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Rotary Club plans 'pandemic-sensitive' Veterans Day

The club is having its seventh annual celebration of veterans, and adding fundraising this year.

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  • | 5:03 p.m. October 12, 2020
The 2019 event attracted more than 100 to honor veterans.
The 2019 event attracted more than 100 to honor veterans.
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The Rotary Club of Longboat Key is planning a “pandemic-sensitive” event to honor the community’s veterans on Nov. 11 for Veterans Day. 

Last year, the Rotary Club invited veterans and their families to pack the pews at Christ Church of Longboat Key for Veterans Day. There was an emphasis on honoring Vietnam War veterans, with a pin ceremony for those in attendance. More than a hundred came to the celebration. 

In 2020, the idea of hundreds gathering on Longboat Key just isn’t possible.

So the club is putting together a drive-by celebration at the circle drive on Bay Isles Road in front of All Angels Episcopal Church and Temple Beth Israel. There will be an invocation, a performance of service songs by a brass ensemble and the opportunity for some to stop and chat if they so choose, and if they wear a mask and keep distance. 

“This would be the seventh annual Veterans Day ceremony, and we obviously love our Longboat Key vets and there’s quite a few of them,” organizer Scott Wuesthoff said. “But we also recognize that this is a unique year and a high risk population, so, we want to be very, very sensitive to that fact.”

The club is also raising money for three local veterans’ charities: Fisher House Foundation, Turning Points Yellow Ribbon Project and SRQ Vets. The goal is to raise $40,000, and one individual has pledged to donate an additional $10,000, Wuesthoff said. Members have begun donating and reaching out to friends to garner support. 

“All three organizations were absolutely delighted that we would reach out and try to help them because as you can imagine, donations are down across the board,” Wuesthoff said. “So we think we're really going to make a difference here.”

If you’d like to support the fundraising, checks should be made out and sent to Rotary of LBK Charitable Fund, P.O. Box 8351, Longboat Key, 34228.   


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