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Florida Elks News Editor:
Rachael King
Entire contents copyright 2021 by the
Florida State Elks Association Inc.
P.O. Box 49
Umatilla, FL 32784-0049

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708 club photo  708 hwy

Tampa Elks Lodge #708 will now be using the Elks National Foundation Beacon Grant to fund the lodge-sponsored Club Chivalry at Robinson High School instead of the Elks National Foundation Impact Grant. The Florida State Elks Association also matches the Beacon Grant, giving the club more funds. During the January club meeting day, yearbook photos were taken, and the Elks volunteers for the day joined in the Club Chivalry photo. Afterward, in celebration of National Pizza Week, the lodge treated the club members to a pizza party. The Elks reminded them to sign up for Relay for Life in April and also told them about an upcoming service hours opportunity with the lodge. On Jan. 15, some students helped lodge members perform community service by cleaning the roadside along Himes Avenue. This project is done quarterly by Tampa Elks in conjunction with Mayor Jane Castor’s Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful project. The students earned four community service hours for their efforts.

Elks pictured in the club yearbook photo in the bottom row on both sides of the four club student officers are Tommy “Loyd” Moore, Betty Orcutt, Carolyn Miller and Edie Hanley. 

Pictured during the highway cleanup are Wendy Wiesler, member; Andy Zheng, student; Melissa Bertoch, Esquire; Bianca Blevins, student; Richard Whizenhut, member; Comfort Njoku, student; Bonnie Atwood, member; and Rita Smith, Leading Knight.


2734 bike

Manasota Elks Lodge #2734 is very active with the Welcome Home Kit program for veterans and Manatee Veterans Village in Bradenton, Florida. In April 2021, the lodge assisted veteran Scott by delivering a Welcome Home Kit to him with items he needed for his new home. At the delivery, lodge members met his daughter, Sophie. In early December, lodge members Mike and Marilyn Veno contacted Jim Klocke, Veterans Lodge Chair, about donating a slightly used bicycle to a person in need for Christmas. Jim Klocke had just the right person in mind for it — Sophie! Klocke contacted her father and made the arrangements to deliver the bike to her.

Pictured Christmas morning is Sophie thrilled to receive her first bicycle.


2469 angel

Jupiter Lodge’s members and community members supported the lodge's Angel Tree this year. With their generosity, the lodge made holiday dreams come true for 117 local children in need. Many volunteers shopped for the gifts and prepared the packages, which were delivered Dec. 20-21.

Pictured are lodge members Bobby and Iris Paul with Ms. Inez at Jupiter Elementary School. 


2113 wrap 1  2113 wrap 2

From Dec. 15 to Dec. 24, Titusville Elks Lodge #2113 opened its Christmas gift-wrapping tent and Drug Awareness Education trailer outside a Walmart store in Titusville, Florida, to raise funds for the Florida Elks Youth Camp by wrapping gifts for shoppers. Two and a half days were lost due to rain, but the project carried on the other days from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and raised more than $1,300 with the help of numerous Elks and ladies members. All the gift wrapping, tissue paper and bows were donated by lodge members.

Pictured are Mark Morris and Doris Becraft, Leading Knight.


1288 angel

The Salvation Army Angel Tree project provides Christmas gifts for families in need in southwest Florida. This year, Fort Myers Elks Lodge #1288 sponsored five of these families. Christmas donations of clothing and toys came from members and guests who chose tags from the lodge's Angel Tree and shopped for those children. Monetary donations also came from members, and $100 Publix gifts were donated to each family by the Fort Myers Ladies of Elks. In all, the members and lodge supplied each family with approximately $500 in clothing and toys for the children and funds to purchase their Christmas dinner.

Pictured Dec. 18 is Angel Tree Committee member Gail Mascari (right) with one of the families after she and her husband, Frank, delivered the gifts.


708 open

On Dec. 26, Tampa Lodge members Edie Hanley, Inner Guard, and Rita Smith, Leading Knight, arrived at Open Arms Ministry at 7 a.m. to give a Christmas card containing a $25 Walmart gift card and a one-day unlimited bus pass to each person in the homeless population who arrived for coffee and a bagged meal, fresh dessert and good company. According to the ministry’s records, 75 people in need were served. The remaining cards will be given to the veterans without homes from the James A. Haley VA Domiciliary when they attend a lodge dinner. This project was financed by the Florida State Elks Association matching funds of an Elks National Foundation grant. 

Pictured are Edie Hanley distributing a card and Leo Dougherty, an Open Arms volunteer, checking in a client.