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Bridgeville firefighters embark on another fish fry season

| Wednesday, March 19, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

Members of Bridgeville Volunteer Fire Department will kick off fish fry season on Friday.

Ken Ursitz, vice president of the fire company, has prepared the dishes for the last 16 years. When he experiments with a new type of fish, his fellow firefighters act as taste-testers. There are 25 active members in the department.

While pollock may be more economical fish, cod is tastier, Capt. Ray Costain said.

About 20 to 25 members help to organize a single dinner, Costain said. The firefighters cook, serve, deliver and cleanup. In past years, they have averaged 200 guests a night, but they could accommodate 300 in the Chartiers Room, the fire station's social hall.

Volunteers try to not to skimp on serving sizes: A diner could make two or three sandwiches from the fish portions served in each dinner, Costain said. They also serve haluski, coleslaw and macaroni and cheese.

“All are homemade by chef Kenny,” he said.

Haluski is Costain's favorite.

“I wait all year long,” he said. “If he'd tell me how to make it, I wouldn't have to wait.”

But all Costain hears is “it's an old family recipe.”

The preparation begins the night before when the filets are breaded.

“Then, we're back in by 11 a.m. Friday for the prep work to begin,” Costain said.

Doors open at 3:30 p.m. Dinners are served starting at 4 p.m.

About 50 percent of their customers eat in, and 40 percent are takeout. The rest comes from delivery.

For families interested in an evening out and saving money, meals are large enough to feed two children.

“We guarantee you'll be satisfied,” Costain said. “You'll be coming back for years.”

Dona S. Dreeland is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5803 or ddreeland@tribweb.com.

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