BALTIMORE, Md. -- The rumble of skid loaders and tapping of hammers signaled the set-up efforts underway on the Firehouse Expo show floor on Wednesday morning.
Vendors were busy setting up booths and creating the perfect displays for their equipment.
"It's going to be a really good show," predicted Harvey Eisner, editor of Firehouse Magazine and Firehouse Expo show director.
"We've had great hands-on training yesterday and today. A lot of people have come early to participate."
Eisner said a full agenda is planned for the coming days as well starting with the opening Thursday morning featuring John P. Farrell Jr., director of Green County Department of Emergency Services in Cairo, N.Y.
He will discuss how responders in his jurisdiction prepared and responded to Hurricane Irene last year.
If you are unable to attend the opening at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, it will be streamed live.
Later on Thursday, the archived video link will be available on Firehouse.com.
Eisner said the various classes that begin at 10:15 a.m. Thursday involve a myriad of topics from safety to tactics, EMS, lessons learned and leadership.
Even though this year's event is barely getting started, plans are already in the works for next year's show – once again to be held in Baltimore. The dates for Firehouse Expo 2013 are July 23-27.
"We're not moving anywhere," Eisner added. "We'll be right here." Also on Wednesday morning, a recruitment campaign was underway for the annual National Fallen Firefighters Foundation stair climb.
A little more than 100 people had registered to participate in the event at noon Thursday at the Hilton, said Cathy Hedrick, an NFFF official.
Money raised during the climb goes to the NFFF to help them continue helping the families of FDNY firefighters killed on Sept. 11.
"We hope people will come over tomorrow to cheer them on," she added.