Flanders Firefighters to Escort Santa Around Town, Collect Toys for Tots This Saturday

Flanders Fire Company #1 & Rescue Squad has driven Santa around to see Flanders children since the 1960s. This will be his second visit to town in as many weeks.

Flanders, NJ, December 13, 2017 --(PR.com)-- The firefighters and emergency medical providers at the Flanders Fire Company #1 and Rescue Squad will welcome Santa to town this Saturday for his second visit this year. As they drive Santa around on their fire apparatus, firefighters also will collect more toys for Toys for Tots.

Firefighters will escort St. Nick around town on its fire trucks. Santa also will stop and talk with kids as firefighters and EMTs collect toys for the Toys for Tots program. Last year, an ambulance following Santa was full of toys by the end of the “Santa run.” Santa is happy to visit children with special needs if parents let him know by calling (973) 584-7805.

“This is something everyone looks forward to doing all year,” said Kevin Dolan, association treasurer and the firefighter who coordinates Santa’s visits and the fire company’s participation with the Toys for Tots program. “Everyone has a good time and it serves kids in the community.”

This will be Santa’s second visit to town. Last Saturday, Flanders firefighters welcomed Santa, two U.S. Marines and several helpers on the Marine’s Toys for Tots Train. Firefighters have been collecting toys for several weeks and helped fill a boxcar. Train sponsors say they collected more than 3,000 toys during the train’s run.

The Santa Run is a half-century tradition The Flanders Fire Company #1 and Rescue Squad has driven Santa around town since the 1960s, when members escorted Santa from a local airport to a local service club’s annual Christmas meeting. The route gradually expanded to cover more of the growing town. Today, the airport is gone – it was around St. Andrews Court and Wright Court -- and the event has evolved into one anticipated by local children.

Today, the “Santa Run” has grown into a day-long affair. In addition to helping Santa reach all of the children in Flanders, firefighters continue collecting toys for the U.S. Marine’s Toys for Tots. That mission requires a second truck to follow the Santa’s apparatus. Meanwhile, the firehouse will continue to be a place where people can drop off gifts for underprivileged children.

“The Flanders Fire Company #1 serves the community in a variety of different ways, not just responding to calls for help,” said Fred Detoro Jr, president of the Flanders Fire Company Association, the organization that handles the business affairs of the department. “Helping Santa is a way to have some fun and put smiles on the faces of local children.”

The Flanders Fire Company and Rescue Squad No. 1 provides fire protection and emergency medical services to residents and businesses in Flanders and, through mutual aid, surrounding towns. It is made up of about 45 members who receive training in fire suppression, rescue, hazardous materials response, homeland security issues and emergency medical services.

The fire company, which is always looking for new members, operates a fire engine, a tower truck, a rescue/pumper, a brush-and-foam truck, three ambulances, a multiple-casualty unit and a mass decontamination unit.

In addition, the fire company offers public education services including lectures, demonstrations, training and a trailer that safely simulates a smoke-filled home. For information about membership, donations or public education, call (973) 584-7805 or visit www.flanders-fire-rescue.org.
Flanders Fire Company #1 & Rescue Squad
Doug Fenichel, APR
(973) 584-7805
Cell: (973) 769-0688