Volume XIII, Issue 22: December 18, 2015

The Rotary Club of Arcata Sunrise will not meet on December 25th or January 1st. Please join us for our first meeting of 2016 on January 8th!

Coming Distractions …
Jan 10SWOT PROJECT – Manila Community Resource Center renovation – 1 to 5 pm
Jan 23 – Adopt-A-Highway – 9:30 to 11:30 am – meet at the Humboldt Coastal Nature Center
Feb 6 – RISE EVENT – AHS College & Career Center Pancake Breakfast – D Street Neighborhood Center
Mar 12 – Our Spring Fundraiser at the Arcata Community Center 
Apr 8-9 – District Training Assembly – Ukiah Fairgrounds
May 6-8 – District 5130 Conference – Marriott Napa Valley Resort & Spa
May 29-June 1 – Rotary International Conference in Seoul, South Korea 

Sunriser Shorts 

  • Dustin Littlefield thanked all who purchased ads for the program for the Jerry Paul Arcata Invitational Basketball Tournament. President Howard said that he was pleased to present the trophy to the winning school – Arcata High!
  • Howard also held our first Activities Chart raffle last week. Two prizes of $100 in Paul Harris Fellowship credit were at stake – and Romi Hitchcock Tinseth was a double winner! Congratulations to a very active Sunriser!!
  • John Gullam reminded us to watch our emails for the SignUp Genius to volunteer for the Backpacks for Kids tasks for January.
  • As noted above, Sunday January 10th has been set aside for our latest SWOT project. If you aren’t familiar with the term, SWOT stands for Serving With Our Talents. And we will bring those talents to bear as we work to renovate Building A at the Redwood Montessori School in Manila. The first part of our efforts will take place from 1 to 5 pm. 
  • Susan Jansson told us that the Spring Fundraiser Committee has narrowed the possible themes for this year’s event to two possibilities. These will be revealed soon, and we will vote between them. The event will take place on Saturday, March 12th, and Susan is committed to outdoing last year’s wildly successful “Alice In Wonderland” party, and we’re behind her all the way!
  • Lori Breyer said that our counterparts to the south – the Rotary Club of Fortuna Sunrise – will hold their Crab-LESS Fest on January 30th. She’s proposing that Arcata Sunrisers buy a table for their fundraiser, and that the Fortuna Sunrisers return the favor in March. 
  • Olivia Reynolds, who received our Club’s Perpetual Scholarship in June, was on hand to sell holiday wreaths to help defray her college expenses. President Howard asked how many she had sold when she visited the Arcata Noon Rotary earlier in the week. They purchased 11, and by an odd coincidence, she brought the same number to our Club …

A Visit From the AHS Madrigal Choir  
Last week, the Arcata High School Madrigal Choir paid its annual visit to our Club, providing some holiday music, and even asking us to join in with a few traditional carols. The group is “under new management” this year – long time Choir Director Carol Jacobson retired at the end of the last school year, and Cassandra Moulton is leading the group. Below are videos of a few of the pieces they shared with us:

 In The Bleak Midwinter
Angels We Have Heard On High
 Deck The Halls

Following the performance, President Howard presented Cassandra with a $500 contribution to the Choir’s travel fund.

Howard & Cassandra

Recognizing Ron  
Nick Torres provided last Friday’s recognition of the multi-talented Ron Sharp. Nick said that Ron grew up in Garden Grove, and he remembers walking through orange groves with his mother to get to the center of town.

Ron paid his dues, working as a Utility Boy, walking the mean streets of Disneyland. Ron said that the Utility Boys had an ongoing feud with the Cooks. The two sides would soak biscuits in water, and throw them at each other.

When he was not at work or at war, Ron enjoyed “sunburning himself as much as possible at the beach”. He also played Little League baseball and high school basketball, and he told Nick that he was “a gifted skateboarder”. He could ride on grass and pull 720s – Nick wants to see that!

Ron graduated from Cal State Fullerton, with a degree in English. He also took many trips to Yosemite National Park, hiking many of the higher altitude trails. He even slept atop El Capitan and climbed the face of Glacier Point. 

Music has been an important part of Ron’s life from an early age. He said that he was five years old, sitting on his 90-year old aunt’s bed. He heard “The Battle of New Orleans” for the first time. At 13, Ron commandeered his brother’s Silvertone guitar, and he took up bluegrass with his first real band, “Big Mac and the Turkeys”. Locally, Ron has played in several bands, and he is currently a member of “Honky-Tonk Detours”, “Cadillac Ranch”, “The Gila Monsters”, and “Sonny and the Sunrisers”. 

Ron told Nick that his wife and fellow Sunriser Barbara Browning is “by far the best partner a man could hope for”. They met in 1998, and were married the following year. Ron said that their life together is “a miracle”, and he is forever grateful. 

Barbara’s mother was planning to be the stereotypical evil mother-in-law, but when she got to know Ron, she couldn’t find anything to criticize. She told Nick that Ron is “the kindest, most considerate person she has ever known. He is patient, thoughtful, and bright. Being in his presence is like spending time at the ocean, in the forest, or whatever calming place is yours.” She said that she is grateful that Barbara and Ron found each other, “because Ron is a gift to all who know him”.

Barbara told Nick that Ron is a blessing to her. He is the rock that keeps her steady, doing all that he can to make her life flow as smoothly as possible. And he keeps her laughing. We all know,” she said, “that Ron is kind and generous. But he also has a wild side, which she forgets.” She often asks herself how she could be so lucky as to have Ron for a partner.