BBQ, bake sale to raise money to place wreaths on 1,800 veterans’ graves in Southern Utah

ST. GEORGE — Who doesn’t love to gather with friends around a barbecue on a Saturday? Not many would turn down that opportunity, but it can be an even more perfect day when it benefits a heartwarming cause.

Wreaths are placed on the graves of veterans during a Wreaths Across America ceremony in Tonaquint Cemetery , St. George, Utah, Dec. 17, 2016 | File photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

On Oct. 20, Zion Harley Davidson is partnering with the Color Country Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution to host its 3rd annual barbecue fundraiser to help honor American veterans’ grave sites this holiday season.

The fun-filled morning with have silent auctions, raffles with a variety of prizes, homemade baked goods for sale, a barbecue lunch for $5 and some great country and rock tunes by the Rock N Horse Band.

Zion Harley has joined forces this year with Lin’s Market and Smith’s Marketplace to provide food for the event and Zion general manager Laura Lavigne said they love to support veterans and are happy to have it at their location every year.

“Not only are they some our most loyal motorcycle enthusiasts, but they are also the reason we are here to enjoy the freedoms we have today,” Lavigne said. “It’s a real true American event, that’s for sure. It’s a real good cause, and we’re hoping to see a lot of people come out and support our veterans and give them a good Christmas.”

Proceeds from the event will support the DAR, which works with Wreaths Across America  to honor veterans at Arlington National Cemetery and at 1,400 locations across the United States. Their mission is to teach children about the importance of honoring citizens that have sacrificed so much for our freedom.

The granddaughter of Daughters of the American Revolution, Color Country Chapter, member Janice Hastings smiles at the Wreaths Across America ceremony held at Tonaquint Cemetery, St. George, Utah, Dec. 16, 2017 | File photo by Valerie King, St. George News

For the last three years, DAR has been able to honor every grave at the Tonaquint Cemetery and the Shivwits Band of Paiute Cemetery, but for the first time this year, the organization challenged itself to take on 1,100 more graves at the historic St. George City Cemetery.

The ceremonies this year will be held Dec. 15.

Local DAR regent Valerie King said this new commitment meant over double the amount of funds would need to be raised, and they decided to reach out to local business owners for assistance.

This year four local Walmart stores banded together and purchased 350 wreaths and Wells Fargo Trust funded another 250, but the organization is still seeking more donors to help them reach the goal of 1,800 wreaths to be laid.

“We can’t bake ourselves out of this one,” King said.

She said one year the organization was not able to raise enough funds and was short about 30 wreaths.

“It was the most terrible thing – at least for me personally – and then I made this vow that would never happen again,” King said.

Wreaths are $15 each, and King said she hopes the community will come out and support the cause.

Volunteers and sponsors are always needed and more information can be found by contacting Valerie King at colorcountrychapter@gmail.com or 435-703-9560.

Event details

  • What: BBQ Fundraiser for Wreaths Across America.
  • When: Saturday, Oct. 20, 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
  • Where: Zion Harley Davidson, 2345 N. Coral Canyon Blvd., Washington City.
  • Cost: No cover; food, bake sale items and opportunity drawing tickets vary; donations accepted.
  • Additional information: To make a donation, contact Valerie King at 435-703-9560.

Email: apinckney@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2018, all rights reserved.

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