By

Sheryn Howlett

Elks take a break for Labor Day party

The Mission Viejo Elks Lodge #2444 held their annual Labor Day barbeque on September 2nd with an overwhelming crowd of members and guests who braved the heat and came out to celebrate. Elks Exalted Ruler Jamie Camunas said of the event, “What makes parties such as this so much fun is that on Labor Day we take a break from our busy schedule of helping others to reward our own members for all they do throughout the year. And even though the Labor Day BBQ is not considered a major fundraiser, we still manage to raise some money for our favorite charities such as our Handicapped Children’s Major Project Fund.”

The hottest day of the summer was cooled by the musical tunes belted out by DJ Roy Southerland and many Elks members who entertained throughout the day. Lecturing Knight Kim Maestri and Barbara King sold raffles for a chance to win a handmade quilt and a 50/50 cash prize. Proceeds all going to Elks charities. Leading Knight Greg Morgan captured all the fun with his camera. Mike Zaic & PER Dave McLeod labored over the grill preparing the corn. Kevin Lindley and his kitchen staff did an outstanding job with plenty of help from Exalted Ruler Jamie Camunas who cashiered. Lodge greeters were Vera Pavelec and Sheryn Howlett, Barbara King and Gwen Williams and their staff of volunteers did the decorating. Also helping out was Loyal Knight Stu Urquhart and family who make volunteering a family fun event.

A group of members from the Lodge’s Run A Ways campers club will be headed to Hemet next month to attend the annual Elks Rally for the Major Project. The weekend event will host hundreds of Elks campers from southern California Lodges. The goal of this year’s rally is to surpass last year’s total of $24,000 raised for that worthy cause which helps so many handicapped children throughout California and Hawaii. The money raised at the Rally is then added to the annual donations from all 168 Elks Lodges in the two states. The grand total amount raised for the Major Project this past year was over $2,950,000. The Mission Viejo/Saddleback Valley Elks Lodge #2444 is proud to be a major contributor to that charity. 

The Mission Viejo, Saddleback Valley Lodge is celebrating 49 years of service to the Saddleback Valley Communities. It is one of 8 lodges in the Orange Coast District of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE) whose headquarters is in Chicago, Illinois. The BPOE is a charitable organization with a 151-year history of giving. “Elks Care Elks Share”. For information regarding Elks programs or membership, call 949 830-3557

Photos by Elks

Sheryn Howlett & Greg Morgan

Kevin Lindley and Dave McLeod A-Team cooks

Tenisha Campanile, Kim Maestri and Barbara King at the raffle table

Exalted Ruler Jamie Camunas, Marcie and Loyal Knight Stu Urquhart taking a break

Roy Southerland (music master)

Exalted Ruler Jamie Camunas cashiering