Rainy Lake Houseboat Trip

Well the weather was perfect when we started our trip out onto Rainy Lake in a nice big house boat ready to do some fishing and relaxing for the week. Over all we had some great weather for the week only having to deal with a minor rain storm one night but other than that not one complaint could be said for the weather. It didn’t take long for everyone to become friends and get to know each other before the fishing stories were being told. Some fish were huge and some were small but everyone had a story to share.fishing

We had some very successful days out on the water when it comes to fishing. At one point we had a double come in with a 29” and 39” pike both at one shot both fish put up a great fight and we had a great time bringing them in especially when we realized that we had forgotten our net. But despite forgetting some of our gear we were able to get both fish in the both with great success and definitely had a story to tell about it. We did really well with the pike fishing bringing in multiple fish over 30” and plenty more that were very close. The bass were also biting and we had caught several of them as well with our biggest topping out around 18” which sure put up a good fight.  The walleyes were a little slower than anyone hopes for but despite that we still brought some into the boat and had a great time catching them.

Like with any of our trips you never know what you will find out there but we always have fun and always leave with stories to tell.  Overall we had a great trip and I can’t wait to get back out there and do it again.

Treasure Island Sponsors Event Honoring Veterans

Toby Keith performed outside at the Treasure Island Resort & Casino Saturday, with his music being a perfect soundtrack for the military.

A portion of the concert tickets benefited two local veteran organizations: Hiawatha Valley Family Beyond the Yellow Ribbon and Disabled American Veterans of Minnesota. The DAV provides strong support to more than 40,000 disabled veterans in Minnesota.

Each group invited 15 current serving military or veterans plus one guest.

Lance Garrick, president of the local Yellow Ribbon program, commented on the third row seats he and his wife had at the concert, the special ceremony before and after the concert and Keith’s honorable playlist.

“All and all it was a great event that gave tremendous support to our group,” Garrick said.

DAV of Minnesota supplies veterans in need with power chairs, walkers and other used, durable medical equipment. They ensure transportation to the VA hospitals around the state with free rides to doctor appointments and have started a new program called DAV Outdoors, which encourages vets to get outside by going into the fields, fishing and hunting.

The Hiawatha Valley Family Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Program works on creating a community that connects and coordinates agencies, organizations, employees and resources in order to support veterans and military families.

Both organizations were given a check for $10,000 during a private dinner prior to the concert to help support their programs.

Along with the donation, a special tribute ceremony took place before the concert, followed by a procession from the Prairie Island Indian Community Honor Guard and an eagle presentation courtesy of the National Eagle Center.

From singing “American Soldier” to “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue,” Keith made sure the veterans were under the spotlight for the night.

In the past 200 years, Native Americans have served in every branch of the U.S. military in larger numbers than any other ethnic group, casino spokesmen said.

There are many reasons why Native Americans have been in the military but there is a common thread; they want to defend the land where their ancestors are buried.

In the Native American culture, being a warrior is the highest honor an individual can have.

Story published in the Red Wing Republican Eagle 8/24/2016

DAV Chapter 28 Mayo Southeast Car Show

Mayo Southeast Chapter 28 partnered up with the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) for the first ever classic car show fundraiser and job fair. This was the chapters 4th car show. It was anticipated to have 250 cars, motorcycles, and semis along with 25 employers at the event. This is the first time that DEED has partnered with something like a car show and they thought it was a great way to work outside the box when it comes to connecting veterans with employers. The event totaled an estimate of $40,000 in funds raised.

 

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Thank You to a Dedicated DAV Volunteer Driver

This week the DAV of MN said farewell and thank you to Eugene (Energizer Bunny) Carriere. Eugene has been a volunteer driv20160728_120900er for over 5 years. It is with a heavy heart that the DAV bids farewell to Eugene. Without using GPS, and plotting his routes the night prior using his trusty Hudson Map Book, Eugene found crafty ways around traffic and road construction. Neither the cold winter days or the hot summer could keep him from showing up bright and early for the morning shift. If there was a shift to cover, Eugene was the man to call. Because of his dedication and commitment to Minnesota’s veterans, a farewell luncheon was held where Commander Aguirre presented a well-deserved award.

The DAV of MN and the DAV Minneapolis VA Volunteer Drivers wish Eugene a hearty farewell and are eternally grateful for his kind heart and caring when it came to our veterans. We all know that his generosity will not stop here.

DAV MN Foundation Golf Classic 2016

On behalf of the DAV of MN and the DAV of MN Golf Classic Committee, we would like to offer our sincere gratitude to all parties  who supported the DAV of MN Golf Classic. This year proved to be one of our best years yet with 64 sponsored veterans golfing in the morning, and over 130 golfers in the afternoon. With 27 sponsors major sponsors and 52 cart sponsorships, along with our silent auction donations, we were able to raise over $50,000!!!!! These funds will assist the DAV of MN with building and sustaining it’s veterans transportation program here in the State of Minnesota.

In 2015 the DAV of MN led the nation in miles traveled and veterans transported, and with your support, we plan to continue to maintain this high standard and continue to grow so that we may continue to support our Minnesota veterans. We could not have accomplished this great event without the support of all of our sponsors, donors, golfers, and volunteers. Once again we thank you for your support and participation in the event, and we look forward to working with you again in the future.

Wayzata Community Sailing

The DAV of MN Foundation recently approved a grant to the Wayzata Community Sailing Center for taking veterans sailing on Lake Minnetonka. The classes consist of four sessions which last for 2-4 hours a piece. The veteran learns the terminology and function of all equipment before going out to sail. The WSCA Adaptive Sailing has been assisting individuals with varying disabilities with sailing opportunities since 2010. They have a crane and sling which enables them to lift individuals in wheelchairs into the boat. Dave Wentzel with the Department office went out on the water to get a first-hand look at the operation. It was a great experience, and it completely consumes your concentration and stress. There is nothing else on your mind other than the wind and the sails. This has been a great way to include veterans with any disability to enjoy the pleasures of sailing.

 

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MN Twins Discount

The Minnesota Twins are giving a Military Discount for the rest of the season! Active military members or veterans with a valid ID plus up to three guests will get: Half-price Home Plate View tickets for every Monday through Thursday game and 10% off merchandise* Through the remainder of the 2016 season Available day of game only with current military ID, retired military ID, discharge papers or DD214, VA Medical Center ID, or Veteran Service Organization membership cards.

*All active military members with valid ID can receive a 10% discount on merchandise including game used, autographed and authenticated items at Target Field’s Majestic Twins Clubhouse Store and Game-Used Kiosk and the Twins Pro Shops.

National Convention 2016

Greetings-

The Minnesota Delegation to the 95th National Convention for the Disabled American Veterans, has returned to Minnesota. Minnesota was well represented in Atlanta, GA this year with over twenty members in attendance. It was an exciting week with meetings, seminars, guest speakers and the election of national officers.

The Convention kicked off with the meetings on the Saturday, July 30th and it kept rolling from there. On Sunday the MN Delegation was well represented at the morning business session and the seminars throughout the afternoon. During the course of the convention the assembled members and guests had the opportunity to hear from Sec. VA Robert (Bob) McDonald, Chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee Senator Johnny Isakson, Department of Veterans Affairs Under Secretary for Health Dr. David J. Shulkin and the President of the United States Barack Obama. The message was similar from the President on down, there have been some significant gains in reforming the VA and there is still much to be done.

Minnesota was recognized several times receiving awards for membership, we also received a brand new Ford Flex donated by Ford. The Flex was given in recognition for the outstanding work our Volunteers in Minnesota do transporting our Veterans. In 2015 DAV Volunteers traveled over 1.7million miles transporting Veterans to their medical appointments. Over the lifetime of the vehicle it will transport thousands of Veterans to their appointments.

One of the highlights of the National Convention came towards the end when our Adjutant Stephen (Butch) Whitehead was unanimously elected for higher office of Second Junior Vice Commander. Congratulations Butch!!

This was my first National Convention and it was a terrific learning and networking opportunity. Every opportunity I have been given to learn about the DAV, over my first two years, I have been impressed. Through all of the training, seminars, speeches and workshops there was one overarching theme; We have had some successes and are making progress, however, as an organization we will continue to push for change and refuse to rest on our laurels.

Trent C Dilks

 

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