)


img248Time for dessert and socializing from 2:00-3:00 pm will wrap up this special day that is planned for our local families and friends.


Note: This is a fun activity for grandparents and grandchildren to enjoy together!

The Day the Fire Truck Came to Our House

On May 2, 2013 The Hand-in-Hand Fire Company honored two of Nathan and Martha Bange’s children, Kendall and Larisa, for submitting their family’s Escape Plan. They had read about the activity in the Children’s Corner of the Fire Company newsletter and completed the project as part of their home-school studies. Here is the photo story of their surprising prize!

The fire truck turned on its siren as it came down Meadow Lane and stopped at our house. Four brave firefighters greeted us Bange children: Kristal (13), Kendall (11), Larisa (10), Angelica (8), and Anita (5).


We hurried to our bedrooms to practice our Escape Plan. Here Larisa crawls through the upper hallway. he is headed to the safety of our meeting place outside by the telephone pole.


What fun to tour the fire truck! We learned about the equipment and how it fights fires. Chief Lonnie helps Kendall strap on an air pack.


Anita and Angelica pretend to be firefighters with coats and hats. They waited patiently while we older children circled the block on the fire truck, siren blaring.


Everyone loves ice cream and whoopie pies! It was a part of our prize for making an Escape Plan. Our parents say that the firefighters were great! They treated us to much more than our family ever imaged or expected.

Community Spirit Beats the Rain at 2013 Carriage Auction

2016-01-16_14-19-55Rains fell, winds blew, and tents collapsed. Everyone in the Birdin- Hand area will long remember the challenging week for our Lancaster County Carriage and Antique Auction, June 24-28, 2013. But the very best memories are of an incredible spirit that rose up out of our community as the weather swirled relentlessly and crisis after crisis demanded that we work together to save our auction.

In spite of having to prepare for the sale in drenching rain and destructive winds, Organizer Jake King summarized the 2013 auction this way. “The community effort was awesome. Even though the profits were down because of extra expenses, the event was still successful. The success came in the way the community people pulled together to do whatever it took to solve the problems caused by the weather. Attitudes were great – no complaints or long faces. The weather brought out the good, better, and best in people.”

2016-01-16_14-22-53 2016-01-16_14-23-09 First ever Dutch Oven meal on Thursday evening sold out in spite of having to rearrange serving lines, change cooking times and locations, and eat at tables with pools of water at everyone’s feet.

The Better… Friday, the day of the sale, dawned sunny and beautiful. A record number of 5,000 attendees, including 1,525 bidders, carefully walked over sawdust-covered mud on the auction grounds and enjoyed buying, eating, and fellowshipping.

The Best… Countless community people stepped up to do whatever was necessary, even setting up a 100′ x 160′ replacement tent in the middle of the night. And donors, such as the Robert J. Gunterberg Charitable Foundation, came forward with contributions to help cover the extra expenses. We, the Bird-in-Hand Fire Company, are very grateful for a supportive community and thank each of you for standing with us during the 2013 auction week.2016-01-16_14-23-26