More Than 200 First Responders, Families Join in 1st ‘Appreciation Day Bbq’

Event Sponsored by Senator Ritchie Draws Volunteers

from Oswego, Jefferson and St. Lawrence County Departments

More than 200 firefighters, rescue, EMS and other emergency first responders and their families joined State Senator Patty Ritchie Tuesday, for her first-ever ‘Volunteer Appreciation Day’, held at Cape Vincent Recreation Park.

The event was held to recognize responders who sacrifice their time and risk their own safety on behalf of their communities, and included representatives from more than two dozen departments and organizations from across Oswego, Jefferson and St. Lawrence Counties.

“Firefighters, EMS, rescue and other emergency first responders are the people who run in when others are running out.  They sacrifice their time and risk their safety to protect the life and property of their friends and neighbors—but also members of the community whom they have never met,” said Senator Ritchie. 

“I thought it was time to say ‘thank you’ and was pleased to be able to offer this event as a way of showing my appreciation for all they do, every single day.”

With picture perfect weather and under clear blue skies, the volunteers from Madrid to Adams to Phoenix enjoyed a free BBQ dinner, prepared by the Pickle Barrel Cafe in DePauville.  Family fun activities included a hula hoop competition for children, sack races, kickball games and tug-of-war contests. 

Families could also take advantage of a free photo booth, complete with costumes and disguises, provided by Allie-Kat Photo Booth of Black River. 

“I want to thank everyone who participated and made the event such a success,” said Senator Ritchie.  “I hope to repeat this event next year, so we can continue to say ‘thanks’ to these brave volunteers and their families.”