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Florida Elks News Online

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District Reporter: Mary Lou Scribner

Lakeland Elks Present $12,000 in Scholarships

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Lakeland Lodge awarded 11 scholarships totaling $12,000 at the 2018 scholarship banquet held at the lodge. Approximately 65 people attended. The guest speaker was Dr. Elaine Thompson, President and CEO of Lakeland Regional Health Center.

Pictured are Exalted Ruler, Bob Fuschetti; Reese Overholt, Lakeland Christian; Tarik Graham, Auburndale; Bethanie Budlong, Santa Fe Catholic; Madalyn Werd, Santa Fe Catholic; Alyssa Harley, Santa Fe Catholic; Karter Thomas, Polk State Collegiate; Taylor Langley, Lakeland Christian; Ahmrii Johnson, Harrison School for the Arts; Mandi Chen, International Baccalaureate; Greeshma Venigalla, International Baccalaureate; and Dave Norwine, Scholarship Chairman. Not pictured was Amelia Barski from Roswell, Ga., who was unable to attend the banquet.

 

SPCA Walk for the Animals Gets Support from Lakeland Elks

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On Saturday, April 21, Lakeland Lodge supplied hamburgers and hot dogs for the Lakeland SPCA Walk for the Animals, an annual fundraiser held on Lake Mirror in downtown Lakeland. Elks volunteers manned the SPCA/Elks food booth and through their efforts raised $876 for the animals at the Lakeland SPCA shelter. Pictured are Larry Gustafson, Rick Littlejohn, Sandy Fuschetti, Barb Malone, Jean Gustafson, Bob Fuschetti, ER Vicki Baker, Garry Malone (seated) and Tom Rivard.

 

Lakeland Elks Support Relay for Life

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On April 14, Lakeland Elks Lodge #1291 was out in force supporting the local American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life event held at Munn Park in downtown Lakeland. Members manned a booth serving hot dogs and chips to all the hungry participants and raising money for the American Cancer Society. Even Elroy the Elk got into the action participating in the mascot races. Pictured are Elroy, ER Vicki Baker, Char Fisher and Sandy Fuschetti.

 

Elks Lodge Tour Goes on After Bus Breakdown

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The Brandon Elks Lodge #2383 bus trip on April 21 was a great success. There were 23 riders from Brandon Lodge joined by seven riders from Plant City Lodge and three from Lakeland Lodge. The first stop was the beautiful Holiday Isles Lodge that prepared a delicious breakfast buffet. They are located on a canal with docks for boats and they have an outdoor tiki bar and a gorgeous pool. Next on the bus route would have been Dunedin/Clearwater Lodge, but due to the bus having engine problems, the tour members were stranded roadside and were forced to cut that lodge from the route. Imagine the odds, though, that a bus full of Elks would be stranded roadside right in front of a neighborhood bar, the RhonDavous! They welcomed the Elks with open arms and even turned on the air conditioning. After two and a half hours, the backup bus arrived and took them to St. Petersburg Lodge where each rider was offered a free drink. The guests were amazed at the size of their pool as well. After a nice visit they headed to Tampa Lodge where food had been prepared for the weary travelers. They also had a 50/50 raffle, played bingo and raffled off a bottle of Scotch. While everyone had a great time riding and chatting and having their own 50/50 raffles on the trip, the purpose was also to earn money to donate to the Florida Elks Youth Camp. When all the math was done, they had $500 to donate to the camp. Jacquie Rehner from Lakeland Lodge and Nicholina Wells helped make this venture a success.

 

Sebring Lodge Sends 14 Children to Florida Elks Youth Camp

Sebring Lodge is sending 14 children to the Florida Elks Youth Camp this summer in Umatilla. Elks National Foundation is supporting the Florida State Elks Association major project by offering to pay for six camperships at the cost of $180 each to all Florida Elks lodges. The remaining eight are being paid for by the tips from the Sebring Elks Charity Bingo players. Campers are chosen from Elks members’ families and children from the Highlands County Big Brothers Big Sisters.

 

Special Stars Recreation Club Receives Donation from Sebring Elks

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The Special Stars is a recreation club which provides sports and recreational activities for more than 250 children and adults with mental and physical disabilities in Highland County, Fla. On Saturday, April 7, Ronna Mason, PER from Sebring Lodge presented a check for $650 to Jack Garnet who is a member of the Special Stars during their annual softball classic. These monies were part of the charity bingo tip donations. Lecturing Knight, Johnny Reed, PER, threw out the first pitch.

 

Sebring Lodge Gives Beacon Grant to Summer Theatre Youth Camp

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Jim Mason, PDD and Judy Hanson, PER from Sebring Elks Lodge #1529 presented their Beacon Grant of $2,000 to the Highlands Little Theatre for the Summer Theatre Youth Camp. Accepting the donation were Music Director, Christy Hagen; Director, Laura Wade; and Instructor, Amanda Mercer. The young adults pictured will be part of the summer camp and will perform in the play “Into the Woods Jr.”

 

Louisiana State Legislature Increases New Orleans Hotel Occupancy Tax

The Legislature of the State of Louisiana has acted to increase the New Orleans Hotel Occupancy Tax from 13% to 14.75% effective April 1, 2014. This will affect our convention room rates and they will go from $128.56 to $130.52 per night.

Convention Attendees With ADA Transportation Needs Urged To Contact Grand Lodge

In order for the Grand Lodge to support the transportation needs of attendees with disabilities you are urged to contact the Grand Lodge if you require special assistance. Special coaches capable of kneeling to accommodate wheel chairs will be placed along the routes for those in need. If you require assistance please contact Tina or Jessica at the Grand Lodge as follows:

TinaH@elks.org

JessicaR@elks.org

 

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