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Once again, Milton firefighters plan to ask residents for their support to replace the existing fire station with a new one across from the town beach along Route 125. (JOHN QUINN PHOTO)

Halloween house

Milton Fire-Rescue hosts Halloween open house

MILTON — Firefighters invite residents to stop by the central fire station today to have some fun and scare up support for a new building next year.

As residents brave the streets for tricks and treats, the Milton Fire-Rescue Halloween Open House is scheduled for 3 to 8 p.m. at the station along White Mountain Highway, Route 125.

Visitors can participate in a variety of games, jump around in a bounce house, eats some treats, spray water from a fire hose, take a trip through the fire safety trailer and show off their costumes.

Meanwhile, Fire Chief Nick Marique said the open house is an excellent opportunity for residents — both young and old — to see the station first-hand. He said he looks forward to discussing the need for a new station with fellow residents.

The station, which previously held police as well, has a variety of issues, especially cramped conditions which limits the size of vehicles the department can use. The building is also filled with dust from old forms of insulation — when the structure served as a horse barn two centuries ago — and moisture in the basement, which flows through the foundation most of the year.

Earlier this month, Marique said he was updating the cost to build a new fire station on the property along Route 125 which was donated by Herbert Downs in 2009. According to the stipulations, the town has three more years to take advantage of the property, the former site of the local Moose Lodge across from the town beach.

Residents will once again consider the issue when polls open March 11.

Last year, a $2.7 million proposal to replace the town’s aging fire station narrowly missed the three-fifths majority required to pass. It received 447 votes, which is 57 percent of the 781 residents who voted on the article, but required at least 468 votes.

It was the fourth proposal since 2007 to renovate, replace or relocate the existing fire station which failed to meet a three-fifths majority.

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