Welcome to the Sunrise Spirit –
the Weekly Newsletter of The Rotary Club of Arcata Sunrise
We hope that you will attend one of our lively Friday meetings,
whether or not you are interested in joining Rotary.
Usually, we meet on most Fridays at 7 am in the Plaza View Room
at Arcata’s historic Jacoby Storehouse,
however, while we are under the Shelter In Place order, we are meeting online.
Please visit the RCAS Website for the meeting links.
The Calendar …
RISE: “Rotary Involvement Strengthens Everyone“
Watch here for events as they return to our Calendar …
Recognitions & Announcements
We were able to visit with former Rotary Exchange Students Alex Rialet, who joined us from Toulouse, France, and Isabella “Izzy” Orsach, from Austria. Alex told us that he is studying aeronautical engineering, while Izzy said that she recently graduated from high school.
Our Recognitions included birthday wishes for Scott Hunt (who golfed for his birthday), and Crystal Perez, who said that she just cleaned house and hung out on her birthday. Gregg Foster’s birthday was tentatively scheduled for the following day, while Lisa Hemphill, Carol Vander Meer, and Janice Newman also have birthdays this month.
President AJ showed photos of some serious gardening tools that are waiting for us. When the COVID crisis abates, we will be able to put them to good use continuing to improve the raised beds at Peninsula Union School.
President AJ also put out another call for volunteers to help distribute goodies for the coming “Virtual Version” of the Humboldt Bay Oyster Festival, coming up this week.
We also discussed the Rotary International Virtual Convention, which will take place from June 20th through the 26th. It’s all online, which provides a unique opportunity for many of us who haven’t been able to attend the usual “live” versions, due to time and travel constraints.
Sharrone Blanck on the Local NAACP
Our Featured Speaker was Sharrone Blanck, an Early Intervention Teacher, who also serves as the President of the local chapter of the NAACP. She pointed out that you don’t have to be black to be an NAACP member. Her husband Jeff is white, and he served as the President of the Reno chapter, before their family moved to Humboldt County. Sharrone and Jeff have raised two adult sons.
Sharrone encouraged us to ask questions online, and she would like to see us engage with people of color whom we encounter. “Smile and say hello,” she told us. When we acknowledge people at work and in general, we create a welcoming environment.
The local NAACP generally meets on the 3rd Sunday of each month. (June was an exception – they met on the 14th since June 21st is Fathers Day.) This week, the organization is co-hosting a Juneteeth Celebration with Black Humboldt. The celebration recognizes when blacks learned that they were freed from slavery.
Sharrone recommended several books that discuss the issue and the state of race relations in our country – “White Fragility” by Robin DiAngelo, “Me and White Supremacy” by Layla Saad, “The New Jim Crow” by Michelle Alexander, “Slavery by Another Name” by Douglas A. Blackmon, and “White Rage” by Carol Anderson. She also recommended that we watch a PBS series, “Race – The Power of an Illusion”.
We can also help support the efforts of some fine organizations in our community, including Centro del Pueblo, HSU’s African-American Center for Academic Excellence, and Alice Birney School, which is the most diverse school in our community.