The Bristol Press – Terryville Congregational Church to support Veterans Strong Community Center with live auction
PLYMOUTH – The Congregational Church of Terryville will support the Veterans Strong Community Center with a live auction on October 15. The church will also honor veterans in a ceremony that day.
The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Terryville Congregational Church at 233 Main Street. It will include a military honors ceremony at 10:30 a.m., silent auction, live auction, cup of tea raffle, live patriotic music, vendors and food. All proceeds will go to the Veterans Strong Community Center, which helps area veterans access support programs and services.
Reverend Zachary Mabe organized the event with Donna Dognin, Executive Director of the Veterans Strong Community Center. He said he will be supported by church members, members of other churches, veterans, local scouts and Cubs, and members of the American Legion Post 20.
“About five years ago we decided that we were doing a lot of fundraising for our own church, but we also wanted to do something to help others too,” Mabe said. “Once a year, our church has decided to hold a benefit event for another organization that our members have a connection with.”
During the first three years, Terryville Congregational Church held fundraisers for the Alzheimer’s Association of Connecticut, Smilow Cancer Hospital, and Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.
After a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, Terryville Congregational Church has decided that its next event will be in support of veterans. Planning began in February.
“There are a lot of veterans who come to our church and many of us know veterans,” Mabe said. “We met with the local American Legion and asked them which organization they would recommend we designate as a beneficiary. They said Strong Veterans. At first I thought they were only for Bristol, but when I contacted Donna I was surprised to learn that they serve seven towns in our area including Plymouth.
Mabe said he was very impressed with how much Veterans Strong is doing to help area veterans in need.
“Part of the reason we’re hosting this event is to raise awareness for Veterans Strong,” he said. “It’s easy to make an appointment with Donna; she will meet with veterans and help them determine exactly what programs they qualify for.
Mabe thanked Dognin for attending fundraising event planning meetings since April. He also thanked local individuals and businesses who donated 50 auction items and 40 raffle items to support the fundraiser.
Mabe said the Terryville Congregational Church was fortunate to receive additional help from Jim Palin, owner of Corner Collective, and professional auctioneer and veteran Mark Albino. The two men appraised the items donated at auction last week for the church and Albino will also host the live auction.
The military honors ceremony will include Plymouth Mayor Joe Kilduff and members of the American Legion Post 20 as speakers. Students from Terryville High School will sing the National Anthem and the Legion Honor Guard will tap dance and volley.
Additionally, Mabe said, a plaque will be presented to the family honoring the late veteran Bob Worden.
“He was fully engaged in our planning meetings until he became seriously ill around May and passed away,” Mabe said. “We made a plaque dedicated to him, which we will give to his family members to show our thanks.”
Mabe encouraged the community to attend the live auction event and do their part to help support local veterans.
For more information on the live auction event, call 860-589-0182.
For more information about the Veterans Strong Community Center, call 860-584-6258 or visit vetstronginc.org. The Veterans Strong Community Center currently operates from the Bristol Senior Center at 240 Stafford Ave., Bristol.
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or [email protected]