Auction to Benefit Volunteer Fire Dept.

Established in 1961 to protect cabins and to assist hikers and campers, the Holy Jim Volunteer Fire Department has raised money for its operations through an annual auction.

The tradition continues Saturday, with this year's auction block including a motorbike, dinner at the Trabuco Steak House, antique tools and furniture, construction supplies, artifacts and other items donated from local businesses.

Organizers said they hope to raise $5,000 to $10,000. "Everything we have comes out of our own pockets," volunteer firefighter Johanna Browne said.

The department's 23 volunteers were on standby to battle the 100-acre Holy Jim Canyon blaze last month, had it moved toward local cabins.

The department maintains eight 5,000-gallon water tanks, a heliport for evacuations and a supply point for water-carrying helicopters and two fire trucks--including Gertrude, a 1948 pumper truck.

Donations will "contribute to the safety of all that enter the Cleveland National Forest and surrounding area," said John Colclough, Holy Jim volunteer fire chief.

The auction begins at 1 p.m. at the firehouse, about 5 miles up Trabuco Creek Road. Information: (714) 262-7484.

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