Osakis VFW to celebrate 75 years of service with a picnic, live music and more

The Osakis VFW will host a celebration for its 75 years of service to the community and veterans. The event will occur at the George H. Elliot VFW Post 7902 in Osakis on Saturday, August 21 from 2 to 5 p.m.

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The Osakis VFW will celebrate its 75 years of service to its community and veterans on August 21 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Thalen Zimmerman / Alexandria Echo Press)

Here's a reason for a party: 75 years of serving the community and its veterans.

A picnic in the Osakis VFW parking lot, live music, meat raffles and a drink special will be open for the public to enjoy and celebrate 75 years of service the Osakis VFW has provided for its community and the veterans of the U.S. military. The event is free to attend, with donations encouraged to receive food served.

A membership sign-up booth will be present at the celebration to add more active members who will keep the Osakis VFW growing and serving the community. The booth will detail how the VFW helps communities at the local, state and national levels.

The core values of the VFW are to promote patriotism, honor military service, ensure the care of veterans and their family and serve their community. The Osakis VFW makes a lot of donations to the community, says Kathy Fystrom, a trustee in the auxiliary affiliated with the VFW and a member since 1982. “Especially our first responders and of course our veterans. We really do a lot of good.”

The VFW benefits not only the community and veterans but also the members who help serve them, according to Fystrom. "I can honestly say I have found all my friends in the [Osakis] community because of the VFW,” she said.


The Osakis VFW Post 7902, started on June 24, 1946, is named after 2nd Lieutenant George H. Elliot of the U.S. Marine Corps. A local resident from Osakis, Elliot was killed in action while serving his country in the Pacific during World War II.

As of June 30, there are 220 members and 40 charter members, with Lee Christopherson serving as the VFW Commander. The charter members are as follows: Norman Abers, Rollance Anderson, Lawrence Benedict, Aven Berg, Gary Breager, Earl Craig, Harvey Erickson, Francis Finnegan, Henry Fischer, Alfred Garvin, Merle Hanson, David M. Haskamp, Earl Hoosline, Raymond Kraemer, Vernon La Frenz, Ralph Laven, Marvin Macey, Harry McLain, Clemens Messer, Robert Miller, Clarence Mohror, Roy Murray, Erwin Nass, James Niehoff, Robert Nolan, Jame Nomeland, Wayne Olson, Oswald Peterson, Paul Pischke, Donald Pollard, Henry Ritter, Alphonse Schlosser, Arnold Schultz, William Sliper, James Tenhoff, Richard Tompkins, Melford Vangstad, Elmer Vogel and George Williams.

Thalen Zimmerman of Alexandria joined the Echo Press team as a full-time reporter in Aug. 2021, after graduating from Bemidji State University with a bachelor of science degree in mass communication in May of 2021.
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