VINTON — American Legion Post 161 and Auxiliary will once again be holding the annual Vinton Civil War Bean Dinner Aug. 4 with a parade, bingo, live music, children’s activities and more.
The parade begins marching at 11:30 a.m. There will be live music, kid’s games, refreshments and the soldier’s meal of beans which is served from noon until about 2:30 p.m.. Everyone is welcome. The event is hosted by American Legion Post 161 and Auxiliary.
According to documented bean dinner history, the first Vinton bean dinner was reported to take place October. 13, 1883 and was originally called a “soldier’s campfire” and then a “Grand Army Campfire.” The dinner was held by Corwin Post No. 259 G.A.R. as a celebration of the post’s first anniversary. Reportedly around 2,000 individuals attended the event. The Vinton bean dinner is recognized as Ohio’s oldest recorded Civil War bean dinner tradition. The dinner was held on different dates, but mostly during October, September or August. In 1893, the dinner formalized to occur on the first Saturday in August. The dinner was next formalized as a homecoming event in 1910.
In 2003, Gov. Bob Taft recognized the community for 120 years honoring Civil War veterans. This year will be the 135th recorded year anniversary of the event and the 68th year the American Legion Post 161 and Auxiliary have sponsored the event.
McClaskey brothers, Robert and Gary, in the past have been said to be the chief individuals responsible for cooking 270 pounds of navy, white beans and 70 pounds of ham in their bean dinner concoction.
According to previous information related by American Legion Post 161’s Bob McCarley, the dinner at one point sat a site on the outskirts of Vinton near State Route 325 before moving to Vinton Community Park.
While being a Civil War tradition, the post has used the event to honor those serving in the US military as well as past veterans.
For more information, call 740-388-8319.
Dean Wright can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2103.