All families are invited to enjoy a meal, as well as fun and games, during a benefit at the Isanti VFW for the Disabled American Veterans.
The organization is the most long-lasting veterans advocacy and assistance group in the country. It is dedicated to a single purpose: empowering veterans to lead high-quality lives with respect and dignity.
The organization accomplishes this by ensuring that veterans and their families can access the full range of benefits available to them; fighting for the interests of America’s injured heroes on Capitol Hill; and educating the public about the great sacrifices and needs of veterans transitioning back to civilian life.
“The Men’s Auxiliary has supported the motorcycle ride hosted by Zylstra Harley-Davidson for the past three years, and last year the Post and Ladies’ Auxiliary got more involved so we decided to make this into a bigger event for our community,” said Tim Kent, Senior Vice Commander and Gambling Manager at the Isanti VFW Post 2375. “We decided to put on this benefit to support the Disabled American Veterans because they help take care of veterans, which is also the first mission of our Post.”
From noon to 3 p.m., the Ladies’ Auxiliary will sponsor kids activities, including face painting and an inflatable moon walk with slide. A cake walk for the kids will begin at 1 p.m.
The Cooties Auxiliary bingo session will begin at 1 p.m., with a meat raffle held during the session. The Men’s Auxiliary Pig Roast will begin at 4 p.m.; the cost for the Pig Roast $8 per person. Kent noted families of the 850th Horizontal Engineering Company, based in Cambridge, are invited to attend the event and enjoy the meal for free. He explained the Post adopted the 850th National Guard Unit under the VFW’s “Adopt a Unit” program.
Other events include a Revolutionary War era cannon demonstration at 5:30 p.m., with the day’s events wrapping up with the band “Road Worthy” performing from 9 p.m. to close.
Supporters of the event will have an opportunity to purchase $5 raffle tickets for a chance to win an Insignia 50” television, a Brute pressure washer or a Kindle Fire HD. You must be 18 to purchase tickets; the drawing will be at 6 p.m. Sept. 14. You do not need to be present to win, and tickets can be purchased from the bartender and pull-tab booth.
Kent said last year’s event raised $2,000 for the Disabled American Veterans.
“We are hoping to raise as much as we did last year,” Kent said. “This is a family event, and everyone is welcome to come and support our local veterans. The American Disabled Veterans Anoka chapter was very appreciative of the check we presented last year, and we are hoping we can present an even larger check to them this year.”
The event will also include an opportunity to purchase $1 raffle tickets for smaller prizes donated by local businesses and vendors.
Kent, who is a disabled veteran who served in Desert Storm, has been a member of the Isanti VFW since 1995. He encourages everyone to patronize the Isanti VFW.
“The Isanti VFW is open to the public, and we invite everyone to enjoy a great meal or play some pull-tabs,” Kent said. “Our proceeds help our local veterans, which is our first mission. Our second mission is to make our community a better place. Our proceeds go toward supporting nonprofit organizations or helping people in need.”
Kent said, each month, the Isanti VFW supports a community activity, with members donating around 500 hours monthly in volunteerism.
Giving back to the community, and to those in need, is why Kent and other members donate their time to the Post.
“Just recently, we helped a homeless veteran by putting him up in a motel for a couple of nights while he was waiting for his Social Security check,” Kent said. “The Isanti County veterans service officer also helped him. The veteran said to me, ‘This is the first time in 30 years anyone has paid any attention to me.’ We have good members at the Isanti VFW helping good people.”
For more information on the Sept. 14 benefit, contact the Isanti VFW at www.vfw2735mn.us or call 763-444-9787. The VFW is located at 410 S. Railroad in Isanti.
Harley’s Heroes Motorcycle Run
The Harley’s Heroes Motorcycle Run will also be held Sept. 14 to benefit the Disabled American Veterans. The cost is $30 per motorcycle and includes breakfast at Zylstra Harley-Davidson in Elk River, 19600 Evans St. NW.
Registration and breakfast begins at 10 a.m. with the ride beginning at 11 a.m. The event is a 100-mile ride with stops at the St. Cloud VFW and the Zimmerman American Legion. The ride will end at the Isanti VFW at approximately 4:30 p.m.
For more information on the ride, contact Zylstra Harley-Davidson in Elk River at 763-241-2000 or visit www.zylstrahd.com.