Ideas for the member who wants to chip in
Edward Douglass White is an unusually large Council. As such, our newbies face some unique challenges integrating. The fact is, we place this burden almost entirely upon our 70-80 new members each year. Meanwhile, our long-time members tend to assume that our Council’s activities and traditions are understood as long as one receives our monthly newsletter.
Since becoming Chair of the Membership Committee, I’m often been asked “How can I get involved?” I’ve been asked by rookies as well as those who joined years earlier but weren’t quite sure about taking their first steps. Certainly, many more never ask the question and drift away. In an attempt to address this problem for the Council, and to ensure that our Brothers desiring to become active have the information needed, I’ve compiled this list. This is by no means a comprehensive list; please contact me with any ideas for additions.
Many know of KOVAR having seen us handing out over-sized Tootsie Rolls at your Parish or in front of a local supermarket. Knights of Virginia Assisting Citizens with Intellectual Disabilities is a charity established in 1971 and has raised more than $12 million since its inception. It’s simple to participate in this worthy cause – donate a couple hours of your time during the spring drive, don the yellow vest, and collect some cash. Keep an eye open as Easter approaches for more information and sign-up sheets. If nothing else, give your time for this important KofC Charity – we rarely have enough bodies to cover all of our locations. There’s no excuse for a Council the size of EDW to be out-raised by any of our sister Councils.Give Blood
The Blood drives at EDW are a long tradition that sadly has seen a decline over the past few years, even as our membership has swelled. If you are able to donate blood, please keep an eye open in the Knight Life for dates. Help revive this charitable event and possibly save a life.Thanksgiving
Every Thanksgiving, EDW serves and delivers more than 1,200 holiday meals to those in need of food or fellowship and this wonderful event requires a lot of volunteers to donate turkeys and to help out on the day of the event. If you know you want to help out this year, click here or for more information click here.Annual Golf Tournament to Fight Cancer
EDW holds our "Jim Savarese Memorial Golf Tournament" each Fall. Proceeds of the tournament are donated to a responsible charity active in the fight against cancer. We always...
EDW recently began participating in an Arlington County program where organizations volunteer to “adopt” a roadway by picking up litter twice a year. Our stretch is a portion of Glebe road from Marymount University to Chain Bridge. The work is easy as North Glebe is kept nice and neat by the locals. But, the more Knights willing to take this stroll once or twice a year will make it easier for the group. It also garners some goodwill and publicity for our Council.Usher at your Parish
One of many ways to assist the parishes our Council serves is to volunteer as an usher; they’re always in need. So, fasten that KofC pin to your blazer and assist fellow parishioners and our faithful priests by performing this basic, yet necessary duty.Service to Our Council and Club
The Ladies U-Knighted (LUK) is a dedicated group of women who meet at EDW. They focus on supporting the goals and endeavors of the Knights of Columbus, EDW specifically. They are responsible for some of the marquee events at the Council, including the adult Halloween Party. Other activities include decorating the Council Home for Christmas and an anual baby shower which supports mothers and children at the Elizabeth House. For these events and more, the LUK carries the burden. With a relatively small and aging membership they often request the help of Brother Knights. Keep an eye on the Knight Life, the website, or the Special Activities Facebook page for these requests. Likewise, if you are a lady, consider joining the LUK -- membership is open to any woman 21 or older interested in supporting and assisting the Knights of Columbus, Edward Douglass White Council.Red Coat
The EDW Red Coat Waiters Team deserves all of our thanks, for without their service our Council would not be able to remain what it is today. Red Coats volunteer one or two nights a month to serve as a waiter at a wedding or other event in the Main Hall or Council Home. They also serve their brother Knights at regular events such as Burger Night. Without their Labor the Columbus Club might not be able to survive. The Red Coats not only enjoy what they do but raise a considerable amount via tips that is spread to various charities and used to finance a Red Coat party. As more members join these waiting teams the burden becomes lighter for all.Degree Team
Our dedicated Degree Team performs all of the First and Second Degree ceremonials that take place at EDW. If you became a Knight at EDW you’ve seen them at work. Obviously, this group of men is essential to the continuation of our Council and there may not be a more direct way for you to leave a positive impression on new members. The Degree team is in need. Many have been performing in this capacity for decades and are trying to establish a larger roster. You must be a 3rd Degree Knight, and willing to commit a handful of Thursday evenings over the course of a year.500 Club
This is an old EDW lottery-like event that supports our Council Home Building Fund. It’s fun and easy to participate. Buy one or more open number (between 000-500), $5 each per month. Purchase five months and get the 6th month free. Each month winners are drawn, prizes ranging from $100 to $500! Not only does your participation help maintain our beloved Council Home, but you just might get lucky too!Chair a committee
There are a number of committees at any Knights of Columbus Council. Unfortunately, many of ours languish without a chairman – or have a long-serving chairman who would like to pass the torch. Contact one of our officers (Deputy Grand Knight or Chancellor) to find out where our needs lie. If you’re not sure you’re ready to chair, at least join a committee that interests you.
A few times throughout the year you find a Mass at EDW, such as July 4th as part of the installation of officers. (All our Masses are advertised in the Knight Life). Sadly, for a Council of our size, these are poorly attended. Show support for our wonderful Chaplain, Father Joe. Bring the family. Partake in this most fundamental Catholic activity, the Holy Mass.Attend a Council Meeting
Unlike some other fraternal organizations, meeting attendance in the Knights of Columbus is optional. HOWEVER, there’s no better way to stay in true to your Council than to attend a meeting. Show support for our Officers who do so much on our behalf. Meetings are the 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month and normally last about 30 minutes. If you’ve not been to a meeting since you joined, try attending once a quarter. Remember, we are a Council first, a club second; without the Council, there is no Club.Eat: Friday Supper Club or Family Breakfast
these dining events are old EDW traditions. Please consider attending the Supper Club. Good food. Informal atmosphere. Family friendly. Priced right. The Sunday Family Breakfasts and Brunches are popular with our entire membership. Enjoy a large, informal buffet after a Sunday Mass. Always check the Knight Life for details about dates, prices, and menus.
These events provide an opportunity for fellowship, especially dear to our retirees and older members. While they’re not designed to make money, the Columbus Club cannot afford to take a loss each month either. I encourage you to add the Supper Club, Family Breakfast, or another of our meal opportunities to your families “going out” rotation.
If you have a special interest or cause, why not start something on your own? Our current Council Recorder recently instated a slew of new activities which look likely to become EDW traditions. The annual Bocce Tournament and BBQ Battle both raise money for the Elizabeth House charity. Chris also organized in 2009 a huge swing band concert that raised thousands of dollars for victims of the earthquake in Haiti. If you have an idea, find an officer at a meeting or at the bar and run it by them.