Sr. Vice Commander of VFW Post 9601
We ask ourselves, “Where has the time gone?” We find ourselves asking that same question again this time of the year, but in this case we look forward to the challenges that come with a new calendar year of 2016 and we start by filling in the calendar spaces as to what we have coming up. As with any organization, there are certain programs and events that happen every year, at the same time, and we’re no different.
Plans are already being made for the annual golf tournament in June, but before that happens, we have nominations and elections for new officers for this coming calendar year. The new officers, whether they be old hands or new ones to these elected positions, we hope will bring fresh ideas and new members to our post along with the existing members and we look forward to a fruitful year.
Along with the golf tournament, we also have our annual Travis Amsbah Bocce Ball Tournament with the proceeds benefiting the Veterans Memorial, and its expansion. Also this year, we’re proud to again be part of the wheelchair regatta, its 20th anniversary, that we were part of at its conception and is held at the Encinal yacht club in Alameda, California. This event is near and dear to all our hearts, as it brings new veterans, young and old, and those that have ambulatory issues to a fun filled day on the water and barbecues. Additionally, there is the Castro Valley fall Festival and once again this year, we will be sponsoring a tent at the East Bay stand down, an event held every two years to help with the needs of homeless veterans; all this happens in the month of September.
As our post is quite diversified in what we do, not only help the veterans of our community at large, we have added a new element to our post with the addition of our Auxiliary, which was formed in the middle of last year. These ladies bring a new element and new ideas along with helping hands to the post and, working side-by-side, we look forward to seeing what we can accomplish together. We are hopeful that the Buddy Poppies, the little orange flowers that we hand out at grocery stores and street corners, will be as lucrative and as productive in helping our veterans in need. We asked for the public’s help and they responded in kind, knowing that the money generated will be going to the right people for the right cause; this event is held twice a year in May and November.
So you see our calendar fills up rather quickly; from the very beginning we know exactly what we want to accomplish and we strive to meet those obligations to help our fellow veterans and our much loved community. We look forward to the challenge that comes with the New Year, and hopefully, will be able to add new faces to our ranks as well.
Jim Uhlik, Sr. Vice Commander
VFW Post 9601
Castro Valley, CA