Location: American Legion Post #1450, Halfmoon, NY


Meeting Date: February 18, 2004 

The February meeting for the 2004 USSVI Convention Committee was called to order at 7:30 by Chairman Gasser.  There were 26 members and 12 guests present.  This months meeting is being held at the American Legion Post 70, Saratoga Springs, NY.

Chairman Gasser introduced himself and for the benefit of our guests gave a brief overview of the Convention.

Parade Chairman Bob Ondek was introduced and gave a report on the Parade scheduled for September 18, 2004.  At the present time we have the US Navy Band and some other local bands we are working with. Bob reported he would ideally like to have 6 or 8 additional bands in the parade.  Some area of concern were raising money to put on the parade, transportation for those unable to walk the distance, finding a Grand Marshal, honoring the oldest WWII SubVet, and honoring the oldest USSVI member who is not a WWII SubVet. Bob is working on all those issues.  Bob announced that Jerry Wells from the Saratoga Elks will be the parade coordinator.  Additionally he spoke about the Parade Program. We will solicit sponsors and advertisers for the Parade Program from business community in and around the Capital District.  The Convention Program will contain only sponsors from the military, VFWs, American Legions, and other civic organizations.

Bob stated he would like to have an airplane flyover during the parade and said he has been in contact with someone from the Civil Air Patrol and was hoping to have C-130 perform the flyover. Retired Navy Capt. Dupree, husband of Lorna Dupree agreed to look into the possibility of having a jet fighter do the flyover.

Other areas of fundraising that were discussed were three fundraising dinners to be held during the months before the convention. We will also solicit funds by direct mailing to major submarine vendors and known philanthropic organizations in the area.

Senior Chief Santos will be our contact person from the Kesselring Site. He indicated he will help in anyway he can. Some areas include providing a quarterdeck at the Welcome Party and the Grand Banquet. He also reminded the committee that although he was offering help, there were certain limitations tasks that could be performed.  All duties performed must be in the best interest of the Navy.

Another area that we still need to work on is publicity.  We are looking for someone to send out articles to military magazines, newspapers in military towns, and any other areas that would have a concentration of ex submariners that we could get the word out to either join USSVI, come to the convention, or both.

 We still need help in all areas of fundraising, please volunteer to help in any way you can. Thanks.

The members were polled to see it there was anything else to discuss.  Being nothing further, the meeting was adjourned.

Submitted by:
Jim Irwin, Secretary
Albany-Saratoga Base
Pride Runs Deep

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