Brussels Lions Club donates Half a Million Dollars

What started in 1961 as a picnic under a tent at Saxe’s Arcadia (later Coun’s C Club) has grown into the weekend event known as Belgian Days sponsored by the 34-member Brussels Lions Club.

As they celebrate their 54th Belgian Days the club also celebrates that this past year their donations to local, state and international causes passed the $500,000 mark.

Incoming Brussels Lions Club President Matt Wautier commented, “All the donations the Lions Club has been able to make are due to the generosity and support of the businesses and the people in the Brussels and Door County area. We couldn’t do it without their patronage at Belgian Days and the volunteer help they give us.”

Over the years the Brussels Lions Club has provided more than $65,000 in scholarships to Southern Door graduates to help them continue their educations. They have contributed more than $170,000 to the local town park and community, including sharing the costs of purchasing the additional acreage on the east side of the town park, the various shelter buildings and other facilities at the park, the Christmas decorations that are put up in Brussels and the free loan of medical equipment when it is needed by members of the community. The club also helps maintain the town park and keeps it looking beautiful for all of the community to use.

The club has provided help to local individuals and the youth of the community with more than $165,000 in donations to school activities, local scouting and sport groups and providing needed assistance when a family may have fallen on some hard times. The club participates in vision screening of students in the Door County schools and at preschools and daycares in the area. The club also sponsors the summer baseball program at the park on Monday nights for kids of all ages.

The Brussels Lions Club also participates with the other 46,000-plus clubs worldwide with more than 1.4 million men and women who are members of Lion Clubs International to support state, national and international causes, with the primary goal being to eliminate preventable blindness worldwide. They participate in the transport of donated corneas that are eventually used for transplants at the Wisconsin Lions Eye Bank near Madison. This eye bank is currently working toward being able to transplant entire eyes for those in need.

They support the Leader Dogs for the Blind program and the Wisconsin Lions Camp ( that provides weeklong camping experiences at a 440-acre camp in Rosholt, Wis. for children and adults with vision, hearing and cognitive disabilities as well as weeks for kids with diabetes. Several local youths and adults have attended the Wisconsin Lions Camp over the years.

This year’s Belgian Days will be held July 11-12 at Brussels Town Park. Gates open at 7 am both days. The Brussels Big Dogs Baseball Tournament starts at 8 am both days. Food stands featuring Belgian trippe, booyah, potato jut, hamburgers and Belgian pies open at 10 am both days. Co-ed volleyball tournament will be held at noon on Saturday (call Mike at 920.536.0556 with questions). The Cooyah tournament begins at noon on Saturday (call Ron at 920.825.7686). The band Spice will perform from 7 to 11 pm Saturday. The Brussels-Union EMR Belgian Days Run/Walk (with 1-, 2- and 4-mile routes) begins at 8 am Sunday. The parade will begin at 10:30 am Sunday. The Modern Day Drifters perform from 11:30 am to 4:30 pm Sunday. The raffle ticket drawing takes place at 4:30 pm and you need not be present to win.

Related Organizations