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Dave Ross, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services, addresses New Richmond Fire Department volunteers and members of the community in the fire hall’s new training room on Monday, Sept. 30. (Photo by Micheal Foley)

New Richmond Fire & Rescue shows off remodeled fire hall

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The New Richmond Fire Department moved into its newly renovated space in its fire hall late this summer, and now the firefighters are ready to show it off to the public.

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Dave Ross, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services, paid a visit to the New Richmond Fire Hall on Monday, Sept. 30, and spoke to the department’s volunteer firefighters and members of the community from the front of the building’s new training room.

The room includes enough table space and chairs for everyone in the department, and extra space for visitors. It is also equipped with presentation technology including a smart board, presentation projector, sound system and twin display monitors.

New Richmond Mayor Fred Horne, who also serves as a volunteer firefighter, had plenty of praise for the training room.

“The training room is a big thing if you’ve seen our old training room trying to get 40 people in a small room shoulder-to-shoulder,” Horne said. “We have a much better training room, and obviously a lot more room.”

Horne also pointed out the new showers, restrooms and laundry machines for firefighting gear and clothing.

“When you’ve been in a fire with all the smoke and everything else you’re dealing with, you’re now able to shower before you go home,” Horne said.

The renovation also included a faux brick facade, a new office for New Richmond Fire Chief Jim VanderWyst and a reception area.

“Before, people didn’t know which door to go in,” VanderWyst said.

New Richmond-based Derrick Construction was the main contractor for the $500,000 project. Costs were shared with neighboring municipalities that the department serves.

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Micheal Foley
Micheal Foley joined RiverTown Multimedia in July 2013 and serves as editor at the New Richmond News. In the past he has worked at several news outlets including Patch.com in Hudson, Wis., the Desert Sun in Palm Springs, Calif., the Leader-Telegram in Eau Claire, Wis., and the Pioneer Press in St. Paul, Minn. He began his career as a Marine Corps journalist. He served as a reporter and photographer in Okinawa, Japan, and editor of the base newspaper at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego, Calif. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin–River Falls.
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