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'Rhythm, Rides & Ribs' set for May 11

ALBANY, Ga. -- Every year, dozens of fire departments work to raise funds for the Georgia Firefighters Burn Foundation.

The Albany Fire Department will soon be making its contribution.

As part of "Give Burns the Boot" campaign, the fire department is hosting "Rhythm, Rides, & Ribs" from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. on May 11 at Sam's Club on North Westover Boulevard.

Among the burn foundation's objectives is to assist children and their families after they have suffered burn injuries, said Daniel Harden, fire safety inspector for the AFD and coordinator of the event.

"A burn injury can be very devastating," he said. "Families can lose homes because of the medical costs. (The foundation's job) is to help them turn things around."

A live radio broadcast of the event is expected to take place from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., which will follow by a performance by the band Relapse. In the morning, there is a firefighter barbecue cook-off planned with a judging panel set to include parties such as Assistant City Manager Wes Smith, Harden said.

Harden also said that local businesswoman B.J. Fletcher is expected to spend an hour in the dunk tank. There will also be a fire safety trailer on site as well as a fire truck children can ride on along with a moon bounce, face painting and a golf cart that has been modified to look like a small fire truck.

"It is all free," Harden said. "We are just asking for a donation to the burn foundation. There will be barbecue ribs (and other food items) we will be giving away in exchange for a donation.

"Anything helps. If people can just spend an hour volunteering, or just donate $1, it all adds up. It doesn't matter; it is all welcomed and appreciated."

In the event of inclement weather, the festivities will be pushed back to May 25.

More information on the burn foundation and its programs is available at www.gfbf.org. More information about the event, including volunteer opportunities, is available by calling (229) 483-7644.