Petzel: Oak Lawn Raiders’ Winter Picnic set for Sunday
By Cheryl Petzel Citizen Journalistfirstname.lastname@example.org February 12, 2014 8:25AM
Greetings, fellow Oak Lawnians! The Oak Lawn Raiders Social and Athletic Club will host its annual Winter Picnic from 1 to 6 p.m. Feb. 16 at the Homestead Barr, 9306 Central Ave., Oak Lawn.
The Raiders are a nonprofit organization that raises funds for those in need within the community. Jim Collachia, the Raiders’ vice-president and a member for 31 years, said this will be the 35th year for the annual picnic. Collachia credits Bill Statler for coming up with the idea for the event.
“Bill was a member at the time, and he suggested we have a winter picnic in the forest preserves. The first or second year we cooked a pig and spent the whole night before preparing,” Collachia said.
The outdoor picnic was eventually relocated from the forest preserves to the Homestead Barr.
“We have a DJ now that it’s at the Homestead and raffles, split-the-pot and a wheelbarrow full of booze. We have food, beer, wine and hot cider. We always have ribs, chicken wings, hot dogs, mac and cheese. It’s a good spread that we put out,” Collachia said.
The Winter Picnic is the Raiders’ first fundraising event of the year. The club raises money for donations it makes to various organizations and schools.
“When we have good weather, we usually have a low turnout, but when we have bad weather, we make quite a bit,” Collachia said.
Proceeds from the Winter Picnic are used for the Ralph W. Arnold Scholarship, named in honor of one of the club’s long-standing members who passed away in November 2010.
Money collected through the Raiders’ fundraisers goes to various organizations, “but 99 percent of our stuff is done with St. Gerald (parish),” Collachia said. He said the Raiders also host four events throughout the year to raise money for breast cancer awareness and research. He and his wife, Laura, participate in the annual Beverly Breast Cancer Walk.
The Raiders is made up of members from Oak Lawn and surrounding communities and began in 1974 with only four members.
“We have 55 members right now and have four currently on a waiting list,” Collachia said. “The majority is from Oak Lawn, but we have members from Palos, Hometown and Oak Forest. In fact, one is from Michigan, he moved there.”
Winter Picnic tickets are $20 per person, $30 per couple and $40 per family and can be purchased event day at the Homestead Barr. For more information, call Collachia at 708-636-7312 or visit the Raiders website at www.raiderssac.com.
Here are this week’s celebrity birthdays: Happy “golden” birthday to Jack Makuch, who’s turning 6, from his parents, brother Luke and sister Ellie. Sandy and Dave Wills wish their granddaughters, Ronnie Guagenti and Julie Smith, a happy 10th birthday. Tim and Maurren Haggerty wish their sons, Kevin and Mickey, a happy 11th birthday. Anton Tomacic’s grandparents, Theresa and Wally Antonowicz, wish him a happy 11th birthday. Happy birthday to Nicholas Maslanka, who’s turning 16, from his parents and Rosemary and Michelle.
Happy 21st birthday to Kyle Frega from his parents and Kody and Patrick. Andrea DeMoss’ family wish her a happy 22nd birthday. Happy 22nd birthday to Christina Pender from her parents, Tina and Tim, and Rachel. Happy 24th birthday to Nina Thorell from her family. Happy birthday to Kristen Brooks, who’s turning 29, from her family and Meaner. Happy 30th birthday to Holly Bubel from her parents, Nancy and Roy, and Kelly, Brian and Grandma Bubel. Maurine Cody’s mom, Patty, wishes her a happy 35th birthday.
Happy birthday to Amanda Olszewski from Chris Gornik, Lola and their family. Kelli Kelly’s family wish her a happy birthday. Happy birthday to Bertha Tapia-Herrera from her family. Birthday wishes to Yolanda Sawicki from her family. A happy birthday to Bill Prusinski and to Jeff Blackburn from Mary. Jim Bruen’s children, Kelcey, Sean and Patrick, wish him a happy birthday. A happy birthday to Jerry Hurckes. Les Sawicki’s family wish him a happy 67th birthday. Happy birthday to Hank Castillo, who’s turning 70, from his wife, Lori. And a happy 71st birthday to William Braun from his wife, Carol, and Dan, Tim and Julie.
Wedding anniversary wishes go out to the following couples: Bob and Kathy Cook, John and Betty Kastros, Michael and Beth Durkin on their 10th anniversary; Ian and Cori Ellis on their 26th and Jim and Charlotte Dillon on their 36th.
Keep your fellow Oak Lawnians informed about birthdays, special events or special “stuff” going on with your family or within the community. Call me at (708) 899-9544 or email me at the address above.
Until next time ...