VFW & Boy Scouts To Host Annual Pancake Breakfast & Blood Drive
ORLAND PARK, IL - An autumn tradition will return to Orland Park on Saturday, October 30 when the Veterans of Foreign Wars Orland-Palos Reber-Tesmond Post 2604 and Orland Park Boy Scout Troop 318 hold their annual All-You-Eat Pancake Breakfast and Blood Drive at the Orland Park Civic Center from 8:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. The Civic Center is located at 14750 South Ravinia Avenue, one block west of LaGrange Road/US Route 45.
"The VFW has teamed up with the Boy Scouts to hold the pancake breakfast for the last five years," said Chuck Groff, pancake breakfast chair for the VFW. "The VFW members cook and the scouts serve breakfast, collect tickets and keep the room clean and organized. The troop leaders also help," Groff said.
Admission is $5.00 for adults and $3.00 for children age ten and younger and includes pancakes, sausage, orange juice, milk and coffee. Tickets may be purchased at the door.
"The VFW uses its proceeds to pay for a pizza party for the veterans at the Manteno Veterans Home. This is a care facility for senior vets who are no longer able to live alone or whose families are no longer able to care for them," Groff explained. "We also help Operation Support Our Troops - Illinois by paying for postage to send care packages to those serving overseas. Our donations to to the Hines Veterans Hospital help support the Blind Center and the Spinal Cord Center with bingo and special lunches," he added..
"Boy Scout Troop 318 used the funds from the past year to purchase a new trailer for the scouts and to support our scouts at summer camp," said Troop 318 Committee Chair Jim Harmening.
"We had more than 50 scouts and 30 adults attend summer camp," reported Troop 318 Scoutmaster Jerry Stechmiller. "We invite everyone to come out to enjoy breakfast and to donate blood," Stechmiller said.
Harmening added, "It's because of the generous donations that Troop 318 receives, including the VFW, that we are able to offer scouts a great program."
LifeSource, Chicagoland's Blood Center, will be at the Civic Center, enabling attendees to donate blood. Prospective donors must weigh at least 110 pounds, be in good physical health, be at least seventeen years old and have not given blood in the past 56 days. Sixteen year olds may donate, with parental permission. All donors must present photo identification.
Ted Barczak, who coordinates the event for Troop 318, said, "This event is one of the troop's favorites as we work in coordination with the veterans. We provide the community an affordable meal and we help our area hospitals with blood products through Lifesource. Last year, we collected 31 units of blood and we're hoping to top that this year."
According to LifeSource, 60 percent of the population is medically eligible to give blood yet only five percent of the national population donates blood. Someone needs blood every three seconds, according to the agency's website. Three gallons of blood support the entire nation's blood needs for one minute.
Barczak added, "It's nice to see all of these groups come together for a common cause. The vets have always been great to work with and it's nice to see the scouts and vets working side by side."
"Our annual pancake breakast is a wonderful Orland Park tradition," Groff said, adding, "You get a great breakfast, are supporting two of Orland Park's very active organizations and can help people by donating blood."