When Joe Males took over the helm as Commandant of American Legion Post 53 in Hemet, few expected a tornado to hit town; however, under his aegis, the changes swept through the post like a hurricane assaulting a hurricane the Mississippi River.

The latest innovation is a joint venture with Hearts Home Gardens. It has a long history of social and entertainment events over the years, so this is a totally new venture for their organization.

Males explains, “The Eagles and Linda Ronstadt experience is going to take place on Sunday, September 12th, starting at 5 o’clock and should end around nine or whenever everyone decides to leave. A sumptuous meal will be served with either tri-tip or chicken riesling as entrees, with garlic mashed potatoes, honey & herb baby carrots and tossed salad & dressing. It will be like dining out at an elegant restaurant for dinner.”

The whole purpose is to raise money for veterans, including college scholarships.

The commander continues, “Coming out of service, many of them need to pick up where their education was interrupted, as it was during World War II with the advent of the G.I. Bill of rights that educated a generation of vets.”

What is the cost of such a spread?

“$60.00 a plate. That may seem a bit high, but included are a lot of extras, including three drinks of your choice – either alcoholic or sodas. Coffee, iced tea and lemonade drinks will be unlimited throughout the evening.”

What is the seating capacity?

“There will be seating for 300 outdoors in a garden atmosphere which is ideal for this time of year. Especially for what has been going on in our society during the past year. We will have 3500 lights in the garden with dancing and socializing. It will be a welcome event for people who have been pretty much cooped up during the past year due to COVID and the lock-downs; an opportunity for folks to get out and enjoy themselves in an open atmosphere.”

The American Legion Post 53 of Hemet is co-hosting the event with Hearts Home Gardens with the profits being shared between the two organizations.

Is this a single event?

“Oh, no. On October 15th, we will have the Stevie Nicks Illusions/Fleetwood Mac tribute, and on November 7th comes the Bonnie Kilroe Country Queens show. Folks in Hemet will remember Bonnie because she has appeared at the Legion Hall in downtown Hemet several times, always appearing to sell-out crowds.”

Bonnie Kilroe is an amazing woman with more mimics than Lon Chaney had faces. “If all goes well, next year the events might event end up monthly. In any event, there will be more than one if these are successful.”

As long as there is a profit providing funds for veteran causes, you can bet they will continue. So shake the dust and moths out of your party duds, kick up your heels and get with it.

Hearts Home Gardens is located at 32643 Highway 74, Hemet, CA. The site can be viewed at: For additional information and tickets, go to: [email protected] or call (951) 6a58-2436. The new Post bar will have a grand opening on September 25th and it has the atmosphere of a cozy nightspot – a place to get away from it all Just sayin’. [email protected]

Rusty Strait | Senior Reporter

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