Dripping Springs Veterans honored
This year on Veterans Day, the Dripping Springs Rotary Club, despite COVID-19, found a way to honor our veterans safely. A drive-by booth was set up on Mercer Street that allowed veterans to either drive by and pick up a goodie bag or park and chat with each other for a while.
“Rotary has always been involved with Veterans Day. We have always done something. It used to be, before the pandemic, at the Mercer Street Dancehall. We always did a big cookout, a dance, and had a band,” said Karen Peterson, Rotary Club Volunteer. “With COVID, we didn't think the veterans would want to be in that kind of environment.”
Veterans day is a day to celebrate all of our U.S. military veterans. The pandemic may have altered the usual plans in doing so locally, but organizations like the Rotary Club found a way, and the gesture did not go unappreciated. Firefighters with North Hays County Fire Rescue were also on hand to show their support.
“Normally on veterans day, we start the day early by going to the schools, and then in the evening, the Rotary Club would put on the deal at the dance hall,” Local Veteran Shorty Barnett said. “But doing this, was an awesome thing they set up for the veterans."
As part of the Veterans Tribute event, the Dripping Springs Rotary Club presented a $2,250 donation to Patriots’ Hall of Dripping Springs.
"This community is such a patriotic community, and the kids...I just can't do enough for them," Shorty said, who is also a Patriots’ Hall Board Member.
The Patriots’ Hall encompasses ten acres of land, located off Highway 290, in Dripping Springs. Facilities will be constructed and the hall will serve as a "retreat and resource base" for all veterans and their families to come together and find support.
"We will have different therapeutic classes and motivational speakers and workshops," Kathryn Chandler said, Patriots’ Hall President. "70 percent of the land is open for gardens and vegetable gardens (run by veterans), beekeeping, and workout spaces."
"I think (the patriot's hall) is a place of honor, I think it is a place of service, and it is a place of camaraderie. Those are three things our veterans need."
Veterans day was still a success in more ways than one. About 75 bags were given out, and the funds donated to the Patriots’ Hall brings the project one step closer to completion.