Opening Ceremonies: President-Elect Tracy Shaffer called the meeting to order at 6:15 PM at our summer location, Timberland RV Park. Andrea Mason led the Invocation and we said the Pledge of Allegiance.
Marian Wells was our Greeter for the evening. Cindy Shoppe was Sergeant at Arms and Michael Fisher took meeting notes.
Make-ups: Lincoln and Debbie Ehrlenbach, who visited two clubs in the District on 9/6 and 9/7.
Visiting Rotarians: Tina Chapman from the Waterville Club
Birthdays: Dana Ritter, 9/7
Door Prizes: Bottle of wine to Tony; Rotary partnership mug to Clyde; American Diabetes Association T-shirt to Laura; St. Dunstan’s 2014 Cookbook to Fred, who already owned a copy, so another ticket was drawn and it went to Debbie; flashlight to Lincoln; Year Planner and Eagle Lodge Motel pin to Dom.
Rotary Minute: Jo Cooper talked about the FIA Golf tournament that took place earlier in the day, where she learned that she had been a schoolmate of Peter Collier’s mother. Jo’s membership in the Rotary had connected her to Peter which then led to her being put back in touch with a friend from her childhood.
Vocational Minute: Jo Cooper talked about how an experience she had as a child, when she took the wrong school bus on her way home from school, has, even though she majored in medieval studies in college and envisioned herself becoming an academic, somehow led her to her current work as Director of Friends in Action where, among other things, she arranges rides for elders.
50/50: $13 was awarded to Arlyn Whitehead as the lucky ticket holder. She graciously donated that plus another $7 to the 1st quarter cause, which is to provide Hancock County Sheriff’s canine in training a protective vest upon training graduation.
Happy Dollars Highlights: Charlene for friends in Florida; Carl for his trip to Cape Breton and his 50th reunion of his high school class; Irv for his son and nephew in Florida, who came through Hurricane Irma unharmed; Clyde in remembrance of the firefighters and policemen who gave their lives on 9/11; Ashley for her husband who is now six weeks out of his latest surgery and doing well; Lincoln to mark 20 visits to clubs in the District; also Allegra, Gene, Fred, Tina Chapman, Andrea, and Rodney.
Rotary Business:
  1. Tracy reminded members that they need to let Ashley know by Sunday afternoon whether they will be having dinner at that week’s meeting.
  2. Scott is initiating a new policy of making available on the back table any correspondence with the club—such as thank you notes-- that he has received in the previous week. For example, the club has received a thank you from the family of Richard Dudman for sending flowers, and a thank you from the Bar Harbor and Noontime clubs for inviting them to join us for the visit of Senator Collins.
  3. Rotary International has set-up a fund to support recovery efforts in Houston and Florida. Information about this can be found on the main Rotary website.
  4. Tracy reminded us about the Bangor Rotary Club anniversary gala coming up in October.
  5. Dave mentioned that most volunteer spots for upcoming pancake breakfast on September 23 have been filled. He still has a need for propane tanks. Anyone who hasn’t signed up but wants to help with set-up should meet at the storage center on Friday September 22nd at 3:00.
  6. Jack Frost will be hosting a one-person pancake breakfast for an individual who now is in hospice care who expressed regret about not being able to attend the Club’s annual pancake breakfast in August.
  7. Clyde told us about upcoming service opportunities: helping a family whose house burned down; staffing the Friends in Action Auction at the Moore Center on September 30th; and the upcoming Blood Drive; and the Purple Pinkie Project for Polio Plus that will be held at Pat’s Pizza October 21.
  8. Tracy presented the options the club now has for choosing a meeting location for the coming year. There are two choices: return to China Hill restaurant or return to the Moore Center. The latter would be the more expensive of the two options, would require dinner reservations in advance, and would result in a budget shortfall. Club members will participate in a secret ballot to make the choice next week. Our deadline for leaving Timberland is October 10th.
  9. Arlyn announced that this year there will be a new effort to make sure every club member donates as part of Every Rotarian Every Year. The plan is to have a quarterly prize drawing for members who participate. The first drawing will be on 9/26.
Rotarian Gene Pellerano introduced Tina Chapman, former President of the Waterville Club. She gave a presentation on a program she initiated a few years ago when she was club President there, “Rhoda Reads.” The aim of the program is to boost early literacy. Supported by District grants, the club created “early literacy kits” that consisted of age-appropriate children’s books selected by the Director of the Waterville Library, plus an owl plush toy, “Rhoda,” as the program mascot. Initially the program was aimed at children aged infant to five years old, and Rotarians were offered training on how to read to these very young kids. The program has since expanded to include children ages 5 to 12. Children are recruited for the program by reaching out to local daycare providers and elementary schools. Rotarians are then matched to children.
The Waterville Club also developed their own children’s book, “Rhoda’s Rescue.” The club hired a Pulitzer-Prize winning author Barbara Walsh to write the book. Abby Gray did the illustrations. The book has been translated into French, “Le Sauvetage de Rhoda.” The book is available for sale and earns money for the club.
The Waterville Club offers an Implementation Guide for clubs that want to pursue this program in their area. The Guide has been distributed for free to every club in our district. Our club plans to begin offering this program later this year to children in our area.
President-Elect Tracy presented Tina with our Rotary Speaker’s Mug, and the meeting was adjourned at 7:15 PM with a reminder about our Polio cups.
Following adjournment of the week’s meeting, Tina Chapman stayed to offer a training session for interested club members. A dozen club members stayed for the training. The basic elements of the program can be summarized by the word “READ.” Repeated reading of the same book, always with a purpose. Engage and enjoy. Ask questions. Do more with the book.
Respectfully submitted by Michael Fisher