Legion Family Playday

Sisters (L) Annie and Lizzy Ornelas play outside during the Legion Family Play Day event at post 25 in El Centro Saturday, November 23.   

EL CENTRO — The American Legion of El Centro hosted the organization’s first ever Legion Family Play day Saturday, November 23, at the post 25 location in El Centro.

Active duty members, Veterans, Reservists, National Guards, Legion Family members, and invited guests were invited to partake in a family-oriented event, where kids and adults played games, watched movies, and enjoyed some snacks in between.   

“Family Play Day is about getting families together in a relaxing environment,” said American Legion Dept. of CA Jr. Past Vice Commander-Area 5, Tracy Rascoe. “We are about family and plan on promoting more family events. We are not only here for veterans, but for our community as well.”

The American Legions is composed of veterans, active duty, and auxiliary members (those directly related to veterans). According to Legion members, post 25 is over 100 years old. 

According to organizers, the White House declared November as Veteran and Military Family month. The kick-off Family Play Day was, coincidentally, slated for November. 

“We plan on doing this more often. Hopefully, at least every quarter,” said Rascoe.

The American Legion provided free popcorn, cotton candy, chips, water, movies, hot dogs, and ice cream sundaes, which were donated by Cold Stone Creamery.

“With this event, we also aim to target younger modern warriors because even if they’ve gotten out, they are working, their spouses are usually working, and they have kids, so this kind of gives them a way to get out, relax, chill, and hang out with other people alike,” said Rascoe.

Entertainment included everything, from arts and crafts, to skee-ball, board games, and an outdoor area for sidewalk chalk, bubble wands, and balloon animals.

Not all veterans have access to go on base anymore. This event is a way to get everybody together to share some laughs and have a good time, informed legionaries. 

“Think of all the things that have happened and what this post has witnessed throughout all that time,” said Rascoe. “To continue on, we have to attract the younger generations.”

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