Bar tops at Brainerd Legion honor veterans with ornamental canine tags, desk artwork – Brainerd Dispatch

BRAINERD — The Brainerd Legion Put up 255 has one thing distinctive about its location.

After changing a number of issues within the constructing, the Legion members turned their consideration to the bar tops. Former Put up Commander Steve Eide had an thought to include canine tags into the bar’s look and it turned a beloved ornament to folks from throughout.

When Janelle Sanderson started working because the bar supervisor on the Legion over 10 years in the past, it was not within the situation that it’s now. With the remainder of the employees, they started considering of concepts they may use to enhance the constructing.

These concepts turned life like when the Legion was given a grant from Residence Depot to rework the constructing and make enhancements. They used this cash to exchange the kitchen and flooring, renovating a lot of the constructing. The very last thing left was the bar tops.

Decorative dog tags decorate a wooden bar top.

The bar tops on the Legion are lined with canine tags that honor each previous and present veterans Friday, Might 27, 2022.

Sara Guymon / Brainerd Dispatch

“We had a extremely darkish bar high and every thing (else) was all new,” stated Sanderson. “We’ve painted and every thing and (the bar high) was simply dingy.”

That’s when Eide was introduced with a chance from Viking Log Furnishings out of St. Joseph. From there, the thought of canine tags was established.

The bar was completed with a layer of epoxy earlier than the canine tags made by Studio Wraps had been positioned down. It was sealed with one other layer of epoxy and every thing was put in with assist from volunteers.

Sadly, Eide would by no means see the absolutely accomplished bar tops in individual. Towards the tip of the undertaking, Eide was recognized with Lou Gehrig’s Illness. By the point the undertaking was ending up, Eide was at house. Sanderson despatched him photos and movies of the undertaking earlier than Eide died.

A memorial photo of a man, Steve Eide, who was the previous Post Commander.

Steve Eide’s photograph is displayed behind the bar to honor his dedication and repair to his nation and to the Brainerd Legion Put up 255 Friday, Might 27, 2022.

Sara Guymon / Brainerd Dispatch

The one factor Eide didn’t get to see was the image of him they put up behind the bar in his honor.

“In order that’s why it is there as a result of that is essential to us,” Sanderson stated.

The tags had been offered for $50 a chunk and an additional cost for any emblems similar to Purple Hearts. The whole bar is full, in addition to every thing behind the bar. Along with the bar tops, Legion members had the choice to purchase a desk within the bar for $400 and design it as they happy. So long as they had been a Legionnaire or veteran, they may purchase a spot on the bar.

A table at the Legion is decorated in honor of the 194th Bataan Death March.

A bar desk is embellished within the honor of the Bataan Loss of life March Friday, Might 27, 2022.

Sara Guymon / Brainerd Dispatch

“I do not even know what number of we offered however the entire total bar is full,” Sanderson stated. “The whole lot again behind the bar the place the bottle set and the pull tab set is full. The entire bar was paid for by the $50 canine tags.”

One of the crucial significant elements of the bar high are the canine tags devoted to Bataan Loss of life March veterans who handed away. The entire tags honoring these veterans had been purchased by the armory and take up a lot of the bar.

The opposite canine tags even have all kinds. There’s a mixture of auxiliary, deceased and at present serving members. Along with the standing of the veteran, there may be additionally a mix of areas represented. The veterans didn’t should be a member of Brainerd’s put up.

“Among the veterans like to return in and see if they will discover their tags,” stated Sanderson. “They will make enjoyable of one another as a result of they don’t seem to be sitting in entrance of their (canine tag).”

A small American flag decorates the bar above Chester Sanderson's dog tag.

Sanderson’s grandfather has a canine tag on the finish of the bar Friday, Might 27, 2022.

Sara Guymon / Brainerd Dispatch

Even Sanderson has a tag that she likes to face by. On the finish of the bar there’s a canine tag for Sanderson’s grandfather, Chester Sanderson. The canine tag is embellished with a Purple Coronary heart and means quite a bit to Sanderson.

Though the bar high and behind the bar is full, there are nonetheless requests for extra. Nevertheless, Sanderson and Put up Commander Kevin Stunek don’t know the place they may go.

“Individuals have stated, ‘Nicely let’s put them on the wall or let’s put them right here,” Stunek stated, including if they begin placing them throughout, it will get “too loud, too cheesy and too busy.”

The canine tags are one thing distinctive to the Brainerd Legion Put up 255 and one thing members cherish. Though they don’t have room for extra proper now, they hope to proceed increasing sooner or later if they will discover the suitable spot for extra.

SARA GUYMON, Brainerd Dispatch, employees author, could also be reached at 218-855-5851 or

[email protected]

. Observe her on Twitter at


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