Queens lawmaker to host in-person veterans BBQ event in September

State Senator Joseph Addabbo will host his annual Veterans BBQ in-person at the Howard Beach Motor Club. (Photo courtesy of New York State Senate)

Seeking a return to normalcy, state Senator Joseph Addabbo announced the annual tradition of treating local veterans to an afternoon of free food and entertainment continues this year on Saturday, Sept. 25.

The in-person barbecue event, when veterans from across his district are invited to the annual Veterans BBQ in Broad Channel, will run from noon to 2 p.m. at the Howard Beach Motor Club, located at 59 Russell St.

In 2020, as New York was still mostly closed down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Addabbo held a grab-and-go lunch for the veterans, who could drive up to the Motor Club, pick up a pre-packaged meal, and head home to the safety of their own houses.

“COVID prevented us from having a traditional barbecue last year, but I’m happy to announce that this year we will be able to invite the veterans and their guests back inside at the Howard Beach Motor Club to have a real barbecue,” Addabbo said. “Although we are back inside this year, in the interest of safety, we are still adhering to the COVID protocols and limiting this year’s event to only 100 people. That will allow us to socially distance while we are inside and keep our veterans, staff and volunteers safe.”

If COVID-19 or the Delta variant worsen, additional safety measures will be put in place to ensure a safe event, according to Addabbo’s office.

Veterans who wish to attend the event are asked to call Addabbo’s Howard Beach district office at 718-738-1111 to make a reservation. Due to space constraints, any veteran who RSVPs may bring only one guest with them.

As a member of the Senate Committee on Veterans, Homeland Security and Military Affairs, Addabbo has been hosting the free event since he took office in 2009.

“I like to say that every day is Veterans Day, and it is an honor to spend time with the area’s veterans and provide them with some free food, music, friendship, and good times,” Addabbo said.

In addition to the traditional BBQ, any veteran who wishes can drive up to the event, say hello to Addabbo and grab a free take home lunch if they prefer instead of heading indoors.

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