The Elks Mission Statement
To inculcate the principles of Charity, Justice, Brotherly Love and Fidelity; to recognize a belief in God; to promote the welfare and enhance the happiness of its Members; to quicken the spirit of American patriotism; to cultivate good fellowship; to perpetuate itself as a fraternal organization, and to provide for its government, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks of the United States of America will serve the people and communities through benevolent programs, demonstrating that Elks Care and Elks Share.
In February 16, 1868, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks began and soon there were requests for Elks Lodges in cities other than New York. In response to these appeals, the Elks asked the New York State legislature for a charter authorizing the establishment of a Grand Lodge with the power to establish local lodges anywhere in the United States. When the Grand Lodge Charter was issued, the founders then received the first local charter as New York Lodge No. 1 on March 10, 1871.
With just under 1 million members in more than 2,000 lodges across the country, the Elks, comprised of both men and women, are one of the largest and most active fraternal organizations in the world!
Over the years this charitable organization has been serving children with disabilities by providing Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Speech-Language Therapy, Preschool Vision Screening, Scholarship Grants, Hospital Grants, Support for our Veterans, Americanism and More…
Visit us at our local lodge today at 158 Conejo School Road, Thousand Oaks, CA or contact us by phone during office hours M-F 10-3 805.496.2477
The History of the BPO Elks Thousand Oaks Lodge 2477
The foundation of the this fraternal organization is found in the Elks Mission Statement: “To inculcate* the principles of Charity, Justice, Brotherly Love and Fidelity; to recognize a belief in God; to promote the welfare and enhance the happiness of its Members; to quicken the spirit of American patriotism; to cultivate good fellowship; to perpetuate itself as a fraternal organization, and to provide for its government, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks of the United States of America will serve the people and communities through benevolent programs, demonstrating that Elks Care and Elks Share.”
With that vision as the root of the organization Thousand Oaks Elks lodge #2477 became a reality with a dinner and dance taking place at the Oxnard Lodge on March 25, 1972 (at a cost of only $3.00 per person).
The series of meeting locations began with Du-Pars Restaurant located on TO Blvd. but due to on-site fund raising restrictions it quickly became apparent that a new location was needed. Thanks to one of the members we found ourselves in a tack room in Lynn Ranch meeting for free. Still, a tack room isn’t necessarily the place to grow an organization so the hunt continued. After an inspection of a warehouse off Skyline Drive conducted by cigarette lighter in conjunction with an “offer they couldn’t refuse” the Elks had a new home. However, temporary.
Again in early 1973 members came to the aid of the lodge moving to our present location a former Lutheran Church at 158 Conejo School Road. Needing $85.000 to purchase the property, some members put their homes up as security against default of the loan. Bob Clark Sr., Dick Churik, Dick Flake, John Farhat, Jack Henry, Paul Jones, Erle Pitman, Frank Rindone and Don Steinhelper did so under the name “The Conejo Brothers”. Thanks to them and twelve other brothers who each loaned $1000.00 to the lodge, funding was guaranteed. The purchase of our lodge building and property was complete and a new era began.
Changes to the current lodge building have continued over the years including some of notable interest. In March 1983, what is now the men’s room was under construction. The project of John Nichols, the ER at that time, was a new men’s room, something to replace the “one holer” which was currently in use. With donations of time and materials from many, it became a reality and the “Johns John” was ready for the Grand Flush Opening! The spring of 1981 saw the remodeling of the bar and efforts to upgrade and renovate the property continue this today.
Thousand Oaks Elks Lodge has been known as the “friendliest” lodge through much of its history. In 1999 Heather Walter was the first woman to be initiated as a member of the Lodge. The men and women of Thousand Oaks Elks Lodge are committed to serving both their members and the community.
To read additional details on the history of our lodge check out the latest Antler Antics. Read more about our charities and community programs on our home page or see a complete list of our programs here.