Annual fish fry helps keep Marble Falls Area EMS ready for action; event is March 5

DANIEL CLIFTON • PICAYUNE EDITOR

MARBLE FALLS — When the Blue Bonnet Cafe started hosting the twice-a-year Marble Falls Area EMS Fish Fry 25 years ago, organizers probably didn’t know the long-term impact.

“It’s been an amazing fundraiser for us,” EMS director Johnny Campbell said. “That event has probably raised somewhere between $500,000 and $1 million for us.”

That money covers the continuing education and training budget for Marble Falls Area EMS Inc. Without the gracious hospitality of the Blue Bonnet Cafe and owners John and Belinda Kemper, Campbell said the department wouldn’t have the training budget it needs to keep its staff and volunteers of 47 up to date.

And it’s time again for the spring fish fry.

The Marble Falls Area EMS Fish Fry is March 5 at the Blue Bonnet Cafe, 211 U.S. 281. The event runs 4-8 p.m. with heaping plates of catfish and all the sides costing only $8. Children 5 and under eat for $3.

You can dine in or take out.

While holding a fish fry for the EMS sounds like a simple matter, Campbell pointed out the Kempers do it at a financial loss to their own business.

“You consider what they’re doing, that they’re giving up those four hours so all the proceeds go to us, it’s incredible,” Campbell said. “They’re losing business, but the Kempers have been wonderful supporters of the EMS, and we appreciate all they do.”

It’s not just giving up four hours of regular business. Campbell said the Kempers cover the costs of all the supplies for the fish fry and even pay the staff.

“This fish fry and what they’ve done for us is pretty much what earned them (the 2013 EMS Citizen Award) during the Texas EMS Conference,” Campbell said. “We just can’t give them enough thanks.”

One way is just coming out March 5 for the annual fish fry. And maybe following it up with a piece of pie.

daniel@thepicayune.com