Frequent Flyer January 2012

Volume 1, Number 1 January 2012

To all our veterans, volunteers, partners, donors, visitors, and friends….

Happy New Year from the Bong Board and Staff!

One of our New Year’s resolutions is to keep you informed about what’s going on at the Bong in hopes that you’ll visit us more often.  This monthly newsletter will fill you in on current events, projects, and other Bong news and will be emailed the first week of each month.  Feedback is welcome, so if you have comments please click here: https://www.bvhcenter.org/guest-book.html


2011 Wrapup


The big news was our Education Program. In March, with partial funding from the Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation, we hired Scott Markle as our Educator.  He has been very successful in increasing school visits, doing outreach to the community, and initiating new activities, such as the Middle School Essay Contest (more on that below.)  He also worked with our new Partner, the Duluth Playhouse, in hosting a Children’s Summer Theatre Camp at the Bong. Not to overlook college-age students, we had several interns this year from the UWS Business Department and Social Inquiry (History) Department. The latter conducted interviews with veterans for our Oral History Collection under the supervision of Bob Fuhrman, Executive Director.

New Events kicked off and closed up the summer – our first Summer Open House in June brought in 400 people, and the Military Vehicle Show in August attracted 600 visitors to see vehicles displayed by Kevin Kronlund and other collectors.  Under the Chairmanship of Tim Sauter, the November Auction was a sellout again this year. Guests had a great time bidding on a huge variety of items, ranging from a Packer football weekend to a Hot Purse filled with diamonds and other treasures.  All events will return for 2012 (see Save the Date section below).

The 2012 Celebrating Their Service Calendar, brainchild of Ryan Kern and featuring Notable Northlanders, was a huge success and required a second printing. We still have a few for sale, so stop by and pick one (or more) up or purchase through our web site: https://www.bvhcenter.org/calendar.html We are grateful to all the participants, to Arrowhead Printing, and to SuperOne for distribution and advertising.

Our Fundraising activities were moderately successful this year. In addition to the DSACF grant mentioned above, which has just been renewed, we also obtained grants from the Paulucci Family Foundation, an anonymous Foundation and a gift from the Doyle Group to support our UWS student projects in 2012. Our Sponsorship drive, chaired by Dave Podratz, has so far yielded 23 individual and corporate sponsors  https://www.bvhcenter.org/sponsorship.html ), and, despite the slow economy, we were pleased at the response to our End-of-Year Appeal. We thank all our supporters for your generosity to the Bong.


What’s New for January


The first Middle School Essay Contest winners have been announced. In commemoration of the 70th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor, the students  wrote short essays answering the question “Why is Pearl Harbor important in American history?”  The 7th grade winner is Nathan Tunnell of the Superior Middle School, and the 8th grade winner is Madeline Marsh from Washburn Middle School. They will receive cash prizes. Honorable mention prizes go to: 7th graders Emma Meeker, Marissa Burkman, and Bridget Motiff, all of Washburn Middle School, and 8th graders Robin Kutsi of Eveleth-Gilbert Junior High as well as Anna Lazorik and Aaron Libert from Washburn Middle School. Congratulations to all!! To read the winning essays and read further information about the essay contest, click here: https://www.bvhcenter.org/essay-contest-winners.html


A new Film Series, “Hollywood’s Heroes”, will start up in January. Each month we will present a World War II film featuring a star born that month. Dana Andrews in “A Walk in the Sun” will lead off the series on Tuesday, January 17, at 1:30 pm, and the subsequent films will be shown on the 3rd Tuesdays of the month. Admission is free! Click here for the full 2012 Film Series Listing: https://www.bvhcenter.org/film-series.html


Our Saturday Speakers Program continues on January 21, with Jim Hencinski presenting “The Eyes of the Fleet: USN Battleship and Cruiser Floatplanes, 1934-49.” The talk begins at 10 am and is free. Be sure to visit us on this and other Saturdays in January, when we will provide free hot cocoa to all our visitors.

January is a good time to order a Commemorative Tile to help ensure delivery by Memorial Day. The tile will be mounted in our Tile Gallery and will recognize your special veteran. You may order online https://www.bvhcenter.org/tile-gallery.html  or on your next visit to the Bong.

Save the Dates

3rd Tuesdays of each month – “Hollywood Heroes” film series, 1:30 pm https://www.bvhcenter.org/film-series.html .

May 15 – Honor Flight Northland trip to Washington DC

June 6 – 2nd Annual Summer Open House at the Bong

June dates TBD – Duluth Playhouse Children’s Summer Theatre Camp at the Bong

August 18 – Military Car Show at the Bong

September 22-23 – Duluth Air Show

September 24 – Bong Center 10th Anniversary Celebration and Richard Bong’s 92nd birthday

November 1 – Bong Annual Auction


Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center, 305 Harbor View Parkway, Superior, WI 54880

Phone: (715) 392-7151, toll free 1 (888) 816-9944  FAX (715) 395-5526  Email: [email protected]