LAKE LINDEN - Brenda O'Connor couldn't help but tap her toes at the Forgotten Eagles Spring Jamboree Saturday in Lake Linden.
"My honey is playing lead guitar," she said of her husband Ken. "He's playing with all the bands until 6 p.m."
Organized by Chapter 2 of the Forgotten Eagles of Michigan, 11 local bands performed during the third annual Spring Jamboree, which got under way at 1 p.m. at the American Legion Post 90 and Lakes Lounge. For a $5 donation at the door, music lovers enjoyed a different band every hour on the hour with all proceeds benefitting local veterans.
Kelly Fosness/Daily Mining Gazette
Dave Raudio, wearing orange, sings on stage with Mary Kerttu, Dave Stahl, wearing a baseball cap, and Felix Fornier on drums during the third annual Forgotten Eagles Spring Jamboree in Lake Linden Saturday.
"We help our local veterans, those who are falling through the cracks, if they need their power bill paid, help with their fuel bill, things like that we take care of," Chapter 2 member Rick Hayrynen said. "This and our steak fry are our two biggest fundraisers."
Chapter 2 President Al Utzman, who was in charge of the sound board Saturday, said 240 people were in attendance and they raised around $1,400.
On top of that, he said, "We picked up five new Forgotten Eagles members."
Shannon Fountaine of Houghton was one of those new members.
"Today is my first day," she said, while helping out at the door. "I love to volunteer and this is a good cause."
Forgotten Eagles Challenge Coins, featuring the POW/MIA symbol on the front and the Forgotten Eagles logo on the back, were available for a $10 donation. Three different button pins, designed by the sixth-grade art classes at Dollar Bay-Tamarack City Area Schools, were also available for a $1 donation.
"We were supposed to have one (design) winner but it was too hard to decide so we took three," Utzman said. "We gave them each a $50 savings bond."
It was just before 3 p.m. when the overhead lights went out in the legion hall where the bands performed. Stage lighting cast a colorful glow over Doug and Lucy Nakkula, who performed "Jackson" by Johnny Cash and June Carter.
"Good Hearted Woman" and "He Stopped Loving Her Today," were other cover songs performed during the music block before Ron Masters and The Country Drifters took the spotlight at 4 p.m.
Opening the rock and roll music for the remainder of the evening were The Wingnuts at 6 p.m.
Homemade chili was being served at the back of the legion hall for $1 a bowl.
Rick Hayrynen, a Vietnam veteran who has been a member of Chapter 2 for the past four years, said he believes strongly in the Forgotten Eagles organization.
"When I needed the help I got it - I'm a 100 percent disabled veteran - and now I'm passing it on so that the other veterans have representation and get the benefits they need," he said. "We also support the (D.J.) Jacobetti (Home for Veterans) in Marquette and the Oscar G. Johnson VA Medical Center in Iron Mountain."
While their numbers were down slightly from last year in how many attended the jamboree, Utzman said they still had a successful turnout.
"As long as people are willing to come out and support our vets, we'll keep doing the Spring Jamboree," he said. "Everyone had a great time."