This Friday’s Program:
This Friday (October 21st), our Featured Speaker will be Chen Yi Ting, better known as Judy – our Exchange Student from Taiwan!
RISE Calendar … “Rotary Involvement Strengthens Everyone“
October 20 – RCAS Cross-Country Championships at the Arcata Community Center
October 23 – Stetsons, Steaks, & Spurs – A Rotary Foundation Fandango! The annual Foundation Dinner at The Lodge – 445 Herrick Avenue, Eureka. No-host cocktails at 2 pm, then cook-your-own-steak at 3 pm. Check your email for your personal invitation!
October 29 – Adopt-A-Highway Opportunity! Meet at the Coastal Nature Center at 9:30 am.
November 17 – A Taste of the Holidays! Our Fall Favorite Fundraiser returns to help kick off another festive holiday season!
March 11, 2017 – The RCAS Spring Fundraiser! Put it on your calendar now (or as soon as you purchase a 2017 calendar)!!
May 12-14, 2017 – The District 5130 Conference at the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort in Incline Village, Nevada
- Exchange Student Judy was unable to attend last week, so Ian Schatz provided an update. He said that she had visited the “Haunted Mill” in Eureka with his family. She’s doing much better after hearing the sad news that a close friend of the family was killed in an auto accident recently. Judy didn’t join us on Friday because she was on the District Youth Exchange “Bluesbuster” trip to San Francisco. We’re all looking forward to hearing about it at our next meeting.
- Our Club was well-represented at the recent “Rocky Horror Show” in Ferndale. The play was narrated by Past District Governor Erin Dunn, and Hadi Ajina (the son of Sunriser Claire Ajina) played Brad! Rina Brodhag won a season pass to the Rep for the Best Costume – she came as Magenta (and she had her photo taken with the woman who played Magenta onstage).
- Past President Howard and his wife Rebecca are still having a great time on their extended vacation in Europe, and they sent word to President Susan that, “We are enjoying the food of ‘Eataly’, along with Rees Hughes and Amy Uyeki”!
- If you need to stay warm this winter, Tami Camper’s son Nolan and his 8th grade class are selling firewood – delivered and stacked! The proceeds will go toward the class trip at the end of the school year. Contact Tami if you’re cold,
- We passed the coffee pot last week to contribute to the Rotary Fund that is helping Haitians deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew. Additional contributions can be made by clicking here.
- There will be an Adopt-A-Highway cleanup on October 29th. The group will meet at the Coastal Nature Center at 9:30 am, and a “debriefing” (a.k.a. “Margaritas”) will take place at Rita’s following the work.
- There’s still time to purchase raffle tickets for the Foundation Fandango coming up on Sunday, October 23rd. Each $20 you donate to the Rotary Foundation will get you another opportunity to win one of the many gift baskets that have been donated by the Clubs in our District. See Terri for more information.
- Ashliegh Diehl told us that the Lost Coast Rotaract Club will once again host “Spirits & Spirits”, a tour of Old Town Eureka with drinks and spooky historical legends. She said that the fun and fundraising begins October 21st, and you can find it as an Event on the Rotaract Club’s Facebook page. It is great fun!
- Ashliegh also said that the North Bay Rotaract Club will be participating in and raising funds for the Alzheimer’s Walk on October 22nd.
- Taste of the Holidays Co-Chair Lisa Hemphill said that several people have stepped up into leadership roles for the fundraiser, but there are a few slots still to be filled. These include Setup, Supply Procurement, and Return to Storage. Contact Lisa if you are willing to take on one of those jobs. Of course, we are all expected to help the leads put on a great show. The Event Committee will hold its second meeting on Wednesday, October 19th, at 5:30 pm at the Plaza Grill.
- Kate McCloud is the Vice-President of the Arcata High Interact Club. She said that as the new school year has just started, the Club has a lot of new members. They are looking ahead to projects such as Toys for Tots and Coats for the Cold. They are also continuing to work to provide more benches in the front of the school, which will allow students places to sit while they eat their lunches.
- Arcata City Manager Karen Diemer was on hand to provide information on the coming election. She reminded us that there are 17 state propositions, 5 county measures, and 1 City of Arcata measure, and several school district measures. She provided a handout that included the positions that have been adopted by the Arcata City Council on selected ballot items, along with general information about all of the propositions and measures.
Arcata Family Resource Center
We heard from Laura Estetter of the Arcata Family Resource Center last Friday. Laura told us that the center is located on the campus of Arcata Elementary School. “We’re part of the network of Humboldt family resource centers,” she said. These are located throughout the county, including rural areas such as Carlotta and Bridgeville. She told us, “The mission of our center is to provide support programs and coordination of services for children and families in the Arcata School District, and the Arcata community in general.”
The center is “a safe and nurturing environment that promotes resiliency and strong families and a healthy community”. The services available include referrals for school counseling and referrals for mentorship. They also
provide nutritious snacks and they support the Backpacks for Kids program. They also host parent support groups and provide referrals for resources, and they do case management and home visits. They work with children who have special needs, and help arrange transportation for children and parents when needed. Other services include medical and dental referrals, including mental health referrals, and lice eradication.
Laura said that the center is looking for donations of sweatpants, socks, and underwear. They are also currently out of bus passes – which are only given to families who have appointments in Eureka. Other needs include laundry vouchers and shoes.
It’s Apple Time!
Jim Polly taught agriculture classes for 34 years at McKinleyville High School, and since his retirement about 10 years ago, he has had more time to devote to his apple orchard in Fieldbrook, next door to Sunriser Cam Appleton. Last week, Jim was our Featured Speaker, and he told us the ins and outs of raising apples (and being Cam’s neighbor).
As part of Jim’s presentation, we had the opportunity to taste two types of apple cider and slices from six varieties of apple. One of the ciders was pressed from apples on Cam’s orchard, and it consisted of a few apple varieties, while Jim’s cider was a blend from 15 types of apple. Tasting the apple slices together showed how different the varieties can taste.
Jim noted that the apple season arrived very early this year, due to warmer than usual weather. “We’re at the tail end of apple season,” he said, “and normally we’d be right in the middle of it.” He asked us to rate the six apple varieties, which he has done with his classes and other groups as well. He said that the results are usually very similar, regardless of the makeup of his testers. The results were as expected – the Honeycrisp got the most votes, followed by the Waltana. Jim has about 130 varieties in his orchard, and “it’s so much fun blending ciders. Some turn out not so good, and others are fantastic.”
Jim said that the apple industry is an exciting business to be in. He sells his apples at the local farmers’ markets, and it serves as “a hobby to keep me busy”. He told us that the Arcata Farmers’ Market is the oldest of its kind in California, and Jim considers it one of the best for variety and quality. The growers come from a variety of climates that are all accessible from this community – coastal, mid-climate, and hotter inland areas like Willow Creek.
Apples originated in what is now Kazakhstan, which borders both Russia and China. “They have apple forests,” Jim told us, “just like our redwood forests, and it is beautiful.” Someone in our Club mentioned to Jim that they could never be an apple farmer, because there are too many variables. “Boy, you got that right,” he agreed. “It’s tough!” He said that those variables include weather changes, prices, and “critters”. And new predators show up almost every year. “This year,” Jim noted, “the elk finally made it to Fieldbrook!”
Jim said that there are at least 3,000 varieties of apples in the world. Jim noted that Albert Etter is a local legend in the apple industry. The town of Ettersburg in Southern Humboldt is named after this pioneer of hybrid apples, who became known as the “Luther Burbank of Humboldt County”. Jim said his other “heroes in apples” in addition to Etter are Tom Chapman (better known as Johnny Appleseed) and Irving Wrigley. Wrigley farmed in the Elk River Valley for 60 years, and he developed two apple varieties – the Red King and the Red Waltana.
Jim said that the apples that Johnny Appleseed distributed as he walked an estimated 100,000 miles were bitter-tasting varieties, which were intended to be used in the making of hard cider. Tart and bitter apples make the best hard cider, which was important to settlers. Many of them did not have access to safe drinking water, so the cider was a good substitute. Jim noted that there are several local companies that produce hard cider.
Several local growers have been able to make great livings producing apples. It takes a lot of work to do so, however. Jim also works hard at it too, but for him it is a hobby: “My expenses are almost as much as the income.” He said that the average price per pound at the farmers’ markets is about $2.50 per pound, although some varieties average a bit more. Jim’s best seller is the Honeycrisp, one of the sweeter varieties he produces, and the one that our Club ranked the highest.