New museum and other happenings at VFW
VFW Post 2913 in Patchogue recently unveiled its new museum, a tribute to veterans that holds memorabilia and information on important events in veterans’ history.
Dave Rogers, commander of the post, said the basement of the VFW building on Edwards Street started to become a waste of space due to storage and other issues, so with help from the Eagle Scouts, he developed a plan to repurpose it.
The space, about 12 by 18 feet, now features display cases with items that are common pieces for veterans of foreign wars. Items were donated by community members and members of the post. The wars in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan are all featured, as well as World War II. Even the lighting was redone to allow a one-switch system that illuminates the museum.
“Now it’s so beautiful and open,” Rogers said.
The goal, he said, of the museum is to keep the history of Patchogue veterans alive. The organization has been struggling to gain new members, and Rogers is hopeful that the museum will now allow people to see what their neighbors and friends have done.
“We wanted to show our history and encourage new members to join and learn about the history of veterans and veterans in Patchogue,” he said.
The post is generally only open on Thursday evenings, but Rogers is working on additional ways for the community to access the museum, including during times of additional programming.
The VFW has also recently started a guitar lessons program at its headquarters on Wednesday nights. Rogers said this is an effort to expand the programming that the VFW provides, especially within the arts.
The organization has done programs at Artspace, with the veterans art show in November and Veterans on the Loading Dock that allowed performers to showcase their talents. The guitar lessons, Rogers said, are a way to add more options for veterans to express themselves. He added that this is just one step in their arts programming, and the next would be to add programs involving the written word.
The VFW, along with the American Legion and AmVets, has also recently been awaiting the installation of new veterans-designated parking signs, a measure approved by the Patchogue Village board in August of 2018. Representatives from each organization recently presented the completed signs to the village.
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