Ron Funnemark photo

Ron Funnemark, American Legion commander, shown with the old heater in the Legion Hall.

Ron Funnemark, the commander of American Legion post 75 said they are trying to raise $20,000 this spring for repairs and upgrades for the Legion Hall.

The legion is planning the first “Save the Legion Hall” benefit auction on Saturday, May 15 (Armed Forces Day) from 5-8 p.m. with the live auction from 6-8 p.m. After seeing other organizations like “Save the Pool crab feed” hold successful fund-raisers at the hall, they decided to hold their own benefit auction. The event will have a no-host bar and pulled pork sandwich dinner for sale. They are asking community members and businesses for cash donations and auction items.

Funnemark said the money will be used to update the heating, add air conditioning, refinish the hardwood floors and some electrical work at the Legion Hall. The American Legion, with 70-80 members owns the building, built in 1947. He said the last time they asked the community for help was when they had a major problem with the roof. In 2010, they worked with the city as part of a block grant to install drop ceilings and construct the accessible ramp to the front door.

“I’m really excited about the community events we have here,” Funnemark said.

The Legion Hall, at 618 Main Street, is available for rent for $175 per day and is used for a variety of events throughout the year. The annual crab feed, the CVRA Taco feed, Kamiah Education Fund auction, biweekly Bingo, community Christmas event, wedding receptions, military history display, brewfest, funerals, voting, dances, birthday parties, reunions and training sessions for larger employers such as the Forest Service and the clinic. (There is no charge for funerals held there).

The hall was also used by Red Cross and other relief groups when we had the 2015 fires.

With many of the larger events canceled in the past year, revenues are down and expenses have gone up. Funnemark said that replacing the aging heating system with a mini split heat pump and cooling system is a costly but necessary investment. He noted that “it gets pretty warm in there.” Adding air conditioning will make the building more usable in the warmer months of the year.

To contribute money or auction items, call Funnemark at 208-935-0294 or Michelle Hayes at 208-935-9131.