Aroostook Community Matters: Presque Isle Elks
PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) -There are a number of different Charitable Organizations in the area, in this weeks Aroostook Community Matters, Corey Bouchard takes a look at the Presque Isle Elks.
Alan Harding - Chairman of Board of Directors - PI Elks Lodge " The Elks is first of all a charitable organization, we are also a uniquely patriotic organization, you have to be an American citizen to belong to the elks”
Alan Harding, The Chairman of the Board Of Directors for the Presque Isle Elks Lodge #1954 says one of the important principals of being an elk is a desire to volunteer in and give back to your community
Alan” That’s what we try to do as members of the elks within this community is have a stronger sense of community... You don’t really have a sense of community if in fact you are paying for something. that makes it more individualized, somebody’s making a profit, somebody is paying money. you have a stronger sense of community when it’s being provided”
That’s why a number of events hosted by the elks are put on at no cost. Those events include the “Hooked On Fishing, Not Drugs” Fishing Derby, A Veterans Day Supper, a Christmas Dinner, and the July Fourth Community Picnic. Fundraising efforts throughout the year allow these events to be provided at no cost to the public. Those fundraising opportunities include their bingo nights, as well as grants from the Elks National Foundation, which is a Major Charity that helps local lodges with their community efforts.
Alan “it’s from the Elks National Foundation that this lodge receives grants, for example the 4th of July event, we received a $4000 grant from the Elks national foundation, well the elks national foundation is able to provide that money because of donations they receive from members of the elks and members of the public who wish to do that”
According to Harding, the Lodge has around 400 members and a lot of them volunteer at lodge events on a regular basis. if you’re interested in becoming a member, you can visit their website at elks.org, but Harding says there’s a better way.
Alan” everyone in this community knows an elk and all they have to say is I might like to be with you at the elks lodge or i might like to be with you on this project, they’ll immediately get an application and we’ll see that they become a member of this great team”
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