Editor's note: This article was originally published Feb. 3, 2012.
The Redondo Beach Fire Department wants your vote—and the normally camera-shy group of firefighters have even put together a video to prove it.
On Thursday afternoon, the firefighters posted their music video, "We Cook Our Food in a Hopeless Place," sung to Rihanna's "We Found Love," on YouTube in hopes that it would go viral.
- Rescue Remodel: Vote for Redondo Beach Fire Station No. 1
Redondo's Fire Station No. 1 is one of five fire departments competing for a new kitchen. The RBFD ranks third in the voting for a $25,000 kitchen remodel from Ikea. Palos Fire Protection District Station No. 1 in Illinois is in first place.
At Tuesday's City Council meeting, Fire Chief Dan Madrigal said the firefighters plan to send the video "to the competition in New York and Cincinatti and (tell) them we're going to whup 'em one."
Division Chief Steve Hyink first entered the contest on a whim when he saw an ad for the "Rescue Remodel" competition in The Family Handyman. "I thought, oh well, what the heck," he told Patch.
"As a rule, the firefighters I work with are willing to give their all and ask for nothing," Hyink wrote in his entry letter to the magazine. "It goes against their grain to do so."
Hyink also described the conditions in the 60-year-old kitchen—cabinets falling off the hinges, a pantry that used to be a broom closet, worn-out flooring—and provided photographic proof.
He was surprised when he received a notice that Fire Station No. 1 was a finalist in the contest.
"I guess they (the judges) just looked at how bad our kitchen was and decided we needed the help," he said.
Still, "it's the cleanest kitchen in the South Bay. It looks bad, but they clean it. They clean it so much that it's worn through the linoleum," Hyink said. "It's old, but it's clean."
"What (started) out to be a little bit of a joke turned out to be something quite serious," Madrigal said.
"All the personnel have gotten behind it," Hyink said. "They're having a great time."
People can vote once per day through Feb. 28.