Despite the non-stop rain Saturday evening, the Panama VFW Post 6628 hosted its 72nd annual mulligan on a beautifully sunny Sunday, Sept. 1.
A lot of work goes into hosting the mulligan. Beginning on Saturday, Aug. 31, volunteers met in the VFW Hall basement to cut the vegetables, while several others, grilled meat in the afternoon and into the next morning. Volunteers on Saturday were Austin Yonker, Nick Jett, Shannon Riel, Calvin Sinklair, John Puls, Rosemary Wapneski, Deb Earnest, Laura Melton, Kim Benson, Jeannette Manning, Linda Warren, Karen Vohlken, Kim Lappie and Sally Spensberger. Grillers were Roger Welzbacher, Jim Kimbro, Danny Melton, Porge and Wiggles.
During the night, VFW members and volunteers cooked the mulligan in 35-gallon kettles, over open flames, watching it very closely. By morning, they had cooked up over 145 gallons of soup, which was served to those who came to eat, or who brought their own bowls, pots or other dishes to take soup home in.
"The soup is going pretty quick, and we've only been selling for an hour," said Lenny Earnest.
Thacker was also excited to premier the VFW's new project during the mulligan. The project is a statue of a pair of boots, a gun and a helmet, surrounded by bricks with local veterans' names on them.
"These bricks are open to all veterans. They can get a brick with their name and a little about themselves," said Thacker. They cost $30 and we are taking orders from Dec. 15 through April 15. We would like to see this display triple in size. I am so happy we got it done in time for Labor Day."
In addition to the mulligan, visitors could purchase grilled items, featuring brats, hot dogs and pork patties. They also had a washer tournament, a cake walk, 50/50 drawing and raffles. The entertainment for the evening was provided by The Strugglers.