Volume 1, Issue 5
July 2002
Happy Birthday to Us!!
East Jefferson County Rotary celebrates 20 years of community service. . .and fun!

It's hard to believe two decades have passed since the Rotary Club of East Jefferson County first met at the Ajax Cafe.

John Barrett, in the photo, far left, was there at the beginning. Chuck Russell, Wanda Grady and Henry Rogers have all been members for at least 15 years.

That guy down in front, Milt Morris, may have only earned a five-year pin. . .but he's our 2002/03 president. He's earned his party hat!

Read the full story of the Club's beginnings further down the page of this newsletter.
From yesterday's halls of Chimacum High School. . .


Upcoming Programs
Thursdays at noon


July 18
Law Enforcement Today
Kristen Anderson, speaker

July 25
Tri-Area Teen Center
Terry Naughton

August 1
District Governor
Ross White visits

August 8
Carol Dyer

August 15
Ron Campbell

August 22
Dirk Lansdon

August 29
Tim Manly, paramedic

This Rotarian was in Chimacum's Class of 1971. He was in the Torch Club, Pep Club, "C" Club, French Club, and on the Student Council. He was the ASB president, a lab assistant, library aide, and stage crew hand. He played football, basketball, baseball and ran track. He was the Honor Speaker at his graduation; and, in 1971, listed his future plans as: "Learn how to play the piano."
Wonder if he ever did?
Here's a bonus clue:
His kindergarten picture.

So. . .can you guess who it is?
The answer will be in next month's newsletter.
Last month's "Mystery Grad" was Billy Marlow.

"Puttin' on the Ritz" is on a roll.

Hundreds of solicitation letters have gone out to local businesses, asking for donations for the auctions. A committee was chosen (or "anointed", in the words of our dear President Milt) to do the follow-up calls. Once they work their magic, others will pick up the items.

Remember, when you're promoting the Sept. 14 Ritz: It is indeed the premiere event of its kind in Jefferson County. It's a gala affair, with fine sit-down dining, dancing and lots of opportunities to bid on tons of wonderful auction items.

As with everything these days, the cost of Puttin' on the Ritz has gone up in the past few years. For the first time since 1996, we're forced to raise ticket prices to $65 per person. Remember, we earn nothing on these tickets. The cost of the ticket covers the expenses incurred Puttin' on the Ritz.

What Rotary Means to Me

"Rotary is the opportunity to be part of a positive force within our community, our country and the world."

Don Young
Welcome our new member, Kevin Ryan!

Kevin Ryan transferred to our Club from the Woodland Sunrise Rotary Club (Woodland, California). The retired radiologist has been a Rotarian since 1993.

Kevin became a Paul Harris fellow in 1997, and will soon receive his sapphire pin.

Welcome, Kevin!

Board Meeting
7 a.m.
July 17
Nancy's Place



This month's
"Rotary Moment"


PolioPlus is a project of The Rotary Foundation. Its mission is to eradicate polio worldwide. Since the program's inception, in 1985, more than two billion children, in 122 nations, have received an oral polio vaccine.

By 2005 (Rotary's centennial), contributions to PolioPlus should surpass $500 million.

And, now. . .as promised:

East Jefferson Rotary celebrates 20 years

By Sandy Hershelman

For 20 years, "Service Above Self" has been the mainstay of the Rotary Club of East Jefferson County. The object of Rotary is to encourage and foster service, friendships and high ethical standards. Funds raised by the service organization go right back into the community.

"Rotary taught me a sense of purpose," said Dee Weinstein, a past-president. "To be thankful not only for what I have, but for the ability to help people who may not be so lucky to have what I've got. To give back to my community who has helped me to grow and prosper.

"It's not money," she clarified. "It's the friendships that I have made through Rotary which have made me rich beyond my wildest imaginations. When I first joined Rotary, I hardly knew what Rotary was about. I knew they did scholarships at Chimacum School, which was what peaked my interest. I had no idea of the things they do around the world, like the eradication of polio, helping the underprivileged in third world countries, and helping victims of earthquakes, hurricanes, floods, etcetera, etcetera. Believe me, I could go on and on, but you get the idea.

"Rotary has not only changed the lives of millions of people they have helped, but changed mine as well," Weinstein said. "Not only has this organization given me a standard of high ethical business practices, but personal integrity as well. The day I joined Rotary was the first day of a new life for me and meeting a group of people that I can call my lifelong friends. I can't imagine my life now without Rotary."

Since 1990, the East Jefferson club has disbursed more than $344,000 — most of that went directly into the local community. Through the years, the Club has supported: food banks, Port Hadlock's Teen Resource Center, the Port Townsend Marine Science Center, Future Business Leaders of America, Jefferson County 4-H, Jefferson County Historical Society Museum, many Chimacum School activities, Rotary Youth Leadership awards, Tri-Area Community Center, Boy Scout Troop 480, McCurdy Pavilion, youth baseball and football, the American Red Cross, Literacy Council of Jefferson County, OlyCap's Thanksgiving and Christmas community dinners, Christmas for Tri-Area Children, July 4 fireworks, the guardian ad litem program, as well as many other similar programs. Medic 13's $29,000 Life Pak 12 heart monitoring unit was a gift from Rotary, too.

The East Jefferson club was chartered on June 21, 1982. "Club 063", in District 5020, was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Port Townsend. There were 23 charter members. Of these, only John Barrett is currently an active club member. Jim Humphrey, now an Honorary member, was the club's first president.

Barrett, who was the Club's second president, recalled its beginnings, "The Rotary Club of Port Townsend sponsored our club. David Gooding and Judge "Ace" Grady were the two members of that club who were the primary movers and shakers of the effort. It was formed so that the members of the Port Townsend club could have a convenient avenue for makeups (of missed meetings).

"It was fairly difficult to get a minimum sign-up of members (for our new club). Gooding and Grady worked really hard to get this club off the ground," the Port Hadlock dentist said. "We originally had our lunches in the Ajax Café."

In its first year, a nearly fatal (to the Club) controversy arose when an overzealous member convinced those present at a lunch meeting to commit to a heavy financial burden, without any fundraising activities to garner the needed cash.

"As it turns out, we were able to raise the funds and find donors for the goods needed and we met the obligation," Barrett said. "The club benefited from this episode by coming together as a group, by being forced to mature at a faster rate than normal, and by having the board of directors realize its obligation to act effectively as a governing body."

The Club's first fundraising effort was a beer booth operated at Hadlock Days and Airport Daze. Dollarwise, the effort was minimally successful, but it did irritate Valley Tavern owner Chuck Russell.

"After quite a bit of discussion between Chuck and me, I learned that his anger wasn't so much a turf issue, as it was that we had been cheating quite a bit on the law — mostly from ignorance — and that wasn't appropriate," Barrett recalled. "I had to talk long and hard with Chuck to convince him that we wanted him as our friend rather than enemy, and that we would prefer to do our business by the book and with guidance from someone who understood the rules. That eventually led to Chuck's becoming a Rotarian — a very good one I might add."

Russell was instrumental in helping to create "Puttin' on the Ritz", which he also named. Aboard the catamaran cruise boat, Spirit of Alderbrook, guests enjoyed a dinner cruise from Port Ludlow to Protection Island. Live music, food catered by Nancy's Place, oral and silent auctions, and everyone decked out in their finest Roaring Twenties' outfits equaled great fun.

"We used cruise boats for about four or five years prior to transitioning to the South Ludlow Bay Club. Subsequent Ritz events were ever more successful, adding magic shows and other entertainment with the result that now the event is looked forward to as the best dress up party of the year in East Jefferson County," Barrett said.

This year, the Ritz is 19 years old. Since 1990, the Ritz has averaged a $21,500 profit. All proceeds from the auction are used to fund local community needs and projects. Ritz donations are tax deductible.

For the first time since 1996, Ritz prices have gone up. This is due entirely to the cost of inflation. No money is made on the tickets. They merely pay for "Puttin' on the Ritz".

This is indeed the premiere event of its kind in Jefferson County. From 5:30 p.m. to midnight on Saturday, Sept. 14, Port Ludlow's The Bay Club is the place to be for food and fun. The evening begins with flowing champagne and trays of hors d'oeuvres, destined to be consumed while folks wander the silent auction room placing their bids.

There's something for everyone at the Ritz's auctions. Local residents and businesses donate lots of items, priced from a few dollars to a thousand dollars or more. In years past, trips on sailboats, parties for 50, travel opportunities, handmade quilts, early telephones, office fans, Wilson classic golf clubs, nursery stock, a solid oak game table and a Seahawk's jersey were just a few of the items that were up for auction. Who knows what this year's donors will offer. Many local businesspersons donate services, as well.

But before the oral auction begins, Ritz guests are wined and dined. The sit down dinner promises prime rib, salmon, or a vegetarian entrée. Trays of decadent desserts follow. Once the last of the donations is auctioned off, guests are invited to dance the night away. (Tickets, $65 each, are available at Nancy's Place, Weinstein's Custom Screen Printing, the Valley Tavern, from your favorite Rotarian, or call Sandy at 385-1087.)

"Being in charge of "Puttin' on The Ritz" has become the President Elects' rite of passage and when first viewed, seems to be an almost insurmountable task. It might be likened to the old adage about eating an elephant. Where do you begin and how could such a task be completed? The answer of course is, ‘One bite at a time.'" quipped President Milt Morris. "There are within this club, a group of people too numerous to single out, who continually step forward each year to give their support and assistance to the newly-elected President Elect in his or her quest to make their Ritz the best ever. Some of these members are there year in and year out. Others are new with only the previous year's Ritz as their experience, but combined together they form the nucleus of the team that puts on the Ritz each year. So, the task of the President Elect becomes infinitely simpler and is largely one of coordination, leadership and delegation.

"This year, John Rodrigues is off to a great start and has overcome some of the hurdles which the club has been struggling with for several years," Morris said. "These changes are surely going to make the task for the succeeding President Elects much easier and I'm sure go a long ways towards the continued success of the Ritz. As President Elect, it gives you incredible insight into the membership, the workings of the club and of benefits of Rotary in general. Without it, we couldn't begin to give back to the community in which we live like we do."

"It is a honor to be a part of the tradition of community service through Rotary membership," said Past-President Mary Lynne Derrington. "I appreciate the founders who had the vision of what East Jefferson Rotary could contribute in the community, admire those who worked to establish the fledgling club in its early years, and look forward with great anticipation of what is yet to come in the next 20 years."

"Those (early years) were fun years and we conducted our club activities with zest and energy. We thought of ourselves as a maverick club finding our own way with inventions, such as the Paul Harris Club, to have more fun raising funds and doing it better," Barrett said.

Paul Harris was the founder of Rotary. Following his death, in 1947, contributions were made to the Rotary Foundation in his name. "Paul Harris Fellows" are those who give $1,000 or more to the Rotary Foundation. The gift may also be given in the name of another.

"The Paul Harris Club, devised by Jim Humphrey, rapidly began to create several Paul Harris Fellows every year," Barrett added. "We were outstripping all the other clubs in our district in this effort and to this day have a phenomenal record of contributions to the Paul Harris Fund."

The Club's long-range planning committee, first chartered in 1996, was tasked to develop potential fundraising activities and club projects that are multi-year in scope. The first project was to raise $63,500 to replace and vastly improve the aged playground at Chimacum Schools. The project was completed in 1999, thanks to fundraising efforts and a lot of volunteer labor. The Club is currently raising money to add to the amenities offered at H.J. Carroll Park.

Each year, the Club awards between $9,500 and $14,000 in scholarships to worthy graduating seniors from Chimacum and Quilcene high schools. More than $100,000 has been granted since 1990.

Besides the typical scholastic records and financial need information, the students are asked to write an essay on "What the Four-Way Test Means to Me and How I'd Apply it in My Life".

Rotary's "The Four-Way Test of the things we think, say or do" asks:
1. Is it the truth?
2. Is it fair to all concerned?
3. Will it build good will and better friendships?
4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

Judging one's actions by this test meshes well with the Rotary's motto, "Service Above Self".

The Club receives one or two students from foreign countries, each year, through the Rotary Youth Exchange Program. In return, the club sends one or two local students to foreign countries. It costs the club between $2,300 and $5,000 annually to offer those teens this experience of a lifetime.

Every quarter, six or eight Rotarians take to the streets for the Adopt-a-Highway cleanup program. Their two hours of time helps to keep two miles of State Highway 116 (from Highway 19 through Kivley Center to Flagler Road) litter free.

For years, Jim Larimer single handedly edited and published the "Jefferson Rotary Bulletin". Although that publication is no longer published, since March, Sandy Hershelman has created online newsletters, which are accessible at www.sandyhershelman.com/desktop/htm. Here, Rotarians and others can keep tabs of the Club's activities.

The Club meets for lunch at the Tri-Area Community Center for lunch at noon each Thursday.

Got news??
E-mail me at: hershelman@olympus.net to send tantalizing tidbits for this monthly missive.
Feel free to send me 72 dpi photos. . .the more embarrassing the better!