2017 FREE community BBQ in Honor of Veterans and First Responders

The 4th annual FREE community BBQ and picnic in honor of our veterans and first responders took place on Sunday, September 10, 2017 from 1 – 4 pm at the St. Francis DiPaolo Society Club, located at 152 8th Ave in Frankfort under beautiful blue skies.

With live music from the band, Granger, a bounce house for kids, face painting, and nearly perfect weather the picnic went off without a hitch.

Marissa Perkins who was painting faces for the delight of children and grownups said, “I come from a long line of firemen so volunteering my time to support a great cause is second nature.”

Annette Gauthier and Mickey Hugick explained that this is their 2nd year donating to the picnic.  This year they donated cannoli.  Gauthier said, “We just do it to support vets and first responders.”

Don Wedemeyer, a Viet Nam veteran, said, “This is a great event for people to get together, talk to their friends and buddies, and get to meet firemen and first responders.  A lot of people put a lot of heart and soul into this.”

Dan Mabbett, past chief in Mohawk, said, “We don’t get paid for this being a volunteer so it’s real nice when somebody does something like this and says thanks.”

John Stephens, Legislator, District 6 (Ilion), said, “Great turn out on a beautiful day.   Supports its cause.  This is the weekend when we have to remember not to forget.  Events like Saturday’s stair climb, this picnic, and the panel and remembrance at Herkimer College on Monday remind us to remember.  We need to remember that this next generation doesn’t remember or even know what happened on September 11.”

Daniel J. Enea, owner of Daniel J. Enea Funeral and Cremation Care in Herkimer explained that the free picnic is truly a community event.  He said, “I want to thank everybody who donated food and supplies and volunteered especially the guys who did the chicken barbecue.  Everything is donated.  That’s how this event works and we had record turnout this year.  Couldn’t have done it without Nicholas Licari of Big M Supermarket.”

You don’t need a picnic to thank a veteran; just say, “Thank you.”  Keep an eye out for next year’s picnic as plans are made.

Live music at the picnic

Picnic goers pause to salute the flag during the National Anthem
Organizer Daniel J. Enea talks to an attendee

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