Western Fraternal Life :: Meadowlands Jr. No. 361

Meadowlands Jr. No. 361

Meadowlands, MN

November 2018

The October and November meetings were held at the Meadowlands Manor.

Members assisted Meadowlands community leaders with the annual Halloween party for area youth on October 27. Western Halloween bags were given to attendees to carry their treats and treasures throughout the event. We fed the ghosts and goblins their daily ration of hot dogs, chips, candy, and juice. The event was enjoyed by kids and adults alike.

On November 3, the annual Hunter’s Supper was held and sponsored by the Meadowlands Community Center. Members supplied many desserts to compliment the delicious meal.

Special thanks to all the veterans for their service to our nation.

Condolences to the family of John Kochevar.

September 2018

The annual potluck/meeting was held September 9 at the National Hall. Members and guests enjoyed an afternoon of reminiscing, food, good music, and Bingo.

President Jim Simunovich presented pins to Vlasta Skala (75-years) and Tom Lytner (50-years). He also gave a brief recap of lodge activities for the year, and suggestions for future activities.

Agent Scott Daniels assisted our members at the bike giveaway and information booth at the Central St. Louis County Fair. Bike winners were Hanna Maly and Jonah Maly.

The family of the late George Kucera, longtime member, presented an award to the exhibitors with the most entries in produce at the fair. George held that honor for many years prior to his passing.

Thanks to Helen Abramson for giving St. Louis County commissioners a guided tour of the National Hall.

August 2018

In July, we collected clothing for the Disabled American Veterans, as well as for a women’s shelter in neighboring communities. Thanks to Dave, Helen, Joe, and Val for delivering the items to the appropriate agencies. 

On August 5, we hosted a birthday party at the Hummingbird Assisted Living facility in Meadowlands. Special birthday cards, gifts, hats, and treats were given to each of the residents. Music was provided by 99-year-old Charlie and his button box. 

We gave away two bikes at the central St. Louis County Fair in Meadowlands on August 19. 

Our annual potluck picnic was held at the National Hall on September 9, with a meal, meeting, and entertainment to follow.

May 2018

On May 5, members met at the National Hall for hall cleaning and the monthly meeting. On June 10, the meeting was held.

Plans were made for a clothing drive to benefit Disabled American Veterans and a women’s shelter in neighboring cities. The clothing was collected at the National Hall on July 11, prior to the monthly meeting.

Planning is under way for an “Everyone’s Birthday Party” for the residents of the Hummingbird Assisted Living facility in August, and for the annual bike giveaway at the Central St. Louis Co. Fair.

Congratulations to the graduating seniors of our lodge. Happy 99th birthday to Charlie Karasek, one of the oldest members of our lodge.

March 2018

Our monthly meeting was held March 11 at the Meadowlands Manor. Plans were finalized for the St. Patrick’s Day party for residents of Hummingbird Assisted Living. We provided entertainment, decorations, and lunch.

Congratulations to everyone who helped achieve a Four Star Award for this year. Let’s work together to be as successful next year.

Condolences go out to the family of Mary Odden.

February 2018

Our meeting was held February 4 at the Meadowlands Manor.

The election of officers was held with the following results: President Jim Simunovich, Vice President Joe Skala, Treasurer Bonnie Van Duker, and Carol Anderson temporarily acting as secretary.

Projects and activities for the coming year were discussed and are being developed.

Members donated baked goods and participated in the Sax-Zim Bog Birding Festival held annually in Meadowlands.

Several members have experienced health issues this winter, and have been hospitalized or in rehab. A donation was sent to the Micki (Marvel) Lane Benefit to help offset the cost of her medical treatments. The benefit was held at the Cloquet Armory on February 17. Best wishes to all.

Congratulations to 50-year members Tom Lytner and Louis Winkle, and 75-year member Vlasta Skala. Their pins will be presented at a later date.

December 2017

The Meadowlands Community Halloween party was held October 28. We provided donations of candy, Halloween bags, and refreshments. The ghosts and goblins (children) enjoyed games and activities.

Table decorations, lunch, and a patriotic program were presented to residents of the Hummingbird Assisted Living in Meadowlands on Veteran’s Day. Val Skala read the poem, America, written by her granddaughter. A community choir sang with members participating. Val spoke of her brother and displayed the medals he was awarded in service during WWII, where he lost his life serving our country.

Congratulations to Penney Nemec who won 1st prize for her “squirrel” photo in the Animal category of the Fraternal Herald Photo Contest.

Thank you to Pat Mathison for collecting the recyclables and taking them to the proper locations.

Members collected winter apparel for disabled veterans. VP Joe and Val Skala delivered items to the Virginia MN collection site.

On December 13, Helen Abramson and Judy Miller entertained folks with music at the nearby Floodwood Services and Training facility’s Christmas Tea.

Condolences to the families of Lillian Ploetz and Helen Koepke.

November 2017

Table decorations, lunch, and a patriotic program were presented to residents of the Hummingbird Assisted Living on Veteran’s Day. After the Pledge of Allegiance, Val Skala read the poem America written by her granddaughter. A choir sang with members participating. Val also spoke of her brother and displayed the medals he was awarded during his service in WWII, where he lost his life in service to our country.

On November 28, we provided Halloween bags and candy. Members Lisa and Helen served refreshments as the kids enjoyed games and activities at the Meadowlands Community Center.

Congratulations to Penney Nemec who won 1st prize for her squirrel photo in the Western Photo Contest animal category.

Condolences to the families of Lillian Ploetz and Helen Koepke.

Helen Abramson and Judy Miller entertained clients, guests, and staff with music at the nearby Floodwood Services and Training facility’s Christmas Tea.

August 2017

Our bike giveaway was on August 20 at the Central St. Louis County Fair. The winners were lodge members Jacob Morse and Addison Kucera.

On September 10, the annual lodge potluck was held at the National Hall. Approximately thirty people enjoyed lunch and fellowship with neighbors and friends. Member Barbara Griswold and sister-in-law Dorene Scott came from Michigan and brought Pracinky (bear paws) made with Barb’s grandmother’s recipe. Rob Marvel brought a Barley-Mushroom (Cerna Kuva) casserole, his late mother’s recipe.

During our meeting, President Jim Simunovich presented a 75-year pin to Raymond Tigue, and a 50-year pin to Michelle Lane.

After the meeting, members and guests played Bingo and were entertained by 98-year-old Charles Karasek and his 82-year-old button box.

Condolences to the families of Eugene Simon and Donald Zitka.

November-December 2016
Pat Mathison, Acting Correspondent

Shortly after our October meeting, George Kucera donated four apple trees for the hall grounds. They symbolize the hope and support we offer to the families of missing and exploited children everywhere.

Our November 13 meeting was at the manor. Margaret Larsen was presented with a past president’s pin.

Birthday cards were signed for two members. Congratulations to Karen Boisner and Roy Miller, winners of the Stay in Touch gift cards in September and October.

Four members, Ann Taray, Carol Anderson, Lisa Hill, and Pat Mathison, helped at the Meadowlands Community Halloween party on October 29. Children and parents were registered. Hot dogs and snacks were served and we furnished Western treat bags.

That same evening, Steve and Bonnie Van Duker took part in the Toivola community hayride.

Helen Abramson, Carol Anderson, and Bonnie Van Duker donated desserts for the November 5 hunter’s supper.

Helen also delivered hand-knitted stocking caps and slippers to Safehaven Shelter in Duluth.

We sent letters to members seeking suggestions for future activities and ways to make better use of our hall.

Members met December 11 at the manor. South Ridge School received 48 lbs of glossy paper. Box tops and labels went to Floodwood School. Twenty-two pairs of eyeglasses were given to Floodwood Lions. Four hundred cancelled stamps were given to VFW Post #3044. Just over 15 lbs of can tabs were given to the Ronald McDonald charities. Thanks to all who supported our efforts this year.

The next two meetings are tentatively set for February 12 and March 12, 1 p.m., at the Meadowlands Manor.

June - August, 2016
Bonnie Van Duker, Secretary

Our June 12, July 10, and August 14 meetings were at the hall. Thinking-of-you cards were sent to members.

We sent a memorial to the family of Judy Linder.

mn-361-1.png mn-361-2.png
Bike winners.

Carol Anderson with Meadowlands Fire Department.

The South Central St. Louis County Fair was held August 19-21. We had an information table and bike giveaway. Winners were Elayna Simonson and Matt Mazurek. We also donated three $10 cash prizes. Five members helped at the event.

Some members are knitting stocking caps for Safehaven Shelter in Duluth, MN. Donations of yarn were accepted. Delivery will be in November.

The September 11 and October 9 meetings were at the hall. Helen Abramson, Carol Anderson, and Pat Mathison furnished baked goods to the local fire department. We planned to participate in the community children’s Halloween party and annual hunter’s supper.

Carol Anderson with Meadowlands Fire Department.

Collection items will be delivered in November.

We are working on ways to boost meeting attendance and recruit more volunteers to help with our activities. Our next meetings are at 2 p.m. on December 11 and January 8 at the Meadowlands Manor.

April - May 2016
Pat Mathison, Correspondent

Vice President Joe Skala presided at our April 10 meeting at Meadowlands Manor. Easter greetings were sent to members who have been so supportive of the lodge over the years.

Long-time member Jane Swartz passed away on March 24. A memorial was sent to the family.

South Ridge School received 120 lbs. of glossy paper on April 1. Members turned in more paper, cancelled stamps, and labels.

The St. Patrick’s Day party on March 16 was rescheduled because of inclement weather and was held on April 20. Names were drawn for numerous small gifts. Cake and ice cream were served and furnished by the lodge. Vlasta fired off several Irish sayings. Joe Baltich Sr., of Ely, so well received for his accordion playing last year, joined us again. We thank him and his wife Paula for driving down. Vlasta and Joe Skala, along with Carol and Gene Anderson, put together the wonderful program that was enjoyed by all. Nine members took part in the event.

The May 1 meeting was held at the National Hall. President Jim Simunovich introduced our new agent, Scott Daniels, who works out of Hibbing. He’s eager to help members with their insurance needs and can be reached at 218-969-8126.

Bonnie Van Duker, Sari Svoboda, and Carol Anderson served lunch provided by us at the May 7 fire department garage sale. This year’s proceeds of $196.85 went to the fire department.

South Ridge School received 120 lbs. of glossy paper on May 9. Thank-you cards were received from the TMDB, Wanda Larsen, and the Hummingbird.

Congratulations to Jacob Skahl for graduating from Cherry High School. He received a card and monetary gift.

March 2016
Pat Mathison, Correspondent

Our March 13 meeting was at the manor. We held a St. Patrick’s Day party at the Hummingbird Customized Living.

The Youth Art Contest was announced. Members, urge eligible children and grandchildren to send in an entry. We challenge them to do so, and “break the bank,” as the lodge will match their winnings.

Thinking-of-you cards were sent to ill members. We extend our sympathies to Wanda Larsen and her family for the recent loss of her mother.

Due to Mother’s Day, our May meeting will be at 1 p.m. on May 1 at the hall. Watch for our June through October meetings at 1 p.m. at the hall. We are asking some of our local inactive members to consider helping out with our activities, even if it is only one this year.

The Meadowlands Fire Department Garage Sale will be held on May 7. Start your spring cleaning and get your unused, unneeded items to the fire hall to be sold for a good cause. Let’s show our support for these fine, dedicated people. We will provide and serve lunch, with the proceeds going to the fire departments.

February 2016
Pat Mathison, Correspondent

Our January 10 and February 14 meetings were held at the Meadowlands Manor. Congratulations to 50-year member Larry Kennedy.

Officers for this year are: President James Simunovich, Vice President Joseph Skala, Secretary/Correspondent Patricia Mathison, and Treasurer Bonnie Van Duker. We thank Margaret Larsen for serving as our president since 2003.

We made donations to support WDSE Public Television and the MN WFL Scholarship Fund. We hope our upcoming graduates applied. Remember that graduates are recognized on the cover of the June Fraternal Herald and you’ll be entered into a $100 cash drawing. Please notify your officers or the Home Office to submit your name.

mn-361-2.jpg mn-361-1.jpg
Jeff from Northwoods Audobon Center with Barred Owl. June Morse serving at the Birding Festival.

The Sax-Zim Bog Winter Birding Festival was held at the Meadowlands Community Center on February 12-14. Members baked bars and cookies, which were served following the raptor presentation Silent Hunters. Live birds, courtesy of the Northwoods Audobon Center, and their expert handlers were featured.

We were happy to learn we received a Level II Award for our 2015 activities. A big thank-you goes to all who worked so hard to achieve this. We value the efforts of several non-members as well.


Call 877-935-2467 to speak with a Western Fraternal Life Representative.