Fire­fight­ers Flip Flap­jacks

McDonald County Press - - FRONT PAGE - Sally Car­roll

The Pineville Ru­ral Fire De­part­ment hosted its an­nual all-you-caneat pan­cake break­fast at 6 a.m. April 7. By 7:30, vol­un­teers were busy flip­ping pan­cakes, cook­ing eggs, sausage and ba­con, and mak­ing

sure the cof­fee was plen­ti­ful for a con­stant stream of cus­tomers.

Peo­ple are se­ri­ous about their pan­cakes in Pineville.

The Pineville Ru­ral Fire De­part­ment opened the doors to its an­nual all-you­can-eat pan­cake break­fast at 6 on Satur­day morn­ing, April 7.

Within 15 min­utes of open­ing, the fundraiser had its first cus­tomer. By 6:30 a.m., one per­son stopped by and said she was on her way to the half-marathon in Bentonville, Ark., said Pineville mayor and as­sis­tant fire chief Gregg Sweeten.

By 7:30, vol­un­teers were busy flip­ping pan­cakes, cook­ing up eggs, sausage and ba­con, and mak­ing sure the cof­fee was plen­ti­ful and hot for the con­stant stream of cus­tomers.

By 10 a.m., busi­ness was very steady and the juice was al­ready gone, but the fluffy pan­cakes were plen­ti­ful.

Cindy Watkins and her fam­ily, of Jane, en­joyed a warm break­fast, com­plete with bis­cuits and gravy. Watkins read about the fundraiser, then de­cided to take ad­van­tage of the break­fast for $5 so she wouldn’t have to cook. In­stead, she and her fam­ily could drop by and en­joy break­fast, then run er­rands.

“And it’s for a good cause,” she said.

Vol­un­teer fire­man Bob Pay­ton, who was in charge of serv­ing gravy, said the fundraiser drew a crowd.

“We’ve had a good turnout,” he said.

Tem­per­a­tures av­er­aged around 27 de­grees in the 6 o’clock hour. Of­fi­cials spec­u­lated that the cold weather — on a “spring” April day — might have con­trib­uted to the crowd of those seek­ing a hot, de­li­cious break­fast.

The fundraiser, how­ever, is a pop­u­lar one for the area. The an­nual fundraiser got its start years ago by own­ers of the Pineville Grill af­ter fire­fight­ers saved the struc­ture from com­pletely burn­ing down. In ap­pre­ci­a­tion, own­ers hosted the break­fast as a fundraiser for the fire de­part­ment.

When the grill closed last year, of­fi­cials de­cided to con­tinue the fundraiser at the Pineville Com­mu­nity Cen­ter.

On Mon­day, Pineville fire chief Ryan Drake said the de­part­ment raised $2,882 af­ter ex­penses. Funds will aid with the pur­chase of new equip­ment and with op­er­at­ing costs.

SALLY CAR­ROLL/MCDON­ALD COUNTY PRESS

Pineville mar­shal Chris Owens (back, right) and vol­un­teer fire­fight­ers Jake Leake and Lori Byrd cook up some tasty break­fast at the Pineville Ru­ral Fire De­part­ment’s fundraiser on April 7.

SALLY CAR­ROLL/MCDON­ALD COUNTY PRESS

Brit­tany Ri­vard hands Pineville vol­un­teer fire­man Bob Pay­ton (left) a plate of bis­cuits that need gravy at the all-you­can-eat pan­cake break­fast fundraiser April 7 at the Pineville Com­mu­nity Cen­ter. Money raised ben­e­fits the Pineville Ru­ral Fire...

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