Park County bakes


There are many talented and skilled bakers and cooks in the county. Edna Ayers holds a strawberry cheesecake pie that she made from her high altitude home in Ranch of the Rockies which is close to Fairplay and Hartsel. In addition to pies, Ayers cooks many traditional recipes from New Mexico. (Photo by Lori Bennett/The Flume)

Volunteers in Park County come in many sizes, shapes, backgrounds, skills, talents and flavors. They also take on a variety of assignments, long term, short term and some that are carried out just for a special event, such as Burro Days.  

Richard Goodman of Hartsel not only volunteers for the Hartsel Fire Protection District Auxiliary, but is also the founder. He started the auxiliary with consultation and support from Hartsel Fire Chief Chris Tingle over two years ago.

Goodman served as president of the HFPDA and is now a volunteer, which includes being on call. Auxiliary volunteers are called to the site of a fire and bring food (often hamburgers and hot dogs), water, coffee, soft drinks and snacks.

The HFPDA also provides fundraising activities to supplement equipment that the  fire district might need.

The mission of the HFPDA per their Facebook page is,  “Our main endeavor is to provide food and drink to firefighters responding to incidents. The auxiliary hosts community meals at Fire Station number one and invites the community to attend.

“This is to pay the community back for its loyalty and backing of the fire department,” Goodman said. “The auxiliary will host fundraising events to raise funds for auxiliary operations.”

Goodman added, “Volunteering for the firefighters gives you a sense of comradery and also you get to meet the firemen working hard to save lives and property and it is great to hear their appreciation.”

For example, Goodman says the firefighters on one event were working hard for four-to- six hours straight, and they were very thankful to have chairs and food which the HFPDA brought. 

Niki Griffin, president of the HFPDA said, “Benefits of helping the auxiliary include serving the community and feeding firefighters.”

She also explained that volunteers can be long-term members of the auxiliary participating in a variety of events or serving short-term, for example, as part of a special cooking day team.

Griffin added that they are thankful to Mountain Heights Baptist Church in Buena Vista for donating a bus after auxiliary members Ken and Patty Belllinger nominated the HFPDA.

Hartsel Fire Chief Tingle said, “We appreciate the meals and fundraising from the auxiliary and we can always use additional volunteers for the auxiliary, as well as firefighter volunteers.”

Goodman said volunteers use the bunkhouse to cook food, and they also have a trailer to bring supplies to the site of the fire.

If interested in joining the auxiliary, contact the HFPDA by calling 719-836-3500. You can find more information about their meetings and updates on the Facebook page, “Hartsel Fire Auxiliary.”

To become a volunteer firefighter, contact your nearest fire district and let them know you want to help save lives and property.

The Flume would like to get to know Park County volunteers. If you have a volunteer that you would like us to feature, email or call 303-838-4423.

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