Hall of Fame Luncheon Club

The Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club meets each Monday from early September through mid-May. Members arrive beginning at 9:30 a.m. Lunch is served at approximately 11:00 a.m., the program begins at noon and concludes at 1:00 p.m. 

Under this program with the Pro Football Hall of Fame, each member of the club will be entitled to free museum admission for one year, Sept. 1-Aug. 31. Also, Malone University and Walsh University offer free admission to their athletic events with your membership card. 

Luncheon Club meets Mondays
at Tozzi's on 12th* (4210 12th Street NW)

330-477-7515

(* Meetings held elsewhere noted on schedule.)

Some of the club highlights include:

  • Top quality speakers from the sports world
  • 35-week schedule
  • Widely-regarded as the finest luncheon club in the country!
  • Membership helps support the Pro Football Hall of Fame
  • Great lunches at affordable prices! ($15.00 for members; $20.00 for non-members)
  • Increased club awareness
  • Members receive annual admission pass to the Pro Football Hall of Fame
  • Free admission to Malone College and Walsh University athletic events
  • Annual golf outing

Memberships for the season remain just $40.00 and are on sale before and after the Monday programs.
 

For membership information:
 

Please contact Club Secretary Jim Lindesmith at 330-452-6138

or

Please contact Speaker Committee Chairman R. J. Van Almen at 330-685-4605

or

Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club
c/o Pro Football Hall of Fame
2121 George Halas Drive NW
Canton, OH 44708

or

To enjoy your membership immediately, you may fill out your application at your first luncheon and give it to Club Secretary Jim Lindesmith along with a check for $40.00 payable to the Hall of Fame Luncheon Club.

Enjoy your membership in the Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club.
 

2022-23 Speakers

September

12: Bruce Drennan - 850 ESPN Cleveland (WKNR) 

19: Jeff Logan - Former Ohio State football player and Ohio State Radio Network analyst

26: Michael Dessecker - NOPGA Teacher of the Year, instructor to the stars

 

October

3: TBD @ Pro Football Hall of Fame

10: Jim Ballard - College Football Hall of Fame

17: Antonio Hall (McKinley) vs. Nate Moore (Massillon)

24: Jamy Bechler, former Indiana high school/college coach at author

31: Rob Dewolf, minor league baseball and journalist

 

November

7: Jerome Pruett, St. Louis Cardinals

14: Bryan Dwyer, Robert Edward Auctions

21: TBD @ Pro Football Hall of Fame

28: Doug Ute, OHSAA commissioner

 

December

5: Todd Blackledge, former Davey O'Brien Award recipient, ESPN college football analyst

12: TBD @ Pro Football Hall of Fame

19: Erica Neininger Muhleman, senior vice president - XFL

26: Joe Dose, grandson of Marion Motley

 

January

2: Tim Jackson, former YSU Male Athlete of the Year and author

9: Shawn Crable, former Massillon, Michigan and NFL player

16: Pat Narduzzi - University of Pittsburgh head football coach

23: Jim Tressel - national champion coach and YSU president

30: TBD at Pro Football Hall of Fame 

 

History of the Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club

One of the main reasons why the Pro Football Hall of Fame is in Canton is because of the community spirit and support. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, many cities across the country expressed interest in having a Hall of Fame devoted to professional football. Canton was the only community that put together an impressive fund-raising drive. Nearly $400,000 was raised to have the Hall of Fame built.

At about the same time, former Hall of Fame Chairman Earl Schreiber — joined by Hank Critchfield, Lin Houston, Red Ryan, Joe Cross, Harry Van Almen, Wilbur Jacobs, Peach Thomas and Bob Schreiber — after attending the Agonis Luncheon Club in Dayton, Ohio, formed the Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club.

The first meeting of the Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club was held at Benders Restaurant in downtown Canton in 1963. Soon thereafter, the venue was switched to Lakeshore Restaurant. Membership grew quickly and after using Topp’s Chalet for a short time, meetings moved to the current site at Tozzi's on 12th Restaurant, just a few miles from the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club, with more than 500 members, is considered to be one of the largest of its kind in the entire country. Meetings are held each Monday from mid-September through the middle of May. The national prominence of the Hall of Fame, coupled with the strong support of the club, continues to produce a remarkable list of national speakers on a weekly basis.

A club that knows no strangers, members enjoy fellowship, good food, and interesting speakers. Couple that with the enthusiasm of the member audience and sports fans and the Hall of Fame Luncheon Club is THE place to be on Mondays during the season.

When the luncheon club was formed, the bylaws stipulated that the purpose of the club was to help support the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Originally, that support was reflected by members serving as drivers during Hall of Fame Weekend. The club’s next project focused on devoting a portion of the membership dues to paying for the Hall of Famers’ rings each year. Today, the Balfour Company, which designs the rings, donates the rings each year to the Hall of Fame.

Currently, the Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club has a new cause to show support for the Hall of Fame. The club will contribute $50,000 over a five-year period to the Pro Football Hall of Fame's national fundraising campaign. In addition, part of the proceeds from the weekly meal sales is used to sponsor the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s “Senior Day” (62 and older) at the museum.

Also, Malone University and Walsh University offer free admission to all athletic events with your membership card. Aside from showing support to the Hall of Fame, this sponsorship also attracts attention to the Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club through media coverage of this splendid event.

In addition, each member of the Luncheon Club will receive an annual pass that will allow the individual unlimited free admission to the Pro Football Hall of Fame throughout the year.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club continues to contribute its support to the Hall of Fame museum while offering first-rate programs each and every week to its members.

 

Current Board:  2022-2023

Board of Directors

President: Jim Starrett
Vice President: Frank Cilona
Secretary:  Jim Lindesmith 
Treasurer: Tim Richard
Financial Secretary: Wade Hostetler
Pro Football Hall of Fame Board representative: R.J. Van Almen
 
Trustees 
 
(1-year term):
 
Jim Evans 
Al Mayfield
Bruce Schorsten

 
(2-year term):
 
Dennis Manzella 
Jim Osborn
Becky Richard
 
 
Ex-Officio: Bill Costello
 
Speaker Committee Chairman:  R. J. Van Almen
 

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