Veterans Club and ROTC to host BBQ Dinner and Raffle

Story by Nick Erickson

The UW-Eau Claire Veterans Club and Reserve Officers’ Training Corps are teaming up to host a barbecue dinner and raffle for the public from 6-8 p.m. Wednesday night at the American Legion Hall Post 53 on Water Street.

While people can enjoy food as well as have the opportunity to win an assortment of prizes, ROTC member Bryan Donovan said the benefits of the evening should also be an incentive for attending, as some of the night’s proceeds will go to the Wounded Warrior Project, while the others will be split between the two clubs.

“With the sequester we’re in, funds are a little low, especially in the Army,” he said. “(We’ll) get training aids, just stuff that will help us further develop ourselves as future officers.”

The ROTC is an organization on campus that is a college-based program for training commissioned officers of the United States Armed Forces. They use fundraising money to buy equipment to aid them in their journey to becoming military men and women.

Donovan said that the group thrives off cohesiveness.

“(The group is) a whole bunch of people that share similar values with you,” Donovan said.

Similarly, The Veterans Club is an organization on campus that is open to anyone, with an emphasis on being a gathering place for veterans and affected military people on campus, and club president Nick Bures said that they also are a close-knit group of people.

“You get that sense of comradery from the military that you don’t really get on campus,” Bures said.

This dinner, which Bures expects to feed 200 to 300 people, will allow both groups to form relationships in the community and campus with the ultimate goal of spreading awareness to people about what it is they both represent.

Veterans Club member Trent Schmidt said that it’s always important to make relationships with people outside of the organizations.

“We’re trying to get more community awareness so that we can do other fundraisers in the future and hopefully we’ll raise a lot of money to donate to other organizations,” he said.

Tickets are $7 per person for a menu that includes pulled beef, cheesy potatoes, and assorted baked goods with Culver’s custard.

Prizes will also be raffled every 30 minutes with a grand prize being a Green Bay Packer logo fire ring. Tickets are $3 each for major items while tickets for smaller items can be bought for $1 or $5 for six.

Bures said that with a cheap yet tasty meal, prizes, and knowing that the money will go to a good cause will hopefully attract an array of students to give the Veterans Club and the ROTC recognition throughout campus.