Iron Workers Local 396 celebrates 100th anniversary in style

Publisher Emeritus

DESERVED RECOGNITION – Recognizing the magnitude of Iron Workers Local 396’s 100th Anniversary celebration on May 18, joining the celebration were top International Union officers (from left to right) former Local 396 business manager and International President Emeritus Joe Hunt, International Vice President David Beard (who also serves as the St. Louis District Council president) greeted by Local 396 officers Business Manager Mike Heibeck and President/Business Agent Phil Decker, International President Eric Dean and International Treasurer James Mahoney. – Iron Workers 396 photo by Melissa Karas

Iron Workers Local 396 celebrated its 100th Anniversary (1924-2024) on May 18 with a day-long, family-friendly, free event at the union hall that matched the pride of the union’s members and officers, Business Manager/Financial Secretary-Treasurer Mike Heibeck reports.

Under sunny skies and shaded tents, the union’s centennial celebration included:

  • Live entertainment by Double Down from Nashville, Tenn.
  • A variety of food trucks including Grace Meat Three, Stellar Hog, Treaux’s Cajun BBQ and Seoul Taco, in addition to an inside buffet by Mangia Catering complete with an ice sculpture and plenty of beverages for kids and adults alike.
  • Activities for the kids included two large bounce houses, the Hill Fire Department trucks and police SWAT vehicle, Sweet & Simple Kettle Korn, Ice Shack STL: Shaved Ice, sidewalk chalk and games of “bags.”
  • Guests captured candid pics with a backdrop of a hanging sculpture of the historic 1932 photo of ironworkers seated on a beam 850 feet above New York City eating lunch.

Everyone received mementos of the milestone event including a commissioned artwork poster highlighting the union’s memorable projects, t-shirt, decals and a special 100th anniversary pin with the union’s logo under their iconic project, the Gateway Arch.

As an indication of the respect Local 396 has within the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers, top officers in attendance included Local 396’s own former Local 396 Business Manager and International President Emeritus Joe Hunt, current International officers President Eric Dean, Treasurer James Mahoney and Vice President David Beard who also serves as the St. Louis District Council president.

LASTING MEMENTO – Channeling the spirit of vintage concert posters, this unique poster was distributed to guests at the union’s 100th Anniversary celebration highlighting some of the locals many major St. Louis area projects: the crown jewel Gateway Arch, Busch Stadium, General Motors and other iconic projects.

Recognizing everyone for what he described as an “incredible” turnout, Heibeck first thanked the event’s planners headed by President/Business Agent Phil Decker and the officers of Local 396 and staff.

Heibeck paid special tribute to the local’s older generation “who paved the way for us through their dedication and hard work as we grew our union.” He then offered a challenge to younger members to carry on the traditions for the next 100 years.

“Thanks to all our members and their families and our many, many guests who came out to help us celebrate,” Heibeck said. “It was a day we’ll all remember.”

For safety purposes 59th street was blocked off to allow free flow of activities and circulation by the more than 1,500 members, families and friends that spent the fun-filled day at the union’s hall, 2500 59th Street.

Based on the smiles of so many happy faces, laughter, and cheers of happiness from the hundreds of children, and the hugs and backslaps from old friends, it was an incredibly successful and appropriate celebration of this unique milestone.

Congratulations to Local 396 from the entire Labor Movement and the Labor Tribune on their special milestone.



One Comment

  • It was an awesome day!!!
    Can’t thank the officers enough for throwing such a great get together!!!


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