Camp Merritt Post 21

Camp Merritt Post 21

Newsletter December 21, 2019


This year has been flying by, the last newsletter was in July, and now we are past Thanksgiving, with Christmas just around the corner.  July was quiet, while the post had a blood drive on Monday, August 13.


We started September by changing our electric sign, out front, from a local computer program to a Cloud Based System, which allows us to access the sign from any computer in the world (how’s that – Post 21 worldwide), as well as new software.  There was a bit of a learning curve for us.


We also got back on schedule with our executive meeting, regular meeting, and breakfast.  Commander Joe had family business to take care of and I chaired the regular meeting.



The beginning of October featured our picnic/pig roast.  We had a 47 pound pig, which was cooked by the Barbecue Pit on Washington Avenue in Bergenfield.  Let me tell you, it disappeared, I think even the tail went.  In addition, there were terrific clams from Rhode Island (thanks to Steve Bianco), burgers, franks, chicken, corn on the cob, salads, soda, water and kegs of beer.  We also found several future singing stars that afternoon. 


We had many volunteers, which I would like to thank;

Ed Buscavage, Walter Klein, Tom O’Malley, Bob Frasco, Zeke Kelm, Jimmy Howard, Fred Robins, Mike Monahan, Dick Waddell, Lennie  Vadala, John Cooley, Commander Joe, Kathy Maher, Max Van Der Linden, Al Kanze , Steve Bianco, Rick Olsen, Ed from Cresskill School.  Our apologies if anyone was missed.

A special thanks to Cathy, Joe and Zeke for being everywhere and doing everything.


We fell short on the following day when we still needed help cleaning and putting tents away.  In the future when we do this or a similar function, we must plan on help on the following day, or night.


At the regular meeting Commander Joe announced that the mortgage has been retired.  We paid off our $350,000 Mortgage for the construction and upgrade of our post in October in Eight Years. We had 20 years to pay it down.


We wrapped up October act ivies with our third Texas Hold Em’ on Saturday, October 20.  It was a good night, but we are still short of getting past 40 players.  That is the magic number to attract more players with a bigger pot.  If you know anyone interested in poker please urge them to come to our next one.




Saturday, November 3rd, Eagle Scout Justin Karach had a fund-raising event in our hall to collect school supplies for Puerto Rico.  We donated the hall to him, as well as putting an advertisement in the local papers.


Thursday, November 8 was our annual visit to the Academy of St. Therese for their wonderful Veteran’s Program.  Once again, we were treated to the children’s chorus and poems.  If you haven’t been to this you are missing a wonderful morning.    


With the hall being used for the fund-raiser we re-scheduled the breakfast to Sunday, November 18.  Even with the change in date, we had a very good turnout.

We also had plenty of help, which takes the pressure off everyone.  Thank you to all the workers of this breakfast.


We had several events on Sunday November 11.  Post 21 held it’s Ceremony at 10:30 indoors due to the weather.  Thank you to the readers and those who attended.  Coffee and cake followed.



At 1 pm many of us attended the dedication in Tenafly of a new park to honor Sgt. Nick Oresko, a Medal of Honor recipient, a member of our Post 21 and  a longtime Tenafly resident.  It was a very nice ceremony for a very worthy man. 

At 2 pm we attended a ceremony at the Old South Presbyterian Church cemetery in Bergenfield to acknowledge the 100th anniversary of the only Bergenfield resident who died during WW I in 1918.  We were part of the initial effort in finding out about Private Edward J. Anderson.  He was seriously wounded in Flanders and died in a hospital in England.  Private Anderson was given a proper military funeral by the Old South Presbyterian Church when his body was returned to the United States.



December started with a District meeting attended by Commander Joe, Zeke and Dick.  Discussions centered around next year’s Hundred Anniversary of the Legion. 

Breakfast on Sunday, the ninth, had a nice turnout.  Decorations throughout the hall, and the outside of the building, were done by Zeke and Joe, with Barry Doll and John Leonessa doing the honors on the big tree in the hall. 

The big feature for December was t Post 21 Christmas with Santa.  Thank you to Zeke for setting up the hall and for cooking, and Kathy for helping in many ways.  Thanks to John Cooley for getting the balloons and Dick for picking up the food.  A special thank you to our Santa Claus, who was very good with the children.  See photos below.


Recent Donations:


● Cresskill Ambulance Core $100 for transporting Jimmy Clarke

● NVEC Salt Ministry $150

● A. L. George F. AXT Nurses Scholarship Dance fund raiser $50

● Ladies Aux. Supplies $70

● Eagle Scout Project Hurricane Maria $200, and

add $190 advertising help

● Dumont HS Graduating Class Year book $150

● Gooney Birds Marine Birthday Ad $175

● $1000 of $10 gift cards to the Office of Concern for the

 Under privileged Children in Bergen County.

● SMA Fathers $100

● Wreaths across America 20 wreaths for Arlington Cemetery,

One wreath for our own Nick Oresko.

Arlington National Cemetery



Pool Table serviced and upgraded including new pool balls $450


Annual Pull Tab License renewed for 2019. At a cost of

$750.00 for the L.G.C.C.C. and $750 for the Borough of Cresskill


Upcoming Expenditures:

Emptying the grease trap $125

Replace kitchen grease trap - est. cost is $5,000

Will schedule in January

Ice Machine servicing for 2019 - Two services $650.



Membership Dues


Thus far 172 have paid and 60 to go.  If you have not paid up by December 31, you will be dropped from the rolls.  If anyone cannot afford the dues, please contact Joe.  This will be kept strictly confidential.  Reminder: please send your dues to the post and not the Legion National Headquarters, this will only delay your cards being mailed to you.


The Board Members of Camp Merritt wish you and your Family a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year




For God and Country,

Commander Joe Cutolo

Adjutant Dick Moloney