CAMBRIA COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) – This week fire departments across Cambria County will be celebrated during the 100th anniversary of the Cambria County Firemen’s Association. Local fire departments took place in a long-standing tradition Sunday afternoon of “Battle of the Barrel,” going head-to-head in a tournament-style competition.
13 local companies in total participated. Before they got started, a team from WTAJ took part in the fun and went up against a team from Saint Francis University.
It’s a contest usually reserved for firefighters. The well-deserved day of fun also serves as a nice way to relax from the usual schedule of a volunteer fireman.
“This is one of the fun parts of being a volunteer fireman. you’re not getting out of bed at 3:30 in the morning in the middle of the winter and going to a fire, or wreck, or some other disaster. So this gives them a little bit of camaraderie” said Gary Haluska, the president of the Patton Fire Company.
When danger calls these local heroes fight on the same team. But once a year, they do enjoy some good competition. And with competition, comes some banter.
“A bunch of rivalries going around with local departments back home. We all work together, but when we come out here it seems like it’s a little bit more enemies going on. But, it’s all fun and games, we’re just out here having fun,” Bracken said.
Residents from across the county coming out to cheer and enjoy a day full of fun and support their local first responders, including Cambria County Commissioner Tom Chernisky.
“A lot of love here in the county. They want to come out here and support their first responders. This is a way for the first responders to show their skills, have fun,” Chernisky said.
Saint Francis handled team WTAJ in a smooth fashion, pushing us around on all four tries. Once the pros took the stage, there was only one thing on their mind.
“Hopefully we win it all,” Bracken said.
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