Q: What had eight legs, ran on steam and will be 150 years old next month?
A: The original Champaign Fire Department.
Yes! The Champaign Fire Department turning 150 years old on July 8, 2015!
Many things have certainly changed in Champaign’s modern fire department; fire engines aren’t horse drawn or steam driven today but dedicated fire service staff continues to serve the citizens of Champaign in ways never dreamed of by the original members.
Parade and Muster:
A parade of fire trucks, old and new, will take place on July 19, 2015, starting at 12:00 p.m. The parade will start at the Illinois Fire Service Institute, travel west on Kirby Avenue, north on Mattis Avenue, east on University Avenue to Champaign Central High School. As the parade passes Champaign Central High School, walking participants will join in and proceed to downtown Champaign to the corner of Main and Walnut.
A Fire Muster will be held in the City of Champaign parking lot north of the News Gazette from 1:00 to 5:00. During the muster dozens of fire engines will be on display; we will have games and fire prevention activities for children, competitive games featuring firefighters from across the area and a mobile museum displaying items from throughout the Champaign Fire Departments history. There will be activities for the family, food and fun. Please come join us for a day of fun for the entire family.
Fire Department personnel will be available the week of July 6th for interviews regarding our 150th anniversary.