GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The Grand Rapids Firefighter Challenge started Friday at Calder Plaza to show everyday people just how tough it is to be a firefighter.
Hundreds of people from around the country and Canada came to the city to compete.
This challenge has been happening in different cities throughout the United States for more than 30 years and the Grand Rapids Fire Department got to host it in 2022.
GRFD has three teams competing.
They say it’s a good representation of what it’s like on the job.
“These events really replicate what we go through on a daily basis fighting infrastructure fires, so we’re running upstairs, we’re pulling the hose, we’re dragging people and we’re operating hose lines and forcing entry. So it’s really what we’re used to on a day to day basis, but a lot of times we have separate crews and we’re doing one or two of these tasks. This requires us to do all five tasks individually at the same time. It’s pretty taxing,” said Deputy Chief Brad Brown with the Grand Rapids Fire Department.
Non-firefighters also can sign up and compete.
The challenge runs through Sunday, July 31.
It’s free to watch and there are food trucks, a beer tent and kids activities on site for spectators to enjoy.