Tag Archives: Burbank Elks

Burbank Elks Host Dinner And Dance For Veterans

(Photo by© Ross A Benson)

Burbank Elks Lodge  1497 hosted over 100 guests, including several people from Sepulveda Veterans Administration on Wednesday, November 8. Attendees enjoyed dinner, entertainment and friendship with fellow veterans.

Burbank Vice Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy was on hand to present a certificate to the Burbank Elks Lodge and its members and officers.

Here is a photo gallery from the event.

 

Burbank Elks Donate Dictionaries at Providencia Elementary School

Burbank Elks Lodge made its 12th annual stop at Providencia Elementary School on Friday delivering paperback dictionaries to three third-grade classes.

 Burbank Elks members and husband and wife, Greg and Charlene Peale, distribute dictionaries to third-graders at Providencia Elementary School.

Burbank Elks members and husband and wife, Greg and Charlene Peale, distribute dictionaries to third-graders at Providencia Elementary School.

Exalted Ruler John Coyle was joined by fellow Elks members Dictionary Chair and Chair of the Board of Trustees Charlene Peale, Greg Peale and Ramona Higgins.

Each year, all the third-graders in the Burbank Unified School District elementary receive the dictionaries. This year the total number of students getting the dictionaries is 1,031, Charlene Peale said.

Providencia Principal Jennifer Culbertson introduced Coyle to the students. He told them the dictionaries not only will help them with their spelling but many other subjects of reference.

There is a place at the beginning of the book where they can write their names and their teachers names have been placed on a label on the same page.

 Burbank Elks Lodge Exalted Ruler John Coyle receives thank-you notes from Noel Mason, left, and Leo Gersh, both students in Kelly Ohrt's third-grade class.

Burbank Elks Lodge Exalted Ruler John Coyle receives thank-you notes from Noel Mason, left, and Leo Gersh, both students in Kelly Ohrt’s third-grade class.

It has the symbols for sign language, list of planets, history of each country, the state capitals and when each became a state and the longest word in the English language that took up half a page.

Other highlights in the book are the U.S. Presidents and their biographies, the U.S. Constitution and the evolution of the American flag’s design.

The students oohed and awed as Coyle told them each highlight.

Joining in the morning presentation was district Superintendent Matt Hill and Director of Elementary Education Peter Knapik.

The Elks and Providencia already share a partnership in that for the past 15 years the fraternal organization has welcomed the nearby school to hold its fifth grade promotion ceremony at the lodge, Culbertson said.

 Three third-grade classes at Providencia Elementary School raise their dictionaries in jubilation after the donation presentation by the Burbank Elks Lodge. (Photos by Joyce Rudolph)

Three third-grade classes at Providencia Elementary School raise their dictionaries in jubilation after the donation presentation by the Burbank Elks Lodge. (Photos by Joyce Rudolph)

“On behalf of Providencia’s third-graders and of course on behalf of all the third-graders in our district thank you so much for your generosity,” Culbertson told the Elks. “The fact that they will have them for years to come is so special!”

As the arts is a major part of the school’s curriculum, Culbertson added, the school has been recognized as a 2016 Exemplary Arts Program School. The designation is from the California Department of Education as part of its Gold Ribbon Awards.

So, to thank the Elks for their donation, each class sang a song and had drawn colorful props to help illustrate the lyrics. They also presented the Elks with handmade thank you notes.

 Burbank Elks members who dropped off the donation of dictionaries are, from left, Charlene and Greg Peale, Exalted Ruler John Coyle and Ramona Higgins.

Burbank Elks members who dropped off the donation of dictionaries are, from left, Charlene and Greg Peale, Exalted Ruler John Coyle and Ramona Higgins.

“I want to thank all of you for entertaining us with some beautiful music and all your artwork,” Coyle told the classes. “You are very talented, though obviously the school teaches much more than singing and art. I’m looking at penmanship here that for a third-grader is really unbelievable. Some adults cannot write this clear.”

Carol Lopez, parent of student Cesar Lopez, attended the ceremony and believes the dictionary donation program is great because it keeps him off the Internet.

“He can use it without asking me to go online, so it’s safer than using the computer,” she said.

 Cesar Lopez, 8, a third-grader at Providencia Elementary School, shows his dictionary after receiving it from Burbank Elks member Greg Peale. (Photos by Joyce Rudolph)

Cesar Lopez, 8, a third-grader at Providencia Elementary School, shows his dictionary after receiving it from Burbank Elks member Greg Peale. (Photos by Joyce Rudolph)

 A detail shot of a thank-you note given to the Burbank Elks Lodge for the dictionary donation. (Photos by Joyce Rudolph)

A detail shot of a thank-you note given to the Burbank Elks Lodge for the dictionary donation. (Photos by Joyce Rudolph)

Genio’s Reunion Gathers Family, Friends, Customers and Employees

Saturday evening the Burbank Elk’s Lodge was filled with over 210 guests all with the same thing in common, they ether were a customer, a server or a family member of the Marvin Cecchini Family owned Genio’s restaurant that closed several years ago.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Members of the Cecchini family. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

The late Genio’s restaurant opened it’s door back in 1952. The Italian restaurant located at Verdugo and Olive was a mainstay for plenty of Burbank families. It closed in 2006 and 10 years later plenty of Burbank old timers gathered one more time to enjoy the laughter and friendship with former owner Marvin Cechini and family.

The conversations heard around the room were fond memories people recalled from the days of Genio’s, some recalled wedding receptions while others  cited Friday night dinners and even a couple recalled civic groups holding weekly meeting in one of the three different rooms.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Called back to the kitchen for the night was the original head Chef, Jose Lopez and his right hand man Rito Puente. They wipped up Meat Lasagna , Chicken Pica ta and Shrimp Scampi from their original menu.

Dancing to the music of John Carro, guests mingled with plenty of laughs and tears with everyone in the room. The evening included an auction of tickets to The Magic Castle with the proceeds raised to help the Charities of the Burbank Elks.

In attendance were former Burbank Police Officers, Burbank Fire Fighters, Former Mayor Mary Lou Howard,  Fire Chief Michael W Davis, Airport Commissioner Don Brown  Elaine Paonessa Sydney Hines, and plenty of others.

 

 

 

Elk’s Chili Cook-Off as Hot as the Day

It was so hot at the Elks’ Chili Cook-Off and Car Show on Saturday, organizer John Coyle joked that competitors didn’t need their portable stoves.

It was 104 degrees in the parking lot where entrants were simmering their recipes, according to Coyle, who is the leading knight of Burbank Elks Lodge #1497. Many of the 100 people attending — family and friends of the Elks — stayed in the air-conditioned lodge.

Mark Peale and Enrique Castillo took home first place this year at the Elks Lodge Annual Chili Cook-Off (Photo By Edward Tovmassian)

Mark Peale and Enrique Castillo took home first place this year at the Elks Lodge Chili Cook-Off (Photo By Edward Tovmassian)

First-place winner was Elks member Mark Peale, who made his tasty blend following the rules of the International Chili Society — all meat, no beans or pasta.

A consolation first-place prize went to Road Kings car club members Karl Grossman and Don Baldaseroni who made two kinds of chili — one without beans and one with beans that took second place. Fellow Road King Al Gonzalez Jr., owner of Al’s Wholesale Meat, provided 30 pounds of meat and it was gone by the end of the event.

Grossman was the head chef and they used his recipe that was refined while he was a firefighter with the Los Angeles Fire Department. He’s now retired.

When tasters were judging the recipes, Coyle said, they preferred Peale’s meatless over Baldaseroni’s but they liked it and liked it even more with the beans.

“Unfortunately, this year’s turnout for the actual cooking of the chili was fairly scarce,” Coyle said. “I attribute this to the 104-degree temperature of the day. I guess there is a lot to be learned from the old adage: ‘If you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen!’ I would add though, that the chili that was prepared was excellent. Thanks to all who participated in this event.”

In addition to the chili, there were 30 classic cars displayed, about 20 of them owned by Road Kings members. Also displayed were a vintage 1952 Ford police car from the Burbank Police and Fire Museum, and a 1951 fire engine owned by George Moore of Van Nuys. Moore was a volunteer firefighter in Pennsylvania before moving to California. He purchased the fire engine at a truck show while visiting Pennsylvania in 1996. Moore is retired after a 30-year career with the Los Angeles Police Department.

​The Burbank Elks Lodge #1497 is a fraternal order dedicated to the act of charity. As an order, the Elks champion the plight of blind children through its donations.

“Not only do we see to the needs of these children, but we fund research in the field of child blindness,” Coyle said.

​The California-Hawaii Elks Major Project Inc. is a multi-million dollar-a-year charity that is funded solely by the charitable donations of its Elk members. Proceeds are raised through fund- raising events put on by Elk Lodges, such as the Burbank Elks’ Chili Cook Off and Car Show.

​Funds are actually collected daily at the lodge when members deposit their pocket change into conveniently located purple pigs. In all, the California-Hawaii Elks Major Project is providing therapy for some 400 children. More than a 100 pre-schoolers are visited by pediatric screeners, and nearly 50,000 children are screened for vision issues each year, including children in Burbank.

​In addition, the Burbank Elks is a sponsor of Burbank Boy Scout Troop 210. The Elks maintain a close relationship with these young men working together on community projects, Coyle said.

​The Burbank Elks invite elementary school students to the annual Halloween and Christmas parties.

The Elks also make donations to military veterans. In addition to a Veteran’s Day dinner, members send simple amenities to troops still in “harm’s way”, Coyle said.

The Road Kings will have their annual Car Show at Santa Anita Horse Race Park beginning at 7 a.m. on Oct. 11. All proceeds go to Burbank and San Fernando Valley charities. For registration and other information, visit roadkingsburbank.com.

The Road Kings car club of Burbank began in 1952 and some of the famous members include drag racers Don Prudhomme, Tommy Ivo and Ken Safford. Many Road Kings members still race today, including Bob Muravez, who recently began driving the Western Hoist top fuel dragster in the Nostalgia Races. In his third race, Muravez won at Las Vegas.

Elks Honor Standouts In Burbank Community Service Awards

Burbank’s Teacher of the Year Darla Gerharter, Firefighter of the Year Eric Jueden, City Employee of the Year David Kriske and Police Officer of the Year Tim Dyrness were all honored by the Burbank Elks Lodge #1497 on Wednesday, January 28.

Several firefighters, police officers, educators and city employees attended the Sixth Annual Burbank Community Service Awards, in support of their fellow honorees.

Community Service Honorees( from left to right) police officer Tim Dyrness ,city employee David Kriske, teacher Darla Gerharter and firefighter Erik Juedan. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Community Service Honorees( from left to right) police officer Tim Dyrness , city employee David Kriske, teacher Darla Gerharter and firefighter Erik Jueden. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Gerharter, a Resource Specialist teacher at Walt Disney Elementary School was recognized as Burbank Unified’s 2014 Teacher of the Year.

Teacher of the Year Darla Gerharter.(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Teacher of the Year Darla Gerharter.(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“Darla is not only an expert in terms of instructional delivery, she is highly respected and generally beloved by her colleagues, supervisors, students and families,” commented BUSD Assistant Superintendent of Instruction, Dr. Tom Kissinger. “Darla is a perfect example of what makes Burbank Unified School District a great place for kids to grow and learn.”

Gerharter grew up in Hawaii and moved to California to attend UCLA. She started working for the district in 1999 as a substitute teacher and served as a one-on-one aide for special education students.

Gerharter received her Master’s degree in special education from California State University, Northridge, and as a Resource Specialist teacher, has worked at Miller, Emerson and Disney Elementary schools. Gerharter is currently working on her administrative credential and second masters through Concordia University.

“She is tireless in her dedication. You can see her at parent and community events. You can see Darla helping struggling students to ensure their success even when they are not in her class,” commented Disney Elementary Principal Melissa Kistler, in advance of the banquet. “She constantly thinks of ways to make school a positive experience for anyone stepping foot on our campus. She is one of our main ‘go to’ people.”

Dr. Tom Kissinger, Assistant Superintendent of Instructional Services with Teacher of the Year Darla Gerharter and with Board President Roberta Reynolds. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Dr. Tom Kissinger, Assistant Superintendent of Instructional Services with Teacher of the Year Darla Gerharter and with BUSD Board President Roberta Reynolds. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“At Walt Disney Elementary School, there’s a definite feeling of home. It has to do with the charm and setting of our school and the sense of family that we have created with parents, students and staff,” added Kistler. “Darla Gerharter is key to the charm and success of our wonderful school.”

“The Burbank Fire Department has a proud tradition of annually selecting a Firefighter of the Year. The qualities that we look for are: dedication to duty, strong work ethic and a positive influence infused into the department which is created by a positive attitude,” commented Burbank Fire Chief Tom Lenehan. “Captain Eric Jueden exemplifies all of these qualities and is an outstanding choice for Firefighter of the Year.”

Jueden is a 20 year veteran of the BFD and has been a Captain for eight and one-half years. Lenehan praised Jueden’s integrity, strong morals, dedication and incredible work ethic.

“Eric is a true student of the fire service, continually striving to better himself and the department,” continued Lenehan.

2015 Burbank Firefighter of the Year, Eric Jueden. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

2015 Burbank Firefighter of the Year, Eric Jueden. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“Over the past year Eric has accomplished many goals including the re-implementation of the department’s Technical Rescue Program and purchase of necessary equipment. He led the department-wide instruction and guidelines of Low Angle Rope Rescue Operations (LARRO) and worked with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Specification, development and computer documentation of new structure turnouts and wildland/rescue jackets.”

“He led the department in Company-level training specifically in residential electrical emergencies and worked with BWP in the development of training curriculum for the department as well as the purchase of necessary equipment to help mitigate these types of emergencies.”

“Finally and most importantly, he worked on the continued development of an Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Continuing Education for the department,” added Lenehan. “In the event of a major emergency or earthquake this keeps our community safer.”

“In conclusion, Captain Eric Jueden is an excellent selection for this year’s Firefighter of the Year and is outstanding ambassador for the Burbank Fire Department,” concluded Lenehan. “I hope one day in the future to welcome him as a member of my command staff.”

Burbank City Employee David Kriske. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank City Employee David Kriske. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

City Employee of the Year Kriske has worked for the City of Burbank for more than 12 years, and Burbank is his hometown. He has lived here his entire life, except for the time he spent away at college.

Kriske was introduced by Burbank Community Development Manager Joy Forbes.

“David has worked his way up from Assistant Transportation Planner, earning promotions in the Community Development Department and is now the Deputy City Planner in charge of Transportation Planning,” said Forbes. “But that title doesn’t begin to explain what he does.”

“Kriske is responsible for all of the transit operations in the City including our commuter bus program and our senior and disabled bus system which provides excellent service for those most in need in our community, serving over 350,000 persons per year.”

“David manages an annual budget of almost 10 million with over 25 employees and oversees projects that help make it easier to travel throughout the City – whether you’re in a car, on a bike or just want to walk to your favorite restaurant – David knows the short cut.”

“With David’s knowledge and exceptional grant writing abilities, the City has received more than 560 million in revenue,” continued Forbes. “These are for projects that either wouldn’t have happened without the grants or would have required taking funds away from other important projects and staffing in the City.”

“David always seems to deal with controversial projects, such as the barricades being installed in the neighborhood around Stevenson. It’s a real testament to what kind of person he is when many may disagree with his suggestions, but they can’t question his integrity and honesty,” added Forbes. “He has a calm demeanor and our residents respect him, whether it’s delivering flyers to the elementary school or taking time to help someone at the counter.”

“His greatest skill is taking very complex information and relaying that to the public, committees, and City Council in an understandable way. Well, I guess his greatest skill is actually understanding it in the first place,” laughed Forbes. “But he can work with engineers and speak their language and then translate it to a media studio executive and then to an accountant. The I-5 project is another example – David is THE staff member who is keeping this all coordinated and forcing Caltrans to communicate w/ the Burbank community.”

“I’m so happy to have him in my department, and we’re so lucky to have him in the City of Burbank,” concluded Forbes.

Burbank Police Officer of the Year Tim Dryness. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank Police Officer of the Year Tim Dryness. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Police Chief Scott LaChasse introduced 2015 Police Officer of the Year Dyrness. Dyrness began with the BPD as a police recruit in March 1988 and has served the City and police department in many capacities.

Dyrness has been a School Resource Officer, a Patrol Officer and has worked in Vice/Narcotics and the ASaLT (Allied State and Local Task Force). He has also worked as a K-9 handler on patrol, in Observer Air Support and as a Motors Instructor and a Mentor.

Currently, Dyrness serves in the Traffic Bureau as a Motors Officer. He has also graduated from University of LaVerne with a B.S. in Business Administration.

“Team Player does not adequately describe the contribution Tim has made to the Traffic Bureau,” commented LaChasse.

More than 100 members of the Burbank community, police and fire departments, along with City and school officials attended the annual awards banquet. Dinner was served by members of Boy Scout Troop 210.

 

 

Burbank Elks Prepare Cinco De Mayo Fest

The Burbank Elks Lodge are currently preparing for their annual Cinco de Mayo party on Friday, May 2. Complete with live music, dancing and a Mexican-food bonanza, the event is hosted by Elks’ Activities Chairman Harvey Ryun.

elksCincoDeMayo_14The party is open to Lodge members and guests from the community are also invited. Advance reservations are required.

Featuring favorites such as albondigas soup, a zesty meatball and vegetable soup prepared by the Lodge chef, the menu includes a tostada and taco bar, along with all the usual sides.

Live country, rock and oldies covers from The Cottonwood Band and a night of socializing and dancing are also planned.

The Elks combine all the fun of a social club with all the generosity of a service organization and hold several themed and holiday events throughout the year.

Photo Courtesy Burbank Elks Lodge #1497

Photo Courtesy Burbank Elks Lodge #1497

Burbank Elks Ring In 2014 With Annual New Year’s Eve Bash

On December 31, the Burbank Elks will hold their annual New Year’s Eve party at the Lodge headquarters located on Hollywood Way near the Burbank Bob Hope Airport. This year’s theme is ‘Surf’s Up’ and is based on the beach party movies of the 1960s, with the Lodge decorated to appear like Malibu Beach of that decade.

Photo Courtesy of Elks Lodge #1497

Photo Courtesy of Elks Lodge #1497

“The Lodge’s New Year’s Eve party is perhaps the biggest social event of the year and we’ve been putting on a New Year’s Eve celebration since day one,” commented Kenneth “Woody” Bixby, Elks Officer and Treasurer, referring to the Burbank social service group which was chartered in 1924. “Last year’s theme was ’50s Forever’ and the Lodge looked like a 50s soda shop.”

Live entertainment will be provided by The Sound Waves. The group will perform popular rock and roll tunes from the 1950s-70s, with some country tunes added to the mix. “One of the players used to play with the original Beach Boys,” added Mr. Bixby.

elksNewsYear_13MyBurbank“This is a really good event to get to know about the Lodge,” Mr. Bixby also said, mentioning that reservations should be made in advance by calling the Lodge at 818-848-5508. Proceeds from the event go to support the Lodge and its charitable functions.

The $50 per person admission includes dinner prepared by executive chef Jerry Salthouse and a midnight breakfast, champagne, party favors and live music.

Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and dinner is served from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m., with a champagne toast at midnight. The Burbank Elks Lodge is located at 2232 N. Hollywood Way.

Photo Courtesy of Elks Lodge #1497

Photo Courtesy of Elks Lodge #1497

Burbank Elks Know What to Do With Corned Beef and Cabbage

Elk's Master Chef Jim Ewart prepares over 150 plates for Friday's crowd. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank’s Elk’s held their St. Patrick’s Day Dinner Dance Friday to a packed house according to Harvey Ryunn.  The crowd of over 150 came to enjoy the music of Lee & The Real Deal and enjoy Elk’s Master Chef Jim Ewart’s fine Corned Beef and Cabbage.

Sporting St' Patrick's green and greeting and collecting for dinner was Woody Bixby, Treasurer.(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Burbank Elk’s, located on Hollywood Way, put on dinner dances several times a year in addition to nightly dinners and special lunches.

 

 

 

Lee & The Real Deal preformed to the packed crowd. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Elk's packed the house Friday evening for their St. Patrick's Dinner Dance.(Photo by Ross A. Benson)