Post 86 members wish all of you a New Year filled with good health and peace.

2020 will see the 100th birthday of James B. Whipple American Legion Post 86 in Wilton. April 16, 1920 we were granted a temporary charter and on Oct. 1, 1920, we received our permanent charter. So we are excited to celebrate with community events, as well as continuing our work for and with active duty military and their families, veterans and their families, the Boy/Girl Scouts and local schools.

April will see our “first” birthday party and we will host an open house with Legionnaires and dignitaries from the national, state and local levels.

In May, we will once again have a two-day collection for the residents of the Homes for the Brave and the PFC Nicholas A. Madaras home for homeless female veterans and their children. Of course, May 25 we will be leading the annual Memorial Day parade in memory of those who have fallen in defense of our freedoms.

June 14 is Flag Day, when we will be hosting a program for people of all ages to learn more about Old Glory.

July 4, Independence Day, will see us at the fireworks with information for veterans as well as educational materials for everyone, young and old. This is also the month Legion baseball begins, so be sure to turn out to support our local ballplayers.

September is our annual Flag Retirement ceremony, when the whole community is invited to attend. We also look to all Scouts to help us conduct the ceremony after which we host a picnic.

October opens our “second” birthday and again we will invite Legion and local dignitaries to help celebrate.

And (I know it’s too early to think about!) we will be open for the annual Wilton Street Fair, Pumpkin Parade, Holiday Stroll and Hanukkah lighting.

Meanwhile, the post is open during the week, (and some weekends), so when you see the “Post 86 Open House” sign hung out at the sidewalk, please feel free to come in for a coffee (or hot cocoa, tea, water), use of our wi-fi and browse our (still growing) video and book library. Read our archives, which go back to the biography of James Whipple, through the years of the Post. If you are a lifelong resident of Wilton, you may even be familiar with (or related to) some names of our predecessors.

We also have copious amounts of information about the VA, children and youth programs, school programs to name a few. Feel free to stop in or email legionpost86@gmail.com with any questions you may have. After all, we are only as useful and effective as you, the community, allow us to be.

Finally, regardless of your feelings about national and world events, please say a prayer for all those in uniform today, both stateside and deployed throughout the world. These men and women volunteered to serve and want nothing more than our respect and support.