The Georgia Forestry Commission and Macon Bacon baseball are “teaming up” this summer to spread the word about fire prevention!

Expect to see the two beloved mascots, Smokey Bear and Macon Bacon’s “Kevin,” in social media posts and on the big screen at baseball games. A series of videos will share lighthearted reminders that “Only You” can prevent wildfires.

The partnership between GFC and Macon Bacon builds on a mutual commitment to serving the community and keeping families safe, as summer activities take center stage. An average 2300 wildfires are recorded in Georgia annually, and the GFC is prepared to respond 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Wildfires are capable of leaving serious damage and even fatalities in their wake, and humans are the number one cause of wildfire. Helping Georgians learn how they can help prevent these tragedies is a shared mission of GFC and Macon Bacon.

Assisting communities in preventing wildfire is also the purpose of a series of grants provided by the USDA Forest Service (USFS). The Community Wildfire Defense Grant (CWDG) program assists at-risk communities with planning for and lowering wildfire risks on state, tribal, and privately managed lands. This is primarily achieved by funding that creates or updates county Community Wildfire Prevention Plans (CWPP) and by providing funding to complete wildfire mitigation projects that are identified in an up-to-date CWPP. The most recent announcement included $250 million in 158 projects benefiting communities in 31 different states, 11 tribes, and two territories as part of the CWDG program. Of the 11 applications submitted by communities within Georgia, five were successful in their bid for CWDG funding, totaling more than $1.1 million to invest in their wildfire risk awareness, planning, and resilience. These grants were awarded in a second round of funding from USFS; a third round of CWDG funding is expected to open for applications towards the end of the summer. If you know of a community that you think could benefit from this funding opportunity, please contact CWDG Coordinator Anthony English at or (478)-832-9298.

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