LACONIA — Laconia Fire Department Lieutenant Chad Vaillancourt is a big fan of the WOW Trail and last year rallied a team to walk the WOW Trail in full bunker gear and self-contained breathing apparatus, over 60 pounds, as part of the WOW Trail's fundraising event called WOW Fest.
This year, Vaillancourt and team will again be participating at WOW Fest by honoring the memory of the 19 Prescott Valley Arizona Firefighters who died battling the Yarn Hill wildfire on June 30th of this year.
"The Laconia Professional Firefighters, Local 1153, is excited to participate again this year at WOW Fest '13 while honoring our fellow firefighters from Arizona" explains Lt. Vaillancourt. "We're planning on having a team of 19 firefighters doing the 3-mile walk in forest fire protective clothing while carrying an assortment of the tools and equipment used in battling forest fires".
"We are also challenging other businesses and organizations to get their teams together and come out, get active and support the WOW Trail" said Lt.Vaillancourt. "We are going to use this as an opportunity for training, conditioning and teamwork all while raising money for the trail".
WOW Fest '13, presented by Bank of New Hampshire, will take place on Saturday, September 14 and features a 3 mile fun walk, 5K and 10K road races and 15 mile and 67 mile bicycle challenges. All events start and finish at the Laconia Athletic & Swim Club on North Main Street followed by a festival with BBQ luncheon, live music and many fun-filled kids and family activities. Luncheon provided this year by Fratello's, T-Bones, The Common Man and Patrick's with music from Paul Warnick.
The WOW Trail is a multi-use trail connecting Lakeport and downtown Laconia. Currently a 1.3 mile trail, the WOW Trail committee is working on plans to build Phase 2 of the trail, which will continue the trail from downtown Laconia to the Belmont town line, effectively doubling the length of the trail.
Laconia Firefighters will be honoring the memory of 19 Prescott Valley Arizona Firefighters who died June 30 battling the Yarn Hill wildfire at WOW Fest '13, a fundraiser for the WOW Trail, which takes place on Saturday, September 14th at Laconia Athletic & Swim Club. Left to right (kneeling) Lieutenant Chad Vaillancourt and Firefighter Nate Mills, (standing) Firefighters Chuck Campbell, Jason Griffin, Steve Hanser, Chris Beaudoin and Dennis Comeau. (Courtesy photo)