SOUTH PLAINFIELD - The South Plainfield Elks invited local veterans to spend the day with them for their Annual Family Picnic held on Saturday, August 31st at 1p.m. at the South Plainfield Elks Lodge, located at 1254 New Market Avenue. Attendees had a wide variety of picnic foods to choose from, played games, entered contests, and enjoyed the beautiful weather with good conversation and family fun.
“The Elks have been having this picnic every year since the 1960s,” said Christine Sauer, Exalted Ruler. “The Elks Family Picnic has always been a time for fellow members to come together and enjoy a beautiful day out with their family members.”
Veterans from the New Jersey Veterans Memorial Home at Menlo Park in Edison were invited to join the family picnic.
“Today was very nice,” said Paula Frederick, Activity Professional at N.J. Veterans Home. “We always enjoy coming here for the picnic. The veterans had a good time. They always enjoy coming. They look forward to this trip.”
The Elks, as an organization, promise to help veterans in any way possible and hold true to their pledge, "So long as there are veterans, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks will never forget them.” The Elks National Veterans Service Commission promises service to the nation's veterans and military members, with a special focus on service to those in need.
“I come every year,” said Army Veteran Tony Parisi, who served in Korea 1952 through 1954.
“Whenever there is an Elks’ event I come. They take good care of us and it’s always a lot of fun.”
Musical chairs, a toy chicken toss, horse racing games, several contests, raffle drawings and music made for a fun afternoon for family and friends.
“It’s not one of our fundraising functions, but it’s a camaraderie function,” said Sauer. “It’s really a wonderful time of the year.”
The Elks strive to help the community where ever there is a need. From their veteran support endeavors, to scholarships for those pursuing a trade or on to college, to their many Special Children’s Programs and countless fundraisers held throughout the year, the Elks are always there, behind the scenes, offering an out stretched hand.
“We’re here to support the community,” said Suzanne Purcell, Elks Lodge Officer. “If we see a need, we do everything we can to help. This is an amazing group of people, who truly love South Plainfield and want to be of service. I am honored to be a part of the South Plainfield Elks Lodge.”