We have five new recruits for our annual banquet in January. I'm having trouble developing a "friendly" plan to welcome the reservists to our volunteer dept. If anyone has any suggestions how we can initiate these guys without hazing or hurting them, I would greatly appreciate it.

Please do assume that I am ecouraging maltreatment of anyone at anytime. Just some playful jokes amongst friends.

Thanks, 

 Vern

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What's wrong with being cordial and welcoming? Why would you want to embarass someone new? Doesn't seem very welcoming to me.
...how we can "torment" these guys without hazing ...
I'm guessing you're somewhat confused about what 'torment' and 'hazing' mean.
But then, nothing like public humilation to really get out the message that someone is welcome.
I was thinking that too, John.

Although, if it's something that's become a tradition in your dept., then why not do what you did to the last batch that came in? If you keep trying to out-do yourself, eventually, someone's going to get hurt.
Yep, I agree with Jack and John. We "torment" the guys who have been here a while, but we treat the new guys like royalty because recruitment and retention are among our biggest challenges.
Why not just include them as any member of your organization....wait a bit...as most probies they will do something to embarass themselves given time....I know I did......LOL Every year we introduce every member as a large number of people attend that may be past members or people from various boards or neighboring Departments....EMS Captain introduces all the CFR's and EMT's, Dive Captain introduces all the divers and rescue swimmers and boat/rope handlers...Chief introduces all the Officers and Firefighters.....Kind of gets old as some of us are included in all the different areas...
Tell them to come here i would throw a party to have that many new firefighters. Our numbers keep going down and we cant get anyone to join. If it gets to it were going to have to start knocking on doors and asking people to join. I would treat them very good and try to make them feel welcome so you could keep them on as long as possible and not lose them.
Everything that these guys said.

If you really insist on "tormenting" your newbies, I'd suggest searching through the forums for one of the many topics on pranks around the firehouse.
yea we'll take 5 and any more you got. like was said they will embarass themselves and thus will wear a nickname the rest of their life, if when you start their training they stick around. get them into class and them tell them they have a life time of school and their lower than whale poop and if they want to change this, like nike says JUST DO IT. playing jackass with recruits tends to drive away the ff that you would have put your life in thier hands and then theit not there. OOOPS. life is a big wheel don't load it up with crap. paid personnell have to do it all but in a lot of places vol. have to spread that out. like one always does traffic control so another does ems and 1 fights fire ect. and that takes numbers.
WE HAVE ENOUGH TROUBLE GETTING AND KEEPING NEW PEOPLE WITHOUT TOEMENTING THEM. I'M LUCKY IF WE HAVE 5 PEOPLE SHOWING UP TO A CALL AND NEED ALL THE HELP WE CAN GET . EVEN THE GUY DIRECTING TRAFFIC HAS A PURPOSE, BUT IF WE DRIVE HIM AWAY BY EMBARREESING HIM THEN WE ALL SUFFER.
I appreciate the sentiments! The suggestions I am looking for will is in no way meant, nor will be delivered in any manor other than humor that they too will enjoy. The last thing I want to do is make someone feel displaced much less drive them away. But again thanks for the input.
I've done a great job embarrassing myself so far this rookie year. The guys have just sat back and laughed, but also made me feel very welcome. They've gone out of there way to help train for certs and teach. Finally got a dept nickname so I guess I'm in. I did have our assistant chief tell me to lick the speaker on my radio because I was to quiet on a call, but that one was a bit obvious.
I think what you meant to say was did we know any good pranks?Right? well that would be better than tormenting them.I was a Rookie once and so were you.My suggestion is just treat them the way you'd want to be treated.Its ok to pull a few "Friendly" Pranks just don't go over board and make them feel like their unwanted.If you treat them too badly they may just quit and not help out on your department.Remember "VOLUNTEER" Key word there they don't "HAVE" to be there.

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