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St. Charles VFW finds new home

Published: Thursday, May 1, 2014 5:17 p.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, May 1, 2014 10:45 p.m. CDT
Caption
(Sandy Bressner – sbressner@shawmedia.com)
A new Veterans Center has opened in St. Charles at 311 N. 2nd St. Suite 107. The facility is now home to VFW Post 5036 and will host monthly AMVETS meetings.
Caption
(Sandy Bressner – sbressner@shawmedia.com)
Dick Leckbee, junior vice commander of VFW Post 5036, straightens chairs at the new Veterans Center, located at 311 N. 2nd St. Suite 107 in St. Charles. The facility is now home to VFW Post 5036 and will host monthly AMVETS meetings.

ST. CHARLES – The Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5036 has a space to call its own nearly a year after selling its Third Street property to the city.

The organization recently moved into a suite at 311 N. Second St. in St. Charles' central business district. The space is labeled as the Veterans Center.

"We've been in here about two and a half months," Dick Leckbee, junior vice commander, said Thursday.

The VFW had been sharing space with American Legion Post 342 on North Fifth Avenue since it sold 119 N. Third St. to St. Charles last summer, Leckbee said. The city demolished the building built in the 1950s to make way for a public parking lot.

When searching for a new location, Leckbee said, the VFW considered a space on Main Street, but parking – along with traffic – was an issue.

"We felt this was an ideal spot right here," he said of the suite a few doors down from the St. Charles Convention and Visitors Bureau and across the street from Salerno's On the Fox.

Although the space isn't as large as the VFW's former home, Leckbee said it has ample parking and good visibility from Second Street. The VFW plans to install flagpoles in front once the property owner gives the OK, he said, adding that should help attract even more attention to the center.

Leckbee, who was in the Veterans Center on Thursday mopping floors and straightening chairs, said the organization hopes to start holding regular office hours from about 3 to 7 p.m.

"We're always looking for new veterans," Leckbee said.

The VFW holds its business meetings at 7 p.m. on the third Monday of each month, with dinner served at 6 p.m. The AMVETS use the space for business meetings at 7 p.m. every first Wednesday. The VA Health Van visits Post 5036 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month.

The VFW will open its new home to all veterans, Scouts and their families on May 26, immediately after the Memorial Day parade and shrine festivities, Leckbee said.

If you go

Visit the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5036 at its new location at 311 N. Second St., Suite 107, St. Charles.

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