Provocative images displayed in a glossy format often comes to mind when one thinks of a firefighter calendar.
However, Scott Collard, North Hays County Fire Rescue Chief, felt there wasn’t a need to turn up the heat when his department opted to create a calendar earlier this year.
Instead, the chance to raise money for a good cause, while also promoting fire safety awareness, was the primary goal of the department’s inaugural calendar, which hit shelves and was hung in homes this week.
“It’s not like that. That was everybody’s first impression, but not the approach we wanted to take,” he said. “We wanted to make it community-oriented and something everybody could use.”
The NHCFR’s 17-month calendar features images taken by photographers of both paid and volunteer staff performing actions at emergency incidents, doing training exercises and other family-friendly content. Along with the pictures, the calendar features dates for community happenings such as varsity football games, Christmas on Mercer, Founders Day Festival and other large events.
Collard said each month features a different safety message, maybe reminding people to check their fire alarms or to ‘turn around, don’t drown.’
“If people have this thing open, maybe they’ll think twice before something bad happens,” he said.
Collard said the calendar is only possible due to the support of the community, along with a group of local residents who approached the department with the idea.
The department unveiled the calendars at the 7th annual Dripping Springs Fair and Rodeo. The calendar sold well, Collard said, but their favorite part was engaging with their community.
“It gave us an opportunity it get out and talk with folks. Kids love to see the truck and wear a hat and we love to get out and provide information,” he said.
Profits from the calendar will go toward purchasing reflective address signs to install in areas that may not have them yet. They are useful when the department responds to emergencies, and they plan to provide them to anyone who will accept it.
“Help us find and help you,” Collard said. “It’s primarily out in the more rural areas we find this when we’re responding, especially at night. They might have an address you can see in the day, but sometimes at night, it’s difficult.”