Volume XIII, Issue 26: January 29, 2016

Coming Distractions …  
Feb 6 – RISE EVENT – AHS College & Career Center Pancake Breakfast – D Street Neighborhood Center
Feb 28RISE EVENT – RCAS Charter Celebration!
Mar 12The Force Is Strong With This One … Of course! It’s our Spring Fundraiser at the Arcata Community Center (“… I have a very good feeling about this …”
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 

Foundation Final Friday
Due to technical difficulties at the beginning of last week’s meeting, President Howard moved our Final Friday celebration of and contributions to the Rotary Foundation to the beginning of the meeting. 

Before the auction, Foundation Chair Terri Clark provided some updates. Although we did not welcome any new Paul Harris Fellows, some existing PHFs were recognized for their continuing support for the Rotary Foundation. Howard Stauffer achieved his second award, and Lori Breyer earned her fourth. Matt Babich is a seven-time PHF, Joyce Hinrichs added “bling” with her eighth lap, and Scott Heller earned his tenth Paul Harris Fellow. Congratulations to all five, and thank you all for your generosity!!

The auction was relatively short, but we still earned money for the Rotary Foundation. Here are the prizes, along with who donated and who purchased:

  • Maggie Kraft donated three of the auction items last week. The first was a bottle of 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon  from Iniquity Vineyards, along with a wine towel. Your Editor offered the winning bid.
  •  Kyle Visser offered two 3-hour visits by a crew of three workers to provide housecleaning or landscaping. Both are new services now offered by Kyle’s business Shred Aware. Visiting Rotarian/Sunriser Spouse Stan Elcock won that package. (And Julie Vaissade-Elcock looked pretty pleased.)
  • Maggie’s second offering was another bottle of wine (a Shiraz, also bearing the Iniquity label) and another wine towel. Those were purchased by Nick Torres.
  • The last package was for high-resolution scanning of up to two “shoeboxes” of photos, also donated by Maggie Kraft. Terri Clark jumped on that offer!

As ever, thanks to those who donated and those who bid. The funds help the Rotary Foundation do its fantastic work in communities around the world. 
Sunriser Shorts  

  • The technical issues were soon sorted out, thanks to Sunrisers Scott Heller and Ed Christians. Good job, gentlemen!
  • President Howard noted that the previous weekend’s Adopt-A-Highway had a great turnout. Thanks to all who showed up – they enjoyed some fellowship at the Plaza Grill following their efforts.
  • Bryan Reeser once again led our efforts to distribute Dictionaries to Third Graders. Sunrisers handed out the books earlier in the week at three local elementary schools. As always, the kids were really excited at the prospect of receiving their own dictionaries.
  • In early November, Sandy Schultz spoke to our Club about the Children’s Surgery Project she heads up in Honduras. At that meeting, she told us that the project was looking for used computers, and Sunriser Craig Newman was listening. He donated a computer that was  given to a medical student in Honduras, to help him with his studies. Yet another example of Craig’s generosity!
  • Support Your Local Monster? Sunriser Alyson Hunter is looking for pledges as she and her team of bowlers prepare for the Monster Bowl – this year’s version of Bowl For Kids’ Sake. The annual event raises funds for North Coast Big Brothers and Big Sisters, and it will take place on March 4th and 5th. Contact Alyson to make your “monstrous” donation.
  • Jeff Stebbins said that all the volunteer roles are set for the AHS College & Career Center Pancake Breakfast this Saturday, February 6th. You’re still needed, though. Please show up for a great breakfast, and support this great program! 
  • Jeff also asked for volunteers to help with this year’s History Day, which will take place on Saturday, February 27th. To sign up, click here: History Day 2016.
  • Sunday, February 28th, we’re hoping all Sunrisers – past, present, and future – will join us at the Plaza Grill at 1 pm for our Charter Day Celebration. The event is family-friendly, and it will feature a Scavenger Hunt on the Plaza!
  • President-Elect Susan Jansson said that the Jedi Council  (aka the Spring Fundraiser Committee) continues to meet every Tuesday at 5:30 pm. All are welcome to participate. She also said that the official title for the event is “The Arcata Sunrise Rotary Star Wars Cantina”, and she said that flyers will be available this week. In addition to our regular table sponsors, we are offering 12 major sponsorship opportunities. Major Sponsors will have their names or business names affixed to a large planet orbiting the festivities. This recognition is available for an additional $100 to those who have purchased a table, or $250 for those without a table. 

Sophia’s Stories  
Your Editor also experienced technical difficulties last Friday, which led to my missing most of Exchange Student Sophia Waern-Bugge’s recap of her week. However, I can report that she went bowling, and she told us, “I actually won! Almost …”

Membership Committee Update
Nick Torres and Tomas Chavez noted that our newest prospective Sunriser, Deb Engs, participated in the Adopt-A-Highway cleanup mentioned above, and she is interested in becoming part of our Transitional Age Youth program. An email from President Howard may have already hit your Inbox; if all goes as expected, Deb will be the second new member of Howard’s year. 

The goal is still seven new Sunrisers for the year, so we would like each of you to invite great people to join us for our meetings, fundraisers, and other events. Once they get to know us, how could they resist? As Deb said to the Membership Committee – “this Club sells itself”.

Nick and Tomas reminded us that we can help make new and prospective members feel welcome by greeting them, and by sitting near them and engaging them during the fellowship parts of our meetings. We should also pick up a handful of “What’s Rotary” cards, and have them handy to give to members of the community.

John Richmond, who recently became a Sunriser, said that he has felt very welcomed in our Club. He indicated that he raised a question about one of our international projects, and the response he received was thoughtful and respectful. He felt that his concern was taken seriously, and he appreciated that. John noted that “Humboldt County can be a very insular place”, but his involvement with our Club has helped him overcome that.

Tomas and Nick closed by saying that the Committee’s goal is to keep our Club “full of engaged Rotarians who want to make a difference in our community and worldwide”.    

Special Daze
President Howard caught up with birthdays and anniversaries last week. Your Editor started things off, noting that on December 20th, I hit 60 (years, not mph). My sister arranged a party that included my son Brody and I attending a football game between the Raiders and the Packers at the Oakland Coliseum. The fact that Brody is a Packers fan made things that much more interesting. It was all great fun.

Tom Tellez said that he has been working on a job in Australia, and the day before his birthday, he got a call from the customer. They asked Tom to “get on a plane as fast as you can”.  So he spent his birthday (December 16th) with friends, and he traveled First Class to the Land Down Under the next day. He was there for four or five days. Unfortunately, “the airline lost my tools, so I couldn’t really work”. The client said, “No worries, mate! Let’s go to the pub!” Tom said he consulted a bit, and had a great five days, and he still made it home for Christmas.

Bryan Plumley remembered that he went out to dinner at the Plaza Grill for his January 10th birthday, saying, “It’s what we do!” No golf this year, though. “Traditionally,” he said, “I go up to Bandon, but it’s been so wet and miserable that I’ve forgone golf entirely for a while.”

Ed Christians had to work on December 19th, so he put off his birthday bash. “We’ll try again next year,” he promised.

Scott Heller drove to San Francisco the night before his January 13th birthday. He noted that you can avoid traffic in San Francisco by driving there at four in the morning.

Craig and Janice Newman celebrated their 44th anniversary after returning from a two-week trip to New England. They visited their son in Vermont, but most of the time they were in Maine. They discovered that lobster can be served in a number of ways – lobster bisque, boiled lobster, and lobster rolls. Craig decided that when he goes back, he will try mac and cheese with lobster. They enjoyed other seafood during their stay, as well. Craig said that “New Englanders really do Christmas well”.  He said there are candles in all the windows and a wreath on every door. The weather was agreeable, too – a balmy 55 degrees as opposed to the usual 10 degrees.

January 26th was the 31st anniversary of President Howard and his wife Rebecca. He said that one of the reasons he joined Rotary was so he wouldn’t forget his anniversary. “We didn’t feel the need to do anything,” he told us. “We just feel so fortunate to have each other and to be alive and in good health.” John Gullam had a different theory, saying, “You forgot, didn’t you?”