BENNINGTON -- The Bennington Lions celebrated the anniversary of their 75 years of service work at a dinner held at Jensen’s Restaurant. Guests from the Arlington, Barre, Cambridge, New York, Manchester, Norshaft, Jerrico-Underhill and St. Johnsbury Lions Clubs were in attendance. Memorabilia, programs, photos, newspaper clippings and the Club Charter and Charter Night Flag were on display.
Master of Ceremonies, Vermont Lions Past District Governor Ed Smith, congratulated the Bennington Lions Club for all their accomplishments and also thanked them for sponsoring the Norshaft Lions Club.
Cambridge, N.Y., Lion Paul Gruber, congratulated the Bennington Lions or as he noted, "The Cambridge Lions Club’s children" since his Club was their sponsoring club. He said "your parents are very proud of all the service you have provided to your community."
Guest speaker Joe Hall of Bennington, discussed the way it was in Bennington and the many changes that have occurred since the founding of the Bennington Lions.
He remembered attending two functions sponsored by the Bennington Lions: The Von Trapp Family Concert 1945 and the Dale Carnegie course in 1963.
In 1939, members of the Cambridge, New York Lions met with 27 Bennington residents which resulted is a charted for the formation of the Bennington Lions Club.
In the 27,473 days since the formation of the Bennington Lions Club, the members have lived up to the Lions International Motto, "We Serve Those In Need."
Thousands of area residents have benefited from the Club’s efforts through their work on civic and individual assistance projects.
In their 75 years of service, the Bennington Lions have done ongoing service work including sight, hearing and diabetes awareness programs; diabetes screening; assistance for eye exams and eyeglass purchases; assistance for hearing exams and hearing aid purchases; the Bennington Lions hearing booth located at Molly Stark School; donating funds to nursing home activities funds; donating audio system to Oldcastle for hearing impaired; donating funds and working at the Green Mountain Camp for Deaf and Hearing Impaired Children; Christmas party for visually impaired and hearing impaired adults; Dollars for Scholars; providing buckets of sand for seniors; support of the Lions Twin State Soccer and the International Peace Poster contest.
The Bennington Lions have sponsored three Lions Clubs -- The Arlington Lions, the Manchester Lions and the Norshaft Lions -- and also sponsored the first Leo Club in the district.
Six Bennington Lions have served as district governors: Schuyler VanderVeer, Ewrin Dunham, Ted Thomas Jr., Edmund Lauzon, Adrian Lane and Robert Wilcox.
The Bennington Lions serve the residents of Bennington, Pownal and Woodford.
For requests for assistance with eye exams and glasses and hearing tests and hearing aids, or information in how you can join the Lions with their work, contact the Bennington Lions at P.O. Box 491, Bennington, VT 05201 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.