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YMCA supporters have plenty of pull

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Like many of the volunteers pulling a fire truck to support the YMCA of Eastern Ontario in Brockville on Saturday morning, the annual Fire Truck and Car Pull has hit its stride.

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Fourteen teams of up to eight people apiece, one short of the maximum, turned out for the fourth annual fundraiser to pull a Brockville fire truck held out of service for the Y’s Strong Kids campaign.

A separate kids’ car-pull was changed to a push for technical reasons – nowhere to attach a rope – and drew a single team of youngsters pushing a Kia down the driveway.

As the timed competition unfolded on a bright and sunny morning, it left organizers smiling easily.

Teams registered from local fire departments in Brockville, Front of Yonge (Mallorytown) and Edwardsburgh/Cardinal, the Brockville and Kingston YMCAs, Burnbrae operations in Lyn, Kingston, Ottawa and Upton, Quebec as well as individual groups such as the Brockville Braves.

“We raised a little over $10,000 in 2018 and 14 teams is the most ever, so we hope to exceed that amount this year,” said Rob Adams, YMCA CEO.

“People recognize the importance of the YMCA in the area and as a community hub,” said Adams, pointing to the city’s only indoor pool and a range of programs for all ages that are provided for local residents.

Ian McFall, vice-president of industrial and food service sales at Burnbrae and co-chairman of the Y’s Strong Kids Annual Giving Campaign for 10 years, said the program provides unique services for children such as day programs and summer camp.

He noted Burnbrae is an active supporter of such programs in all its communities and was pleased with the broad support it brought to Saturday’s fire truck pull.

“They come here to support our event and we reciprocate by helping with causes in their communities,” said McFall, who works out of the company’s Lyn site.

He said he was encouraged by the large crowd and growth of the event, which included a new power-lifting demonstration in addition to a barbecue lunch and a silent auction.

All in all, McFall felt optimistic the event would raise close to $20,000 and he thanked all participants for their support.

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