Nonprofit Profile

Legion unveils freshly fixed building

Carol Wagner Leader Correspondent

Photo by Carol Wagner Kevin Barkow is the commander of Shawano American Legion Post 117. The local clubhouse recently received a new roof and a new heating and air conditioning unit.

The Shawano American Legion Post 117 will thank all those who helped this year on Saturday with updates to the clubhouse, including a new roof and new heating and air conditioning.

“The community was so behind us,” said commander Kevin Barkow, a Navy veteran who served on a nuclear submarine from 1986 to 1991.

There will also be an award for Legionnaire of the Year and Friend of the American Legion.

Festivities start at 4 p.m. followed by dinner from 5-7 p.m. Charlie Harvey of Charlie’s County Market donated the food.

“He wanted everybody to get a thank you,” Barkow said. “We are fortunate to have a businessman like that in the city.”

Barkow also commended Rory Buss, who ran all the fundraisers. Buss isn’t a veteran, but his father was. All major donors will receive a certificate.

The local post has around 200 members with 25 active. It sponsors a fishing derby the third Saturday in January at the Bamboo Bar on Shawano Lake. Proceeds go for two scholarships.

The Legion also sponsors a high school student for Badger Boys State and a Legion baseball team. Barkow said the team has been doing well and more help is always needed. You don’t have to be a member of the Legion to help out.

Santa Claus will be at the Legion on Dec. 23. It is the sixth year they have held the event where each child gets candy and a gift.

The last Saturday in April is the barbecue rib dinner.

“I make everything,” Barkow said. “I was a cook in the Navy.”

A lot of people donate their time to the Legion and don’t expect anything in return like Paul and Sue Hintz, who donate countless hours, according to Barkow.

“A lot of people in the community care about us,” Barkow said.

Revenue for the Legion comes from the clubhouse bar, which is managed by Melea Norton. It is closed Monday and Tuesday and open to the public other days beginning at 1 p.m.

The hall is also for rent for $75.

Other officers are Al Boyd, first vice commander; Kieth Vanevenhoven, second vice commander; Phil Nelson, membership chairman, adjutant and finance officer; Dennis Cauldie, chaplain; Lloyd Koeller, historian; Joe Schwobe, service officer; Roger Oleson, judge advocate; and John Becker and James Lutz, sergeant at arms.

They meet the fourth Monday of the month at the clubhouse at 7 p.m.