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Home News Prince Albert Elks’ Lodge celebrates a century of giving back

Prince Albert Elks’ Lodge celebrates a century of giving back

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Prince Albert Elks’ Lodge celebrates a century of giving back
Visitors celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Prince Albert Elks Lodge No. 58 with the Elks Canada mascot on Saturday, Aug. 27. -- Photo by Marjorie Roden

The Prince Albert Elks’ Lodge No. 58 celebrated 100 years of being part of the community with a family fun day on Saturday.

At the centre of the attractions were free hamburgers for all, a bouncy castle, candies and temporary tattoos for the children, and the hope of expanding their membership, according to member Grant Ursaki.

“The lifeblood of any organization is bringing in new blood, so that’s what we thought we’d try and do,” Ursaki explained. “We’ll hand out applications to everybody, saying they can have a look around (and ask) if you’d like to join.”

A common misconception about the club is that it’s men’s only. Ursaki said they started out as a male only group, but they changed that requirement a few years ago.

“A ladies’ auxiliary formed with the Royal Purple, and then a few years ago, we decided to make the Elks themselves co-ed so women could join the Elks,” he said. “In fact, our grand exalted ruler this year is a woman.”

The Elks’ organization is more than only the Prince Albert Elks in our community. Ursaki explained, “The Order of the Royal Purple split between ones that wanted to stay with the Elks and became their own Elk Lodge here, which is the Royal Purple Elks number 50. (The second group is) the Canadian Royal Purple, and they are in fact the hosts of the Brain Boogie.”

An advantage to being an Elk lies within the building itself.

“For the members themselves, it’s an excellent location. Because it’s a private club, it’s controlled access so you know who you’re going to be encountering down here,” said Ursaki.

“We have a number of events throughout the year. The kids’ Christmas party is one of the big ones for kids, and kids 12 and under see Santa Claus and (each) gets a gift. We also have things like a fall supper. We have a seniors’ breakfast in the spring, and a number of events throughout the year.

“Also, members get to use the hall as long as nobody else is using it, for their own things.”

How have the Elks been giving back to the community over the years?

“We support the Salvation Army and the Victoria Hospital fund every year, those are the big ones,” said Ursaki.

“We give scholarships to the schools. We have a bunch of seniors’ homes on 26th and 27th street up here on the hill. We don’t charge very much for rent which makes it very popular with seniors. They’re small, but they’re affordable. We have a pretty good waiting list all the time for those.

“We were the lodge, here, that originated that idea in Saskatchewan,” said Ursaki.

“Now I think there’s five or eight communities that have these kinds of homes supported by the Elks.”

What else have the Elks helped create in Prince Albert and district?

“Throughout the years, we’ve built a lot of things,” said Ursaki.

“We built the Nordale Community Hall back when we could raise a little more money than we can now. Times were different back in the ‘70s.

“We have a long history supporting all sorts of things in Prince Albert, and we’d like to continue with that, and new members is the way to do it.”

To learn more about the Elks Lodge No. 58, feel free to call them at (306) 764-1260.