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BTU Do it Center

BTU Do it Center Is Serious About Fire Safety

sparky the dog and Wayne Sonchar
Wayne Sonchar (left) and Shelly Sonchar, in Sparky costume, are co-owners of BTU Do it Center. They invite people in their town and the surrounding area to meet local firefighters and learn about fire safety.

BTU Do it Center takes community safety seriously, and its annual fire safety event demonstrates that commitment.

The store is in Las Vegas, New Mexico—a small rural community located in a heavily wooded area. Forest and grass fires are common.

BTU Do it Center hosts its event in October, which is National Fire Safety Month, to teach local people about preventing fires and offer special deals on safety products, co-owner Shelly Sonchar says.

The store invites the U.S. Forest Service, the local fire department and a chimney company to set up in the parking lot and talk to area residents about fire safety.

The Forest Service brings its mascot, Smokey Bear, and the fire department brings a Dalmatian dog named Sparky.

The fire department parks a fire truck for people to climb through and allows community members to don firefighting gear and enter a smokehouse that simulates what it’s like to be in a burning building.

“The bottom line is to promote safety,” Sonchar says. “Our goal is to prevent fires and keep the communities safe.”

About Kate Klein

Kate Klein
Kate is profiles editor for Hardware Retailing magazine. She reports on news and industry events and writes about retailers' unique contributions to the independent home improvement sector. She graduated from Cedarville University in her home state of Ohio, where she earned a bachelor's degree in English and minored in creative writing. She loves being an aunt, teaching writing to kids, running, reading, farm living and, as Walt Whitman says, traveling the open road, “healthy, free, the world before me.”

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