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Monday, February 11, 2008

A special Valentine for the troops

On Feb. 4, valentine packages were shipped to 22 servicemen and women with ties to Walworth County currently serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Photo Provided
L-R: Mike Bauer, Kelly McGinnis, John Bauer and Jim Houston of the Elegant Farmer in Mukwonago donated Valentine treats for the troops for the second year in a row.

This shipment makes a total of 511 packages sent to overseas troops over the past 3 years by the Walworth County Council of the American Legion with the help of the many dedicated participants.

Each package contained a Valentine Card, playing cards, eyewash, an assortment of treats and other miscellaneous items.

The bulk of the treats were donated by the Elegant Farmer, the well-known bakery and deli located at 1545 Main St. in Mukwonago.

Some of the donated items included a large beef sausage, crackers, a fudge heart, almonds, licorice sticks and a special large handmade, heart shaped cookie.

When John Bauer, one of the co-owners of the Elegant Farmer learned of the Legion's troop program from Rich Hinners, Walworth County Commander, back in early 2007, he immediately embraced the idea and offered their support in the form of a donation of treats.

This is the second year that his organization, best known for their "Apple Pies in a Brown Bag", has donated delicacies for the Valentine packages.

Mr. Bauer, accompanied by his brother Mike, who is a co-owner, two members of their management team, Kelly McGinnis and Jim Houston, delivered the items to the 158th Support Our Troops Rally at the Walworth County Government Center and attended the Monday rally.

They also wanted to express their personal gratitude to the troops.

The Support Our Troops Committee was able to acquire enough copies of the hard-to-find Brett Favre Collectors edition of Sports Illustrated that a copy was sent to each of the troops during the Green Bay Packers playoff run.

Support the Troops rallies are held every Monday at 11 a.m. in the Walworth County Board room in the government center on the square in downtown Elkhorn.

Names of the men and women currently serving in Iraq and Afghanistan and those who have served and returned are read. The Support Our Troops Committee of the Legion is always looking for additional names that should be included among those serving or who have served.

Any businesses, organizations or individuals desiring to contribute to the program may do so in person or by mail to PO Box 821, Elkhorn, WI 53121.

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