Vestal Elks to hold donation drive for Veteran Care Packages

On Monday, Nov. 11, the Vestal Elks Lodge #2508 and WBNG-12 are partnering together to hold a donation drive for the Veterans Care Packages Program. It will be held rain or shine at the Vestal Elks Lodge, located at 2071 Vestal Parkway West from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

Want to bring a donation but don’t feel like getting out of your vehicle? There will be a “drive thru” tent set up and smiling veterans will gladly come up to your vehicle to receive your donation. 

The Vestal Elks Veterans Committee has been shipping care packages for 12 years to local soldiers stationed overseas. So far over 13,000 soldiers have benefited and enjoyed these goodies. An average of 15 soldiers share the box with the recipient, with a mind boggling 20,000 pounds of treats sent so far. 

The veterans committee noted that all items are donated, and that every monetary donation goes back into the care package program. To date, over $33,000 has been paid for shipping costs, with each box weighing an average of 30 pounds. 

Some of the most requested and needed items include jerky, slim jims, spam, tuna/chicken in cans or pouches, single serve nuts, single serve protein mixes, single serve water flavoring packets, single serve coffee or hot cocoa,  powdered Gatorade, energy and granola bars, summer sausage, high quality socks, travel size pain relievers (Tylenol , Advil), Icy Hot or Ben Gay, batteries (AA or AAA), DVD’S (new), hand held video games,  travel size games, and  puzzle books. Monetary donations are also needed to help with the high shipping costs. 

Along with sending out monthly goodie boxes, the committee puts on a yearly Veterans Day dinner at their lodge to honor local veterans. They also host an ice cream social for all the residents at the Oxford Veterans Home as well as a Christmas party, complete with presents, for all the residents in the Alzheimer’s unit.     

For more information, contact Mindi at (607) 259-3814. 

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