Photo by Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion Kenai firefighter Dustin Voss takes money from a woman at a traffic light Friday October 17, 2014 in Kenai, Alaska. Several off-duty firefighters held a fill-the-boot campaign to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Photo by Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion Kenai firefighter Dustin Voss takes money from a woman at a traffic light Friday October 17, 2014 in Kenai, Alaska. Several off-duty firefighters held a fill-the-boot campaign to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Kenai Firefighters host first fill-the-boot campaign

  • By Rashah McChesney
  • Friday, October 17, 2014 8:22pm
  • News

Justin Horton had the better spot for soliciting donations along the Kenai Spur Highway, but Abe Porter had a secret weapon.

As the two firefighters hustled up and down the intersection of the highway and Bridge Access Road in Kenai, Porter’s 2-year-old daughter, Eden played with the over-sized firefighting hat her dad had given to her — it matched the tiny black and green striped firefighting outfit she wore and many passersby stopped, grinned and dug out their wallets to toss a few dollars into Porter’s boot.

“We’re on kind of the slow side of the street,” he said as Eden sat happily on his shoulders, occasionally reaching into cars to take money from friendly strangers.

A crew of several off-duty firefighters with the Kenai Firefighters Association launched the Kenai Fire Department’s first fill-the-boot campaign. They spent four hours Friday waving their fire boots in the air, soliciting donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

It paid off.

They raised just over $7,688 for the association.

Kenai Fire Chief Jeff Tucker said the campaign was held later in the year than what is typical for fire departments.

“Typically, it’s Labor Day weekend,” he said. “But, the logistics of doing it properly and hosting the fire conference was challenging for us.”

But, despite the chilly evening and setting sun, boots were filling quickly as drivers honked, waved and stopped — sometimes in the middle of traffic — to pass a few dollars into a boot.

“This is a way for firefighters to give back to the community, it’s a cause that we support and we like to be involved with the community,” Tucker said.

Photo by Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion Kenai Firefighter Abe Porter holds his daughter Eden Porter, 2, as the two collect donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association during a one-day fill-the-boot campaign Friday October 17, 2014 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion Kenai Firefighter Abe Porter holds his daughter Eden Porter, 2, as the two collect donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association during a one-day fill-the-boot campaign Friday October 17, 2014 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion  Kenai firefighter Justin Horton waves a boot in the air for drivers along the Kenai Spur Highway Friday October 17, 2014 in Kenai, Alaska.  Several off-duty firefighters stood near the intersection of Bridge Access Road and the highway soliciting donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

Photo by Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion Kenai firefighter Justin Horton waves a boot in the air for drivers along the Kenai Spur Highway Friday October 17, 2014 in Kenai, Alaska. Several off-duty firefighters stood near the intersection of Bridge Access Road and the highway soliciting donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

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