Tug-O-War at labor family picnic Sept. 28 will have exciting challengers

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Illinois vs. Missouri in Tug-O-War 

at the gala Sept. 28 Labor picnic?

TO GIVE ‘FITTERS COMPETITION? With two heavy-weight (pardon the pun) United Association teams from Missouri and Illinois coming into the 2013 Tug-O-War  with great confidence, can their spirits be “chilled” by Laborers Local 42 whose teams have twice won the championships – 2008 and 2009? But will the Laborers be in the hunt, prepared to fight for the first place honors? They are not yet signed up, giving hope to other teams! The 2009 Local 42 team (pictured) celebrates their victory. Is your local in the hunt yet? Labor Tribune photo
TO GIVE ‘FITTERS COMPETITION? With two heavy-weight (pardon the pun) United Association teams from Missouri and Illinois coming into the 2013 Tug-O-War with great confidence, can their spirits be “chilled” by Laborers Local 42 whose teams have twice won the championships – 2008 and 2009? But will the Laborers be in the hunt, prepared to fight for the first place honors? They are not yet signed up, giving hope to other teams! The 2009 Local 42 team (pictured) celebrates their victory. Is your local in the hunt yet?
Labor Tribune photo

The potential for two giants in the “heft” field competing for the crystal trophy in the Sep. 28 Labor Tug-O-War is imminent, as Illinois Steamfitters Local 439 has entered the fray once again to challenge a previous event winner and Missouri sister local, Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 562, who won the first contest in 2007. Both are United Association affiliates.

They both might be surprised, however, because in the past, Laborers Local 42 has produced two mighty teams, first place winners in 2008 and 2009, the only local to win twice. Local 42 Business Manager Brandon Flinn said his union was again entering which means the stakes for the trophy are getting higher.

But Steamfitters 439 Business Manager Totsie Bailey was not fazed. With his trademark chuckle he said,  “We may the David in this field of Goliaths, but we intend on bringing that trophy back where it belongs, on the East Side!”

FUN, GAMES FOR ADULTS, KIDS

The gala Labor Picnic will have something for everyone. Besides the Tug-O-War, a popular and exciting event, there will be games and events for the adults as well as kids of all ages including a Jr. Tug-O-War where everyone gets a prize, and of course, lots of food and drink.

One of the adult games: a $5,000 cash prize drawing where only 200 raffle tickets at $50 each will be sold.

 All charitable proceeds this year will go to the $5 For The Fight Fund that helps out-of-work union members facing some kind of a financial disaster, either with rent, medicines, car problems, mortgages, etc. In the past three labor picnics, a total of $45,000 has been raised for charities.

YOUR LOCAL IS NEEDED

To date, eight locals have signed up, so there’s plenty of room for your local; there’s room for 32 teams!

If you’re not signed up, it’s important to do so as quickly as possible by contacting organizers Local 562’s Marty McClimens (Rockwood Labor Club) at 314-920-1404/email: mbmcclimens@gmail.com or Bricklayers Local 1’s Steve Bailey (Tri-County Labor Club) at 636-794-4878/email: tricolabor@gmail.com).

A team consists of no more than six people with a combined weight of 1,500 pounds. And the judges are strict about the weight limit to keep the competition fair; in previous contests, some participants had to shed clothing at the weigh-in to get down to the team limit.

Locals signed up to date include: Glaziers Local 513, Graphic Communications/ International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 6-505M, IBEW Local 1439, Iron Workers Local 396, Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 562, Sheet Metal Workers Local 36, Steamfitters Local 439 and the St. Louis Police Officers Association.

Previous winners were:

2007 – Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 562B team weighing in at 1,497 pounds.

2008 – Laborers Local 42’s mighty team weighing in at 1,499 pounds.

2009 – Laborers Local 42 repeats with their team weighing in at 1,490 pounds.

2010 – Sprinkler Fitters 268A weighing in at 1,394 pounds and Sprinkler Fitters 268B team weighing in at 1,486 pounds. In a dramatic turn of events, as the two sprinkler fitter teams squared off for the championship, in a show of union solidarity, both teams dropped their ropes and were declared joint winners.

The program will be held in Forest Park at the Cricket Fields from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. with the Tug-O-War to begin at 10 a.m. Mark your calendars now and plan to attend.

Also, the program’s sponsors, the Tri-County and Rockwood Labor Clubs are seeking sponsors who will get large signs ringside during the Tug. A 2x2 foot sign is only $100; 2x4 is $200 and 2x8 foot is $400. An event “Welcome Tent Sponsor” is $2,500, which includes a 10 x 10 foot tent with tables and chairs and a 2x8 foot sign.

Donations of any amount are welcome.

Remember, all charitable proceeds go to $5 For The Fight to help our out-of-work families.

 

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