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Firefighters and police officers will square off in a golf tournament

Firefighters and police officers will square off in a golf tournament
Posted at 6:04 PM, Jun 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-14 20:01:59-04

GREAT FALLS — In years past, it was the hockey rink where Great Falls firefighters and police officers met to duke it out. Now it’s the fairway getting ready for the battle between the red and the blue.

The police and fire departments are renewing their rivalry next month and there are much more bragging rights on the line with the first annual "Battle of the Badges" golf tournament at Eagle Falls. The fundraiser will raise money for each department’s respective foundation.

Austin Collins of State Farm, who is sponsoring the event, said, “As part of a community outreach we were trying to find a couple organizations we could partner with. Great Falls Police Community Foundation and Great Falls Fire Rescue Foundation were two great organizations we wanted to work with. It was just kind of a natural fit and what better to have a little friendly competition between the two.”

The Great Falls Police Community foundation was created in 2007 and serves as an extra source of funding for police officers when they need equipment or other things they can’t get through the city.

“If the foundation can help and assist and buying the necessary equipment to keep the officers safe that’s our goal is to keep the officers safe, keep the community as safe as we can and with that, we’re able to purchase equipment that we can’t normally through the budgeting process,” says Tim Shanks of the Great Falls Police Department.

The Fire Rescue Foundation was created last year and has already gotten significant donations for new equipment for firefighters. Fundraisers like this tournament help each department raise money so they can better serve the community.

Steve Hester of Great Falls Fire Rescue said, “Appliances and stuff that we can’t afford every year. Things that the city needs, and it allows the department to provide better service to the community. That’s really what our premise is about. If we can help out with fire education for instance and help prevent a fire, that’s a win win for everybody.”

The shotgun tournament is set to start on July 8 at 8:00 am at Eagle Falls Golf Club. For more information or to register, click here.