A Bartlesville group provided some much-needed funding to the Washington County Fire Department after the volunteers spend several days fighting wildfires in the area.
The Bartlesville Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie 610 presented a $1,000 check to the volunteer fire department Friday morning.
Lester Ropp, a member of the Eagles, said the group was happy to provide the funding.
“We have bingo on Fridays, Saturdays and Mondays, and that’s how we make our money,” Ropp said. “It goes right back into the community. We donate to different fire departments, donate to baseball here and different programs in the area. That’s why we do it. Our money goes right back to the community in other areas too, like the Kiddie Park. Everything we do is for a good cause to help people here in our county.”
Washington County Fire Department Chief Kary Cox said donations from groups like the Eagles is one of the ways the volunteer fire department is able to make ends meet. The Washington County Fire Department has been dispatched to many fires across the area this year because of the drought conditions and high winds so far.
Cox said the department’s equipment and manpower has taken a beating this year because of the multiple fires. Donations help the fire department survive.
“It’s just important to what we do and we wouldn’t be able to survive without donors like the Eagles and others,” Cox said. “That really supplements our budgeted income, and it’s especially important on years like this when we’ve had a lot of wildfires, a lot of activity — that budget gets stretched pretty thin. These donations do a lot for us.”
The Fraternal Order of Eagles is located at 110 W. Second Street in downtown Bartlesville. The doors open at 6 p.m. on Monday, Friday and Saturday, with bingo games starting after that time.
For additional opportunities to donate to the Washington County Fire Department, contact Cox at (918) 331-2710.