Camp Merritt Post 21

Post 21 Update for December & January

As of Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Fellow Legionnaires,

I hope your holidays were enjoyable, although they passed quickly as usual.

The Post had our annual Children’s Christmas party:


The room was ready for Santa and so were the children and their parents.



Thanks to


                                                                       (Kevin Morgan)


Special Thanks

to all that helped to put this event together.

Kevin Morgan

Steve Bianco

Zeke Kelm

AL Kanze


John Cooley




Christine, a friend of Mike Johnston, is responsible for the beautiful and interesting art

that we see from time to time on the bar board.  This is the Christmas edition,

Thank you, Christine.


At Christmas Post 21 did not forget Medal of Honor Recipient Nicholas Oresko.

Zeke and Joe placing A Wreath on the Medal of Honor recipient’s grave site In Washington Cemetery, Paramus.

Our Post also donated

20 Wreaths to

            Arlington Cemetery


Thanks to Zeke and Joe for decorating Tom’s Christmas tree outside and the bar and hall with trees and various decorations


    Now for the not so fun stuff, we had to repair the bar cooler due to a relay malfunctioning.  Zeke and Joe fixed the wine cooler after finally getting the proper part.  The Roof heating unit failed, which made the bathrooms and kitchen chilly places to be during the cold spell.  The mother board had broken and had to be replaced to the tune of $550.00.


We finalized the Red White Que paperwork from last October/November.  From the proceeds we donated $1,500 to the Cresskill Police Department for their cooperation during the Red White and Que.


Once again this year we donated $1,000 worth of gift cards to the Bergen County Office of Concern to be given out a t Christmas to families in need.


We also donated $1,500 to the Camp for Hero’s Project for Veterans being run by the Bergen County District of the American Legion, bringing the total we have donated to $2,500.


We arranged, at the request of Dick Waddell, to send 3 boxes of coffee and a Couric machine to First Lieutenant Christene Jansson in Afghanistan.  We wish all those well over there, come safely.


             Commander Joe led the Mayor and Council in Cresskill in the Pledge of Allegiance during their swearing session in early January.


The Post also donated two wheel chairs, one to a handicapped school, the second to a member.  In addition we also donated a walker to a member.


There is a stair lift (Superglide Stairlifts) available, if anyone can use it please contact the Commander or Chaplain.


A special thank you to Steve Bianco, and those who helped him, Zeke Kelm, Eddie Buscavage, and Steve Guerra for the Army Navy Game last Saturday.


Just a note of caution, at the recent District meeting several other posts have pointed out that the ABC has visited them, checking the sign-in book and rules behind the bar as well as various signs.


We have 15 members who have not paid their 2018 dues.  Both letters and emails have been sent to them. Please send in your dues.


For your knowledge the Bergen County District has a Central Relief Committee which will help a veteran in financial straits on a one time basis (something like the water heating breaking, paying the rent one time).  The committee has been expanded to also help SAL members and Auxiliary members.  At the recent District meeting two SAL and one auxiliary member were added to the committee.


I would like to write about our monthly breakfast, which really starts on Wednesday or Thursday with a review of the various supplies in the kitchen and a trip to Restaurant Depot at 7am the next morning.  Commander Joe and Al Kanze take Al’s pickup truck and go shopping, picking up food and other supplies which on their return are stored in the various cabinets, refrigerator and walk-in box.

Sometime on Friday or Saturday, depending on rentals, the hall is swept and mopped, the tables, both the customer and those along the wall, are set-up with all the equipment for Sunday.

Then on the following Sunday; Commander Joe, Al Kanze, Zeke Kelm, Kenny Bryant, and Denise Kanze start preparations at 6 am at the post, starting the coffee, laying out cooking utensils and what-not.  Zeke starts the bacon and sausages, Al prepares his pancake batter, Denise starts getting ready for the regular and the French Toast, eggs are broken by Kenny for the omelets and scrambled eggs, all with a lot of banter, all before a customer walks in the door.  And speaking of the door, Jane Cutolo is setting up at the entrance to greet the customers and Gail Welch gets ready to sell the 50-50s.  Sometimes Eddie Buscavage does the eggs (this last time he came early to help with the preparation), sometimes Joe cooks.

Our first customer is usually Henry who likes the back table, and it had better have the number 10 on it, sometimes it gets the number 11 (not always by accident).

Now we have some pretty good waiters and waitresses, Steve Bianco, John Cooley, Lynn Kein, Gerry Kennedy, and me when I get there.  We also have some students working on their community service points.  For the last couple of years we had Tom O’Malley’s grandchildren, Megan and Ethan O’Malley, both terrific workers.  There have been others in the past, I remember one very nice young lady, from about two years ago, we made sure that we watched our language around her, until someone slipped and she started laughing.  She said she heard worst from her Father.  On occasion Kathy Mayer and Warren Bruno help out in hall and the kitchen.  Just recently we have had some new people join us, John Amicucci, Barry Doll and Dixie Rainie.  If you would like to help or have a child or grandchild who needs community service, come on breakfast morning at 8 am, we have a good time and the more hands the better.

At 12 noon we start our cleanup, after all our guests have left; salt and pepper, utensils, table numbers, etc., are put away, while the pots and pans and all the equipment are scrubbed down and put in their proper places, this can take a couple of hours.

Many thanks to all, you are appreciated.

The breakfast has been one of the main tools for paying off the mortgage, and it also allows the Post to reach out to the community and let them see us.  For the price and the great food you can’t beat it.




What’s Coming Up:

Super Bowl Sunday will be celebrated on Sunday, February 4, 2018 with free food and a cash bar at the post.  There will pizza, wings and sandwiches.  Please sign the sheet so we can get a count for the food.


Next we have the Four Chaplains on Sunday, February 18, 2018 at the 9:30 am service at the Old North Reformed Church, at 120 Washington Avenue, Dumont.  There will be a sign-up sheet for those coming back to the post afterward for a light breakfast – need that food count.


Plans are being made for Monmouth Race Track outing sometime in June.


Dick Moloney