ELMWOOD PARK, N.J. — The Elmwood Park Elks Valentine's Day beefsteak dinner Feb. 13 won't just mean a large meal, but a chance for big opportunities for the rest of the community.
The Elks use the annual beefsteak at 192 Market St. to fund future dances for special-need adults in Elmwood Park, organizer Dennis Orosz said. The lodge members try to throw three such parties a year, he said.
"When you see the expression on these people's faces," Orosz told Daily Voice, "and you've watched them through the years as they progress, or sometimes regress, it's a very warm feeling inside."
To help people achieve that feeling, the Elks host the annual Valentine's Day dinner. This year's event will run from 7 to 11:30 p.m. with a DJ to choose the music.
Tickets are $35 and include dinner of salad, pasta, beefsteak, fries, dessert, coffee, tea, beer and soda.
Around 120 to 130 people typically attend each year, Orosz said.
The Elks keep up a Valentine's theme with red and white decorations, plus Orosz said his daughter will make chocolate covered pretzels and strawberries.
Orosz, an Elk for 36 years, said people always have a fun time, which they then use to help the special-needs community.
The events are held Friday evenings with music and dinner to create a social environment. Orosz said they're well-known in the special-needs community.
"To this day it brings a little tear to my eye," he said. "They're looking for love and an awful lot of them, after they get older, they're put in group homes and they don't have places to go.
"We try to do the best we can with what we have."
FOR TICKETS: Call Orosz at 201-791-6149 or the Elks Lodge at 201-796-9797.