With its recent move to Brunswick Street, the Penticton branch of the Royal Canadian Legion (Branch No. 40) is getting a new lease on life.
This was apparent to Legion president Bob Sudbury on Saturday when roughly 90 people came out to its grand reopening party at its new location at the old Army Navy & Air Force Veterans (ANAVETS) Club at 257 Brunswick St.
“I was amazed that the 11 o’clock ceremony was full. The response we had from all those people was great,” he said.
“The place is really nice. It’s clean and bright. Having those windows that you can look out and get the sun in. It was a really good atmosphere. Everybody really enjoyed it.”
Several special guests came out for the ribbon cutting ceremony at 11:30 a.m., including Mayor John Vassilaki, South Okanagan Member of Parliament Richard Cannings and MLA Dan Ashton. And Fred MacDonald — a Korean war veteran.
“He wore all his medals and all that. He was an artillery man just like my dad was. We had him cut the official ribbon,” said Sudbury.
Service medals were then handed out to volunteers who have contributed their time to the legion in recent months. Some of these hard-working members include: Ivo Jaager, Marina Ashley, Dan Coyle, Garry Inscho and Tim Shewan.
Since moving to the new location and reopening on Aug. 1, Sudbury said membership registration has picked up, with 17 new members.
“I think people thought when we were shut for so long that we may be shut for a long period of time or maybe that we weren’t reopening at all so they wanted to show their support,” he said.
“Where we are located now is really good. We’re in the area where a lot of the older people don’t drive so they can walk to it. It’s where everybody is. Our previous location was just a bit too far from downtown.”
The legion will be holding meat draws every Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. On Fridays, it will hold a karaoke nights with Entertainment by Candi.
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