Toy Program
Simply the Best
By Sally Casazza
Kikkoman Cooking Challenge

While waiting to be interviewed for a radio station regarding the Kikkoman Cooking Challenge, a question was given to me by the DJ. In one sentence, sum up what it is like to work with the San Francisco Firefighters, as a civillian?

I thought, hmm, most are Kind, Helpful, Fun, Demanding, Bold, Playful, and Smart. All those words seemed to lack something, not what I was wanting to express on the air.

That night as I was driving home a song came on the radio by Tina Turner, one I had not heard or thought of for a long time, I sat in my car till the end.

I had it, in the morning when the DJ asked me the question, I told him. “Working with these San Francisco Firefighters is, Simply the Best!!!

Our three Firefighters that were part of the contest (we had 27 entries) were as follows:

Katherine Alba Station 18 Salmon Dish
Kaeo Nakua Station 8 Ribs
Mariano Ellias Station 7 5 Alarm Chicken

Mariano won, and will be rewarded with a gas grill for Station Seven. The Toy Program will get a $5,000 donation from Kikkoman.

Our three celebrity judges were Brandon Moore (from the 49ers - who wants to be a firefighter when he leaves the 49ers - is that a pay increase?), Don Sanchez, from Channel 7, and Gene Owens from KGO radio.

A big thanks to Firefighters Tom Rey and Jeff Moreno who helped us set up, and break down our tables. Dave Piccone who played Santa, Stations 1 and 13 who came by and mingled with the crowd, and Acting-PIO Ken Smith who handled the large group of media in attendance.

Chili Cook-Off

We have a Chili Cook-Off scheduled for September, please enter and help us make this a big success. It will be at Tres Agave Restaurant on 9/16/06. Save that date. For details call Danny Gracia at Station 1 or Sally at the Toy Program. This event is put on by your Union Local 798. There will be prizes and celebrity judges. Bring the family.

Golf Tournament

And, after that we will have our 2nd Annual Golf Tournament at Lake Merced Country Club to benefit the Toy Program on 10/30/06. Save the date. In addition, mark 11/16/06 on your calendar Opening Lunch at Noon for the Toy Program, Station 11 cooking a great lunch for all our volunteers.

A reminder, if you have Toys dropped off at your station call the Toy Program on 415-777-0440, and let us know. We will arrange for a pick up, or maybe one of your station members can drop them off to us when they are getting off in the morning. I am usually there by 8:00 am.

Thanks also to Firefighter Dave Thompson, and AC Al Lee who helped us at the Pride Celebration at Civic Center.

I almost forgot, a Special thanks to Lieutenant Brad Rey and Firefighters Moreno and Bassett for hanging the banner that the Union had made in honor of Johnny V. It has a place of honor in the dining room, it had been missing since St. Patrick’s Day, and just reappeared last week. I guess John is still playing tricks on us!!

And, I cannot forget President Hanley, Directors, and Office Staff at 798 for giving us the ability to bring this program to the children of San Francisco, in a positive way.

Remember, simply put, You are Simply the Best!!!! Thank You.


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