Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Plymouth Harbor shows appreciation to firefighters with annual lunch

Plymouth Harbor residents treated firefighters at Sarasota County Station 3 to lunch on May 15, 16 and 17.
Plymouth Harbor residents treated firefighters at Sarasota County Station 3 to lunch on May 15, 16 and 17.
Photo by Carter Weinhofer
  • Longboat Key
  • Neighbors
  • Share

The relationship between Plymouth Harbor and Sarasota County Fire Department Station 3 is all about appreciation. 

That was evident on May 15, when the first group of residents came to have lunch with the B-Shift team at the station on St. Armands Circle. 

Residents of Plymouth Harbor have continued the tradition for about a decade, according to Vice President of Philanthropy Beth Watson.

The residents visited each of the different shifts — A, B and C — on May 15, 16 and 17. Watson said that Plymouth Harbor tries to schedule it around International Firefighters Day, which is on May 4.

In the past, the firefighters would come to Plymouth Harbor for the annual lunch and dine at the Mayflower Restaurant. There was a pause in the tradition during the COVID-19 pandemic, after which the residents started going to the station for lunch. 

Lieutenant Kent Hayes gives a tour of Station 3's bunk area.
Photo by Carter Weinhofer

The residents took a tour of the station before joining the firefighters for a lunch provided by Plymouth Harbor. 

Lunch was filled with smiles and conversation, as Plymouth Harbor residents asked the firefighters about the job and what civilians could do to make their jobs easier. 

On May 15, residents Jill Considine, Sara Little, Barbara Shaver and Nancy Lyon attended the lunch. 

Overall, the lunch is a way to say thanks to the firefighters. 

“They’re very appreciative of Plymouth Harbor,” Watson said. “And they’re there every day.”

According to Watson and the firefighters, the station responds to calls at Plymouth Harbor almost daily, whether it’s to help with falls or assistance at the Smith Care Center. 

“Every time they’re on campus, our residents are enamored with their personalities,” Watson said. “Our residents are very appreciative of them.”

Residents talk with Lieutenant Kent Hayes about the station's shift schedule.
Photo by Carter Weinhofer

But it’s also a way to build the relationship since the station also used Plymouth Harbor to train. 

Lieutenant Kent Hayes has worked as a firefighter for Sarasota County for 24 years, the last eight of which have been with Station 3. 

He said the station also frequently responds to calls on Longboat Key to assist the Longboat Key Fire Rescue Department. 

At Plymouth Harbor, if the firefighters aren’t there to help someone in need, they’re probably using the 26 floors to train. Hayes said going up and down those stairs is a regular part of the station’s training. 

Over the years, the residents have grown familiar with the firefighters, and the relationship has been nothing but positive according to both groups. 

“The rapport we have with the people is awesome,” Hayes said. 



Carter Weinhofer

Carter Weinhofer is the Longboat Key news reporter for the Observer. Originally from a small town in Pennsylvania, he moved to St. Petersburg to attend Eckerd College until graduating in 2023. During his entire undergraduate career, he worked at the student newspaper, The Current, holding positions from science reporter to editor-in-chief.

Latest News