BEACON FALLS — Rides, fried dough and a parade? It must be time for Beacon Hose Company No. 1’s annual Firemen’s Carnival.
The carnival returns to the firehouse, 35 North Main St. for three days. The carnival is open 6 to 10 p.m. June 12, 6 to 11 p.m. June 13 and 3 p.m. to midnight June 14.
The carnival features rides, food and live music each day. Special events will also take place during the three days, including a bicycle raffle for all Laurel Ledge Elementary School students June 12 and the annual Firemen’s Parade, which steps off at 6 p.m. June 14.
“We have local departments that we work with daily and ones as far away as New York,” said Mike Pratt, former fire chief and chairman of the carnival, about the parade.
First Selectman Christopher Bielik said the town is always pleased to see the support by other fire departments at the parade.
“One of the things we’re always grateful for is every year we get a showing of strong support from fellow fire departments from the area and from far away,” Bielik said.
In addition to firefighters, the parade also includes members of the armed forces.
American Legion Post 25 Commander Bruce Carlson said the legion is in need of uniformed U.S. Army, Marine Corp, and Air Force personnel to carry their branch of service flag during the parade. Carlson said those who are interested can contact him at (203) 723-6936.
A fan favorite every year at the carnival is the food. The menu includes steamed clams, fried dough, hot dogs, hamburgers, steak sandwiches and loaded baked potatoes.
“One of our biggest attractions is the lobster dinner,” Pratt said.
This year the firehouse is allowing carnival-goers to pre-order their food and ride tickets online at www.beaconhose.com.
In addition to being a fun event for the community, the carnival is the department’s largest fundraiser. People who are unable to attend but still wish to donate to the department can do so at www.beaconhose.com.
“All the money raised through this carnival goes back to community through the different things we do,” Pratt said.
Pratt said the money goes to support scholarships, the annual Easter Egg Hunt, trophies at the annual fishing rodeo and a fire prevention program among other activities.
Bielik said the carnival has always been a huge success.
“It’s something that I’m always thrilled to participate in. It means so much to this town,” Bielik said. “Even the years we’ve been hit with bad weather it doesn’t dampen people’s spirits.”
Pratt is thankful that so many people turn out to enjoy the carnival and support the fire department each year.
“We’re such a small community. It’s great everyone supports firehouse so well. They help us out so much,” Pratt said.