If the winter blues are setting in, Missoula-area firefighters can help.

No, they don't roll up with their colorful engines, lights, and sirens.

But for the past dozen years, firefighters have teamed up for a favorite local fundraiser, which assists and "rescues" people in the community who might be having a tough time.

And once again, all you have to do is show up and bring a willingness to help and have fun.

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Fun & Fundraising

12-years ago, Missoula area firefighters, many of whom already play hockey, decided to follow the lead of other area communities like Great Falls by staging a benefit hockey game.

"Fire On Ice" has turned out to be a fan favorite, with people packing Missoula's Glacier Ice Rink every February, helping to raise more than $100,000 over the years for local charitable causes.

Dennis Bragg photo
Dennis Bragg photo
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Although they jokingly call it "mediocre firefighter hockey", the games are super competitive and very entertaining.

Can the BomBEARos come back?

In the initial matchups, the Missoula Fire Department team was the one to beat. But things started to change a few years ago when the Missoula area Wildland Firefighters fielded their own team.

Each year, the USFS Wildlanders have gotten stronger and stronger. Last year in the opening game, known as the Urban Inter-Face Off, the Wildlanders beat the BomBEARos 4-3, tying that series at 4 games each. During the Fire On Ice match-up, the Wildlanders also topped the BomBEARos 5-4 in a game that went down to the buzzer in the final period.

The BomBEARos looking for a comeback; Dennis Bragg photo
The BomBEARos looking for a comeback; Dennis Bragg photo
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Word on the street is that the BomBEARos are aiming to "come out of hibernation" and take the series this year.

The Wildlanders look to repeat; Dennis Bragg photo
The Wildlanders look to repeat; Dennis Bragg photo
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Fun for a great cause

Proceeds for Missoula Fire go to their unique "Fired Up for Kids" program, which helps kids caught in the aftermath of house fires with clothing, toys and a friendly smile to help them heal.

The Wildlanders channel their proceeds into the Wildland Firefighter Foundation, which helps families of firefighters recover after a firefighter is injured, or even loses their life.

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Great items in the silent auction; Dennis Bragg photo
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Admission is free, donations welcome

Admission to the games at the Glacier Ice Rink is free, but there are many opportunities to donate, including a silent auction with amazing items, bottomless beer mugs from Big Sky Brewery, and a 50/50 raffle. The event is sponsored by Missoula Chevrolet.

The first puck drops at 6:00 pm on February 10th but get there early for the presentations and the colorful entry by the Celtic Dragon Pipe Band.

The Celtic Dragons start the games with a flourish; Dennis Bragg photo
The Celtic Dragons start the games with a flourish; Dennis Bragg photo
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Looking Back at One of Montana's Most Explosive Fires

The 2013 Lolo Creek Fire burned within 6 miles of Missoula

Gallery Credit: Dennis Bragg

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