Chenal Brothers warmly welcomed by Grantsburg community
Sarah Phillips commented on this photo she took of her dad, Louis DeMarre, and the Chenal brothers. “Dad got autographs and a photo opp with his two favorite Badger players! Thanks John and Leo!! Congrats to you both on a great season!”
GRANTSBURG – John and Leo Chenal were warmly welcomed by community members at a reception held for the Wisconsin Badger players at the Grantsburg Legion Hall Wednesday, Jan. 8.
The Chenals arrived to find the hall sporting Badger gear from top to bottom, complete with large wall hanging pictures, Badger tablecloths and napkins. Fans of all ages enjoyed free root beer floats served in Badger cups.
The impromptu event, hosted by the Brask-Fossum-Janke American Legion Post 185 members and We Are Grantsburg, was held to show support for the two Wisconsin Badger brothers after their recent Rose Bowl performance and for the Grantsburg youth football Clipper Club. Volunteers from the Clipper Club and the Country Store in Grantsburg were on hand to help host the event.
Folks coming to the meet and greet for the Chenals could support the Clipper Club by participating in a meat and 50/50 raffle, and by making a donation for handmade Badger bowl cozies made by the Legion Auxiliary and other Badger memorabilia.
Fans young and old coming to congratulate the two Badger football players fresh back home from the Rose Bowl game brought items to have signed or had their root beer float Badger cup signed by the Chenals.
"The Chenal boys walked through the doors leading to the Legion Post hall area even bigger and stronger in appearance than what fans remembered,” noted 2nd Vice Commander, Duke Tucker, who helped organize the community welcome. "We’ve been looking at ways to show support for our community youth and to bring people together in general and thought this would be a great way to do both.”
During his remarks welcoming the Chenals and their fans, Tucker joked John and Leo had a tough time getting their focus off the raw meat neatly lined up on the raffle table. "No doubt it can be compared to their hunger to be stronger in the coming year in order to help bring even more success to the Badgers.”
"It was nice to see lots of community members out to support the local team. It was so much more than I was expecting. I really appreciate the people who put the whole thing together, including Duke Tucker and the whole Legion,” commented John Chenal after the event.
The Legion post in Grantsburg holds a meat and 50/50 raffle every Saturday evening in to provide a venue for organizations to raise money. Some upcoming organizations taking advantage of the raffle opportunity are the Grantsburg youth trap team and a group raising funds to support the annual eighth-grade Washington, D.C., trip.
Recent groups benefiting from the raffle are the Burnett County Family Resource Center, Burnett County Law Enforcement Citizens Auxiliary, and the Legion post itself.
"It was mentioned a number of times during the Chenal event how the post is looking to help any group seeking to raise money for causes that help to make our community a better place to live,” said Tucker.
According to Tucker folks should keep an eye on exciting new things happening at the Grantsburg Legion post.
"Recent renovations of the rest rooms and the increased activities and membership has its members fired up for things to come,” said Tucker. "The focus of Post 185 is on promoting Americanism, patriotism, service to our veterans, and helping the community be a great place to raise a family with strong core values.”
"It was really nice to see the community show up and support John and I and to give back to the football program. Coming back to Grantsburg, to our hometown, and being able to help our hometown football team with this fundraiser was fantastic, said Leo Chenal of the event. "We really appreciate all of the support the coaches and the community have given us over the years. Having all the young kids there was great because they are the future of the program and it’s great to be able to inspire them and that’s something John and I really enjoy getting to do!”
NOTE: The Grantsburg American Legion Brask-Fossum-Janke Post 185 "family” is made up of four groups: The Legion - which requires for the individual to be honorably discharged from active duty or to be current active duty status; the Auxiliary unit - women who are direct descendents, siblings, or spouses of Legion-eligible veterans; SAL (Sons of the American Legion) - Men who are direct descendents, siblings, or spouses of Legion-eligible veterans; Team Players - This group covers anyone that wishes to support the post activities. Individuals participate as much as or as little as they’d like. Joining the post can be accomplished by reporting to the membership table at any monthly meal, which is generally held the fourth Thursday of each month.
The Foxhole Bar & Lounge, which is a fundraising arm of Legion Post 185, is open daily at 11 a.m. for lunch specials, has a variety of fresh-ground burgers, Burnett Dairy pizzas, and a Friday night fish fry, which are fairly new offerings.

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