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“Pullin’ for Partnership Fire Truck Challenge,” which will benefit Partnership for a Drug-Free Community, will be held Sept. 30 from 10 a.m. to noon at Bob Jones High School. CONTRIBUTED

Teams to show strength in ‘Pullin’ for Partnership Fire Truck Challenge’

MADISON – Community teams will demonstrate that they’re ‘pulling for’ people working for sobriety by entering the “2023 Pullin’ for Partnership Fire Truck Challenge,” which will benefit Partnership for a Drug-Free Community.

For the third year, Madison Fire and Rescue employees are joining forces with Partnership personnel to bring attention to substance use problems that face the local population. The event will raise funds to provide services to individuals looking for help.

The fundraiser will be held Sept. 30 from 10 a.m. to noon at Bob Jones High School, 650 Hughes Road. The event coincides with National Recovery Month. The Partnership staff will combine their Recovery Resource Fair with Pullin’ for Partnership, giving the audience numerous options to learn more about available treatment resources.

Pullin’ for Partnership will involve teams of 10 competing for bragging rights, trophies and a chance to prove they ‘have what it takes’ to pull a 46,000-pound fire truck for the length of 100 feet with a rope. This community event will offer youth activities and a couple of food trucks.

Brandy Williams, Deputy Chief of Madison Fire and Rescue, said the department is supporting Pullin’ for Partnership event because, as first responders, they see the impact of the opioid and fentanyl crises almost daily.

“I think most people are very aware that we have a serious substance use crisis. Too many are dying. So anything we can do to bring awareness to programs that help address it, from trying to prevent it to helping those who have an addiction, it is a positive for our city and community,” Williams said.

On a lighter note, Williams said the event presents a rare opportunity for people to be able to say they pulled a fire truck with a rope. “The department will have strict safety protocols to ensure this is a fun event for all,” she said.

Partnership Board Chair Karren Crowson said the nonprofit appreciates the support from the City of Madison and Madison City Schools to create this event for the third year. “We expect this to be our biggest year yet,” Crowson said.

Encouraging teams to enter ‘the pull,’ Partnership board and staff said the fire truck pull can be a great team-building exercise and a fun stress buster. It’s also a great way for a person to celebrate sobriety.

“It’s the reason we’re doing it that’s so important,” Partnership Deputy Director David Battle said. “We see this as a great way to show those who may be struggling with addiction and maintaining their sobriety that there are many people ‘pulling’ for them to get better and lead healthier lives.”

A team’s registration fee is $250; registration deadline is Sept. 15. Any donation to the nonprofit organization is tax-deductible, and all proceeds will support Partnership for a Drug-Free Community’s programs, which are in high demand with the opioid, fentanyl and vaping epidemics.

For event rules and registration forms, call 256-539-7339, email info@thedrugfreepartnership.org or visit www.partnershipforadrug-freecommunity.org.

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