The Norwood Young America Fire Department is a paid-on-call fire department that provides emergency response services for the City of Norwood Young America, which is located approximately 40 miles to the west of the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. The department is also currently responsible for responding to emergencies in parts of the surrounding townships of: Hancock, Camden, Young America, Waconia and Benton.
Our members are currently Firefighter I and First Responder certified . . . with a variety of members holding EMT, Paramedic and HazMat certifications.
Just as the city of Norwood Young America began their histories as two seperate cities – Norwood and Young America – the FDNYA also began as two seperate fire departments. Here is a brief history of the department:
The Young America Fire Department
The Young America Fire Department records begin with January 4th, 1894. It had been organized years before, but the records have been lost or destroyed. This first fire equipment consisted of a hand pump, hook and ladder, and hose cart which were drawn by hand. Large cisterns were built from time to time for the water supply.
In the early years, the fire alarms were given by a large bell in the tower of the City Hall and in 1929 the siren was installed. Pagers were purchased in December 1980, eliminating the use of the siren.
In 1903 the first gasoline engine was installed, which was a great improvment over the old hand pump. A new chemical engine was installed in 1923, which was always very effective in putting out small fires and sometimes keeping fires under control when the big engine was moved from one cistern to another.
As time went on, better and more fully equipped trucks were purchased to serve the community in the event of a fire. For many years, the fire vehicles were housed in the back area of the City Hall. In 1959, a block building was built that housed three fire vehicles and contained a small office and storage space. In March of 1979, what is now the FDNYA North Station was built.
For many years that records have been kept, the department had always had a large membership and had also hosted many of the town celebrations such as the 4th of July, many dances and card parties. The Young America Fire Department also began carrying on the celebration of Stiftungsfest, which today is still the oldest continuous celebration in the State of Minnesota.
The Norwood Fire Department
In the early days, the town of Norwood had no organized fire department. When there was a fire, and the horn was blown, everyone grabbed buckets, ran to the fire, formed a “bucket brigade”, and threw water on the fire by hand. Later on, a hand pump was purchased and was used with good results in the Norwood elevator blaze of 1894.
In 1888, a fire hall was built with a village meeting room upstairs. By 1907, the Norwood Fire Department was officially organized, with August Arndt becoming the first Fire Chief of the Norwood Fire Department.
The first equipment was a hand pump transported by horses, however in 1907 a gasoline engine was purchased and a cistern built under the hall. The engine was placed on top of the cistern, ready to be connected with instant service.
In 1962, what is now the FDNYA South Station was erected on Elm Street. The building is a combination community hall and fire station. The station originally could house up to five trucks. Later, another door was added to accomodate one additional truck.
On April 1, 1969, the Norwood ambulance was purchased by the Young America, Hamburg and Norwood Fire Departments. It was decided that the ambulance would be operated and maintained by the Norwood Fire Department, however members of all the communities donated towards the purchase of the ambulance.
On January 1, 1997, the cities of Norwood and Young America merged together to form the city of Norwood Young America. Thus, the two departments also merged into one. Bob Kroells was the first Fire Chief of the new department.
The merger of the two departments involved not only combining personnel and equiptment . . . but also procedures, Relief Associations and traditions. The department has continued to streamline the department, so it can best serve the community of Norwood Young America, as well as the surrounding townships.
- Chief – Steve Zumberg
- Assistant Chief, Station #1 – Mark Thomas
- Assistant Chief, Station #2 – Chris Glander
- Training Chief- Brad Droege
- Engine Captain –
- Hose Captain – Kevin Raether
- Search & Rescue Captain – Andy Wigfield
- Safety/Training Officer – Steve Noll
- Treasurer – Jesse Molanu
- Secretary –
- Steve Noll – Paramedic
- Melissa Pasquarette – Paramedic
- Dave Orr – EMT
- Kevin Raether – EMT
- Pat Stacken – EMT
- Rollin Beaver
- Jason Franck
- Steve Kanduth
- Paul Lano
- Tony Mueleners
- Andy Wigfield
- Mike Villalva
- Jesse Hackbarth
- Todd Karels
- Tom Warnock
- Scott Blom
- Luke Silseth
Purchased in 2000, this engine is our primary engine and can respond to medicals, PI accidents and fire calls. It can transport up to 7 personnel, including 5 SCBAs. This vehicle hauls 750 gallons of water and has a 1250 g.p.m. pumping capacity. It is also capable of applying Class A fire retardant foam. Also transports vehicle extrication equipment. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 1.
This 2003 Ford pickup was purchased by the department in September of 2001. It is used primarily to transport personnel to medicals, PI accidents, and fire calls. It carries various medical equipment and backboards, along with road flares, safety cones, and more. It can carry up to 5 fire personnel to emergency scenes. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 1.
This 1996 Chevy Tanker was purchased by the department in November of 1995. It is used to haul water to rural fires, grass fires and car fires. It can also be used to transport personnel to fires and PI accidents. This vehicle is equipped with a winch and 150 gallon-per-minute pump. It can hold up to 2400 gallons of water. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 1.
Peterbuilt Heavy Rescue
This 2002 Peterbuilt was purchased by the department in December of 2001. It is used to respond to some medical calls, all PI Accidents, and all fire calls. It can transport up to 7 fire personnel, including 5 SCBAs. Utility 21 also transports vehicle extrication equipment, extra SCBA air bottles, RIT equipment, rescue boat, remote controlled overhead scene light and much more. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 2.
Ford Mini Pumper
Purchased in 2016, this engine is a “quick-attack” mini pumper that responds to PI accidents & vehicle fires, medical calls and other small fires. It can transport up to 5 personnel, as well as numerous tools including SCBA air packs, fans, ladders & more. This vehicle hauls 225 gallons of water and has a 750 gallons-per-minute pumping capacity. It is also capable of applying Class A fire retardant foam. This vehicle was previously in service for St. Louis Park Fire Dept. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 2.
Grass Rig 21
Chevy Grass Rig
This 1990 Chevy was purchased by the department in 1990. It is a 1-ton pickup, fitted with a pump in the bed for fighting grass fires or other small fires. Although it is primarily used to respond to all grass fires, it also can be used to transport personnel to larger fires or PI Accidents. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 2.
Purchased in 2009, this 1996 E-One Hurricane is a multi-use vehicle that can be used in a variety of situations. It can transport up to 6 firefighers. It features a 75′ ladder, can haul up to 500 gallons of water and has a 1,500 gallon-per-minute pumping capacity. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 1.
This 1995 F-Series Ford tanker was purchased by the department in June of 1995. It is used to haul water to rural fires, grass fires and car fires. It can also be used to transport fire personnel to fires and personal injury calls. This vehicle is equipped with a winch and 500 gallon-per-minute pump. This tanker can hold up to 2400 gallons of water. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 2.
This Polaris Ranger 6-wheeler was purchased by the department in 1999. It features a small tank and pump and is used primarily for fighting grass fires in remote or off-road locations. It has the ability to carry up to two fire personnel. This vehicle is currently housed in FDNYA Station 1.
This 1925 Universal is an original fire truck used by our department. It is currently used for parades and special events. The 1925 Universal is currently housed off-site from the fire station.
This smoke trailer is owned by the Fire Departments of Norwood Young America, Cologne and Hamburg. The trailer has two floors, with a living room, kitchen and bedrooms. It is used at special department events to teach fire safety. It is also available to be rented by other area departments.