Located at 122 W. Palatine Road, the Post 690 offers a number of events, activities and opportunities for the community at-large.
American Legion Posts are known by most as a Veterans organization, but the Palatine American Legion Post 690 is taking a fresh new approach in how it engages with the greater Palatine community.
The Post would like to invite community members to take part in the many events and activities they coordinate and host throughout the year.
In addition to organizing the Memorial Day Parade, the American Legion Post 690 serves lunch on Tuesdays from just $4 and has a full service bar with a pool table. Bingo is held every third Saturday beginning at 7:00 p.m. and upcoming Casino Nights will be hosted on September 9, October 8 and November 18, 2016 (for individuals 18 years of age and older). The Post is open 365 days a year to the public.
Pancake breakfasts are many times coordinated with downtown Palatine events, along with visits from Santa Claus during Christmastime, an Easter Egg Hunt and a Fish Fry every Friday evening during Lent.
All of these events and activities are open to the greater Palatine community, in addition to the Veterans who are members of the organization.
“We don’t want to lose who we are, but we also realize that we would like to be inclusive and invite the community to enjoy our facility and other offerings,” said Daphne Matthews, who is a 27-year veteran who retired as a Captain in the U.S. Navy. Matthews was recently named the American Legion Post 690 Post Commander.
The Palatine American Legion Post 690 is completely self-sustaining. By opening its location and events to the community at-large, it helps them to keep their doors open. Matthews said that many Posts are forced to shut down because they simply cannot afford to continue operating.
The Post remodeled a banquet room which is available to rent for gatherings from 10-85 guests and includes 5 HD televisions, A/V service and free Wi-Fi. For more information, email ClubAdmin@alpost690.us or call 847-359-1606.
The Post also engages with young people in the Palatine community.
Awards are given yearly to children who write winning essays about patriotism. A certificate and a ‘challenge coin’ – which signifies going above and beyond – is given to one girl and one boy each year who enter the competition.
Scholarships are also awarded on a yearly basis to young people who are planning to attend college. One such young person is Bridget Babcock, a Fremd High School graduate, who attended the University of Illinois and joined the Air Force ROTC. She credits the American Legion Post 690 with helping her find her direction in life.
“I have had experiences I never could have imagined, and it all started because of the Legion. They were the first to back me up in support, scholarship and mentorship – I am happy to call the Post 690 home, and part of my family,” Babcock said.
Matthews said she and the Post are incredibly proud of Babcock’s achievements, as well as those of other young people who also have received scholarships.
In addition to providing many opportunities for the public to enjoy the facility and other activities, the Post has always provided an array of support services and resources for Veterans of all wars. One of the many ways this is accomplished is by hosting U.S. Sailors each year for Thanksgiving dinner at the Post.
If the Color Guard is needed for ceremonies of any kind, including a Veteran’s funeral, the Post will provide it. They also help to process VA claims and raise funds for a plethora of Veterans programs.
In the end, Matthews wants community members to know that by taking advantage of the Legion’s offerings, they are supporting Veterans. She added that the Legion is meant to be a place for camaraderie and friendship for Veterans, and for the entire community.
“It’s very special to put on the cloth of your country and to serve; it’s prideful to put on that uniform and the Post is a place of belonging for those who appreciate that,” Matthews said.
The American Legion Post 690 is a member of the Downtown Palatine Business Association (DPBA). This organization is made up of core and associate members, whose goal is to join forces to assist with the growth and development of all members businesses. To learn more about the DPBA and yearly events, please visit www.downtownpalatine.org.