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Craley Fire Co. hosts annual New Year's shooting competition

Alyssa Pressler
York Dispatch
  • The fire department hosted its annual shooting competition Monday to raise funds.
  • The money will go toward paying off a new tanker purchased last year.
  • The New Year's Day shoot for meat competition has taken place for 60-plus years.

Craley Community Fire Co. held its annual New Year's Block Shoot on Monday, a tradition that spans decades. 

Each year on New Year's Day, participants head to Craley Community Fire Co. in Lower Windsor Township for the opportunity to win meat or cash prizes. Don Fake, a trustee with the fire company, said he didn't know exactly how long the fundraiser has taken place, but it has been more than 60 years. 

This year, the block shoot took place on Jan. 2 because the company doesn't hold the fundraiser on New Year's Day if the holiday falls on a Sunday, Fake said. He estimated 75 people came to the competition to try to win some of the meat prizes. There were also a number of cash prizes and gift cards. 

The competition requires a 12-gauge shotgun, which participants must bring. Each participant then purchases shells and can shoot as many times as they'd like. The targets are 4-inch-square pieces of cardboard with X's on them, and the goal is to hit each line of the "X."

Gina Frey of Wrightsville holds her first-round winning target during the Craley Community Fire Co.'s annual New Year's Day block shoot, Monday, Jan. 2, 2017. Frey, who has been shooting for about two years, won first and fourth place in the first round. "My dad and I, it's something we do together," said Frey. John A. Pavoncello

The person that does hit each line wins the grand prize. This year, the grand prize winner could choose between a quarter of beef or $350, Fake said. There are also raffles that occur throughout the day, with prizes such as hams, turkeys, gift cards or cash. 

Additionally, the kitchen at Craley Community Fire Co. offered food for purchase. Between the money for shells, the food purchases and raffle ticket purchases, the fire company hopes to raise enough money to finish paying off a tanker that was purchased last year. 

Fake explained the tanker is a fire truck that holds 3,000 gallons of water, which is important to the fire company because there are very few fire hydrants in that area. 


Craley Fire Department holds their annual New Year's Day block shoot, Monday, January 2, 2017. For more than 60 years the fire department has held block shoots every Friday in October and November and the year end shoot on New Year's Day. About 70 shooters took turns firing shotguns at a four inch square piece of cardboard 31 feet away for a chance to win prizes. John A. Pavoncello

"We don't have fire hydrants, so we have to have a readily available water source," Fake said. 

The tanker was approximately $400,000. There have been a number of other shooting competition fundraisers, and Fake said there will probably be more to help pay for the truck. He said the fire company is 100 percent volunteer.