After the meeting was called to order, the Pledge of Allegiance recited and the invocation rendered by Bob Garagiola, Juli Niemann presented her latest lyrical rewrite, one of “The Yellow Rose of Texas,” in honor of our “visiting” member, District Governor Rose Cooper. Approval was voiced by all.
President Beth moved on to the announcement phase of things, sharing the good news of Tony Intagliata’s recognition as 2017 honoree of the St. Louis Italian Open Children’s Charity Golf Tournament and of Gary (and Pam) Neal’s recognition by OpenTable Diners’ Choice website’s selection of Al’s Restaurant as the best overall restaurant in St. Louis. This was followed by a remarkable letter of appreciation from James Turner about his Rotary Youth Leadership Award experience, which would sell you on the program in nothing flat.
Following came a positive report on the latest tennis outing and a note about the upcoming happy hour at Perennial Ales on August 16th from 5-7 p.m. Bob Sherrill next took the stand with a reminder that the St.L.Public Schools kids need help with suppplies, so Push for Pencils is on. This will involve bringing new supplies all month and making checks to “Kid Smart” to help is welcome as well. Jim Sheets gave information about the upcoming Business Expo on September 7th at the MAC. This is big stuff – up to 300 participants are expected. Finally, Phil Hensley alerted everyone to the opportunity to paint classrooms at Lift for Life Academy.
Sergeant at Arms Mike Mosella then announced the presentation of a new badge to Logan Hollo (sponsored by Blake Smith) and a banner exchange with James Gilchrist of Club 28, Rhode Island.
The everything fell apart as a major gaggle resulted from having a group picture taken with our current District Governor. Order was restored fairly promptly.
Rose talked about her frenetic schedule, especially meeting with outstate members who know our crew. She did spend some time talking at length about at least one visit she’s had which has affected her greatly. This came from a meeting in Cape Girardeau with senior Rotarians at a retirement facility called “The Chateau.” She mentioned especially how Ed Kaiser mentioned how Rotarians have always been ready to help. When Ed sought someone in Kennett to check on some family graves, he contacted the local Rotary Club and discovered the club president was an unknown great-nephew, showing how Rotary establishes and renews connections.
Rose also emphasized how RI is a great force for good. There are 35,000 clubs – 1.2 million members. We are connected worldwide and we make a difference, whether it’s down the road in Cape or across the globe in Sri Lanka. We define what Rotary is by our actions and service. Rose also shared a very personal account of how Rotary has affected her life, whether she realized it or not at the time, since she was a teenager and throughout the time she has, as an adult, been a member.
Rose then challenged us on several fronts. World Polio Day will be on October 24th. The international conference will be in Toronto next year and a great chance to attend an international conference without going too far afield. We have a district challenge to plant a tree for every member (53 clubs). We need to look over our shoulder to make sure Washington doesn’t catch up as the largest club in the district. They’re within a dozen members of our total!
Last (not least) extra help is welcome for the district conference in only two months. Hosting overseas visitors will be especially helpful and a major feature will be the Peace Panel.
For her final act of the day, DG Rose pulled the weekly ticket. Ralph Decker swung – and missed, drawing the Six of Spades. Almost $3200 is now at stake. Maybe it’ll go next week (ha!).