Image of renovations in VFW Post 1760
VFW Post 1760 extensive renovations and upgrades are noticeable as you enter. (May 21, 2020)

VFW Post 1760 is coming out of the COVID-19 lock-down better than ever! We used the canteen shutdown time to go into full renovation mode, while taking care of our people. Whether you are a long time regular, have not been here in a while, or new to the post, prepare to be impressed. A huge thank-you to our bar manager, bar tenders, janitors, and both post and auxiliary volunteers, who made the VFW Post 1760 renovation happen.

Taking Care of People

We committed to take care of our one employee and our independent contractor bartenders and janitors. We believe in doing right by those who have served our post. Taking care of people, without fundraising or canteen income, could have hit hard. Thankfully, Bank of America‘s Paycheck Protection Program interface was clear and simple enough for our post quartermaster to navigate without paid help. The accounting whizzes behind QuickBooks Online had all the necessary information organized and called out conveniently. The numbers and documents were very simple to get right the first time. As a result, we got the full requested and authorized amount to cover 8 weeks of our bar manager’s employment costs, with a small additional amount authorized to help cover our utility bills.

Renovating our Canteen

Throughout the Arizona governor’s mandated shutdown, we paid our bar manager, our bartenders, and janitor to square our canteen away. They started with deep cleaning, sanitizing every square inch inside and out of the bar equipment and space. Then we started the VFW Post 1760 renovation. The walls were stripped of everything mounted or hung, scrubbed, patched, then given two beautiful coats of new paint in a light khaki color from floor to ceiling. This lightened up the room all by itself.


VFW 1760 flooring up
Floor tear down, ready for new flooring!

We knew the floor needed serious attention. We had been patching tiles in for years. With weeks of no floor traffic, we seized the opportunity to make things ship-shape and squared away. The great width of knowledge in our post came to the front in identifying the right tools and technique to safely remove all the old tile. With the plywood under-flooring exposed, we found the weak spots, cut and patched in new plywood, making the flooring stable for the long term.

Refinishing tables
Monica and Dave refinishing the high top tables

We called in professionals to lay new heavy vinyl flooring that looks like wood flooring. What an amazing difference Empire Today made in one day!

Walls and Ceiling

Two high capacity smoke eaters, designed for bars and veterans’ canteens, were purchased and installed. Thanks to expert advice from Paul Buza of Big Sticks Fine Cigars in Mesa, we got the right equipment for our canteen. The C-12 Smokemasters are rated to filter the entire room air volume at least every 10 minutes. That will make a noticeable positive difference in patrons’ experience of our canteen.

Dan Wilson installing speakers
Dan Wilson cuts an opening for new in-wall speakers

Dan Wilson rerouted and squared away all the camera, cable TV, and computer network cabling, as well as setting new PA speakers into the wall with wiring. His hard work yielded better security and a cleaner, newer look. The lighter, fresher paint scheme adds to the new look, especially highlighted by new brass outlet and light-switch covers.

A Better Bar

Matt "Ole" Olsen finishing bar topNow patrons have direct access to outlets with USB ports, set into the front of the bar.  Our Auxiliary sanded and refinished the heavily scuffed legs of our canteen high-top tables. Matt “Ole” Olsen took the bar molding down to glassy smooth bare wood, then laid a series of coatings on to a dark high gloss that should last for many years.

Another big thanks to Jason and Mesa Fully Formed, LLC, for donating the amazing new table top for our potlucks and other activities.

A new and improved point of sales (POS) system is linked with a new merchant account system. This saves money for both patrons and the canteen. Notice the addition of a security camera monitor viewing our parking lot for our patrons. 

[First Edition! Come back for great photographs and a big thank-you to all who volunteered. If you have photos or stories to tell, please comment below this story. We will consider comments in our next edition.]

Thank you to all who came out and volunteered:

(in alphabetical order)
David Borg
Cliff Brown
Charity Brian & Matthew Kammes, Jayden, Kailee
Jesse Chitwood & Ahsley Roberts-Doula
Monica Collins
David Corona
Joe Dempsey
Randy ‘Racecar’ Dubbs
Ruben Hatton
David Hopkinson
Eric & Christine LaLiberty
Jon LaMarre
Joe MacDonald (D&J Vending)
Kevin MacDonald (D&J Vending)
Mandy Nolan
Matt “Ole” Olsen
Steve McDonald
Brian Ritter & Sara Hackbirth
Peggy Rivera
Noma Skinner
Jason Williams & Mesa Fully Formed, LLC
Dan Wilson & Zane
Eric Yates