Florida Elks News Online

our military and veterans

Thank You to Florida Elks from Re-Creation Director



Sept. 14, 2017


Mr. Carl Seibert, Secretary Florida State Elks Association

P. O. Box 49

Umatilla, FL 32784-0049


Dear Carl,

Thank you for your recent donation to help Re-Creation produce and distribute the group’s CDs and DVDs to the VA Medical Centers and state veterans homes nationwide.

We cannot say thank you enough for your dedication to this cause. As you know, the patients use these materials as they attend rehab sessions and medical center professionals say the DVDs are used often for movie-night activities or when a particular patient’s morale is low. Both the CDs and DVDs are amazing reminders of the Elks and Re-Creation’s partnership in honoring our hospitalized vets!

Each CD and DVD will feature the Army of Hope logo and the following citation:

Copies of this CD (DVD) are being given to every VA Medical Center and State Veterans Home Re-Creation visits nationwide with appreciation and gratitude for our hospitalized veterans and troops by the Florida State Elks Association and their Army of Hope.

We will have all projects inhouse soon and we are excited to send you copies of what you have helped to produce, and this year is special as we filmed the show in an actual care facility! It will truly give those who watch the DVD a glimpse into what it is like to perform in the VA facilities nationwide.

Thank you so much from our grateful hearts and from a grateful America!


Jay Muller, Director

Re-Creation USA Inc.


Orange Park Elks Donate to Sea Cadets

2605 Sea Cadet

Orange Park Lodge presented a grant check for $2,500 to the JAX NAS Sea Cadets. The Sea Cadet group participates in events at the lodge as well as helps out with dinners and other functions held at the lodge. The donation will be used to help defray expenses for the Sea Cadets’ annual field trip. Orange Park Exalted Ruler, Phyllis Bonser, presents a check to Robert Long, lodge member and commanding officer of the Sea Cadet Group.


Orange Park Member and Retired Marine Receives Old Glory Flag

2605 Flag

Following the Pledge of Allegiance, the Old Glory ceremony was performed. At the end of the ceremony, the folded flag was presented to Orange Park Lodge's senior retired Marine, Bill Ruffian, PPD.


Orange Park Lodge Partners with Atlantic Coast Young Marines

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Orange Park Elks Lodge #2605 held the Northeast District Vice President dinner Aug. 26. The Atlantic Coast Young Marine Group served the meal and cleaned up afterward. The lodge plans to partner with this group on future events and presented them with a $1,500 grant check the night of the dinner.


Lodge #2866 Paints Home of Veteran's Widow

2866 paint

Mandarin-St. Johns Elks Lodge #2866 partnered with the American Legion to paint the home of a veteran’s widow. The American Legion bought the paint and lodge members did the work. The American Legion uses the lodge as a place to hold their meetings.

Mandarin-St. Johns Elks Carol Hopson, Lodge Secretary, and George Hurd with his granddaughter are pictured painting a veteran’s widow’s house.


Venice-Nokomis Elks Host Veterans Luncheons

1854 vets

Venice-Nokomis Elks Lodge #1854 proudly hosts luncheons for veterans with funds provided by a Gratitude Grant. The July lunch was served to 40 veterans which included Brigadier General James E. Shelton. Pictured with Shelton is Southwest District Vice President, Sven Nelson (left).


South Hillsborough Elks Support Veterans

South Hillsborough Elks Lodge #2672, thanks to a Beacon Grant, hosted 20 veterans to a Tampa Bay Rays game as part of the annual Elks Day at the Rays. The veterans enjoyed great seats down the third base line and received vouchers to cover the cost of food and drinks. Bob Preston, Chairman, along with seven members of the lodge also enjoyed the event which was won by the Rays 3-1 over the Boston Red Sox.

South Hillsborough Lodge also serves meals to veterans from James A. Haley Veterans Hospital every second and fourth Friday of the month. They are allowed to order anything off the menu. Personal items provided by lodge members are also presented to the veterans.


Sarasota South Elks Provide Lunch and Guest Speaker for Veterans

Sarasota South Elks Lodge #2495 has a monthly veterans luncheon in which they invite veterans from local nursing and assisted-living homes. In August, 90 veterans and spouses heard guest speaker, Colonel Ben Knisely, a MEDEVAC helicopter pilot and former MIA in Vietnam.


Manasota Elks Support Chef's Course

2734 chefs

Manasota Elks along with USF and Goodwill sponsored a program where six nearly homeless veterans graduated Aug. 21 at the new culinary school created by another veteran. After a 12-week course, they become certified chefs. All six now have jobs.


Bradenton Elks Riders Raise Money for Veterans

1511 Riders

The Bradenton Elks Lodge Elks Riders hosted an evening of “Meat Bingo” to raise money to benefit the lodge’s veterans fishing trip. The game is played like Feather your Nest with the winners receiving prizes ranging from turkeys to ribs. The evening netted over $400 for veterans.

Bradenton Elks Riders Donnie Anderson and Ron Duquet, President, helped raise money for veterans.


Northwest District Holds Kids on the Water/Military Appreciation Day

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The Northwest District lodges, Crestview #2624, Destin #2688, Warrington #2108, Twin Cities #2747, Holly-Navarre #2787 and Pensacola Beach #497, along with host lodge, Fort Walton #1795, held their a Kids on the Water/Military Appreciation Day event Sept. 23. All five local military services, U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marines and U.S. Coast Guard, were invited to attend with local families. Over 80 volunteers and more than 300 attendees enjoyed pontoon boat rides, rock and face painting, arts and crafts, and Capt. Davy’s pirate and magic show. Food and drinks were available to all.


West Citrus Hold Dinner to Raise Funds for Veterans

2693 Vets dinner

On Sept. 23, West Citrus Elks Lodge #2693 held the annual Veterans Dinner Dance. It well-attended and much enjoyed. The volunteers raised about $500 for the Veterans Committee to be used in the support of veterans.


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:




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