MIFFLINTOWN - As an experienced firefighter, Mike Tressler knows that sometimes creativity is necessary to have a successful fundraiser.
So when he moved to Juniata County and joined Mifflintown Hose Co. after 32 years of working for the New Buffalo Fire Co. in Perry County, he knew the local firefighters had to get together to brainstorm ideas.
A gun raffle calendar with gift cards to Bass Pro Shops and cash prizes is just one current idea to help with generating funds for local fire companies.
Tressler talked to a friend of his at Duncannon Fire Company about putting the calendar together. Tressler's friend at Ducannon talked to someone he knew at Wiconisco Fire Engine Co. in Dauphin County and Tressler spoke to New Buffalo where he used to be a member.
Tressler said the four companies from three counties got together to brainstorm ideas to create more revenue. Mifflintown, Duncannon, New Buffalo and Wiconisco all met for breakfast and came up with the idea for the group to put out a calendar.
The Tri-County Fireman's Sportsmen's Calendar 2013 will be a gun raffle calendar with packages from Bass Pro Shops included. There will be 20 different types of guns and a variety of packages including camping, hunting, fishing and crossbow packages. The calendar will also include cash prizes.
The calendar will cost $25 and be available at any of the four fire companies. Each of the companies was responsible for paying for the printing of the calendars.
Because of this, the proceeds collected from the sale of the calendars will be distributed evenly between the companies.
"There is a brotherhood of volunteers that keep helping each other," Tressler said. "This has been a result of tough fundraising in the past four to five years."
Tressler said New Buffalo used to host Bingo each Friday for 25 years and had to quit because the company was not turning a profit due to lack of attendance.
The calendars will be coming out in time for the holiday season, Tressler said.