Some of our more notable past fundraising efforts are listed here,
by year, in reverse chronological order. We will add further content
from our records and past newsletters as time permits.
MARCH 5TH BENEFIT FILM SHOWING WAS A HUGE
In support of our district's special equipment needs fundraising
efforts, a benefit showing of "Searchers 2.0,"
was held on March 5th at the Meese Auditorium in the Center for
Visual Arts on the SOU campus.
There was a student showing in the late afternoon with a Q and
A session with Alex, followed by a break, during which we held
a rafffle before the evening CRFD benefit showing. Several people
donated items or services, and we also raffled off some of our
This special fundraising benefit was organized by Board member
Tod Davies, who is also Alex's wife and collaborator, and Karen
Dwyer (of our Budget committee).
Thank you, Tod, Karen, and of course, Alex, for your time in
arranging this event, and your keen support of the fire district!
AND A HUGE THANKS TO ALL OF YOU WHO ATTENDED THIS FUN, FABULOUS,
AND VERY SUCCESSFUL EVENT!
All proceeds from the benefit showing and raffle went to our
fire district. (Film tickets went for $10 each; raffle tickets
were $1 each; shirt sales varied, depending on type and size,
from between $15-$25.) Initial totals for the money raised were
"well over $1,000."
At the March board meeting, it was reported that the benefit
raised $2,207.00 for the district that evening - by far, our most
successful fundraiser ever! Thank you, again, everyone, for such
great support for our district!!
"Searchers 2.0" is the latest film by Colestin
valley resident and internationally popular independent
filmmaker Alex Cox, whose previous films, including "Repo
Man," "Sid and Nancy," "Three Businessmen,"
and "Revenger's Tragedy," have already earned
him a wide following.
"Searchers 2.0" is "the hilarious story
of two out of work actors who take a road trip to Monument
Valley in search of revenge against a screenwriter who tortured
them when they were kids." The film has already been
screened "at the Venice International Film Festival,
and the AIF Festival in Los Angeles, and will play at [the]
Lincoln Center in New York, in February."
For more information about the film, check out the film's
website at www.searchers2.com.
A TIDES FOUNDATION GRANT WILL GO FOR A WATER TENDER
In August of 2006, we were informed by the Executive Director
of the Tides Foundation in San Francisco that the fire district's
general fund had been granted $5,000.
This support has specifically been provided by the
Baraka Fund of the Tides Foundation, on the recommendation of
Colestin resident Benjamin Stott. The Tides Foundation has supported
organizations working for positive social change since 1976, and
has been a tremendous supporter of our fire district over the
Our Board agreed to allocate the grant towards the
purchase of a used water tender. Given our geography and the difficulty
of getting water to fires, the opportunity to have a water tender
allows our firefighters to control fires much more easily.
A 4x4 two-axle 2,000-gallon capacity truck, the
largest that the district is able to house, normally costs between
$25,000 - $30,000.
The Tides Foundation money was combined with additional
grant money and with money from firefighting revenues received
through automatic and mutual aid agreements with other agencies
to purchase the water tender, and to help pay for its operations.
Our New Structure Fire Engine, financed by a FEMA Grant:
After nearly a two-year wait while CDF built the engine for us,
and after outfitting it with parts, our long-awaited FEMA (Federal
Emergency Management Agency)-financed structure fire engine, Engine
No. 44-13,was finished and put into full-time service in the fall
of 2004. It is housed at Station No. 1 at Colestin, in the center
of the district. Photos and more
On June 24th, 2003, we were notified that the CRFD has been awarded
a $6,500 grant from the Neil McDonald Foundation,
to complement the new State of Oregon grant award for about $12,000,
and the FEMA grant we received in September,
2002, for a structure fire engine.
We purchased our first structure fire engine last
spring with the FEMA grant money. This engine has been outfitted
by CDF with hoses, tanks, and other parts and equipment, and was
put into service this September.
Also last spring, we sold our old 1956 International
4 X 4 Fire Truck. It was put on sale to the public through
a sealed bidding process which closed March 30th. We received
and accepted a bid for the minimum bid amount of $3,500. View
this truck as advertised.
[The following contents are taken directly from
newsletters to our district members during 1999, presented here
at length in order to demonstrate where we were then as a district,
and how far we have come since then:]
The combined efforts of Fire District fundraising,
and generous donations to CRFD by local residents
through private fundraising, allowed the Fire
District to purchase a portable cardiac AED (Automated
External Defibrillator) unit in the fall of 1999, augmenting
our emergency medical response services with this potentially
life-saving special equipment.
An AED is a vital service to be able to provide in an area such
as ours, where on a good day, most of us are at least 45 minutes
away from the nearest hospital defibrillator unit, which is in
The cost of the defibrillator, at $ 3,520. per unit, could not
have been met by our available budgetary provisions; and "borrowing"
from other budget categories would have shortchanged other vital
equipment needs and services.
Donations for the defibrillator, from all fundraising sources,
totaled $1,450 by mid-June last year, shortly after we set out
to begin raising the money for it. Just one month later, $3,433
had been raised, almost reaching the goal. The Board was then
able to approve the purchase, and the defibrillator arrived a
few days later. A special thanks is due Cheri Avgeris, who volunteered
her time to hold a special training session on the AED.
We are grateful to all of the following people who, through various
endeavors, helped to make our new AED a reality:
On May 31st, a number of local Colestin residents, headed up
by Amanda Germain and Dansing Galusha, held a "Firewalk"
event. A "firewalk" is a fire in an open pit with hot
coals or rocks, which people walk over. Donations were requested
of participants, from which proceeds the organizers donated about
$700, to assist CRFD's medical equipment fundraising efforts.
[Please note that this event took place before fire season began,
and that it was co-ordinated ahead of time with the fire district,
with the full co-operation of all parties involved, in order to
ensure fire safety.]
Several participating residents also contributed additional cash
donations to help the fire district purchase this equipment. Many
thanks to Amanda and Dansing, to their business, Peaceworks, and
to all those who played a part in this generous, much-appreciated
contribution to our fundraising efforts!
Another major fundraising event during 1999 was a Used
Book Sale, on July 16th and 17th, held at the Talent
Wal Mart parking lot. Originally scheduled as a 3-day event, the
sale went so well that most of the books were sold by the end
of the second day, enabling us to conclude the sale that same
Many people helped us with this event: Firstly, all of you who
contributed books to sell.
Wal Mart in Talent donated the parking-lot vendor space to us,
helping to set up the booth canopy, and loaned us a display shelf.
Frank and Jeannie Marin loaned the booth canopy to us, and Italo
Marin also assisted with the assembly.
Steve Dippold of Best Designs donated a display banner for the
booth, with the District's name on it.
Colestin residents and Fire District volunteers Sharron Halvorson
and Cheri Avgeris organized the book sale, procured the booth
space at Wal Mart, and picked up books from all those who contributed
Sharron also handled advertising in local newspapers, and sent
out the district-wide flyer announcing the sale and the need for
used book donations. In addition, she and her partner, John Wall,
sorted, categorized, and priced the books in preparation for the
Special thanks is due Andy Herskind and Steve and Cheri Avgeris,
who transported display tables, supplies, and books in their own
vehicles, and gave lots of time and energy to pull off the book
Sheila Maher and Johanna Wright also gave their time to work
at the booth.
Steve and Penny Meads, the proprietors of Stateline Service in
Hilt, donated cash and merchandise to the sale from the Store's
And Lisa Buttrey and her husband, David Cothran, donated an additional
$500 in cash to the book sale proceeds, specified for the defibrillator
Overall, book sale proceeds totaled over $900. We are most grateful
for all of the community support and the many monetary and in-kind
donations that made this event possible, and successful. Thank
CRFD has also been fundraising with CRFD T-Shirt sales
throughout the past year. Since sales began last spring, we have
raised almost $500.
The brain-child of Cheri Avgeris, our first-ever T-Shirts began
as navy blue heavyweight, 60 %-cotton / 40 %- polyester Tees,
with the CRFD logo on the front, and a "you light 'em, we
fight 'em" slogan on the back. At $15.00 each, available
at Stateline Service in Hilt and directly from the fire district,
they were gorgeous and very popular, and we sold out quickly.
The second incarnation of CRFD T-Shirts are white, and are lettered
across the left side of the front with "CRFD." They
are regular (not heavyweight) 50/50 % cotton-polyester, without
the original slogan & logo, yet are just as wearable as the
To purchase one of our fundraising T-Shirts, contact Cheri at
(541) 488-1768, or visit the Stateline Service store in Hilt.
A limited quantity is still available, for $ 10 each, in the following
sizes: 3X, 2X, XL, L, and M. (No 'Small').
We are thankful for being able to co-ordinate the sales of our
T-Shirts with Steve and Penny Meads, who are the proprietors of
We also wish to extend an in-house "thank-you!" to
Cheri Avgeris, who has handled the supply and printing for the
shirts, as well as promotion and sales, throughout the past year.
These shirts are intended not only for firefighters or fire district
personnel, but for anyone who is proud of our fire district's
volunteer efforts. Treat yourself, or someone you know, to one
of our shirts, and help us to acquire the much-needed firefighting
and medical emergency response equipment that our budget cannot
This year, we will again participate in the annual 4th
of July in Ashland, selling miniature American flags.
Last year, we were fortunate to have Mike Maher (Sheila Maher's
brother) agree to don the customary 'Uncle Sam' costume and sell
We don't yet have a 'Sam' for this year's 4th. If you, or someone
you know, is interested to do this for us, please contact Board
member Peg Stewart, who is organizing this year's event. Look
for more details in our June news. (Continued to next page)
Spearheaded by Assistant Fire Chief Andy Herskind, who has
also been our Medical Officer through the Hilt Fire Company
for the past several years, we are currently pursuing a grant
for a "jaws of life" for our medical
These grants are sponsored by the Siskiyou County Sheriff's
Department, which is responsible for all safety equipment for
emergency vehicles in the County. Under the aegis of the Hilt
VFD, which is legally in California, we are eligible to become
a grant recipient.
SPECIAL MENTION: The District owes a very special thanks to
former Board member Nick Doherty, who was solely responsible
for CRFD receiving a $7,500. grant to purchase a medical rescue
Steve Avgeris was able to locate a 1987 4-wheel drive diesel-fueled
Chevrolet 'Suburban' in excellent condition, which the District
recently purchased with the grant money.
We have a siren for it, a light bar is on its way, and some
minor mechanical work is currently being done; we may also receive
a donated radio for this rig. Our former medical vehicle, the
Ford Bronco, will become a patrol and back-up response unit.
The rescue unit grant funder will remain anonymous by request,
but has given the District this money so that it can respond
to the ever-increasing medical emergencies we face throughout
the year. Thanks, Nick!
During the past year, we have also received 'general fund'
$ DONATIONS from a number of people, in addition to the defibrillator
donations listed above.
A sincere thank-you to each of these folks, for their personal
or business donations: Mountcrest Ltd. (Jud Parsons), Alex and
Jennifer Liston-Dykema, Art and Mary-Jo Trainor, and a $1,200
donation from Fruit Growers Supply Company in Hilt.
Special Mention: The Fire District received a Memorial Contribution
from Betty Schoenhals , in honor of her late husband, Leonard.
Both Leonard and Betty have been strong supporters of the District
over the years. We recognize the representative significance
of this special donation, and appreciate it very much. Thank
Bill and Laurie Rooker donated a vehicle for a "Burn-To-Learn"
session, for firefighter training. To the unacquainted, this
might seem like a waste of a perfectly good used vehicle, but
hands-on practice is essential to good firefighting techniques.
Thank you, Bill and Laurie.
Mike Maher also helped set up the District's computer software.
His time and materials to install programs in the District's
computer are valued at $225. Thank you for your expertise, Mike.
Marshall and Nancy Cole donated a new, 1992 snowmobile to the
Fire District this past fall, for wintertime search and rescue
situations. An approximately $5,000 value, this is a wonderful
gift. A hearty thanks to both Nancy and Marshall.
Frank and Jeannie Marin, who are familiar with snowmobiles,
have offered to operate this unit for the District.
A debt of gratitude is owed to Fruit Growers, for the use of
a recently acquired "Quick Attack" small fire rig
(44-20, nicknamed "The Squad").
Although this 150-gallon pumper is not officially recognized
as a fire engine, cannot respond to Code-3 calls, and is limited
to use as a private vehicle, it is particularly advantageous
for our District's initial response needs. Currently stationed
in the Hilt schoolhouse (owned by Fruit Growers), they are also
separately insuring this rig for us.
In addition, Fruit Growers has been footing the electric heating
bill for the schoolhouse, which we also use to house some equipment
and 44-11, our 500-gallon pumper at the southern end of the
District, as well as the Squad.
A definitive 'thank you' to Chuck Hickman and the Fruit Growers
Company, for the use of the schoolhouse, its wintertime heat,
and the use of this excellent, insured, local-response vehicle.
Jerry Keller of the California Dept. of Forestry donated wildland
firefighting clothing (jackets and pants) to us through the
Hilt VFD this past year. New firefighting gear is very expensive,
and this very welcome contribution will save us considerably.
Thank you, Jerry Keller.
Chief Darin Quigley of CDF's Fire Dept. in Weed donated two
air packs and self-contained breathing apparatus masks for fighting
structure fires. These are also very expensive items. Thank
you, Chief Quigley.
Also from CDF, Gib Anderson rebuilt a "foam unit"
and gave it to the Hilt VFD. This is a portable unit, requiring
only a can of foam, and can be a real asset in firefighting.
Siskiyou County Sheriff Charlie Byrd donated three radios to
the Hilt VFD; they are downsized models, but have very good
range, and are outfitted with batteries and chargers. As communications
radios is still one of our less funded items, because of the
expense, we are grateful to receive these units. Thank you,
Among additional local volunteer contributions, Lisa Buttrey,
John Marin, and CRFD Board member Nancy Carlson have privately
formed a committee to work on voluntary participation in establishing
better identification of residences within the district, by
posting visible house numbers and road signs for 911 - Emergency
Response Access purposes.
While the Fire District is not engaged in any formal program
to do this, as some districts have, we are urging everyone to
voluntarily make their residences, and the back roads you may
live on, easier to find, for emergency situations. Thank you,
Lisa, John, and Nancy, for working with the community on this.
A big thanks to Sharron Halvorson and Kay Henry, who are preparing
our Annual Budget, for submission to Jackson County this June.
The budget will be proposed before the Board and publicly posted
in mid-May, before being finalized. Sharron reports that this
year's budget is tailored to "real money" rather than
projected tax-base revenue, since there is a 6 % to 8 % discrepancy
between the two figures.
Sharron and Kay are not Board members, but have again agreed
to take on this tedious job on our behalf. The Board is very
thankful for their expertise help.
Last but still very importantly, a huge thanks to Steve Avgeris,
for completing the maintenance on all of the District's vehicles
this past winter, and to John Moody, who also helped out with
this time-consuming, but vital, work. The details involved are
too numerous to list; the result, however, is that all eight
of our vehicles are in fine running condition.
Parts and other expenses have been minimized as much as possible.
Pumper 44-13 now has all-new tires, thanks to Les Schwab Tires
in Ashland, which offered us a good trade-in price for the old
ones. As most people well know, labor costs are the most prohibitive;
Steve's labor on 44-12, alone, totals over $375. After all of
this work, we are still within our maintenance budget. If we
had had to hire out the work done by Steve and John, we wouldn't
be. THANKS, GUYS!
[Ed.: A lot has gone on this year, and the above list goes
back a full year. If your name doesn't appear here for your
contribution to the Fire District, please let us know and we
will mention you in our June news.]
Why must we fundraise, and solicit donations?
Since its inception several years ago, the Fire District's
tax base has been able to fund most of our basic operating expenses.
However, as our population in the valley has increased, our
service needs have also increased, in relation to this growth.
The demand for our fire protection and medical services by adjacent
districts and agencies, with which we have mutual aid and automatic
aid agreements, has also increased.
We therefore have done our best to meet these service demands,
by engaging in a higher, more professional level of service,
through our training programs and equipment augmentation, in
accord with the growing needs of our own community and other
agencies with whom we work.
These additional service requirements that our District must
legally strive to meet, places additional demands upon our base
budget. We are in the precarious position of being mandated
by Jackson County to provide the services we do, without having
the full funding to do it (not unlike local schools, police,
and other government agencies!).
As an all-volunteer Fire District, we could not function without
the back-up aid and occasionally, the equipment support, of
other agencies with whom we have aid agreements. Nor could we
jeopardize our own community by limiting our services, in order
to remain within our tax base budget.
Therefore, we go forward on a "shoeshine and a smile,"
as playwright Arthur Miller says, trusting that the financial
end of our affairs will somehow come together. The strong support
we receive from our own residents, and from "friends of
the District" among neighboring agencies and private sources,
allows us to make up the difference between what our tax-base
covers, and what our actual operating expenses are, and to continue.
Bear this in mind, as you peruse the above-listed catalogue
CRFD'S MEDICAL UNIT NEEDS EQUIPMENT
Cheri Avgeris, who heads the Fire District's Medical Response
Team, informs us that the unit is without an emergency response
defibrillator for heart attack victims.
Based on the kinds of calls the district is getting, we need
to be able to have this item on hand during emergency situations.
Two calls for medical assistance this past winter that did not
initiate as heart failure crises became more critical due to
stalled traffic during storms.
While other medical response units outside of our district
were able to provide additional assistance in these instances,
we cannot normally depend upon other agencies' units for rapid
response within our area.
Immediate response to a medical emergency is as vital as it
is to a regular fire call. As experienced responders know, a
regular fire call can also become a medical emergency, since
the stress of any crisis can provoke a medical crisis in turn.
The established time frame for initial response to a cardiac
arrest call is ten minutes. The nearest defibrillator unit is
in Ashland, which is too far for a response unit to arrive in
most of our district within the necessary time frame.
We are unable to afford to outfit our medical response unit
with defibrillator service under the current budget.
We are therefore attempting to raise the necessary additional
funds with a second fundraiser (possibly a used-book sale, with
donations by Colestin community members). Call us for details,
or watch for flyers posted at the Stateline Store in Hilt.
Portable cardiac AED (Automated External Defibrillator): The
cost of a defibrillator is $ 3,520. per unit.