American Legion Post 690
December 2023 Newsletter

Post 690 Club Room
Is Open 6 Days a Week
Monday - Closed
Tuesday to Thursday - 1pm to 11pm
Friday & Saturday - 11am to 1am
Sunday - 11am to 11pm

DECEMBER 24, 1941
Washington, D.C.

Shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941, Churchill went to Washington with his chiefs of staff to meet President Roosevelt and the American military leaders and coordinate plans for the defeat of the common enemy. On Christmas Eve Churchill broadcast to the world from the White House on the 20th annual observation of the lighting of the community Christmas tree.

“I spend this anniversary and festival far from my country, far from my family, yet I cannot truthfully say that I feel far from home. Whether it be the ties of blood on my mother’s side, or the friendships I have developed here over many years of active life, or the commanding sentiment of comradeship in the common cause of great peoples who speak the same language, who kneel at the same altars and, to a very large extent, pursue the same ideals, I cannot feel myself a stranger here in the centre and at the summit of the United States. I feel a sense of unity and fraternal association which, added to the kindliness of your welcome, convinces me that I have a right to sit at your fireside and share your Christmas joys.

This is a strange Christmas Eve. Almost the whole world is locked in deadly struggle, and, with the most terrible weapons which science can devise, the nations advance upon each other. Ill would it be for us this Christmastide if we were not sure that no greed for the land or wealth of any other people, no vulgar ambition, no morbid lust for material gain at the expense of others, had led us to the field. Here, in the midst of war, raging and roaring over all the lands and seas, creeping nearer to our hearts and homes, here, amid all the tumult, we have tonight the peace of the spirit in each cottage home and in every generous heart. Therefore we may cast aside for this night at least the cares and dangers which beset us, and make for the children an evening of happiness in a world of storm. Here, then, for one night only, each home throughout the world should be a brightly-lighted island of happiness and peace.

Let the children have their night of fun and laughter. 

Let the gifts of Father Christmas delight their play. Let us grown-ups share to the full in their unstinted pleasures before we turn again to the stern task and the formidable years that lie before us, resolved that, by our sacrifice and daring, these same children shall not be robbed of their inheritance or denied their right to live in a free and decent world.” – Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill

Churchill’s ever so eloquent words capture hope in face of even difficult times. May this season be especially bright and safe for you, American Legion Palatine Post 690 Auxiliary, Sons of the American Legion, Legionnaires, and your family and friends. May those currently on duty in uniform and veterans, wherever they are, never “feel far from home”.

Mark Cramer - Commander Post 690

Post 690 Veterans Day

Members of the American Legion Post 690, along with members from Post 690 Sons of the American Legion and Auxiliary, participated in several Veterans Day events. Veterans Day was on a Saturday this year. The day was honored with a ceremony at Cutting Hall. The event included the Post 690 Honor Guard, remarks from Mark Cramer, Commander Post 690; P. Michael Roche, Commander of Post 690 Sons of the American Legion and Erica Bartniki and Jill Robertson, Co-Presidents of the Post 690 Auxiliary. The program also included the laying of a laurel wreath, which was moved to the Palatine Veterans Memorial, following the program.

In the days prior to Veterans Day, visits were made by a number of Post 690 Legionaries with the students and faculty of Thomas Jefferson Elementary School, St. Theresa School, Gavin Middle School, Winston Campus, Palatine High School and Fremd High School. Several of the visits included participation in the school's Veterans Day programs. The honor of being able to share the experiences of being a Veteran was deeply appreciated by each Legionarre participating. The respect and gratitude shown by the students and faculty were amazing.

Additionally, visits were conducted at two senior residential facilities--Aventara in Long Grove and Deer Park Village in Deer Park. Veteran pins were provided to the Veterans of these facilities, along with a salute of thank you for their service.

RW Leap, Service Officer
Chili Cook Off
On December 10th at noon, American Legion Post 690 will host a Chili Cook Off. If you want to enter your chili, stop by the post to sign-up.
If you want to be a judge, the donation is $7 and the judging will take place during half time of the Bears vs Vikings game.
Veteran's Movie Night

Monday, December 11th

Food, drinks and fellowship starting at 5pm.
The movie begins at 6:30pm.

It's All Free!

All Veterans are invited.
Legion member or not.
Bring a guest veteran with you.
Click for a preview of this month's movie.

Club Room

We have drink specials, video gaming, free popcorn and lots of friendly people. Open to the public.

$1 Jello and Pudding Shots

Video Gaming at Post 690

Come out to the post and try your luck.

Club Room is a great place to meet up with friends and family.
We are open to the Public--members and non-members.

Click on the link to find out about upcoming events.

Wally Degner Plaza

We are taking donations for bricks to be installed in Phase III. Lets fill the plaza.
This will make a great Christmas gift for a Veteran or someone who is currently serving in the military or a First Responder.

Click on the link below to get an order form.

Phase III bricks will be installed in the Spring.
Bricks will be sold only through January 31st, 2024.

We wanted to wish everyone and their families a Happy and Healthy Holiday Season.

The Polar Express
“Just remember, the true spirit of Christmas lies in your heart.”

Erica Bartnicki and Jill Robertson
Co-Presidents, Post 690 Auxiliary

Payday Raffle Winners

 Congratulations to the Payday winners in November.
11/3 #274
11/10 #453
11/11 #157 - Veteran’s Day $100
11/17 #85
11/24 #82 – Thanksgiving $50

December winners will be posted in the January Newsletter and the Club Room.

2024 Payday Raffle Tickets are available for purchase.
$10 each.
Please see an Auxiliary member to make a purchase.

Come out for a night of fun on Saturday, December 9th and 23rd.
Doors open at 6 pm with the Early Bird Game at 6:30 pm.
Bring your adult family and friends. Win cash prizes.
Full cash bar. Video gaming and strip cards available in the Club Room.
Must be 21 years or older.
We look forward to seeing everyone at Breakfast with Santa. This is an annual tradition that brings the Post and community together.
We also wish everyone Happy Holidays.

Mike Rocha, SAL
Need A Great Spot For A Party or Event?
The Post 690 Club Hall just might be the spot for you.
Take a look at what we have to offer at a really attractive price.

The Post will be open on Christmas Eve at 11am.

The Post will be Closed on Christmas Day.
Cleaning Person Needed
We are looking for a responsible individual capable of attending to our building needs with attention to detail.
Perform a variety of cleaning activities such as vacuuming, sweeping, mopping, and emptying garbage cans
Check stocking levels of all consumables and replace when appropriate.
Notify management of any damage and items that need to be looked at.
Adhere strictly to rules regarding health and safety.

If interested email us at or call us at (224) 800-1359 and leave a message.
St. Jude’s Recycled Card Program

Send your used cards (Christmas, birthday, any type!) to the children at St. Jude’s Ranch. The kids there will cut the fronts off of the old cards and affix new backs, creating new cards! The recycled card program helps to provide teens at the ranch with life and work skills.

St. Jude’s Ranch is accepting used, all-occasion cards. YEAR ROUND!

You can mail your donations to:

St. Jude’s Ranch for Children
Recycled Card Program
100 St. Jude’s Street – Boulder City, NV 89005
877-977-SJRC (7572)

Some card donating tips:
  • All types of greeting cards, including Christmas are used.
  • Brand new cards (with or without envelopes) are also accepted.
  • Only the card front can be used (please check to be sure the back side is clear of any writing, etc.).
  • They can not accept Hallmark, Disney or American Greeting cards due to copyright laws.
  • Cards promoting other charitable organizations are not accepted.
  • 5″ x 7″ size or smaller is preferred.
Adopt-A-Sailor Was a Success!

The Adopt-A-Sailor program returned to Post 690 on Thanksgiving Day. The program has been in existence since World War II. It offers the opportunity for Post 690 to host up to 50 recruits from Great Lakes Naval Training Center for Thanksgiving dinner. During a Navy recruit's first months, he/she experiences rigorous training with strict discipline. Their access to the outside world is extremely limited. This includes access to cell phones, social media, television and other means of relaxation and communication. For many of these recruits, this is their first time away home during a holiday. With the Navy's permission, members of Post 690 transported 50 recruits from North Chicago to Palatine. The recruits were provided with a full Thanksgiving dinner, a late afternoon meal, billiards, cell phones to call home, tablets for communicating with others, a warm and comfortable place to relax, the ability to send out personalized holiday greeting cards and a visit to the Legion Memorial in Towne Square.
We would like to thank everyone who donated, gave time in preparing the food and the Club Hall, donated phones, tablets and transportation. We also thank the cooks who prepared the wonderful food and goodies for the recruits. Without your help, time and donations we wouldn't have been able to make these recruit's first Thanksgiving away from home a memorable one for them and their families.

Special thanks goes to Sue Hallsten and Ed Behrens for their efforts in making Adopt-A-Sailor a success. The two of you provided 50 sailors and more than 100 parents, spouses and children a memorable Thanksgiving. Post 690 salutes you both!

More Upcoming Events

December 16th - Wreaths Across America
December 31 - New Year's Eve Party

See for more details.
New Legion Member Sign Up Bling!

Hey Legionnaires. 

Did you know when you encourage a new member to join our Post, you will receive some nice presents. Sign up one new member and receive a 2024 membership pin. Sign two new members up and receive a special edition National Commander dog tag. 

Membership sign up forms are available at the post. Please keep in mind that new members need to provide a copy of their DD-214 with their membership form.

Any questions, please contact our Senior Vice Commander, Jim Kott, at

American Legion Post 690
122 West Palatine Road
Palatine, IL 60067