"If it wasn't for firefighters, there would be a lot of destruction and loss of life and these are the people who save our lives, they help people out, they're our heroes."
SoNo Marketplace hosted its first fundraiser to benefit the Norwalk Professional Firefighters Association. Residents had the chance to meet city firefighters and sample 13 selections of beer from four beer distributors, and enjoy food and live music.
"Over the course of the year we donate a good portion of the money raised back to our community and the surrounding communities, so this is another way to supplement that account," said Joe Coppola Secretary of the Norwalk Firefighters local A30. "And some of those include the scholarships for all the high schools, we donate to any kind of catastrophic event that takes place in the city, we make donations on good will."
Firefighters say all the money raised will neither go to them nor the firehouse but directly to their supported funds.
"We're not going to use this money for anything of our own," said Coppola. "We're not going to use any of this money for anything in firehouse. The money we raise today is all going back to the funds that we support so these guys are helping us help other people so it really is strictly about that."
The event also provided a way for SoNo marketplace to introduce its new outdoor Farm Terrace Beer Garden. Chris Sharpe, sales rep from Northeast beverage says bringing local craft beers to the marketplace as a way to give back to officials and community members is an honor.
"This is also one of my accounts," said Sharpe. "So I take pride in helping my accounts succeed in whatever they do."
"It's fantastic, the food was good, the beer was good, the people were all good, this is wonderful," said Lee Gardella.
"It's a great community and they are the first responders," said Anibal Rosado. "You've got to support them."