Past President Frank Congel sharing the podium with current President Darrel Longest

Lions History

The US Lions were formed in June 1917 by Melvin Jones, an insurance executive. He organized 25 independent business clubs into a service organization. The goal of the first Lions Club was to plan and execute a wide variety of service projects that addressed the needs of the local community. The Lions' focus on addressing the needs of the visually impaired followed their 1925 annual convention. Helen Keller, a well-known disability rights advocate, was the principal speaker at the convention and challenged the Lions to become "Knights of the Blind." The Lions enthusiastically endorsed the challenge. While our work continues to serve the needs of the visually impaired, we have broadened our service to include, for example, providing hearing screening to local school children, conducting seminars to improve awareness of the risks of diabetes, supporting youth athletics, granting scholarships to local students, and a range of other services.

Lancaster County Lions Club (LCLC)

The LCLC was chartered on Oct 14, 1947, and has continually served our community for 75 years. We currently have about 35 members. Consistent with the history briefly discussed above, we provide and support many service projects within our community including the following:

Sight and hearing screening for local public and private schools, Head Start, Day Care Centers, and needy adults;

Pay for eye exams and prescription eyeglasses for those in need;

Pay for audiology exams and hearing aids for those in need;

Conduct an Eyeglass Recycling Program that provides free eyeglasses to the needy locally and globally;

Conduct an annual holiday food collection drive for local needy families;

Award college scholarships to local high school seniors;

Participate in the annual Lions' (Bland) music competition that awards scholarships to local talented youth;

Sponsor a local high school LEO Club and a middle school Peace Poster Contest.

This is only a partial list of our activities. There are also activities underway to raise funds required for us to carry out our work. We are always looking for individuals to become Lions and join us in this most satisfying endeavor. If you desire to get involved in the community and meet great people, please contact us. Our contact page provides the required information.

We are a member of Lion District 24-I. This district includes all clubs within Southeastern VA.



Lions Clubs International is the world's largest service club organization with more than 1.4 million members in approximately 46,000 clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas around the world.

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