Over 100 local residents joined the responders to ring in the New Year and raise funds for the Firefighter’s Association
ATASCADERO — The Atascadero Firefighter’s Association brought back their New Year’s Eve Bash Centennial Celebration Fundraiser this year. There, local residents and fire and emergency personnel celebrated Atascadero Fire and Emergency Services’ 100 years of operation, which was an addition specific to this year, as well as ringing in the New Year.
“COVID, obviously, killed some of the fun, so we decided to dig it [the New Year’s Eve Bash] back up, especially since we’re celebrating our 100-year anniversary,” stated Cody Ferris, a firefighter with Atascadero Fire and Emergency Services. “We wanted to celebrate with the public and as a department for 100 years of service.”
The Bash started at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 31, at Springhill Suites by Marriott with a sold-out, sitdown dinner for guests who purchased tickets early. The dinner was catered by Springhill Suites and consisted of delicious, mouthwatering food. Then from 9 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2022, to 1 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2023, more guests who had purchased tickets for the later festivities joined in the fun.
“We wanted to keep it rolling with the public and have as many people as we can to celebrate,” added Ferris.
The celebration also featured raffles and a silent auction. The New Year’s Bash is always the Atascadero Firefighter’s Association’s biggest fundraiser, bringing in the most money for the nonprofit all year. All proceeds from the event go directly back into the local community. At this time, it is not known how much money was raised at the event.
“The money goes to our local [Atascadero Firefighter’s Association] 3600 Union, and from there, we use that money to support the public,” Ferris continued. “We do BBQ fundraisers for people in need that have cancer or maybe they’re going through a hard time. We’ll throw BBQs for them. We support the high school by doing high school scholarships, giving money for different things, so we’ll support through that. Or if somebody loses their house in a structure fire, then we support those families with money that we earn at this event.”
The New Year’s festivities included dancing with music by DJ Marco Alarcon, two cash bars, and rounded out the night with a champagne toast and a balloon drop at the stroke of midnight.
“We would like to shout out everybody who has donated to us for the silent auction. We have great support from local businesses and different wineries around this area. Mostly in Atascadero, but there’s been people in Paso and Templeton that have all helped out,” Ferris said. “And [thank you to] all the families and friends of the fire department that helped with the setup and all the little details that go into the event.”