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Wine, music benefit volunteer Pipes and Drums band in El Dorado Hills

By: Laura Newell, Folsom Lake Entertainer
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Locals can join the El Dorado Hills Fire Department for the El Dorado Hills Firefighters’ Association’s 40th annual Wine, Cheese and Brew Fundraiser Festival. The fundraiser takes place at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 8, at the El Dorado Hills Old Golf Course, 3775 El Dorado Hills Blvd., El Dorado Hills. This year a portion of the proceeds will go to assisting the fire department’s new El Dorado Hills Firefighters Pipes and Drums band. Michael LeBlanc, El Dorado Hills Fire Department engineer/paramedic, is the pipe major for the band. “The association has gracefully agreed to donate a portion of the proceeds to us,” LeBlanc said. “Proceeds will go towards uniforms and additional instruments and instruction.” After starting the band almost two years ago, the department now has six bagpipers and four drummers. Due to high costs, there are only four band members who own a bagpipe and two members who own their own snare drums. Pipe and Drum bands commonly perform at memorials and other community ceremonies. LeBlanc said while many firefighters were interested in joining the band, almost none of them had musical experience. “For the past 20 months, we have been paying for drum and bagpipe lessons with our own personal money,” he said. “Some of us have also purchased our own instruments.” LeBlanc said while the costs have personally been high for members, it has been worth the investment for this community service. “The band has a long history in the fire service, dating back to the 1800s,” LeBlanc said. “So for our department, it allows us to show our respect to fallen firefighters.” El Dorado Hills Fire Chief Dave Roberts said the Pipes and Drums band is a positive addition to the community. “We are so happy to have the Pipes and Drums band in our department,” Roberts said. “They will be working arm and arm with our honor guard to provide the proper respect to those who have lost their lives in the line of duty.” The El Dorado Hills Firefighters Pipes and Drums band will perform to the community for the first time at the Wine, Cheese and Brew Festival. The festival will include fine wine and microbrew tasting, food samples from local restaurants and chefs and gourmet cheese tasting. Attendees can also bid for fine goods and artwork at a silent auction. Live music by Hip Service will also be featured. As a safe way to get home, the department is providing free local taxi service to provide safe rides home for people living in El Dorado Hills, Cameron Park and Folsom. “We’d love to see everyone come out,” Roberts said. “It will be a wonderful evening and a lot of fun.” Tickets are $40 per person available at any El Dorado Hills Fire Station, the California Welcome Center or at the event. For more information and tickets, visit edhfire.com. ----- KNOW AND GO What:?El Dorado Hills Firefighters’ Association’s 40th annual Wine, Cheese and Brew Fundraiser Festival When: 6 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 8 Where: El Dorado Hills Old Golf Course Tickets: $40 Info: edhfire.com