America's Largest Veterans Service Organization

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Hours of Operation for the Canteen and Meal Times at the Post!
Closed Monday and Tuesday
Weekdays:  Wed thru Friday 2 p.m. until 8 p.m.
Weekends:  Saturday 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., Sunday 10 p.m. until 6 p.m.
Closing hours may be adjusted by the bartender depending on the business activity.  
Meals, due to COVID-19 mandates, are served throughout the day when the Canteen is open.  Organizational meal times are:
Wednesday  @ 6 pm
Thursday @ 6 pm
Friday @ 6pm
Saturday @ 12 pm
Sunday @ 10 am
Meal prices will vary depending on the meal itself and the cost of goods (that have been steadily rising)
Post Telephone # (619) 469-6064
Several Big Screen TV's to watch game shows, Soccer, Baseball, Golf, Football, Basketball, etc.  We have the Direct TV NFL package and we welcome everyone to watch your favorite team.  
NOTE  that active duty military and their guests as well as members of ANY OTHER Veterans organization such as Navy League, Air Force Association, Disabled American Veterans, Legion of Honor, etc., can be served alcohol without signing a guest register or having someone escort you.  

 We Have An Outstanding Hall Facility that is available to the public!


In what started as a peaceful demonstration in support of the Black Lives Matter movement within the City of La Mesa, the evening of 30 May 2020 descended into chaos when the La Mesa Police Station suddenly came under attack.  This was followed by attacks on City Hall; the complete burning of two local banks, a railroad museum, vehicles and a fire truck; the looting of Walmart, Target, and Vons, and some other small businesses; and the breaking of windows and destruction of several small businesses; and to the after-the-fact shock and non-sensical reaction of the community and our members, the burning of American and POW/MIA flags at American Legion La Mesa Post 282 and damage to the facility.  The flags that flew over the Vietnam Memorial, adjacent to the facility, were taken and replaced by an unknown flag.  The flag in the front of the facility was completely burned.  Other damage included graffiti sprayed over the entire building and the breaking of two very large hall windows, the window above the hall entrance doors, and one smaller.  Due to road blockages and an imposed curfew, Commander Porath first assessed the building early on Sunday morning and to his surprise found volunteers already cleaning the areas and facility.  The volunteer group quickly swelled and consisted of facility membership, members from other Legion and VFW Posts, strangers, and La Mesa Boy Scout Troop 51.  Their work included painting over the graffiti, power washing, facility repairs, temporary covering of the broken windows, tear-gas cleanup, and some repair and painting of the Vietnam Memorial.  Due to the vandalism, the entire building will need to be repainted and various repairs made; an unexpected cost that is out of reach of the Club. 

A few days later it was found the climber was Cory Boyd and that he replaced the burned flag with one of his own along with a new lanyard, and that his brother Derek assisted.  Because of their actions, the American Legion National Commander has personally provided his appreciation via a personal video, certificate, and challenge coin.  On 25 June, the Commander of Post 282 and membership (all organizations) formally provided recognition to include paid membership for the 2020-2021 year for the American Legion (Derek is a combat veteran) and the Sons of the American Legion (Cory is eligible).     

Damage to Post 282

Remnants of our flag after vandals burned her and damaged our post!

For more photos of damage done go to: http://www.lamesapost282.org/site/photogallery.php?cat_id=28


La Mesa Post 282 has been in La Mesa, a relatively small community of 60,000, since 1947.  The American Legion facility houses American Legion Post 282 and Auxiliary, Sons of the Legion, VFW Ship 1774 and Auxiliary, AMVETS Post 1775, and the Air Force Sergeants Association Chapter 1365 of San Diego and Imperial Counties.  The facility is affectionately called the La Mesa Veterans Club.  Commander John “Jack” Porath has been the Commander since 2014 and is also the Ship’s Captain of VFW Ship 1774 since 2010. 

If you would like to make a donation to help our facility recover from the recent protests, please CLICK HERE!

or - You may stop by and drop off cash or a check (made out to) American Legion Post282 at the canteen during normal hours of business.

or - Mail your check or Money Order to: American Legion Post282

                                                                   8118 University Avenue

                                                                                        La Mesa, CA 91942-5568

Your donation is 100% tax deductible.  You will receive a letter of acknowledgment and proof of payment.  

We thank you in advance for your generous donation, regardless of the amount.


The Club is now open for regular business.  We will close on Mondays and Tuesdays.  All of the American Legion business meetings are now on the fourth Thursday of each month.  

To purify the air, we have installed UVC light in the return ducts of the HVAC System and UVC lights in each room that will operate when the facility is closed.  This will purify the air and furniture in each room.  We also have fans with UVC light installed that will also purify the air when the heating, air conditioning, and fan is not operational.  The UVC light, used in hospitals, has proven effective to remove most common forms of indoor air pollution.  The UVC light will keep the HVAC coils clean of mold.  This light is also effective for viruses, germs, odors, cooking smells, tobacco smoke, and pet odors. 



30 July 2019:  Membership eligibility changed.  An individual is eligible for membership in The American Legion only if the individual – (1) has served in the Armed Forces of (A) the United States at any time during – (i) the period of April 6, 1917, through November 11, 1918; or (ii) any time after December 7, 1941 (for one day or more); or (B) a government associated with the United States Government during a period or time referred to in subsection (A) of this section and was a citizen of the United States when the individual entered that service; and (2) was honorably discharged or separated from that service or continues to serve honorably during or after that period or time; provided, however, that such service shall have been terminated by honorable discharge or honorable separation, or continued honorably during or after any of said periods; provided, further, that no person shall be entitled to membership who, being in such service during any of said periods, refused on conscientious, political or other grounds to subject themselves to military discipline or unqualified service.”

Since the American Legion La Mesa Post 282 charter on June 28, 1923, we have been welcoming personnel from all uniformed branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.  We welcome you now whether you are Active Duty, National Guard, Reserve, or Veteran regardless of where in the world you may have served, a member of another veteran's organization, or family member.  Because La Mesa Post 282 hosts all other La Mesa-based veteran organizations in our facility, we affectionately call ourselves the La Mesa Veterans Club where we conduct family-friendly events and food offerings.   

We are a very active establishment with reasonable, suggested prices.  You will meet fellow Legionnaires and those of our Auxiliary (that now allows males); see membership) and Sons of The American Legion (any age); Shipmates of VFW O.K. Ingram Ship 1774 and the Auxiliary (male and female); members of AMVETS Post 1775 (male and female); members of Air Force Sergeants Association San Diego and Imperial County Chapter 1365 (male and female); members of other veterans organizations; and the authorized personnel who visit us. 

The American Legion family include the Auxiliary, Sons of the American Legion (SAL), and Legion Riders.  Membership in The American Legion Auxiliary (see TAB) includes spouses (male and female) of active-duty service members and U.S. Veterans who served at least one day since 7 Dec 1941 to the present; grandmothers, mothers, sisters, wives, and direct and adopted female descendants of members of The American Legion; and the grandmothers, mothers, sisters, wives, and direct and adopted female descendants of all men and women who were in the Armed Forces of the U.S. since 7 Dec 1941 to the present, and from 6 Apr 1917 to 11 Nov 1918; or who, being citizens of the United States at the time of their entry therein, served on active duty in the Armed Forces of any of the governments associated with the United States during any of said periods, and died in the line of duty or after honorable discharge; and to those women who of their own right are eligible for membership in The American Legion.   The Sons of the American Legion (see TAB) is a male of any age who is a direct descendant, adopted son/stepson of a member of The American Legion and/or such male descendants of a veteran who served our great country during times of war as defined by the American Legion and who was eligible for American Legion membership based on dates of service.  The descendant needs to not be living at the time of application.  American Legion male members can also be an active member of SAL and often do join both.  The Legion Riders is a Program of the American Legion but not yet formed at our Post.  

If you are interested in leading or assisting with the formation of a Legion Riders Chapter, please contact the American Legion Commander or an officer of the Post 282.  Legion Riders' membership comprises the entire American Legion family who rides motorcycles as well as members of other organizations who wish to also join the Legion.  

Our members often belong to one or more of the veteran's organizations that may be present in our facility based on individual eligibility.  Persons who have multiple memberships do it for reasons related to the desire to assist other organizations, benefits, travel, and a sense of belonging since the Programs do somewhat differ.  La Mesa Veterans Club members do not care to which organization another belongs; "we are all together.".   Eligible persons are strongly encouraged to join us so we may fulfill our mission to better serve the needs of the community and the veterans of La Mesa.  Keep in mind also, that membership helps retain the benefits we have earned that each Congress attempts to reduce.  Membership applications for all of the organizations present in our facility are available at the Post.   To those who may be interested, please visit us at any time of the day.  

We are a community gathering place that welcomes all.  Your membership and participation allow us all to continue serving God, Country, and Community.  Our local mission is to provide camaraderie, a support base for the veteran and family within the local community, low-cost meals, entertainment, counseling, various programs that assist the community, and to otherwise serve veterans and family members while embodying the goals of the American Legion Preamble as stated below:

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For God and Country, we associate ourselves together for the following purpose: 

To uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America;

to maintain law and order;

to foster and perpetuate a one hundred percent Americanism;

to preserve the memories and incidents of our associations in all wars;

to inculcate a sense of individual obligation to community, state and nation;

to combat the autocracy of both the classes and the masses;

to make right the master of might;

to promote peace and goodwill on earth;

to safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy;

to consecrate and sanctify your comradeship by our devotion to mutual helpfulness.


              Karaoke is Presently Suspended

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We are now distributing the Calendar and other issues of interest via email and posting on this site.   If we have your email address, we can directly send it to you.  Please provide your email address to the Commander at: jporath1@roadrunner.com

Not eligible to be a member or are someone who would like to contribute? Want to help the La Mesa community veterans? You may donate directly to us BY MAIL TO: American Legion Post #282, P.O. Box 265, La Mesa, CA 91944-0265 or by using the donation button on this web page.  You may also join our Post as a Sponsor (for details, click Sponsors tab on the left).  Fully 100% of the monies raised are used for veterans’ needs and issues.  Your donations help us sponsor such as youth programs and scholarships, flags for the Memorial, aid and assistance to our local needy Veterans and their families, our Vietnam Memorial's upkeep, and otherwise help us to continue the financial support to worthy community programs and projects.

To the wonderful patriotic citizens of the La Mesa community:  Join our Post as a Booster or Sponsor (if a business, we will provide a link to your business).  100% of the monies raised are given back to the community.  Help us to continue to support financially worthy community programs and projects.  Help us to continue sponsoring Scholarships for children, and give aid and assistance to our local needy Veterans and their families.  

Thank You for your Donations! 


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We've just completed our new Veterans' Guide to Getting Hired. You can find the guide here: http://www.learnhowtobecome.org/veterans-guide-to-getting-hired/

Overview of federal and private educational benefits available to servicemembers and their families. http://www.bestcolleges.com/financial-aid/military/


Welcome VFW and AMVETS


Link to the VFW O.K. Ingram Ship 1774 - Web Site




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