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Florida Elks News Editor:
Rachael King
Entire contents copyright 2023 by the
Florida State Elks Association Inc.
P.O. Box 49
Umatilla, FL 32784-0049

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What a great FSEA state convention we had this past May! Our FLOE luncheon had a record-breaking number of attendees. Our annual chance auction, chaired by Susan Kikta from Tarpon Springs Lodge, was very successful. Thank you to all our Ladies organizations and individual ladies who provided donations! We could never do this without you. Thank you to Connie Kalel-Poage, PSP-FLOE; Adella Ashton, PSP-FLOE; and Merritt Island for helping with the luncheon. Thank you to everyone who volunteered in the FLOE hospitality room. Our room was super busy all three days. I appreciate all the help from Merritt Island with donations of food and decorations for the room. Thank you to everyone who came to our room and supported our fundraisers for our state major projects.

We sold tickets for the Angel Program reverse draw at the convention and there are still some available. Please reach out if you are interested in supporting our Florida Elks Children’s Therapy Services fundraiser. Our conference raffle has great prizes (weekend stay at The Shores, awesome Elks cooler and a laptop). Tickets are on sale with our statewide Ladies of Elks.

During our May meeting, we voted for our 2023-2024 board. Congratulations, ladies! We reviewed details for the conference, the RV rally and retreat. Our next meeting is the 60th FLOE conference at The Shores Resort & Spa in Daytona Shores, Florida, Sept. 22-24. We will have a casino night Friday night and all are welcome to attend. Registration is available on the FSEA website. Our fundraising room is open for Ladies of Elks to fundraise for your organizations. We will have a FLOE chance auction table to help us reduce future conference costs. Please consider donating to this table to help us improve future conferences.

I had a great time in Minneapolis, Minnesota, at the Grand Lodge convention. It was great to support our Northeast District FLOE delegate, Deborah Reedy, as she represented Florida at the 11 O’clock Toast competition. I spoke to ladies from several lodges interested in restarting their Ladies organizations and others interested in FLOE activities. Please contact me if you have any questions or need support.

Our motto is “Launching Children’s Futures.” Our special project is supporting the Future Leadership Program. We are collecting donations of gift cards from Walmart, Target, Chick-fil-A, McDonalds and Dollar Tree in any amount up to $25. The gift cards will be sent as congratulations for achievement and encouragement to program participants during the year. The goal is to provide continuous support, demonstrating “Elks Care and Elks Share.” You don’t need to have a Ladies organization to help support this effort! Let’s work together to help our future leaders (and hopefully future members). Please bring any donations to the FLOE conference.

Unfortunately, this year we have lost a Past FLOE President, Betty Lou Pickenpaugh. It is always sad when we lose anyone within our organization. We will honor all our departed sisters during our memorial service at the conference. Please refer to the conference package on the FSEA website for the form to have your lodge’s departed ladies included in the service.

The first RV rally was held June 2-4 at Ocala North RV Resort. All proceeds will benefit our state major projects. There were 27 RVs and eight districts represented. We raised $3,000 while camping for the kids! Thank you to the two anonymous event donors. We appreciate your donations, which helped assist in a great event! Thank you to PSP-FLOEs Connie Kalel-Poage, Becky Long and Suzi Simonelli for all your hard work in organizing this event. You all had a great idea and made it a reality. We can’t wait until next year!

Our second annual Ladies retreat is scheduled for the Smith Center Sept. 8-10, 2023. Registration is now open. If you would like to have a quick weekend getaway at the Florida Elks Youth Camp, please register to join us!

Our Ladies of Elks have been great about posting their events on our Florida Ladies of Elks Facebook site. Consider joining us to see what great events ladies are hosting and to see the great success they all are! Please share your events so I can share them here!

Fort Myers LOE #1288 are continuing their great work despite the impacts of Hurricane Ian. The ladies held a shabby chic fashion show and luncheon using North Fort Myers Lodge. Fashions for the event were from the Hope Chest Thrift Store, which is associated with Hope Hospice. Both organizations were the beneficiaries of the event.

Ocala’s OLEOs held a fashion show and held Mother’s Day and Father’s Day lunches. The also provided a donation to the RV Rally in addition to hosting a lunch at the lodge for the RV rally attendees.

Deep Creek LOE presented two nursing scholarships at $3,000 each to deserving nursing students. Money for the scholarships was raised through weekly Show Me the Money events. To date, the LOE has presented 12 scholarships for a grand total of $27,500!

Tampa LOEs held a movie night with popcorn, candy and hot dog baskets, with the proceeds going to FECTS.

Several of our LOEs held Kentucky Derby events. Tampa raised funds for FECTS. Tarpon Springs raised money for the expenses of a lodge member who was seriously injured. Merritt Island LOE held its own Derby races with lodge members acting as jockeys, which benefits the community.

We are looking for ladies in the Central, South and South Southeast districts to represent their district. Please consider working with other ladies to support our FSEA major projects. You do not have to have a Lodge LOE to be a delegate.

Laura Sardella
2022-2023 FLOE President