Continuing the legacy
The loss of one of the founding members of the Knights of Columbus Pancake Day is being felt by the volunteers working to set up the feed so much that this year’s event is being dedicated in his honor.
Duane Redlinger was one of the original organizers of Pancake Day. He was very active with A.R.C. (Assoc-iation for Retarded Citizens), and served as president for many years. He was instrumental in starting Washington County Developmental Center (WCDC), and helped organize handicapped housing in Washington. Redlinger died Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014, at the age of 83, exactly three weeks before the annual event he helped begin.
“This was his pride and joy,” Grand Knight Mark Langr, who was setting up the KC Hall for the event this morning, said. “He made sure this happened.”
Langr expects Redlinger’s family to attend today’s event and said that the people putting together this year’s event still haven’t figured out everything that Redlinger did for the event every year. He said that losing Redlinger has left a large gap.
During the morning meal, volunteers worked in the kitchen to prepare the annual meal for clients of WCDC, who are always first in line.
Langr said that the Knights of Columbus had begun handicapped housing in town and that Redlinger was among the most active. He was a member of the board at the time. Langr said that as the founders got older and new people took over the mantle, Pancake Day had evolved a bit from its beginnings. Still, Langr was always used to seeing Redlinger as a mainstay at the event, doing whatever was needed.
“This is a large fundraiser for WCDC, handicapped housing, and the funds stay locally,”
Langr said. “When we send money out, our council sends it through a state organization and they take a small chunk or administration, but we actually as the council make up all that.”
Langr said that the KC council ensures all the money raised from Pancake Day remains in the community. He said the money goes to help WCDC and handicapped housing. He said the event began in the early 1970s, if not the 1960s.
He hopes over 600 people will turn out today to eat a hearty meal of pancakes, sausage, and eggs. In preparation for the event, the Knights have over 300 pounds of patty sausage, about 3,200 eggs and 10 cases of pancake mix. Langr said many businesses in town help with the event.
The event began this morning with the early serving from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The meal will also be served this afternoon beginning at 4:30 p.m. and running through 7 p.m. at the KC Hall.