Episode 12: Building Bridges Foundation, Major Dick Winters with Larry Alexander – May 26th, 2021

by | May 26, 2021 | Lancaster Connects Episodes

Full Episode

Clips & Segments

Ann Marie Shaw, Building Bridges Foundation

Lancaster Connects Community

Local Events

Larry Alexander about Major Dick Winters, Band of Brothers

Food Truck Alert

Do you know Gary Sinise or the founders of Home Depot?

Star Spangled Banner from The West Point Band

On this special, pre-Memorial Day episode 12 of Lancaster Connects, we talk to Ann Marie Shaw from Building Bridges Foundation – Equine Assisted Therapy for Veterans about their equine therapy for veterans suffering from PTSD.

We also talk to Larry Alexander, correspondent for The Ephrata Review and bestselling author and historian, about Lancaster native, the late Major Dick Winters, and the Band of Brothers story.

There’s also:
🎟️ Our weekly local events roundup
🥡 Our food truck alert – which food trucks will be where and when
🤝 How you can help the Lancaster Community
🍔 Our $25 Gift Card Giveaway for local Lancaster restaurants
🛌 And a tip on how to Sleep Better.


🍔🍗 Are you hungry for some good eats from a local Lancaster Restaurant? Fill out the form below to enter for your chance to win one of two gift cards to a local restaurant!

😴 This show is sponsored by Gardner’s Mattress & More in Lancaster, PA!

Get your FREE copy of Ben McClure and Jeff Giagnocavo’s book – “Sleep Better”: https://gardnersmattressandmore.com/sleep-better/


This Week’s Guests:

👉 Building Bridges Foundation:

👉 Larry Alexander:

Events Around Lancaster This Week:

    • Rainbow Fish Musical: Until May 28th
    • Registration Open For Lancaster Rec’s Summer Day Camps
      • Lancaster Rec is offering three great day camps for boys and girls right after the school year ends.
      • Camps run June 14th – August 14th, Monday – Friday, 8am-4pm.
      • Camps include:
        • Discovery Day Camp – The goal is to keep academic skills fresh over the summer, apply the knowledge the children have learned in a fun way, and prepare them for the next school year.
        • Sports of All Sorts Day Camp – Offering your child a full day of sports fun, including fitness and wellness activities.
        • Camp Optimist – They create a non-competitive environment where fun is the main goal – while making lasting friendships and feeling safe trying new activities. All campers take part in outdoor skills, sports, crafts, community activities, waterfront adventures, and all-camp events.
      • Website: http://www.lancasterrec.org
      • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LancasterRec/
      • Location: 525 Fairview Avenue Lancaster, PA 17603
    • Farm Fum Combo at Old Windmill Farm in Ronks
    • Pennsylvania College of Art and Design Art Exhibit, “Sincerely Yours,”: Until July 17th
    • Worlds of Wonder Magic Show: Until October 31st
      • Worlds of Wonder Magic Show at the Magic and Wonder Theater is running from now until October 31st.
      • Join Illusionist Brett Myers and his cast as they captivate with illusions and circus arts while reminding the audience that magic is all around us all.
      • Location: 3065 Lincoln Highway, Paradise, PA
      • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LancasterMagicShow
      • Website: https://www.magicandwondershow.com/
    • Ghost Tour At Bube’s Brewery: Until Dec. 18th
    • Taste of the Market House: Friday, May 28th, 5:30-8:30pm
    • Fourth Fridays In Mt. Joy: Friday, May 28th, 5-8pm
    • Live Music @ Weathered Vineyards in Ephrata: Friday, May 28th & Saturday, May 29th, 5-8pm
      • Enjoy live music while feasting on a delicious Mediterranean menu at Weathered Vineyards in Ephrata.
      • Friday, May 28th, musical duo “The Two of Us”
      • Saturday, May 29th, acoustic session with Blake Hillard
      • There’s a $5/person cover charge, 100% of it goes to the musician.
      • Mediterranean Bistro Menu served from 5 – 8 pm
      • Since they have a tent, the event is happening rain or shine!
      • Location: Weathered Vineyards Ephrata Tasting Room & Wine Bar at 900-A West Main Street, Ephrata, PA.
      • Website:http://www.weatheredvineyardsephrata.com/
    • Mt. Hope Estate’s Flavorfest: Saturday, May 29th & Sunday, May 30th, 11am-5pm
      • Flavorfest is Mt. Hope Estate’s premier wine festival
      • Admission: $15.95 / Kids 11 & Under: Free
      • Will be held on the grounds of Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire
      • Over 20 wineries will be offering samples and if you find one you love, you can purchase it right on site.
      • Location: 2775 Lebanon Road, Manheim, PA
      • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PaRenFaire
      • Event Website: http://www.parenfaire.com/flavorfest.html

    Lancaster’s Food Truck Scene For This Week:

    • East Petersburg Fire Company’s Food Truck Frenzy: Friday, May 28th, 4-9pm
      • East Petersburg Fire Company Station 23 is hosting a Food Truck Frenzy featuring the following food trucks: Wich Way Sandwiches, Scoop O’Dough, Walk O Taco, Auntie Anne’s Pretzels, G’s Concessions, The Italian Job, Uncle Paul’s Stuffed Pretzels and Lancaster Cupcake.
      • There will also be a 50/50 Raffle
      • Location: At East Petersburg Fire Company Station 23’s HQ at 6076 Pine Street in East Petersburg, PA.
      • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EPFC23
      • Facebook Event Page: https://www.facebook.com/events/276494647183298
    • Food Trucks and Families Day From St. Joseph’s Children’s Health: Sunday, May 30th, 11am-2pm
      • St. Joseph’s Children’s Health is sponsoring Food Trucks and Families Day at Columbia Market House
      • Celebrating the opening weekend of the revitalized Columbia Market House!
      • Food Trucks: Cajun Culture, Mara-Leo’s, Scoop’s Ice Cream and Grille and TJ’s Ice Cream
      • The Market House will be open throughout the event for those wishing to stroll through and explore. Kids will enjoy caricature artists and balloon artists!
      • There is no need to register for this event, all are welcome to come and purchase food and drinks from the food trucks and enjoy the festivities.
      • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CHIStJosephChildrensHealth
      • Facebook Event Page: https://www.facebook.com/events/487178025804999
      • Location: 15 S 3rd St, Columbia, PA 17512
    • Papa Sneaux’s Food Truck
      • Papa Sneaux’s serves New Orleans style food and Sno Balls! Serving: Jambalaya, red beans and rice, gumbo
      • Friday, May 28th at Green Dragon Farmers Market: 8am-8pm @ 955 North State Street, Ephrata PA
      • Sunday, May 30th at Wrightsville Assembly of God – Summer Kickoff Snoball Event: 8:30AM-12:30PM, 365 Orange Street in Wrightsville
      • Tuesday, June 1st at Roots Country Market: 9am-9pm, 705 Graystone Rd, Manheim
      • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PaPaSneaux


    Lancaster Connects Community:

      • Memorial Day Ceremony @ Bergstrasse Evangelical Lutheran Church: Sunday, May 30th, 1pm
      • Larry Alexander will also be attending a ceremony at New Holland Park on May 31 at noon
      • VFW Post 1690’s Riverview Burial Park’s Memorial Day Service: Monday, May 31st, 10am
        • All are welcome to share in remembering those who gave the ultimate sacrifice. The Post’s canteen will open immediately following the service.
        • VFW Post 1690’s Location: 343 Dorwart Street in Lancaster, PA
        • Riverview Burial Park’s Location: 1100 S. Duke Street Street in Lancaster, PA
        • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vfwpost1690
      • Memorial Day Service @ Stevens Greenland Cemetery: Monday, May 31st, 11am
        • This cemetery has the largest number of African American Veterans in Lancaster County. 
        • Location: 1000 S Duke St, Lancaster, PA 17602
      • Sara Gutshall of Maytown Ceremony By Blankets Of Honor: Monday, May 31st, 1pm
      • Manheim Memorial Day Parade Hosted By VFW Post 5956: Monday, May 31st, 10-11am 
        • Crispus Attucks Community Center Strategic Plan Discussion: Wednesday, June 2nd, 4:30-6:30pm
        • Gardner’s Mattress And More Recycles!
          • Not only does Gardner’s recycle their customer’s mattresses, they recycle their wooden pallets.
          • Visit their store to grab their pallets for free: 830 Plaza Blvd Suite 2, Lancaster, PA 17601
          • Website: https://GardnersMattressAndMore.com/
        • Do you have a non-profit, good cause, or worthwhile endeavor that you’d like to promote on the show?
          Tell us all about it via our contact form.
        • Do you need volunteers to donate their time to help with a non-profit, good cause or worthwhile endeavor?
          Tell us all about it via our contact form.
        • Would you like to donate some of your time to supporting local non-profits, good causes and worthwhile endeavors in the Lancaster area? Join the Lancaster Connects community by checking the box on our free restaurant gift card giveaway entry form!

    Additional Links:

    • Gardner’s Mattress And More is running their Double Dealzzz special – a great way to pick your own discounts and maximize your savings when buying a new mattress.
      • Click here to learn more about this opportunity to customize your own savings!
      • You can also visit Gardner’s Mattress And More At: 830 Plaza Blvd Suite 2, Lancaster, PA 17601


    Episode Transcript (Click Here To Open/Close)

    Jeff Giagnocavo 0:00
    On this special pre-Memorial Day Episode 12 of Lancaster Connects we’re joined by Ann Marie Shaw from Building Bridges Foundation, and journalist, historian and author Larry Alexander. We will also have our local events run down, our food truck alert, how you can help your local community, a local history nugget, our tip on how to sleep better and your chance to win one of two $25 gift cards to a local Lancaster restaurant. That’s all coming up on Episode 12 of Lancaster Connects.

    Ben McClure 0:28
    So, how can you support the Lancaster community? That’s what this show is all about.

    Ben McClure 0:50
    Coming to you from the Dream Room at Gardner’s Mattress & More, Lancaster Connects is brought to you by the Sleep Better book from Gardner’s Mattress & More. We’ll mail you a free copy. Just go to GardnersMattressAndMore.com/Sleep-Better.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:04
    Very good.

    Ben McClure 1:06
    I read most of the words.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:07
    Yeah, you can read. Good job. We got a gold star. Yeah, nice. So here we are. It’s pre-Memorial Day weekend. This episode is pretty special. We’re very excited to have it recorded. You know, we’ve said this show is about moving from success to significance. So yes, Gardner’s participates in the typical consumerism aspect of Memorial Day. Our customers demand it, so we respond. But this episode is part about and part of our committed to helping the community that supports us. So we’ve got two really great guests to talk about different aspects of Memorial Day. One of our guests is our first guest with a Wikipedia page. That’s awesome, which is pretty cool. You know, Wikipedia put a bunch of encyclopedia salespeople out of business. But I think Wikipedia has a little better user experience and a little less weight on the bookshelf and a little less dusting, although I’m a big hold-it-in-my-hand-paper guy. But anyway. So yeah, one of our guests has a Wikipedia page. So we’re mixing things up a little bit, right, we had the long show last week and we may very well have a long show this week. But that’s simply because of the caliber and the quality of our guests. Not that our last guests have been bad. Was that one of those like backhanded wipes…?

    Ben McClure 2:40
    The guests last week were great.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 2:42
    Yeah, all of our guests are great. I mean, that’s our goal here, but we’ve got something really special. So let us know about the short show format. You know, we’re mattress retailers, first and foremost, giving back to our community through this podcast. So, we’re feeling our way, sometimes it feels like in the pitch black dark through this thing, but mixing it up trying to make it relevant. So let us know what you think about the format. What you like, what you don’t like. We’ve got food trucks still, community events still, just maybe not highlighting as many on camera, but you’re still gonna see them on the on the show notes. So for those listening, those watching, you can always get the show notes by clicking the link in front of you. And again, everything for the show is at LancasterConnects.com.

    Ben McClure 3:26
    So, we’ve got some great guests coming up. Ann Marie Shaw from Building Bridges Foundation and journalist and historian and author Larry Alexander. He’s going to be talking about Dick Winters, the Easy Company and the Band of Brothers. Good morning, Ann Marie and Larry.

    Ann Marie Shaw 3:43

    Jeff Giagnocavo 3:44
    We’re happy to have you.

    Larry Alexander 3:44
    Good morning.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 3:47
    So, interesting note about both of guests. Larry is an authoritarian on the 82nd Airborne. My sister served in the Army and was 82nd Airborne.

    Ben McClure 4:00
    Oh, wow.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 4:01
    I used to read Larry’s columns in the Lancaster newspaper back in the day. And then Ann Marie works with my sister now through her Building Bridges Foundation. And my sister attends there. So very connected show and we got a lot of great stuff to go on about but why don’t we get into what’s going on in and around Lancaster?

    Ben McClure 4:30
    Yeah. Let’s find out.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 4:32
    Yeah, let’s do that.

    Ben McClure 4:33
    All right. So this week where are we?

    Jeff Giagnocavo 4:45
    Remember what I said feeling around in the dark? There we go. We had guests in our ear and production team in our ear, but that’s all right. We’re gonna keep plugging right through, keep going right along because that’s just what we do.

    Ben McClure 5:00
    Things aren’t always going to be perfect.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 5:01
    Yeah, that’s right. That’s all right.

    Ben McClure 5:04
    So this week we are having a shorter events run down. But we are going to have all of these events plus a bunch more listed on our show notes page on our website LancasterConnects.com. So, all this info and a lot more will be available on the website and also via email each week. Again, find the show notes by clicking on the page for this episode, Episode 12 and to get our weekly email just enter our giveaway at LancasterConnects.com to subscribe to our weekly email update with all the show info. And of course remember this show is also available as a podcast you can find all the links at LancasterConnects.com. Don’t forget to like and share this video on Facebook and other social media platforms. Leave a comment tell us how we’re doing give us feedback about the show. Again, that’s LancasterConnects.com. And thank God I’m caught up so let’s do the local events.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 5:58
    Alright, so first one, summer day camps, that’s very good. Get our children back involved with each other and socializing. I firmly believe our society owes a tremendous amount of respect to our children because they are our legacy. And I’m really happy that they can get back to these summer camps. So Lancaster Rec is offering three great day camps for boys and girls right after the school year ends. Camps run June 14 to August 14th, Monday through Friday, 8am-4pm. Registration is now open at LancasterRec.org. So please get your children out there, get them active again, get them socializing. They’ve got a Discovery Day Camp where the goal is to keep academic skills fresh over the summer and apply their knowledge. Children learn in a fun way and prepare them for the next school year. That is a fantastic tenant of education that I think would be awesome. Keep your kids up to speed. Sports of All Sorts Day Camp offers your child a full day of sports fun, including fitness and wellness and activities. We talk about sleeping better, and health and fitness is one of those legs of the stool of a healthy and successful life. So that’s a great camp. Camp Optimist…they create a non-competitive environment where fun is the main goal, while making lasting friendships and feeling safe trying new activities. All campers take part in outdoor skills, sports, crafts, community activities, waterfront ventures and all camp events. Learn more and register today www.Lancaster.org or on Facebook @LancasteRec. Hey, real quick. So I listened to a podcast this morning…just caught Ben off guard…he was he’s like, “We’re were on the script now Jeff’s off, what’s he doing?” So…I listened to a podcast this morning on the way in to record this and I learned that the Cherokee Native American, they would teach their children and they would give them no responsibility until the age of nine.

    Ben McClure 7:51

    Jeff Giagnocavo 7:52
    They just wanted them to learn and they wanted them to have fun. They basically get a decade of exploring and just kind of soaking in the world, their world at the time. Soak that all in for the first 10 years of your life. Talk about Camp Optimist’s non-competitive environment, that’s good. Now, with with all of that said, they instilled it, maybe around age 7,8,9, 10…”You’re gonna have responsibility coming up, but enjoy this time and learn in your own way.” So, I thought that was really neat, kind of ties into Camp Optimist. Anyway…

    Ben McClure 8:27
    Julian is still gonna make his bed.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 8:29
    Well, sure. I mean, those things are, yeah,, I think those little things are important, but you know.

    Ben McClure 8:35

    Jeff Giagnocavo 8:36
    I just thought it was congruent.

    Ben McClure 8:37
    Alright, we’re gonna enjoy some live music while feasting on a delicious Mediterranean menu at the Weather Vineyards in Ephrata. That’s on Friday, May 28. We’ve got the musical duo The Two Of Us between 5pm and 8pm. Saturday, May 29, there there will be an acoustic session with Blake Hilliard, that’s also from 5pm to 8pm. The Mediterranean Bistro menu is served from 5pm to 8pm and since they have a tent, the event is happening rain or shine. $5 per person cover charge and 100% of it goes to the musicians. That is at Weathered Vineyards in Ephrata. Oh, I’m sorry, Weathered Vineyards Ephrata Tasting Room and Wine Bar at 900-A West Main Street in Ephrata. Again, you can visit the events tab at WeatheredVineyardsEphrata.com for more information.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 9:34
    FlavorFest. This is another wine tasting. Mount Hope Estates premier wine festival will be May 29 and 30th on the grounds of the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire from 11am to 5pm. Over 20 wineries will be offering samples and if you find one you love, you can purchase it right there on the site. That is located at 2775 Lebanon Road in Manheim on Facebook.com/PARenFaire.

    Ben McClure 10:02
    So all this info about these events and others we haven’t read will be available on the website. Find the show notes by clicking on the page for this episode, Episode 12. And to get our weekly email, just enter our giveaway at LancasterConnects.com to subscribe. Oh my goodness. Subscribe to our weekly email update with all the show info. Remember, this show is available as a podcast. Find the links at LancasterConnects.com. And again, like and share our video and podcast. Leave a comment tell a friend about this show.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 10:38
    I think that word you are trying to like manufacture in your own mind there was “surprise”.

    Ben McClure 10:46
    I don’t know what it was.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 10:47
    Subscribe to the show folks, for all this really great comedy. Anyway, so I guess for our guests, any of those events sound like something you would enjoy? I mean we really gave you no option, you got to like wine, because you’re not going to go do the kid’s camp. But if you like drinking, you got some great wine events to go to. How about you Ann Marie, in your free time, anything like that grab your fancy that you like to do, what kind of events do you like to go to?

    Ann Marie Shaw 11:22
    I enjoy most of the events that are going on in the county love going to the music festival. They had a great event, recognizing first responders a couple of weeks ago. Honestly, you can keep involved and excited about Lancaster County if you participate in in what’s offered out there. We don’t have enough free time. I hate to say that to you. But we’re totally purposefully engaged at Building Bridges. And so we get to go to VFW meetings and things like that. I think that’s wonderful too. But I love living in Lancaster County. I do. I would say this is that most of the people have no idea how fortunate they are if this is their home.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 12:13
    Yep, well that’s why we try to highlight all of what Lancaster has to offer on the show. Larry is a man around town, formerly a man around town, maybe still around town. What events do you like to go to, any of those ones sound like you’re gonna put them on your list? The wine tasting events?

    Larry Alexander 12:31
    Weathered Vineyards is an excellent venue. It’s right up the road for me so that’d be one that’d be one to look into. But I’m not the butterfly I used to be so I don’t get up to [Inaudible] those. I’m covering them as a correspondent for the Ephrata Review which I do now in my spare time or whatever spare time I have left after the grandkids, you know? [Inaudible]and now that we’re allowed to again and just go to take in some theater maybe or something like that.

    Ben McClure 13:07
    That’s great.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 13:08
    Yeah. Great. Well, Larry, we’ll get back to here. Hang tight.

    Larry Alexander 13:12
    I’m here.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 13:15
    All right. Very good. Ann Marie. So we’ve got Ann Marie Shaw from Building Bridges Foundation. So we donated to Building Bridges last year. We were introduced to her through my sister Kristy, who is former Army. We’ll maybe talk a little bit about her and her experience here as we get into it. But Ann Marie, why don’t you just let our audience know what exactly the Building Bridges Foundation does?

    Ann Marie Shaw 13:41
    Sure. Thanks, Jeff for welcoming me to talk about Building Bridges Foundation and what happens here. The Building Bridges Farm is a center of caring for veterans and their families. It was founded and established as a 501 c3 nonprofit in 2015. And we operate with a board of directors of 11 people from a variety of vocations that have confirmed their commitment to advancing the mission of the foundation. Our mission that was part of those registration papers and it goes like this: Our mission is to provide a safe space for personal growth through equine assisted activities for veterans and their families. As well as those suffering from trauma and loss and those who are struggling with cognitive and emotional challenges. We have 115 volunteers that have signed up to participate with us here at Building Bridges. Some of them are here once a month, and we value every hour of time that is donated to a sustained farm operations. We have some that are here weekly. We have some that are here several times a week and we have some that just come to help us for the major events. We have two major events a year usually on Veterans Day and Memorial Day. And at our last Veterans Day event that was before COVID, we had 99 named tagged volunteers in place to care for a crowd of 500 people. It was a great time. We also have contracts service personnel to do beyond what our volunteers can do. We have a plant manager that’s here four days a week. And how did it happen? What prompted all of this? Well, as a young boy, Dave Anderson, the founder, the son of a Minnesota farmer, remembers his older brother returning from combat duty overseas, trying to find his way back into North American life. After struggling a few years at home, trapped by alcohol and depression, he took his own life, as did several of his military buddies. Today, we call it Post Traumatic Stress, and we recognize it as traumatic injury. But then it was called Shell Shock. And people didn’t know how to respond to these veterans. As they grew older, they prospered in his business. He kept thinking, there must be some healing, there must be a way of recovery to facilitate the lifetime that is yet ahead of returning veterans suffering from PTSD. In 2011, his wife Anita passed away and he was left wondering how we could best use the farm. By 2015, he decided to begin Building Bridges Foundation where veterans could come to receive healing through equine assisted therapy, and non-traditional therapy with equine and mental health specialists at no cost to the veterans or their families.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 17:10
    Well, that’s amazing, Ann Marie. We’re gonna dig into all of that. But it really is. And I speak from personal well, family, personal experience when you say extension of family. My sister attends Building Bridges. So we’ll talk about that. But right now what we want to share with our audience, is why don’t you give us a quick introduction on this video provided by West Point Academy that we’re going to play next, give a brief introduction.

    Ann Marie Shaw 17:42
    Alright, in conversation with West Point Academy administration, they gave us permission to use this video and so with that we’re taking liberty to include it in this interview here today. US Military Band that’s out of West Point, I think they do a fabulous job of reminding us of the energy and the youth that is put on hold when our veterans head out into deployment circumstance.

    Video Singer 1 18:21
    Oh, can you see by the dawn’s early light, What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming. Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight…

    Video Singer 2 18:49
    O’er the ramparts we watch’d, were so gallantly streaming?

    Video Singers – All 18:56
    And the rocket’s red glare, the bombs bursting in air…

    Video Singer 3 19:06
    Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.

    Ben McClure 19:44
    That’s pretty powerful.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 19:47
    That’s a tremendous way to lean into our pre-Memorial Day show. So thank you for sharing that Ann Marie. That was really great to see all the joint forces come together like that through West Point Academy, so thank you to you for sharing that with us. And thank you to them for allowing you to use it. We appreciate that. Why don’t we dig into a little bit of more about Building Bridges. So where where is the farm located?

    Ann Marie Shaw 20:20
    I’m sure you’re interested in knowing where we are, our address is 230 Indian Hill Road Conestoga, Pennsylvania, of course, it’s a 21 acre horse farm that is Building Bridges Foundation. The gifting of the property and facilities are just are so perfect for this non-traditional kind of therapy and can best be spoken of as, as an incredible expression of compassion, purpose and generosity. It’s a good news story. It’s it inspires people in the local community and in distant places. For 30 years, the farm was home to Dave and Anita Anderson and their two sons Leif and Kurt. The house is Itallian architecture and offered abundance space to care for their family and extended family that visited from Italy and Sweden, as well as living accommodation for Anita’s parents in the last years of their lives. Dale and I each have an office in the house, and there’s office space, a lovely glassed-in sunroom that’s designated for volunteers to work and there’s even a resident cat, the most awesome resident cat that has adopted us. The grounds have been created into a remarkable garden and park-like space. The long drive up to the house up Indian Hill Road was through peaceful lawns, beautiful trees, shrubs, and a variety of flowering bushes and roses. In response to equipping our yard care volunteers. We mapped and counted more than 100 Rose shrubs in the yards that welcomed visitors along the way. Earlier this year, we had a volunteer, I was here during the severe COVID days. But he was masked and he came on site. And he was cautious but he took pictures of all the mulch beds. If a volunteer will take on one of those mulch beds in the coming season, it’ll be marked with their name and it’s a great kind of way to invest in our of time, maybe twice a month to care for a flower garden that will welcome those that come on the property. Further along the drive is a barn and it offers comfortable stalls to the six off track horses that now serve as therapy partners. The acreage has five pastures, and each of the pasture areas has a covered hay feeder, and the four of them have walk in shelters for the horses. Our horses love to be outside, they don’t spend a lot of time in the barn. They go into the barn at a time of events when then they’re available for people to talk to them and meet them and have become friends with them. And during veteran cafe hours then we bring a couple of horses into the barn at that time too. But they’re mostly there in the barn. For when the vet comes to give them their shots and care for their feet and look after their teeth. That kind of thing. The there’s a three bedroom apartment that is on the second floor of the barn and that houses our manager a farm operations and and family. The footprints in the snow during the winter days speak of the many creatures that feel at home here too. It’s just pretty amazing. In this time of the year we have at least 10 Cardinals. We never know where what yard they’re going to show up in on any given day. But they’re very visible and they they just live at this place. Along with woodpeckers, Blue Jays, Doves, Sparrows and a possum they feed out of our bird feeders. Early in our service here. The founder Dave Anderson said if this initiative makes a difference in one life, it will be worth it. Today we can review a list of more than 45 participants. This is I don’t usually get a chance to talk this much about building bridges and I’m gonna have to get better at it because when I start talking about it, it just hits me as to how much and that has happened since we’ve been here because of the remarkable space and facility that was initiated So today we have a list of more than 45 participants that have found renewed hope, because of the foundation. The therapy sessions happen on the ground. Okay. In a pasture we’re intentional about following the globally recognized the gala model of equine assisted therapy. It sets a standard of excellence and safety. And we believe it’s the best professional association for us. If our, we want our therapists to be Eagala certified, and if they are, then they have [Inaudible] the coaches of that organization. And that’s just a plus. In every therapy session, there are four participants, there is a Pennsylvania State, credentialed mental health specialists, that means that they have credentials or a master’s degree in mental health studies. And Pennsylvania requires that so that’s a good thing. Our primary mental health provider here is also credentialed in trauma response applications, so we have the best providers here. A certified equine specialist then is the second person in that therapy huddle. And that person has in depth understanding of horses and knowledge of how a client a participant can interact to facilitate healing. Or equines is also a marine veteran with 20 years of deployment service. And so he brings sensitivity to that huddle in the therapy session. Then there’s the third partner, and that’s the horse. And our horses are just amazing friends. They each have distinct moods. They’re just like people. They have their own personalities and attitudes. They are, we’ve seen them stubborn, we’ve seen them defiant. We’ve seen them grieving. We’ve seen them playful, we’ve seen them fun, friendly, and we’ve seen them not friendly. It’s just the way they are and that they are the most significant person in that therapy huddle, and then there’s the participant. And there’s lots of evidence that of success in sustainable behavioral changes through equine assisted therapy more so than traditional talk therapy. Ongoing research shows that positive physical and psychological rest is evident in humans interacting with horses, things such as decreased blood pressure, and heart rate, lower levels of stress, reduce feelings of tension, anxiety, anger and hostility. Often people that have high demand lives benefit from the equine assisted therapy option, because they just don’t have time or space for people relationships. The therapy sessions are incredible, yeah.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 28:32
    Yeah, for the benefit of our listeners, let’s really kind of dig in. So you mean, you described the setup of equine therapy with the four participants there? Let’s kind of take a step back. Because I think it’s really important for anybody watching anybody listening to understand how it exactly came about what you touched on in in when you introduced it, Dave Anderson, the founder, his brother, unfortunately passed away from Shell Shock, what we now know as PTSD, committed suicide. That’s what I have, is that correct. Is that right?

    Ann Marie Shaw 29:05
    Yes, that’s right. Yeah, yeah. So yeah, there were several of his friends. Yeah.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 29:13
    Yeah. So I mean, this is a very serious thing that goes on and happens right here in the backyard. We obviously know what happens on a national level and really worldwide. When you say 45 participants, you know, my sister is one of them. She’s active, is that fourth participant in the huddle of equine therapy? And I think for our listeners, Ann Marie, I might I heard that correctly. The the farm was owned by Dave, is that right? And he has basically turned over the entirety of that idyllic property to building bridges and now I’m assuming he lives elsewhere. Is that right?

    Ann Marie Shaw 29:50
    He does. He lives in Lancaster, but not on site.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 29:53
    That’s, that’s, that’s really incredible. I mean, I could only hope for One day through the success of our business be able to do something like that. But here we have somebody right here in Lancaster County. And I am positive, we’re gonna discover more people like Dave in Lancaster County on the show. On the show here, we’re highlighting this one person. So you know, out of a need just selfless giving to create something that could replace the path that David’s brother left on locked. For the remainder, you know, what could have been the remainder of his time here on Earth. So that’s just really, really amazing. Um, so you describe the kind of the setup, so why Ann Marie, why are horses and I’ve got some other questions for you, but specifically, why are horses so important in this part of therapy? I mean, why not dogs? You know, why not some other animal? What is so unique about horses?

    Ann Marie Shaw 31:03
    Well, it’s common knowledge among those that have explored that question that the horse is more aware of body language, and more able to participate. Because of that, they are sensitive to all levels of anxiety, anger, fear and sadness more readily than some other creatures. When we came, I remember the night we arrived here at Building Bridges, and you have seen pictures of the house. And it was dark, and we came in the house and we didn’t know where any of the light switches were. And we were about ready to go back to Willow Street to Kmart, and see if it was still open so we could get some of those battery operated things so we could find our way around the house. And we thought, wow, what have we kind of got ourselves into, and the next morning, I went outside and, and walk back to the barn and and I looked around as I walked down the driveway, and the place seemed just empty. And it was really, really still. But there was one horse that had its head out the one of the stall windows. And as I walked toward it, I thought I have to say something to the horse. But I I’m a little uncomfortable shouting out to a horse, but I did it anyway, I shouted out, I knew the horse’s name and I shouted, Connell, you are a beautiful horse. And then I looked to see if anyone was watching because I thought I really don’t want this to be known. And then I went a bit further and I shouted it out again. And that horse didn’t, didn’t bother. And I just went like this and nodded her head. And I thought I really don’t believe this just happened and I’m sure not gonna tell anybody. Well, since then, all the horses are my friends. And that’s I see no in a person come through. Who I don’t know what the issue was. But as we walk through the gate, and the horses usually run, okay to meet us up at the gate. [Inaudible] across they were within 10 feet of the gate, and they just screechingly stopped. And so I understand, I learned that wow, maybe they felt anxiety or fear from the person that was with me. I didn’t say that to that person. But I just know they’re very sensitive to the, the situation. We had a guy in here, a veteran, one morning, and his son came on his own to see him. And the veteran had gone into the office with the provider. And the son said which one of the horses was my dad with? And so I showed him a cluster of four horses and I said, I pointed out the horse that was part of his dad’s session. He went into the field and walked toward that cluster of four horses and they all looked up but one of them broke away and came towards him some. I don’t know whether a mannerism or a scent are resemblance but somehow that horse knew that there was action with the person.

    Ben McClure 34:35
    Well those are amazing stories. Yeah. Your your passion is incredible in it and it shows in these stories. Why are you personally doing this? What’s your story with Building Bridges?

    Ann Marie Shaw 34:54
    Well, Dale and I got to meet David and Anita when we lived in Lancaster. Dale was senior pastor at Parkway Church from 1997 to 2011. And when Anita passed away, Dale was asked to conduct the funeral service. Then in 2017, Mr. Anderson connected with us while we were vacationing in Florida. And we met Charlene, a new life companion today. And we valued this new friend connection, [Inaudible] serving as president of the foundation. And he told us at that time, we were Welcome to at his chalet in Beaver Creek, Colorado. So we planned a date for that vacation. And we went out there with friends, Jane, June Reynolds. And when we were there, Mr. Anderson, talked a lot about Building Bridges, and what his hopes were, and what what he wanted to see happen there. And he thought we should get involved in that mission. So two weeks later, he called us and said, I want you to come down and lead the Veterans Day Program here at the farm. And when we went down to do that, he said, I want you to come back here for 12 months to set up foundational and administrative programs. And so we started our 12 month, stay here on January 18, 2018. And we’re still here. And we would not be here, if you didn’t see a measure of success. One morning. I remember Dave stopping, and he doesn’t stop very often. He just rushes through his days. But every now and then he’ll pause and he’ll say, you know, I know that this could not be happening if it wasn’t for the intervention of God. I just I know that. And he also says, you’ll show up early, some mornings and say, God told me I should take you out for dinner today or take you for breakfast. But there’s just, we really feel like we are purposefully involved in serving this generation and the future or we would not be there.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 37:20
    Well, I mean, I can speak to that, you know, divine intervention, if you will. My sister Kristy, who you know, a client there. She comes for horse therapy. That’s how we got to know one another. She’s 82nd Airborne aerosol qualified, you know, she was a [Inaudible]. I believe it’s called MOS or preventative medicine. You know, she ended up breaking her back on a job. So she retired medically in 2013. But, you know, she’s had a rough path and that’s okay for me to share. That’s her story, and she shares it willingly. But boy, I’m really glad she found a way home.

    Ann Marie Shaw 38:08
    Yes, I am, too. I am, too. And there are stories like that here. We were not doing this on our own. Okay. Well, I mean, I look at that list of 115 people. And I know that they can’t all be here all the time. We’ve got one woman that signed up and said, I’ll be a volunteer, I’ll be the popcorn person, I will come to events and I will make popcorn. When I get all this is what I thought, I’m going to be that person. I’m going to be the popcorn woman. That’s all the events I can get to kind of thing. I mean, that is valuable, you know, the smell of popcorn at an event. That’s great. And so we don’t do this alone. We do it with with partners that that that have been strategic in helping us achieve our programs, and our operational budget. And our farm operations in the past year. We have over 130 donations that came our way to facilitate mission programming and operations of the founder Dave Anderson continues to be the most generous supporter. Community response has increased every year. In 2020, our gun raffle team and organized team and this is amazing to me, an organized team of 15 business men, okay and, and members have a variety of sports and clubs, recruit a string of businesses to purchase a gun. And then in November, they have a gun raffle. And, and in the months in between August and November, they all network with another string of businesses to sell the tickets. And last year, that event brought in above $70,000 that’s just amazing. It is incredible. It is.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 40:05
    Yeah, I was fortunate to be there and see it happen. So that was pretty neat. You know, we’ll continue to talk about how to support you. But just so people understand why the support is so necessary. And why volunteering is necessary. How much does equine therapy costs, you know, for a person?

    Ann Marie Shaw 40:28
    We figure it costs between $2000-$2500 for a person for 10 sessions. And we ask all of the veterans that find their way here to please sign up for 10 sessions and make a commitment to that. So whatever time they choose, please choose a time in the week where you know, for the next 10 weeks, you can be here at that time, we don’t want you to miss a session. And then then there will be a bit of an assessment. And if it’s helping you, you’re welcome to stay on. But please make a commitment to 10 sessions because it takes we think it takes that long to become comfortable and have comprehension of the benefit of it in your life. And so that seems to work here. And and that’s the cost per 10 sessions. And at the end of the 10 weeks, what happens sometimes is that a veteran will say, for the next next string of sessions, I’d like my partner, my life partner to come with me. And, we’re open to that. That’s great. That is just so great.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 41:41
    So, you know, so you just heard $2000-$2500. I’m sure it’s closer on the $2500 side of things right now with you know, the prices and most everything going up as of late. So, you know, look, if you can donate, I am positive they will. Ann Marie and the whole crew there will be happy to take a donation from you. You heard her talk about a mulch bed. Okay, talk about one hour, folks, this is what this shows about. I mean, we’re, we’re here using our platform at Gardner’s to you know, invest in the community that supports us, but this is where you listening and watching come in, go grab a mulch bed, you know, go walk in the barn, go cut some grass. We understand the financial aspect of it may not just be in the cards for you. But if you’ve got time, you know, if you find yourself you feel like I’m watching a little too much TV or I’m you know, I feel rudderless. I just don’t have a motivation, right, like, maybe you can get a little dose of your own therapy, a little release a little bit of pre connect with the earth. I’m a big believer in that. I’ve gotten into camping as of late and I will tell you, I unequivocally feel 100 times better, having spent time just out in the woods. So I got a little long in the tooth there. But seriously, like I say, a mulch bed. Ann Marie said, you can help with a mulch bed, keep the ground sound fantastic sound just idyllic like it’s out of a fairy tale. Go help them, right because if we don’t as a community, either monetarily or with with our sweat equity, investing our community, then their costs go up. And so literally your time can make that difference. So we’ve been putting the information on the screen. Please, please reach out. All right, thank you, Ann Marie. I rattled off a couple jobs there. Just give us a couple more, maybe two or three others quickly that people could also volunteer for beyond mulch beds and maybe scooping up stuff in the park.

    Ann Marie Shaw 43:48
    Well, recently we’ve begun construction of an equipment shed to house and care for our equipment. I mean, we have to take care of it. And Willow Valley, and this is the way it plays out and you think wow, that’s incredible. Willow Valley Retirement Homes, gave us 37 truckloads of dirt. Okay. How great is that, to level the land behind the barn? I mean, 37 truckloads of dirt. I don’t know what that would be, but I know it would be significant. And then Park Hess, a real estate trucking business hauled it. Hauled 37 loads of it out to the farm. Well, that’s, I mean, that’s incredible. And so donations sometimes are money, but they’re in kind kinds of things like that that are really helpful and I mean, if you see Park Hess driving that big truck, he just loves to be in that truck. So just wait. You’re doing something really great. And he likes it. Jay Garver Landscaping gives us 40 hours of of yard work and yard care a year and and that’ll be at the end of the year when there’s the most work to be done. And he brings in his yard care workers and they may give a week’s work. Jeff Mineck at Tanglewood Golf Club, they give a percentage of their [Inaudible] golf proceeds. I mean, those are gifts that are aren’t checks. And then there’s you and Jeff, who went back home from that event, and send us a check for $2,000. I mean, that’s, that’s what happens. That’s amazing. Oh, that was I mean, those things really inspire us onward. Because that cares for the next veteran. You know, there you got it right there. The Lancaster Equestrian Club came out here and had one of their meetings, they didn’t know what we did. And they’re all more savvy in looking after horses, and knowledgeable than I am. But they came out here to see what we did. And before they left from their meeting that night gave us a check for $1400. That’s kind of how, how it happens. And that’s how we grow our network of support.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 46:20
    So I mean, again, to kind of put a bow on that part for our listeners, I mean, what you really just heard is, if you work for a business that has any kind of congruency with what Building Bridges is doing, talk to your ownership, talk to your bosses. A lot of companies are actually, which is good, they’re looking for ways to give back to their community. And they just made kind of struggle with where to direct that giving, which is funny to say, but it actually happens. So put this on their radar, okay, if you’ve got a pickup truck, if you’ve got power tools, and maybe physically you’re not able to get down on your hands and knees in the mulch bed, but you can you got a little utility trailer, reach out, I’m sure Ann Marie and Dale will put you to work, right. You’ll never turn a volunteer away?

    Ann Marie Shaw 47:06
    No, we don’t. We don’t turn them away. We want people to engage in doing what they can do, though, using their skills, you know, so a lot of people love gardening, especially in the county.

    Ben McClure 47:24
    We understand you’re trying to get the attention from the founders of Home Depot. Can you tell us more about that?

    Ann Marie Shaw 47:32
    Wow, that was just a very inspirational moment. One day, Dave called, and he said, Ann Marie, you got to check out this video, it’s on Fox News. And I listened. And it was Arthur Blank and Bernie Marcus, cofounders of Home Depot. And they’re, I think they’re both around 90 years old. But both each of them made a pledge commitment of 20 million. And they’re going to partner with the Gary Sinise Foundation. And their goal is to establish a string of 20 non-traditional therapy centers across the nation, because they’re seeing that the veterans benefit from that experience of non-traditional, not in the clinical setting. And so we we connected with the all that network, and they asked us what we wanted, and we said we want you to come to Building Bridges to explore this site. Because we believe that we have the capacity to be one of those twenty. They’re going to have to raise 200 million to do 20 of them. So I’m thinking that here we have a center that is established, we have a capital project on our radar that we’re going to have to move slowly on with the price of lumber and everything going up. But it’s for building a space that will seat 500 people sitting down. It costs us $6,000 to rent a tent to do that when we have our events here. And we have found approval with the township office for this project. And we look to having that and with the number of veterans, 32,000 in the county and 100,000 in the Commonwealth, we could have events here with the very best resource people for the veterans. And veterans like being with veterans. There is that experience of deployment of PTSD issues, all of that. You see it on social media, Vietnam Reflections, our friends, Larry, you probably are part of that. I am privileged to be part of that. 14,000 people are in that group on Facebook. It is incredible to be part of that network and see how they support each other. And so we feel like we have got a jumpstart on that non-traditional kind of thing. And we’d like to be part of that, believing that it would strengthen our positioning to serve the county and Pennsylvania, where there are so many veterans.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 50:41
    Ann Marie, you were kind to list off your [Inaudible] partners that help you achieve your annual budget, as I understand that’s about 350,000. So that’s great that all of those businesses helped, so thank you to them. When we talk about this Home Depot project, and their goal of establishing 20 centers across the United States, you know, you never know who’s right here in your backyard. So again, if you’re watching, if you’re listening, if you have any connection to this foundation via Home Depot, or the Gary Sinise Foundation, if there’s any connection, you know, your cousin’s brother’s best friend is Gary Sinise’s assistan, then my goodness, please.

    Ann Marie Shaw 51:30
    Thank you. Yeah, you know, that’s what it takes in this day, people tagging other right?

    Jeff Giagnocavo 51:37
    How hard is that? And I gotta think here in this area, we might just have somebody that knows somebody. So that’s, again, I mean, I haven’t been there. I haven’t personally seen it at a personal level, I can speak to you, directly looking at you right now into this camera, that Building Bridges 100% doesn’t deserve, they’ve earned the right to be one of these 20 sites, and I hope, the 19 others are just as great. In fact, this might sound a little odd, but as great as Building Bridges is, they’re amazing. And I hope that they’re the 20th most amazing out of all the sites, because that means there’s 19 other amazing sites just as committed. Yeah, I want them all to be as amazing as Building Bridges. So that sounds like a big deal. So thank you. All that withstanding, we’re gonna shoot for the stars there. But you know, your budget at $350,000 a year? What would you be able to do with a half a million dollar budget?

    Ann Marie Shaw 52:53
    We have the capacity to serve our primary mission is the equine [Inaudible] piece. So we will not be starting other programs until we’re at capacity. With that, we know that when COVID opens the gates again, when we’re not under protocols that restrict anything, we’re going to grow again. And we’re going to have to bring in another provider team, we just know that and we’re watching. We’re looking for qualified people that don’t have a long distance to drive so they can grow with us. They’ll maybe start with two days a week kind of thing, of sessions, but it won’t be full time. And so that takes a certain kind of commitment, because they will grow with us and our current providers are ready to grow with us too, but we need another team as we move toward achieving capacity. And we can be caring for 40 veterans at one time with the facilities and the horses that we have here. That would be over a week. Instead, I mean, it was great that we can report 41 lives have been impacted by Building Bridges, but think of that [Inaudible], and there are ways to do that. You know, the Coatesville Veteran’s Hospital, has a veteran’s life for three years. In the second year of their stay there, they should be coming to Building Bridges once a week for therapy sessions for a day at the farm because the next year they get a suitcase, and they’re out on their own. And I believe that they need a time of transitioning in the outdoors, in the freedom of space, not the clinical setting where they can experience peace and recovery steps. And so I look at us doing that. We’re keeping thirsty for that kind of thing. And if we can get a van, we’ll have 10 people coming here on one day, okay, and they all get an amazing therapy session, they’ll all get a group, to be part of a group session, they’ll get an hour of volunteer service, and they’ll get an hour of free time and we’ll give them a brown bag lunch. You know I can get excited about that.

    Ben McClure 55:42
    Amazing Ann Marie. It’s incredible work that you do there. Thanks so much for being on. Each time that we have a nonprofit or charitable organization on Lancaster Connects, we make a donation to them. We can’t get quite get to half a million dollars today. But we’re happy to give the Building Bridges Foundation $125 from the Lancaster Connects podcast to help what you do there. So thanks so much for being on. Thanks for sharing all the stories. And again, thanks for doing what you’re doing for the people that fight for our country.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 56:27
    Thanks, Ann Marie. Appreciate you being here, alright?

    Ann Marie Shaw 56:31
    Thank you for welcoming me.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 56:34
    Yeah, no problem. Larry, we really appreciate you hanging in there. We’re turning the corner to come to you. In just a minute or two, or maybe five. But we’re gonna be here soon, alright? So thanks for hanging in because I cannot wait to hear what you’ve got to say about Dick Winters and all the great stuff that you’ve learned about 82nd Airborne and veterans from the past. Real quick, got a sleep better tip for you on our Sleep Better segment. This is about curbing your refrigerator raids. I battle this one all the time.

    Ben McClure 57:10
    I think I need to listen to this one.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 57:11
    I think I need to listen as well. It’s all too common how we hear the kitchen calling our name at night especially during those expertly crafted food commercials. You’re probably not really hungry, and eating can be the furthest thing from your mind until the nachos advertisement skillfully pulls you off the couch for a mad three minute dash to raid the refrigerator and whip something up. You know you shouldn’t but it’s really hard to break that habit. If you can curb this habit which is a bad one, your sleep should improve, perhaps drastically and your overall health just might make leaps and bounds in the right direction and not just from getting better sleep. So the trick there really is really look to kind of curb eating not only late at night, but even after seven o’clock. You can actually burn about 400 calories on an empty stomach from 7pm till when you wake up in the morning and you got to do a lot to burn 400 calories. And sleeping is pretty easy as compared to other other ways to burn 400 calories. So you can get your free copy of the Sleep Better book, we will happily mail you a copy. You can get that by going to Gardner’s Mattress & More, go to our website. You just go to GardnersMattressAndMore.com/Sleep-Better and we’ll get you a free copy, alright? We’ve got some some food trucks.

    Ben McClure 58:37
    We do have some food trucks. We got three food trucks or events to share and you can get more information at our website LancasterConnects.com. The first one…

    Jeff Giagnocavo 58:49
    There’s the signal.

    Ben McClure 58:55
    So let’s wait for the sound. And there we go. Friday, May 28 from 9 to 9, the East Petersburg Fire Company, Station 23 is hosting a Food Truck Frenzy, featuring Wich Way Sandwiches, Scoop O’ Dough, Walko Taco, Auntie Anne’s Pretzels, G-S Concessions, The Italian Job, Uncle Paul’s Stuffed Pretzels and Lancaster Cupcake. A lot of good ones there. There will also be a 50-50 raffle that’s located at the East Petersburg Fire Company Station 23 Headquarters, which is 6076 Pine Street in East Petersburg. Facebook Events tab for the fire companies page @EPFC23.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 59:40
    Food Truck Festival, Sunday, May 30th, St. Joseph’s Children’s Health is sponsoring the Food Trucks and Families Day from 11am to 2pm at Columbia Market House, at 15 South Third Street in Colombia. Celebrating the opening weekend of the revitalized Columbia Market House, guests will enjoy a complimentary culinary fare from the choice of for local food trucks and those food trucks are a Cajun Culture, Mara-Leo’s, Scoops Ice Cream. I think Ben likes Scoops Ice Cream and Grill and TJ’s Ice Cream. The Market House will be open throughout the event for those wishing to stroll through and explore it. Kids will enjoy caricature artists and balloon artists. There’s no need to register for the event. All are welcome to come and purchase food and drinks from the food trucks and enjoy the festivities. For more info you go to the events tab at St. Joseph Children’s Health or the direct link which is easier. Everything’s easier when you go to LancasterConnects.com for all things. Lancaster Connects P,odcast events and food trucks, just go to LancasterConnects.com and look for St. Joseph’s Children’s Health Food Truck Festival on May 30th.

    Ben McClure 1:00:50
    I don’t think there’s an ice cream truck that I wouldn’t enjoy. Alright, Papa Sneaux…that’s S-N-E-A-U-X…Papa Sneaux serves New Orleans style food and snowballs, serving jambalaya, red beans and rice gumbo. Friday, May 28th there at the Green Dragon Farmer’s Market from 8am to 8pm, 955 North State Street in Ephrata, where the Green Dragon is. Also Sunday, May 30th, they’re at the Wrightsville Assembly of God. It’s their summer kickoff snowball event from 8:30am to 12:30pm, which is at 365 Orange street in Wrightsville. And then last but not least, on Tuesday, June 1st, they’re at Root’s Country Market from 9am to 9pm, 705 Graystone Road in Manheim and you can find them at Facebook @PaPaSneaux.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:01:54
    You got into that mode of reading. Got a little robotic on yourself there.

    Ben McClure 1:02:00
    It didn’t sound right when I first said it so I had to spell it.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:02:03
    So they’re on Facebook @PaPaSneaux, alright? Anyway, listen, our viewers want to know where the food trucks are each week. So if you own a food truck, we absolutely want to hear from you. We’ll tell our viewers where you’ll be so that they can support you just fill out the contact form on LancasterConnects.com and tell us where you’ll be and when. Tell us about your great food and we can have people really just kind of lined up ready to show up at your food truck and you’ll have fun and they’ll have fun. It all means great success that starts when you go to LancasterConnects.com and fill out our contact form. And really make sure you tell us how great the food is. Fill out the form there and with this show, help us to help you spread the word, spread the love for Lancaster Connects. Don’t forget to like and share this video, leave a comment and tell a friend about the show. Real quick, my production team is going to be upset, I forgot this. With Memorial Day weekend, we do have some really great offers through our “Double-Double” deals. It was in the newspaper on our website, you name it. We’ve got that going on. This show isn’t about the store. But since it is Memorial Day weekend, that does mean some savings. So we’d love for you to come on out if it’s time for a bed. Larry has been patiently waiting by. So Larry, we really appreciate your time. Well, I know that you’re retired, I know your time is precious. So we appreciate you hanging in. I can’t wait to jump in with you. I think this is so cool. Because I used to read your column in the paper and loved it all those years that I read it. So you’ve actually got our history nugget this week. So we’re gonna just jump right in. Is that alright?

    Larry Alexander 1:03:51
    Yeah, yeah, go ahead.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:03:54
    All right. So can you tell us a little bit more about why the buildings are set so far back from the street on one particular side of Main Street in Ephrata?

    Larry Alexander 1:04:04
    That’s one of the quirks of Ephrata as you go into town you find all the [Inaudible] on the north side, they are right up against the sidewalk. If you cross the street to the south side, you get to sidewalk then you qualify for set back. The whole first [Inaudible] of East Main Street, all the businesses, all the stores, and that’s because back in the late 1800s there were two very posh hotels in town. There was the Mount Vernon, which is in the square where there is an office building there now, this used to be the Lancaster County weeklies but now it’s not. But anyway, up on the hill where the Hampton Inn is now, used to be the other hotel which was the [inaudible] spa and attract people from all over the East Coast, and they’d have passengers coming in on the trains. The train stop was at the Mount Vernon Hotel at the square. So that’s, yeah, you got it right there. The Mount Vernon and Mountain Springs had an arrangement, when pastures got off the train to go to the Mountain Springs, the Mount Vernon would signal with flags or whatever, to the Mountain Schools and they would send their [Inaudible]to pick up the passengers and ferry them back to the hotel. So to accommodate that little thing, all the buildings in the south side had to be set back. The two hotels had direct line of sight. If they couldn’t see each other, they couldn’t signal. And that to this day, anything has built in that first block has to go by that setback.

    Ben McClure 1:05:48
    That’s cool. That’s one of those things you’d never know.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:05:52
    Unless you have a connection, you bring Larry Alexander on.

    Larry Alexander 1:05:56
    I probably lived in this town 30 years before I knew that. So anyway, there you have it.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:06:03
    One of the other little quirks about Ephrata is how you say Ephrata, right?

    Larry Alexander 1:06:07
    Yes. I’ve had people asking where Ephrata is.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:06:13
    Yeah. So Larry, with Memorial Day, you know, a lot of folks sadly, miss the intention of what’s coming up here this weekend. Memorial Day is about honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice, right? Gave their life and service to our country. That’s really what it’s about, we kick this show off…I mean, trust me, I would love if we could just really get down to helping people, wake up happy and sleep better here and skip all the hoopla of sales and discounts and everything. But you know, consumers have an itch to scratch with that. So we participate. But I’m far happier to participate this weekend, this year, this memorial day with you and with Ann Marie on the show. So, your first book you wrote, which probably is news for our listeners, was about Band of Brothers, “Biggest Brother – The Life of Major Dick Winters, the man who led the Band of Brothers. So tell us about your connection there, especially for our younger audience members, or maybe even those that just aren’t in the know. Tell us all about Dick Winters and the Band of Brothers from your perspective.

    Larry Alexander 1:07:28
    Dick Winters was was actually born in Lancaster in 1918, his first two years in New Holland before his family moved to Ephrata, which is where a lot of his family had their [Inaudible]. His grandfather and his great uncle owned hotels in Ephrata at one point so they were kind of big in cultural circles in his hometown. He lived there for 10 years before moving to Lancaster. Dick Winters went on to to join the army and after graduating from F & M in 1941, the war came along, and he enlisted as a private and before the war ended, he’d be a major and battalion commander. So he was a very competent person, a very patriotic person and very determined. His men loved him. He loved them and never put them at any undue risk if he could help it. But he was just an excellent officer and excellent leader. And I met him in 2001. In fact, in the 1990s, author Stephen Ambrose, who is the Pulitzer Prize winning author, picked up on the story of Easy Company. [Inaudible] originally [Inaudible] entire war in Europe. They jumped into France on D-Day. That’s his home in Ephrata where he lived. He jumped in and they fought in France, they fought in Belgium in the Battle of the Bulge, they fought in Holland. And when the war ended, they were on Adolf Hitler’s balcony in the [Inaudible] in the Bavarian Alps. And that’s Dick [Inaudible] there and his cousins. So Ambrose picked up on the story and decided to write a book about it called Band of Brothers. The book was picked up by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, who pooled their resources to create a 10-part miniseries…that’s where he’s from in Lancaster….a 10-part miniseries called Band of Brothers based on the book and that went global, it went viral. [Inaudible], just to meet him [Inaudible] speaking engagements and just became a national, a worldwide celebrity. And that’s how I met him in 2001, the mini-series was being aired by HBO. And my boss at newspaper said, maybe I should contact these people and talk to this guy. So I found him, I tracked him down and I went, I interviewed him. And it found that [Inaudible] our homes are about 150 yards from each other. We both grew up in [Inaudible] and we both knew the same people. I mean, I knew his Aunt Lottie. When I was a kid, we used to rake leaves for her and we used to shovel snow. We used to do things like that. So I knew her and Dick and I became friends. And that’s how the book came about. But two years after I met him, my boss again said I should write a book about him, that people should know who this guy is. And then there’s a lot of interest there. And he was right. The miniseries was like a media phenomenon. And they agreed to sit down with me and do interviews and we put that book together back in 2004.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:11:08
    I actually [Inaudible]…

    Larry Alexander 1:11:10
    That’s the 101st Airborne not the 82nd Airborne.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:11:21
    Yeah, my bad there.

    Larry Alexander 1:11:23
    That’s okay.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:11:24
    I actually put the Band of Brother’s DVD set in my box to take up to the campsite. We know when I say camp, I use that word loosely. It’s more like glamour-camping…glamping. So we have a TV and a DVD player in the camper. And yeah, once it gets to the end of the day, and you’re kind of worn out and tired, I’ll put on Band of Brothers this weekend coming up.

    Larry Alexander 1:11:45
    The cool thing about the book is I got Damian Lewis to actually wrote a foreword for me for the book as to what it was like to play Winters, to meet Winters and try to be him in the movie. It’s kind of interesting insight.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:12:05
    Yeah, that really is and it was fortunate he was able to represent him well, having been able to connect with him. You actually went with some of the Easy Company over to Europe, when you wrote the book about that. The book was called In the Footsteps of the Band of Brothers – Return to Easy Company’s Battlefields with Sergeant Forest Guth. So yeah, we will have some pictures scroll on the screen. So that’s from when you were over in Europe?

    Larry Alexander 1:12:37
    Yeah, that’s good.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:12:49
    Run us throught your tour there in Europe with members of Easy Company.

    Larry Alexander 1:12:53
    I just had this after I wrote the book, I had this urge to go see these. And as I’ve gotten to know Forrest, he’s a Millersville College graduate. And he came back from the war he went to Millersville what was then called Millersville Normal School, and to learn how to [Inaudible] a great teacher. And so that’s how I met him and then became friends with him also. And then when the opportunity for this book came up, I talked to my publishers into helping to fund his trip. Because it was would have been costly otherwise, but so they they agreed to fund the trip. So I took a veteran along with me and Forrest was the one I picked because Winters at this point was not going to go along anymore. He was at an age and his health was at such a such a point where he wasn’t about to go along over there. So right away {Inaudible] his wife [Inaudible] months earlier, a few just didn’t get his mind off his grief. We went back and this is the field here back on D-Day morning. He’s the company’s commander was was killed in a plane crash when his plane was shot down. He crashed in that field. And then Winters became the head of Easy Company by default because that was yes that’s where the plane crashed. And you know Winters didn’t know it until about several days later. He was not in command of Easy Company because his captain was killed in this plane crash. But anyway, I went over there. We left on the 31st of October 2008. And we were 14 days walking the battlefields [Inaudible] where they trained. We went over by ferry to to Normandy. And I tried to hit as many places as I could in the time I have a lot of to me to try to recapture it and take them in pictures, this is the aid station where when it was treated when he was nicked by a ricochet bullet [Inaudible] these places and try to match up then and now because I’m kind of a nut about [Inaudible] photographs. This is also [Inaudible] charge across this square. Take one that were taken to the center of the city, the center of the town, they charged across the street. So there’s an interesting trip. We didn’t get into Germany. But actually they didn’t fight in Germany. I was covering their battlefields. And technically they did not fight the battles in Germany.

    Larry Alexander 1:12:53
    I just love the fact that you have such a passion for this, bringing forth you know the history to modern day with it then and now photos obviously telling the story. You had the opportunity to know dick in a way that not many people outside of his immediate family would have known him. But you were you were able to be with him when he returned to his former high school to talk to the kids. That was probably pretty interesting. Can you share anything about that experience?

    Larry Alexander 1:16:58
    Yeah. But he came back to Lancaster he went to McCaskey High School and he didn’t graduate from McCaskey, he graduated from what was called Boys High School. He was the last class to graduate from Boys High School. The following year is when McCaskey opened, still he was considered a graduate of that school. So they brought him back in 2005, probably, [Inaudible]an alumni award. And after the award, he went into a classroom of seniors and talked about World War II. And he asked for questions. And they didn’t know. And we’ve got [Inaudible] really had any idea what happened. And they for seniors in high school, they knew surprisingly little about the history of world war two and two winters, considering all the sacrifice he’d seen, and of men killed and maimed, and things like that, that really got him and he came to him out right there in the classroom for not knowing their history. That’s one thing he liked me. He liked people who knew what was going on. He wouldn’t interview with me unless I read the book Band of Brothers. When I called a guy reached him through I reached him through one of his men Wild Bill Garnier. I had read the book. But the subject was very outgoing for me. You know, he was very such a stickler for not only what [Inaudible], but all veterans, he was always about the veterans. He was always about, you know, we he was saying like, we didn’t do anything special. Everybody else did what they were sent to do.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:19:06
    It makes I mean, to me, it makes perfect sense. I mean for somebody, you know, we live in today’s modern age and such a level of comfort and ease. I mean, truly, you know, people feel their inconvenience when their Gmail goes down, or when Facebook won’t allow them to go live.

    Larry Alexander 1:19:43
    Imagine living in their day. You might be living in this woods like they did in December of 1944. Those who are [Inaudible] that they’re in subzero weather and snow. So yeah, the [Inaudible] inconvenience of having your internet go down is kind of petty compared to what these guys put up with.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:20:04
    Yeah, yeah. So, I mean, I can certainly appreciate and respect completely where, where Dec was coming from of, you know, this isn’t about me. It’s about service. It’s about the group. It’s about the totality of service members. And having lived and I can’t imagine having lived and seeing that level of sacrifice human sacrifice people paying the ultimate price. I mean, it certainly changes your perspective of, of the people you meet in the entire world. I’m sure.

    Larry Alexander 1:20:38
    That was a tough, that’s what he was just telling me that sort of watching them. That was the toughest part of watching the miniseries for him, knowing who was going to get hit when, you know, was toughest part of watching, watching the miniseries.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:20:55
    Yeah, I’m sure. Another fact about Dick that maybe some don’t know Is he was very vocal on the support of minorities who served. You ever have any conversations with him about that?

    Larry Alexander 1:21:09
    Not a whole lot. But yeah, but he would because he thought didn’t matter who you were. You served your country, you did what you’re what you were sent to do. And you were you put your life on the line. And whether you were white, or black or Native American, it didn’t really matter to him. You the veteran to what was what it was all about?

    Ben McClure 1:21:28
    Yeah. Something else you talked with our producers about was German U-Boats. They made it to the east coast during World War Two. And something about the city of Miami in Florida. What what’s the story there?

    Larry Alexander 1:21:44
    Early in the war, but what the German submarine called the happy days, they they pro the Atlantic Ocean, they were operating within, you know, easily within sight, which is they said out there, especially at nighttime, it’s in the water, you watch for cargo vessels going up and down the East Coast, because they would be silhouetted by lights of cities like Miami, and places like that. I refuse to dim their lights, because of because of their tourist tray because of their you know, they just refuse to dim the lights. And there are photographs of farming just off the coast. And that was a very it was dangerous, especially at night because like I said they they silhouetted against the against the light from onshore. So yeah, there were a number you can find a number of U boat wrecks off the east coast from being sunk by by the Navy.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:22:45
    Yeah. Larry, real quick. I this is we’re kind of going a little off off off script, if you will. When do we stay on script? Yeah, we don’t. Our production team in the background is rolling their eyes right now. But I think it’s very topical. You know, and I’ve alluded to it now twice, we’ll go for a third time, you know, the consumerism around Memorial Day weekend. I think we should definitely take the opportunity to really cement and remind people, what this weekend is about. It is about the memory, the sacrifice of those who have died. It’s become commonplace to say Happy Memorial Day have a great Memorial Day. How to how to decorate that. I would wonder if you know if you could speak to that. There’s a saying have a happy have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. Does that kind of cut like a knife for people that have served and seeing their fellow brothers and sisters, you know, killed in the line of duty?

    Larry Alexander 1:23:43
    No, I did it. We didn’t talk about that. But knowing because I did, I’d say Yeah. He all the group flags, carries a gun going to be two different ceremonies this weekend. Weather flags will be placed at all the graves. And that’s what that’s what he would be doing. He’d be up there with that. He wouldn’t be you know, hiking or sales and, and long weekend vacations and things like that all day long. Keep off the consumerism and the vacation type atmosphere. Some people say that, oh, it’s a three day weekend. It’s more than a three day weekend, especially if you gave the the ultimate price last three day weekend. And I think a lot of people, a lot of people lose the meaning of that they really do lose the meaning of it. I think it’s I said, I’m going to be going to two ceremonies this weekend. And there’ll be a number of people there. But I bet there’ll be a lot of people there who don’t have any idea like in New Holland and Ephrata who have no idea that these things are going on in the cemeteries, that there’s groups that they’re honoring the actual veterans.

    Ben McClure 1:24:54
    So yeah, we’re actually going to share some of those ceremonies and events in our community segment. And just after we wrap up, Larry, talking about about you, Larry, personally, you, you have some interesting things that you participate in Civil War reenactments, according to Wikipedia, only Wikipedia guessed. And apparently you’ve also been involved in a couple of rules a little bit about those.

    Larry Alexander 1:25:21
    Back in 80s, my wife said, I suggest that I get a hobby sheep stamp collecting coin collecting something up. But being a history buff, I joined a civil war reenactment group and ended up wearing wool jackets and woolen pants and all that stuff in July and August, which my wife thought was absolutely crazy in which I would have to agree. But yeah, because of that, and that’s cool. I mean, I’ve been a history buff. So it was good, it was kind of cool seeing how movies come together. And they’re far different when you’re making them, they are on the screen, because when you’re making them, they’re boring as all get out. Because there’s so much lag time between scenes. When they put it all together, it’s quite exciting on the screen. So it’s kind of neat, seeing the seeing them seeing how it all came together and the director was very much with her for details on Mexico. [Inaudible]he’d asked him, he actually asked us is just the way it was done. And we’d say yeah, that’s right. Or no, they do it this way. And he would change it as you wanted it accurate. So it was kind of neat in that respect, some directors, so they, they have their own ideas, and they won’t change their minds. But he was very appliable about that. So yeah, I got the chance to do that a little bit, too. So that was neat. And I got to meet so many. I got to meet so many. Go ahead.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:27:39
    I was just gonna say very interesting that you’ve been able to, you know, parlay your your hobbies into something more substantive, like, you know, adding to our culture through these movies that remind us of the past. That’s really great.

    Larry Alexander 1:27:54
    Yeah, it was fun. It was interesting to that’s the kind of opportunity my, my daughter got into a too little bit, my wife never good. But my wife, my daughter likes to put on the hoop skirts and all that stuff. That’s cool.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:28:07
    Neat. So again, off off script here. I’ve one other thing, you know, we’re really big. You probably heard it as you stood by thread Murray’s segment with building bridges. You know, we challenge people to connect with our guests. So whether that’s donating or volunteering time, through through my work with Cub Scouts in the past, you know, we’ve donated to Wreaths Across America, you’re involved in community ceremonies? Would it be okay? I’m assuming it wouldn’t be frowned upon. And I’m going to challenge our listeners and our watchers this weekend, carve out an hour of time to go to your local hardware store like your locally owned days, by half a dozen to a dozen flags, or maybe some potted flowers or flowers, you can lay on a grave, and you’ll be able to tell the headstones of which service members should be honored this weekend. Would that be out of bounds? Larry, if somebody were to do that?

    Larry Alexander 1:29:05
    I don’t think so.Yeah, you said go to any cemetery can tell the veterans graves have flags most most. They get new flags of Memorial Day usually the American Legion VFW club, like they decorate [Inaudible] all things not sometimes they’re not but but they you can you know, you can [Inaudible]the graves and put some flowers down yet, you know, like and spread them out. One of the big things about about Dick Winters is the cemetery where he’s buried there are 200 veterans graves there dating back as far as Revolutionary War and they each get one flag. Winters unfortunately, it’s kind of a history has become a kind of a shrine. Time plus mementos laid on the headstone in airborne badges, coins, military emblems, things I got laid on the headstone. And I understand that I understand people wouldn’t do that paying homage to dick addict would say, hey, there’s another veteran to really for me, you know, there’s another veteran right across the driveway from me, spread them out a little bit, you know, and his family did not want when I in my books, you’ll never find references to where the family plot is. That came out, I got out, even though even though I was asked not to reveal, it did get out. But I did not reveal his grave site. And I know it’s common knowledge now. But but didn’t the family didn’t want it to become a shrine? And I don’t say, yeah, flowers, flags, whatever you want to put out any way you want to honor a veteran, I think Winters would smile down on.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:31:01
    Yeah. And and I’ll say, you know, again, maybe maybe affording some flags and flowers isn’t isn’t in your wheelhouse this week, maybe it just doesn’t isn’t doable. Here’s an idea. Go next week, middle of the week, next weekend, after the holiday, maybe a flag has fallen over. That’s one thing that I just can’t tolerate. Sometimes, enough winds sometimes snap so that they come on. Yep. So you know, maybe, maybe grab, you know, if you find one that’s in disrepair, that should be disposed of properly. You can Google that search that how to do that. But you know, half an hour, I mean, in your community, just just take a quick stroll, you’re out, you’re outside getting some fresh air. That’s another way to help our community. And again, I really challenge our listeners and our watchers to participate in the community that way after watching episodes like this…

    Larry Alexander 1:32:01
    Another thing that people [Inaudible] in Ephrata we have the Winters Leadership Plaza. And it’s right along the walking trail, close to the old rail line, and [Inaudible] called the Major Dick Winters Memorial Walking Trail. We’ve got the plaza, there are bricks in the sidewalk or with veterans have purchased [Inaudible] with their veterans names on them. And there’s several 100 of these bricks there. And in the center of Plaza, as a statute, they [Inaudible] Dick Winters. It’s a duplicate of one that was erected in St. Marie demont in Normandy a few years back. It’s a leader leadership statue, that decoe Cave for him doesn’t appear on it, which doesn’t accept as a as an above his pocket here we’re seeing up on his butt, you know, but people lay flowers there too. People can put flags in the in the in the garden area around the plaza to there and because every and every year on Veterans Day in November and November, they line that trail with with the with candles up. That’s that’s the plaza. Yes, the statue. But yeah, they take that trail and they actually put the luminaries along the along lines that listen in on them. So that’s that’s another way to honor that effort honors. Its favorite son. Yeah. Oh, that’s favorite sons and daughters.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:33:33
    Yeah. Well, Larry, I really appreciate you spending the time with us. We do. Yeah, we have a question for you as we wrap up about the role of the military and today’s in today’s modern day, so maybe we’ll we’ll wrap up with that if you can hang tight for a little bit longer. We’re going to share it to get into our community events, the ones that you’re participating in, we’re going to highlight those but so if you’ve got a worthwhile cause that can make excellent use of members of the Lancaster Connects community. That’s again what we’re what we’re trying to do here. That’s where our Lancaster Connects community comes in. And it is all about whether you have a good cause that needs volunteers or you want to donate your time to help out in the community. We want to hear from you and if you’d like to volunteer your time let us know go right to LancasterConnects.com there’s a box there you’re also entering our giveaway. But you can check if you’d like to volunteer for the Lancaster Connects community. We’ll put updates on the website we’ll send out on emails when when service organizations are looking for that volunteer time. And again, I really want us to think about the difference we can make right here in our backyard. If we each gave just one hour a week of our time, so if you’ve got that good cause that can use some volunteers let us know again go to the form. We’ll promote the show just go to LancasterConnects.com fill it out. Fill in in the comments. What your about and who you’re looking for the help you need, and we’ll put it on this show. All right. Remember this show is also available as a podcast find the links at LancasterConnects.com. And of course we want to grow the show we want to get more great guests like Larry and Ann Marie on and continue this so please like it and share it, share the video leave comments, tell friends about the show, tag them, please this is this is us about us, giving back this platform to the community and we want to see it continue for many, many years to come.

    Ben McClure 1:35:31
    So talking about Larry and where he will be Memorial Day, Sunday, May 30th, day before Memorial Day at one o’clock. Larry Alexander will be speaking at a ceremony to remember all veterans, especially those who died while in active service to our nation. He’ll also be sharing his experiences with the late Major Dick Winters. World War II reinactment to be part of the procession to the grave site of Major Dick Winters from again Band of Brothers. The service begins on the upper parking lot by the flagpole. And this is located at Bergstrasse Evangelical Lutheran Church, that is at 9 Hahnstown Road in Ephrata and you can follow the Bergstrasse Evangelical Lutheran Church on Facebook.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:36:31
    Second Memorial Day event in Lancaster VFW Post 1690 in Lancaster we’ll be holding hosting a memorial day service at the Riverview Burial Park Monday, May 31st at 10 o’clock in the morning. All are welcome to share in remembering those who gave the ultimate sacrifice. The post’s canteen will open immediately following the service.VFW Post 1690 is located at 343 New Dorwart Street in Lancaster. And Riverview Burial Park is located at 1100 South Duke Street in Lancaster. If you want to check them out on Facebook, just go on Facebook and type in @VFWPost1690.

    Ben McClure 1:37:12
    We’ve mentioned volunteer opportunities at Stevens Greenland’s Cemetery for a few weeks now leading up to Memorial Day week. And now we’re here. On Monday, May 31st, you can attend their Memorial Day ceremony at 11am. The cemetery has the largest number of African American veterans in Lancaster County and that is located at 1200 South Duke Street in Lancaster.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:37:38
    And out of respect to those veterans that died, it’s not that there’s a ceremony of African American veterans. It was just a little little word mixed up there. It’s the cemetery. The cemetery has the largest number of African American veterans in Lancaster County. So out of respect for them, that’s an interesting fact. And maybe you go check that out for that part of our history. Memorial Day Event, Blankets of Honor, we’ll be honoring Sara Gutshal of Maytown on Monday, May 31 at 1:00pm. Sara has been known donating her time as a Legion Auxiliary member for 70 years. This ceremony will be taking place at Maytown Road in Marietta. Again on Facebook, you can search them up @BlanketsOfHonor. And I believe I’ve heard about Blankets of Honor before from some past guests.

    Ben McClure 1:38:28
    The Mannheim VFW Post 5956 will be hosting a Memorial Day Parade on Monday, May 31st, from 10 to 11am. The parade route will run from East High Street to North Main Street to East Granby Street. You can follow them on Facebook @ManheimVFWPost5956.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:38:51
    And our last event, the Crispus Attucks Community Center is excited to share that they are developing a strategic plan to drive a thriving future and they want input from the community. So if you want to be a part of that discussion that’s taking place at the Crispus Attucks Community Center on Wednesday, June 2nd, from 4:30 to 6:00 to register and get more information.

    Ben McClure 1:39:11
    Yeah, and once again if you have a good cause that we can promote, or you need people to volunteer their time, we’ll put the word out for you on this show. Lancaster Connects please get in touch with the with us via the contact form at LancasterConnects.com. And don’t forget this show is also available as a podcast find the links at LancasterConnects.com, please like and share the video. Leave a comment and tell a friend all about us LancasterConnects.com.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:39:58
    So for our guests, we know what Larry’s doing right for the weekend. Ann Marie, you have any specific plans for Memorial Day there at the at the at the farm?

    Ann Marie Shaw 1:40:11
    No, [Inaudible],we don’t have a gathering here at the farm. Just look, we’re still under COVID rule. And even though it didn’t impact our essential services itself? Well, it did. But some people still come for sessions. But as far as the crowds, were we just decided we’re not going to comply with the message that we hear out there. We’re looking to have an open house here on the farm on the first of July.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:40:52
    We’re sure to highlight that. Thank you. Let’s appreciate that. Yeah, Larry, other than the two events we highlighted for you any anything else for the weekend that my our listeners might find interesting or that you just want to share?

    Larry Alexander 1:41:12
    [Inaudible] in [Inaudible]…New Holland?

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:41:24
    Well, let’s go ahead. Why don’t you? Yeah, why don’t you share? I didn’t hear about that one.

    Larry Alexander 1:41:27
    But [Inaudible]it’s in New Holland the veterans groups are decorated with cemeteries in the area. And they’ll converge on New Holland Park for a gathering. And I’ll be speaking there for about 10 minutes. That’s noon, on Monday, the 31st, that’s the other thing I’m doing.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:41:49
    So as we wrap up, you know, obviously the history of World War Two, Larry that you shared is is astounding. It’s it strikes on me to think about it at times, you know, when I’m when I might pick up a documentary or watch, you know, as well as I’ll rewatch Band of Brothers. Ann Marie, you see the effects. And as terrible as all of that is, and we’re certainly not pro-conflict, we’re not pro-pain and heartache and death. You know, the military does have a vital role in our society, even in modern day. You know, what do you think of those that are still here still serving? You know, what is their important important role to play in our society for our nation, as you see it? I’ll throw it to Ann Marie first, and then we’ll have Larry wrap it up.

    Ann Marie Shaw 1:42:42
    To educate the nation, on our veterans, it seems to me like there is or why am I here? I mean, for so many years of my life, I was not engaged with that community. I didn’t really have intelligence about our veterans. And, and what’s incredible to me is, and I know it’s a statistic, but 99.6% of this nation. 99.6% is depending on the point 4% of the nation that is currently engaged in defending and protecting our national interests. That’s incredible to me, we are without excuse to offer them support 6% of the population today are veterans, including those that have served, but are not currently serving 6% of America are veterans. And that’s about 2 million people. And not one of those soldiers, not one of them has returned to America uninjured. And that’s where it starts when we understand the trauma. I talked to a young man and I said, Why did you sign up? Sometimes you can’t ask the question like that, but I could. And he said, I was in my university dormitory room with my roommate, the day of 911 and we watched the foundation’s crumble. We watch people fall to their death. We saw the invasion of our land, and our national foundations and it dawned on me and the other guy I was with that we are healthy young men. And we have responsible freedom to defend the nation. The principles of it, the values of it and protect and guard the people and so they signed up. They’re not losers, they put their they put their life on hold. And he said that when he was away, it was remembering the future that he had set aside that kept him safe. And so to 10 years went by, and he comes home. But that future is gone. It’s not there. It’s not possible anymore. He’s doing well. But it’s a long way from the future that he had in mind. And so he gave that up even though he’s alive. In some ways, he’s walking around lifeless. And and we can be an agent of encouragement.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:45:26
    Well, I’m thankful that you’re there to to help with his path and the rest of his time here on earth with us. And I hope that he can be restored and live a good life. So thank you, Ann Marie for all you do. You know, that number, Larry that Ann Marie shared? Maybe you picked up on it. I know, I heard it the first time at their event they had last year, you know, 6% sit there and serve the 94% in society who never served? That’s that’s a very interesting number. To me. Your thoughts on the question, the vital role of our military, those who serve to really have the majority of the majority? Not which isn’t? You know, it’s not a slap but those who don’t serve, it’s just no simpler ality of the math. Yeah. And and it shows your thoughts there.

    Larry Alexander 1:46:15
    That was a very powerful number that Ann Marie threw out there. And I’m not sure I was aware of quite that percentage, but but the role of the military has changed the last 80 years, up until December 7 1941, was pretty much a defend America force. But in the years since World War II, it’s kind of a peacekeeping force of becoming, to not just patrolling the world. And it’s not just to keep maintain, protect the trust, but the interest of others as well.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:47:32
    Yeah, I couldn’t agree more. So guests we really appreciate your time today, I think we put together I hope, in both of your opinions, that we were able to put together a show worthy of Memorial Day weekend, to honor those that gave their sacrifice those watching those listening. Please remember that this weekend is about something far, far bigger than barbecues and vacations and three day weekends. It’s actually all about what gives you that opportunity, you know, paid for by the blood and the sacrifice of those before you. You know, we highlighted somebody that’s been serving 70 years. You know, to veterans and and for community causes. Think about legacy, think about your place in our community and what you can do to have lasting impact, whether that’s volunteering, whether that’s donating, whether that’s finding a cause that’s important to you, reflect on that this weekend, that would be my biggest benefit from that. So that’s what I would have to say there, Ben, I forgot one thing. Our gift card winners. I’m gonna let you announce our gift card winners. Yeah, wrap up the show.

    Ben McClure 1:48:41
    All right LancasterConnects.com, you can enter our restaurant gift card giveaway. $25 gift cards we give away to each week. This week’s winners are Deborah Butt and Monica Forte, both in Lancaster. So thanks for entering. And, again, if you’d like to win a restaurant gift card, you have a good chance to do that at LancasterConnects.com fill out the contest entry form. And you’ll also be added to our weekly email lists to learn more about future guests. And what we’re doing at Lancaster Connects podcast.

    Jeff Giagnocavo 1:49:14
    Yep. So we thank Larry and Ann Marie for joining us. Really appreciate your time. Thank you for committing to the reverence and the honor that is Memorial Day weekend. Larry, thank you for those events you attend and Ann Marie, thank you for all you do to help our veterans. We really appreciate you being on the show. All right, everybody. This was another episode of Lancaster Connects. Yeah. Thank you for joining us. Everybody have a great day. Thanks for tuning in to this Episode Episode 12 of Lancaster Connects.

    Georgia 1:50:04
    Get Super Cereal.

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