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, during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are meeting online.
Please visit the RCAS Website for the meeting links.
Together, we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change
– across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.
The Calendar …
RISE: “Rotary Involvement Strengthens Everyone“
- January 13, 2021 – Sunrise Swednesday!
- January 20 & 27 – RCAS Equity & Diversity Workshops
Door Number One: Club Assembly
The first RCAS meeting of each calendar year is reserved for a Club Assembly, and President Maggie noted that, despite the challenges of the pandemic, our Club has been “very active in our fundraising”. As evidence, she showed the revised budget for the RCAS Community Foundation, with increased funds available in each Avenue of Service. Maggie said that our Taste of the Holidays: Home Edition netted over $7,000!
We heard from a few committees, starting with Tomas Chavez of the Membership Committee. Tomas reminded us that the “whole Club is the committee”. We all should have an eye open for potential new Sunrisers. Once those folks are identified, Tomas and his crew are ready to contact them to give them all the information they need to decide whether they believe that our Club is a good match for them.
Brandi Easter then talked about the Mentorship Committee, which is closely related to the Membership Committee. Mentors are important conduits for new members to connect with the Club. But as with the Membership Committee, we all need to be involved, reaching out to new members when we perceive a need. Brandi noted that the pandemic has made staying in close contact with new members difficult, but the mentors are adapting.
The Fellowship Committee is busy working on new and creative ways to bring our members together, said Jessica McKnight. One of the ways that is happening is via our monthly “Swednesday” meetings. These are held on the second Wednesday of each month, and each has a theme. This month’s theme is cooking! Jessica also said that our annual Charter Night event is coming, but it is unlikely to take place in February.
Past President AJ Gonzales told us that the Community Service Committee is identifying hands-on projects that can be accomplished without COVID risks. If you have ideas for potential projects, please contact AJ or any member of the committee. AJ noted that the group usually meets on the third Wednesday of each month; the next meeting will take place at 7 am on January 20th.
Our Club’s contributions to the Rotary Foundation are leading our District, according to Foundation Committee Chair Terri Clark. She reminded us that there is no reason to stop contributing, however. Although you can make a donation at any time online at the Rotary Donation website, many of you like to tie your donations to our (almost) monthly Final Friday Foundation Auctions – Terri reminded us that the next auction is slated for January 29th. Be ready!
Bryan Plumley has chaired our Scholarship Committee for a number of years, and he said that this is the time of year that they really get going. He noted that the pandemic has put a couple of our favorite programs in temporary jeopardy. Our History Day program will apparently not take place this year. (If I heard correctly from one of our members, History Day itself has been cancelled for this school year.) We will have to wait and see whether our annual meeting to honor Arcata High School’s Academic Top Ten Percent will be a go or not. Bryan also told us that his committee is also looking into ways to work with the Transition Age Youth (TAY) program.
Door Number Two: Recognitions & Fun
Sunriser Dustin Littlefield will soon be our District Governor, and he had some news for us – Rotary International recognized our Club for having a great year in 2019-2020, under the leadership of Past President AJ! Congratulations to all of us, and a big thanks to AJ for leading us to these honors.
We heard about the newest Rotary Kid – Isaac David Sarvinski was born on January 3rd at 8:30 am! His proud parents are Casey Sarvinski and Sunriser Rachel Sarvinski! We hope to see him (oh yeah, and his mother) at a meeting very soon!
And now the moment you have all (well, at least one of you) have been waiting for – Gregg Foster’s Rotarian of the Month presentation! He told us his history from June 13, 1965 (his birth in Garberville) to January 8, 2021 (when he gave this presentation on Zoom). Nothing much happened in between, but Gregg told us about it anyway …
When our meeting resumed, President Maggie awarded a Virtual Blue Badge to Bryn Coriell, who has completed all the steps needed for his graduation from Red Badge Status.
Then Lori Breyer introduced us to a new challenge – the RCAS Walking Challenge! During the next several weeks (through March 31st), you have the opportunity to join the fun. You’ll need to download the Nike app, add Lori as a friend, and decide whether you want to participate in the 100 mile, 200 mile, or 300 mile challenge!
Door Number Three: Service Above Self
President Maggie showed us photos from the presentation of Stockings for TAY (Transitional Age Youth). AJ shared information about a family that we helped out at Christmas. One of the children in the family has medical needs that require the family to travel out of town frequently. This posed a major financial hardship, and they worried that their holiday would be sparse, if not bleak. But Sunrisers (and others) came to the rescue, and ensured that all of the children received new shoes, along with toys and a tablet for the family.
Backpacks for Kids had its 2021 kickoff, with a packing session held at Maggie’s offices in Eureka. And Amanda Nelson is looking for volunteers to help distribute meals for seniors. Please contact her for more information and to help out.
Gregg Foster talked about the Choose Humboldt program, saying that it was quite successful over the holiday season. The effort is now transitioning to the Valentines Day season, using the hashtag #LoveHumboldt!
After the raffle, President Maggie donated a sturdy piñata – fashioned to look like the COVID-19 virus – to be auctioned off. Several of our members offered to help fill it with gift cards, along with the “regular piñata stuff” provided by Maggie. The purchaser was JOYC (the Justice Of Your Club). Congratulations!