Legion plans country music show

Gerry Volkenent, Commander of Waconia American Legion Post 150, (233 Olive St.) reminds everyone about the upcoming Country Music Show at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 20.
The Waconia Legion is planning a special tribute honoring Sgt. Major Walter Schmakel, former Commander and manager of the Waconia Legion. Schmakel began serving in the U.S. Army in June 1948, was in in Vietnam for two years,achieving the rank of Sgt. Major before retiring from the Army in 1969. Following his retirement, Schmakel became active in the community serving as Commander of the VFW from 1980 to 1981. Beginning in 1991 Walt served as Commander of the Waconia American Legion Post 150 until 1998, in addition to serving as the Legion Club Manager from 1985 until his death.
For nearly 30 years Schmakel’s passion was serving his community by making certain the local schools had American Flags in their classrooms and the city’s flags on street poles were maintained and replaced as needed. He would look forward to Memorial Day celebrations, participating in the day’s activities, and would serve in the Honor Guard for military funerals and parades.
Proceeds from the Country Music Show will benefit the Legion’s many ongoing projects and will feature the popular Red Johnson, a nationally known country music artist and songwriter. Johnson is known for his military tribute songs which will be dedicated to the memory of Schmakel.
Johnson has appeared often on the RFD-TV network as a featured performer on the Midwest Country Show originating in Sandstone. Johnson is a Charter Member of the “Country Music Association” and was included in “Country Music’s Book of Who’s Who in 1966 and in 1970.
Also making a guest appearance will be Virgil Logelin from St. Bonifacius, who is a popular and well-known button accordion artist. Cyrill Demian, a musician from Vienna is credited with the invention of the diatonic button accordion in 1829, designed to be played with the left hand, and Logelin knows how to play it masterfully.
Also appearing will be Rich Bellert, the show’s producer and award winning Cowboy Poetry reciter. In 2007 Bellert competed at the National Cowboy Poetry Rodeo in Hot springs, S.D., winning 2nd place in the Reciter Serious division.
Tickets are now on sale at the Waconia American Legion every afternoon and evening for $10.
Plan now on attending this special tribute show and support the Legion with their community projects. For more information, contact (952) 442-5340.

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