Shrimp Boil Hauls In Tasteful Success

Judy Kramer
County Reporter
About 700 people ate shrimp, chicken parmesan, baked potatoes, coleslaw, homemade shrimp sauce and desserts at the annual shrimp boil benefit on Saturday, November 2, from 3 to 7 PM. Drinks included iced tea and beer. The popular event is the biggest fundraiser sponsored by the Warsaw Knights of Columbus. Proceeds are donated to local and Catholic charities during the year. 
“My sister, Rose, and I travel every year from Tabernacle, New Jersey, to Edwards at the end of October,” said Vicky, a retired school secretary who attended the shrimp boil on Saturday. “We were elated with the food, the people coming together, and the helpers who kept the hall clean. We have soups, sandwiches and chicken dinner fundraisers where we come from, but nothing like a shrimp boil. The deserts were to die for.” 
Local residents, Cynthia Bolinger and her husband Dave, attended the shrimp boil for the first time this year and definitely plan to attend again in the future.
“The meal was delicious,” said Bolinger. “There were so many desserts and the shrimp was perfect. It was good to see the community come together, and to see people from churches other than St. Ann’s Catholic Church helping out with the dinner. It is also a good feeling to support our community and have fun too.”
Diners picked up their food at the front of the hall and chose places to eat at one of the 450 available seats.  Knights and their helpers walked between tables replenishing shrimp and cleaning up. A stage full of homemade desserts was provided at the back of the hall comprised of favorites such as pumpkin pie with cool whip, and a variety of fruit pies, cake and cobblers.
“We started preparing for the shrimp boil a week ahead of time, arranging tables and chairs in the hall,” said Grand Knight Dave Grimes. “Knights’ wives baked desserts, and on the Saturday morning of the dinner we prepped potatoes by hand-washing, soaking them in olive oil and butter, and cooking them. Also on Saturday morning we set up the tent in front of the building where the cooking would take place in twin turbo cookers.”
Grimes said that there were a few changes this year including a time adjustment. In previous years, the shrimp boil was scheduled from 4 to 7 PM, and this year it started at 3 PM due to people who kept showing up early to eat. He said even with the earlier starting time this year,  people were showing up at 2:30 PM. Another change was the addition of chicken parmesan to the menu to meet the needs of those who might have an allergy to shrimp. And, the price of a ticket bought before the dinner went up by $2, from $20 a person to $22. 
“Deputy Storm Walker is a Knight, so he and a few other volunteers from the Sheriff’s Office helped control traffic into and out of the parking lot,” said Grimes.
Grimes said that proceeds were still coming in from the sale of tickets, but he estimated that between $25,000 and $30,000 had been raised. A meeting of the Knights will be held next week to determine where the funds will be donated.
“Last year we donated money to the Sheriff’s Office to help pay for a drone, and we will probably do something similar again this year,” said Grimes. “We usually donate to Birthright (a Catholic charity providing love and support for over 45 years to women facing unplanned pregnancies), the soup kitchen, and Missouri Special Olympics. We helped build the Special Olympic facility in Jefferson City that was hit by a tornado last year.
The Knights of Columbus building is located at 31687 Hwy 83, in Warsaw, and is available for rental. The Knights are Catholic men, 18 years of age and older, interested in strengthening their bonds as a family, deepening their faith in the Catholic Church and working with other like-minded men to help support church and community. Monthly meetings are held at 6 PM every second Wednesday of the month. Fish Fry fundraisers for local charities were held by the Knights on September 13, and October 11 and other times during the past year.