Fund-raisers benefit firehouse renovation

Kathy McCarty, Special to The County
17 years ago

    PRESQUE ISLE, Maine – The Presque Isle Historical Society’s recent barbecue as part of the Balloon Fest activities August 24 raised much-needed funds for the renovation of the firehouse on Church Street.
“Despite the weather, we did very well,” said Kim Hall, treasurer of the non-profit organization.

   This year’s barbecue featured the usual hotdogs and hamburgers but added a new item to the menu in hopes of attracting more interest. Hall said it worked and sales were better than expected, considering the gray skies and threat of storms that plagued the area on Friday.
“We had barbecued chicken this year. We usually do burgers and hotdogs. The chicken proved to be a big hit,” said Hall.
Hall said the final tally isn’t in yet but so far it looks like several hundred dollars were raised for the cause.
“It’s looking like we’ll have about $500 above our expenses when the final tally is in,” said Hall.
What food remained after Friday’s feast was donated to Homeless Services of Aroostook, according to Hall.
Hall shared her love of Presque Isle and its history serving as a tour guide on Saturday during the festival.
“I did a guided walking tour in full costume on Saturday and did a presentation before a class reunion at Slopes that went well too,” she said.
In all, Hall said she led seven people around town, all members of different reunion groups.
“There were several reunions that took place recently. These were members of various reunions,” said Hall.
At the end of the tour, Hall was surprised when the group presented her with a donation for the restoration project.
“They asked at the end of the tour if we’d take donations. I was shocked to receive $130. I never expected a donation of that size,” said Hall.
Another fund-raiser is planned for next weekend to celebrate the installation of new doors at the former fire station.
“In celebration of that, we’ll have a cookout on Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. We’ll have hotdogs, hamburgers, chips, soda and maybe desserts. Hamburger plates will be sold for $4 and include chips and soda; hotdog plates will be $3 and include chips and soda,” said Hall.
Local craftsman Alden Swanson has been in charge of the door project and will be busy installing them over the next week.
“Alden made the doors and will be overseeing their installation. The glass is being installed by Portland Glass,” said Hall.
Hall hopes to see a good turnout for this weekend’s cookout.
“We welcome questions about the firehouse and invite anyone interested to come visit and have an inexpensive meal. Proceeds will go toward the continued renovation of the firehouse,” said Hall.