MANISTIQUE - Manistique Elks 632 recently held an initiation and welcomed four new members who had the opportunity to attend a special presentation. Following the ceremony it was announced by Elks National Foundation (ENF) co-chair, Robert Carlson, that the Manistique Elks had placed first in the State of Michigan in ENF donations with a total per capita of $16.09, which is more than triple the national goal of $4.50. Carlson added that without Manistique the State Association would not have met that goal.
"The Manistique Elks have again exceeded our goals in the name of charity", said Carlson, "We carried the state and every member of this lodge should be proud."
The Negaunee Elks came in second with $10.66 per member and Traverse City came in third with $10.55 per member.
The Elks National Foundation programs include the largest private scholarship program in the country, the Hoop Shoot, drug awareness programs, and many veterans programs.
Carlson and Mary Hook have co-chaired the program since 2010 and since then the program has thrived with Manistique placing first in the state, then second, and now back to the top spot. They conduct several fund-raising events each year, including the biggest event the annual chili cook off which is held each March.
The ENF rewards lodges with exceptional performance by redistributing funds back to the local lodges in the form of community grants. Last year the Manistique Elks secured one to help fund the flag pole and monument at the Manistique Central Parks baseball fields. They have several more applications currently submitted for community projects.
Brian Norton, current Exalted Ruler of the Manistique Elks, encourages people to get involved.
"I am very proud of our lodge and community," he said. "Between Michigan Major Projects and Elks National Foundation, our lodge is consistently one of - if not the most - charitable in the state. That really says something about our members and volunteers. There are many working every day of the year to continue our mission of charity. I would encourage anyone that is interested to get involved."
For more information on the Elks and their programs visit www.facebook.com/elks632.