April 20, 2018: The Brainerd VFW hosted a membership dinner for Crow Wing County Disabled American Veterans. Over sixty attended and had a great time in a party atmosphere. Food was Surf and Turf....steak and jumbo shrimp. Thanks to Chuck, Karen and the rest of the kitchen crew for a great meal.
Bataan Death March Remembered: gilbertlodge.com/2018/04-09a-18-bataan.html
March 13, 2018: (photos above) A Doris Krueger from the Lakes Area Restorative Justice Project gave a talk at the Brainerd VFW and Auxiliary monthly meeting. This program for juveniles shifts the focus from punishment to restoring and healing. March 21, 2018: Brainerd VFW and Auxiliary members got together to put poppies on cards, which go out to area businesses. Some went on the wall in honor of veterans. Yes, there was popcorn for the workers that day! Poppy Days in Brainerd and Baxter are Friday and Saturday, May 18th and 19th. The public gives donations for poppies. All of the money goes to help veterans. April 4, 2018: (bottom row) Helen Doucette celebrated her 84th birthday at the VFW. Helen is Sr. Vice President of the Brainerd VFW Auxiliary.
March 17, 2018: (photos above) The Brainerd Downtown Association used the Brainerd VFW as a place to hold their annual St. Patrick's Day Kid's Costume Contest. Two bicycles were given away along with other prizes. The VFW served corned beef and cabbage. Then a parade was held on streets nearby, led by the Honor Guard.
March 12, 2018: (photos above) About a thousand veterans gathered at the Minnesota State Capitol for the annual "Vet's on the Hill" day. They marched up the capitol steps with flags and then heard speeches by state legislators in the capitol rotunda, followed by break-out sessions for questions and answers with legislators from their districts. Many questions were very direct in asking for more veterans homes and legislation favoring veterans. WCCO Television was there to do interviews. Six Brainerd veterans attended.
March 3, 2018: (photos above) The annual Polar Plunge to raise money for Special Olympics Minnesota was held at the Breezy Point Resort. The Brainerd VFW has been a big sponsor of the event and won the best costume competition the previous two years. This time they were dressed in Black as the Addams Family. The Walmart team was judged best costume this year with their red cone hats. Plungers raise money for this charity by diving into icy water. The last photos in this gallery show Brainerd VFW Gambling Manager Chuck Hanson and his daughter Bergen. Every year they say it is their last, but every year they are back for another dunking in 33 degree water. That's dedication! Some 326 plungers raised over $74,000 for Special Olympics Minnesota this year.
February 17, 2018: (photos above) A Minnesota State VFW Pistol Shooting Competition was held in Brainerd. It was a joint effort between the Brainerd VFW and the Jenkins, MN, VFW. Competition officials/range officers were Tex Stafford and Tim Brastrup (seen in yellow jackets) from the Jenkins VFW. Fifteen shooters competed in 22 caliber and Open Class shooting. The event went off without a hitch. The most heard comment was they'd like to do it again next year. Ladies from the Brainerd VFW Auxiliary prepared a great lunch for the hungry crew of about 30. A big thanks to the many volunteers involved. Winners: Ray Cowan, Post 3839, Jenkins; Tommy Johnson, Post 246, Minneapolis; Mike Williams, Post 1647, Brainerd; John Gieson, Post 5145, New Prague; and Chad Solheid, Minneapolis.
February 15, 2018: (photos above) Funeral for 95 year old Willard Erickson. The Honor Guard was from the Brainerd American Legion, VFW, and DAV. Erickson was a Master Sergeant serving in WWII and Korea. May he rest in peace. Ceremonies like this are a frequent occurrence with ten during a two week period in February.
January 19-21, 2018: (photos above) The annual VFW Mid-Winter Conference was held in Minneapolis. Those attending from Brainerd included Commander Chip Borle and his wife Kari, Vice Commander Dave Meyer, Junior Vice Commander Mike Williams and his wife Karen, Quartermaster Pat Wing, Vet's Gazette Editor Dawn Garin, Auxiliary Senior Vice President Helen Doucette along with Webmaster Mark Persons and his wife Paula. Brainerd made a great showing by donating $2000 to veterans homes. Recruiting new VFW members was stressed. Also on hand were 6th District Voice of Democracy winner Connor Kockler from Sauk Rapids and state VOD winner Logan Ledman from Northfield. A large gathering of participants gave a SKOL showing support for the Vikings. The gathering was a good way to learn more about the VFW organization and meet new friends. You can look forward to Vets on the Hill on March 12th. It is a great way to see the Minnesota State Capitol and influence legislators.