Our thrifty secretary, Al Feather, saved his dollars for happy days by choosing to mail his postcards from Farmington instead of paying the $4 apiece to mail from Colombia! Many happy dollars saved!
July 27, 2006 Paul and Al at the helm; one cannot help but smile at such a lively pair! Our meeting today began with visitors from afar: Pennsylvania and New Jersey, both fellow Rotarians and guests of our guest speaker today. Welcome to both! Gil Reed received his 6 month Object of Rotary plaque and shared aloud what is written on it. A good reminder for all of us to find where ours is hung and read it to keep in in the front of our minds. Service and High Ethical Standards: Who can go wrong? Clayton King had a very important announcement that we have finally attained some serious progress in our quest to host an Rotaract club at UMF. On September 19, during orientation, Rotary will be present to offer the opportunity to college students. We all look forward to the possibilities of this endeavor! Thanks, Clayton! The Strawberry Fest, formally known as Midnight Madness, is this Saturday; Paul sent around a sign-up sheet for Rotarians to participate. Jackie will be shaving again, $15.00 for a nice hot towel razor shave! I think, if I remember correctly, John Frary had volunteered to help. Whether he is placing hot towels or sitting under one, we will discover following the Fest. 100% of the proceeds go to Rotary for our service projects. Thanks, Jackie! And you, too, John! The Zone Coalition in Phillips is the cup collection project for the month. The non-profit group has been slowly refurbishing the old gym so that there is a place for youth to come on weekends. Presently we have 30-40 young people each Friday and Saturday night. Thank-you for digging deep into your pockets to support this local service project! The dollars you give will go to support keeping the doors open, electricity, heating oil in winter, and staffing for youth programs. A new development drawn from the past is the Rotary Minute. Two years ago, the Rotary Minute was started to punctuate the celebration of 100 years of Rotary. It has traditionally been linked to the white "free breakfast" ticket. Sadly, not everyone has had the opportunity of sharing and so the board has decided to disengage the Rotary Minute from the "free breakfast" ticket and just have it as a fully-shared club activity. Going by alphabetical order, which places me towards the end, each and every member will have an opportunity to share something about Rotary. Joyce King and Kathy Muller will be selecting the presenters, so if you see them coming towards you, how lucky can you be? Sherwood Anderson claims that Sherwood starts with an "S", so he will be presenting after me, I think! The members of the Board and the Past Presidents will fill in the blanks. Kathy will time the minute with an egg-timer and there will be a penalty if you exceed the time. I say, stop in mid-sentence when you hear the bell ring! This is going to be fun . . . The Rotary Minute, for me, is one of the highlights of the meeting, because it is so good to hear of the myriad of activities that Rotary is involved in, as well as the vivid history that has brought us up to the present. Who will be first? Our guest speaker today was Reverend Scott Planting, the Presbyterian minister of Fairbanks. He enlighted us on a project that his ministry has been involved in that has drawn participants from afar. He described Franklin County in Scottish terms as a "thin place, where heaven and earth are really close". Each year, a work party has come to our county, relatively quietly, and undertaken carpentry work for the poor. They build roofs over mobile homes, build porches, wheel-chair ramps, and do small additions and home repairs for those on fixed incomes with no other resource. We are all aware of our community and the needs, but to discover that we have been chosen as a special mission by these hard-working people from afar is a blessing to each of us. The MATE project, Mission at the Eastward, is a ministry of reconciliation that connets people by the hearts. The mission statement that Bill Berger had come up with is being sustained: "To reach the last house on the last road". Housing is a critical issue in our area, and these kind-hearted and generous people are lending a hand. Thank-you Rev. Planting for endeavoring to reach that last house! It is good for us to know that others are doing service projects that go hand in hand with Rotarians in Farmington! Have a good week, everyone! Signing off, susy sanders