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Welcome to our Club!


Service Above Self

We meet Mondays at 12:00 PM
Steve Ryan Community Center
501 N Fourth St.
Kentland, IN  47591
United States
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The Kentland Rotary Club joined with the Thrivent Action Team to support the Rotary’s annual Food Pantry and Voucher Drive. The Rotary Club in cooperation with Thrivent, Kentland Chamber of Commerce, Kentland Retail Merchants Assn. and private donors provided $2450.00 in $25 food vouchers to needy families in the Kentland, Goodland, and Brook communities that were suggested by Town Marshalls, Township Trustees, churches and the Food Pantry.  The Rotary Club provided the funds for the publicity and that allowed the entire $250.00 to be used for food for the Kentland Covenant Federated Food Pantry.  Rotary members volunteer as "carry outs and sackers for 6 hours on Saturday December 20th 2014 at Murphy's Food King. We distributed $2450.00 in food vouchers, collected $765.81 in donations, and collected an additional packed full grocery cart of food items.  The volunteers enjoyed the "Live Generously" T-shirts provided by Thrivent and the Thrivent Action team banner was displayed on the service counter.  This project is also part of the Kentland Rotary Club's activity to support the Rotary Has Heart program   This a perfect example of groups working together to meet serious needs in a community. 

Rotary Touchpoints
Rotary District Assistant Governor John Frischie (pictured) gave an update on the organization’s website and also touched on some possible changes regarding the club’s attendance policy at Kentland’s Rotary Club meeting this past Monday. Frischie stated that it’s important for club’s to recognize perfect attendance and maybe Kentland should consider adopting Rotary Touchpoints. A point system where members can earn points for projects to make up for absences instead of the weekly fined for missing meetings.
In other Rotary news, the Kentland Rotary and the Kentland Chamber of Commerce will look to hold quarterly joint meetings. The first joint meeting has been scheduled for Jan. 19. Photo by GREGORY MYERS

The history of the Kentland Elevator was the topic of the Kentland Rotary Club program Nov. 17. Company President John Fredrickson spoke about the company’s origins. “In August 1978, Myself Francis Sowers and his son Dean purchased and organized Kentland Elevator and Supply,” said Fredrickson. “We are now nearing completion of our 37th harvest.”
Fredrickson also stated that after founding Kentland Elevator, a few years later they purchased elevators at Boswell, Earl Park and Quaker, IL. Then in 1994, they purchased the Sheldon elevator. Over the years, the owners decided to sell the Quaker, Earl park and Boswell locations to concentrate on Kentland and Sheldon. In 1996, an expansion was completed at Kentland for more storage and this past year, the facility doubled its drying capacity. John’s son Darrell joined the company in 1985 after graduating from Michigan State University. He purchased Francis Sowers’ stake in the company and is now vice-president and general manager. Dean Sowers is vice-president of operations and manager at the Sheldon location.
Fredrickson went on to say that the company has nine full-time employees and several part-timers. “We have been fortunate to have a number of loyal customers in this area,” said Fredrickson. “This area has also been blessed with good crops over the years.”

Kentland Rotary hears about animal shelter
Morgan Rinehart of the Newton County Animal Shelter was the guest speaker at Monday’s Kentland Rotary meeting. She informed the Rotarians on her job duties, experiences and her passion for animals. Since taking over from ICARE, Rinehart told the club she has placed a number of dogs and cats in new homes and/or with animal rescue groups. PHOTO by Gregory Myers

Dr. Gray speaks about Germany with Kentland Rotary
Purdue University Associate Professor Dr. William Gray was the guest speaker at Monday’s Kentland Rotary meeting. He spoke on mistakes made by Germany in World War I and some misconceptions about that time period. Gray noted that the biggest mistake made by Germany in the war was its unwillingness to stop fighting and to hold out for absolute victory. “This eventually drew the Untied States into the war and eventually to Germany’s defeat,” said Gray. “The loss of the war and the strict punishment given to the country, along with some other factors led to the country following some darker ideas and eventually into World War II.” Pictured, Gray (right) was the guest of Rotarian Brandt Stum. The Oct. 20 program will be about the Servants At Work, Inc. (SAWs). SAWs is a non-profit, all volunteer ministry that builds wheelchair ramps to provide persons with disabilities and people with conditions of aging access to their world and the freedom to remain in their communities.

Dr. Gray speaks about Germany with Kentland Rotary
Purdue University Associate Professor Dr. William Gray was the guest speaker at Monday’s Kentland Rotary meeting. He spoke on mistakes made by Germany in World War I and some misconceptions about that time period. Gray noted that the biggest mistake made by Germany in the war was its unwillingness to stop fighting and to hold out for absolute victory. “This eventually drew the Untied States into the war and eventually to Germany’s defeat,” said Gray. “The loss of the war and the strict punishment given to the country, along with some other factors led to the country following some darker ideas and eventually into World War II.” Pictured, Gray (right) was the guest of Rotarian Brandt Stum. The Oct. 20 program will be about the Servants At Work, Inc. (SAWs). SAWs is a non-profit, all volunteer ministry that builds wheelchair ramps to provide persons with disabilities and people with conditions of aging access to their world and the freedom to remain in their communities.









Gary Rheude, President of Adkev, Inc., Goodland, IN, was the guest speaker at the August 25 meeting of the Kentland Rotary Club.  Doug Morgan introduced Gary, by asking Rotarians if they were aware that Adkev produces injection molded parts that are in nearly every car and truck sold in the United States, that Adkev is the largest employer in Newton County (and one of the largest in White County), and has a broad array of manufacturing occupations in engineering, quality control, automation, tool and die, machine setup, machine operators, maintenance, and accounting.

Adkev began in 1987 with two employees and two molding machines in a former farm implement dealership building and has grown to two large, automated manufacturing facilities in Goodland and Monticello, where 300 employees and 114 molding machines operate, as well as a 25-employee tool and die shop located in Elkhart.  Adkev’s great success results from manufacturing processes that allow it to be competitive in a world economy, primarily serving the very demanding and time-sensitive assembly requirements of automobile and equipment manufacturers.  The company has earned numerous awards as well as recognition from manufacturers and national and international organizations.

Gary, raised in Goodland, studied Machine Trades at Vincennes University and Mechanical Engineering Technology at Purdue University.  Gary’s business partner, wife, Cathy, graduated from Indiana State University in Elementary Education and taught, locally, while working part-time in the business in accounting and human resources.  The company and her responsibilities grew, which required her to assume a full-time position in human resources and spend additional time at the Monticello location.  Gary and Cathy have two sons.  Adam, a Purdue Mechanical Engineering graduate, has joined the business in automation design and development. Kevin, a Purdue Turf Science graduate, is employed in the Lafayette area.

Gary addressed the club, speaking about the types and inherent characteristics of plastic used for various applications (structural strength, suitability for color and painting, lubricity for levers and bearings, and insulating for covers and cases), the intricate processes  of extrusion, rotational, vacuum-forming, blow-molding, and Adkev’s method of injection molding of all parts, in which plastic is melted through an extruder, with high pressure injecting the plastic into a mold cavity which is the shape and configuration of the part.  Further, insert molding is utilized by placing plastic around pins and bushings, stamping to add function to parts, and two-shot molding gives a plastic part a sealing surface or use as vibration dampening.  In the development stage of molded parts 3D printing is used.   To exemplify, Gary displayed an alternator cover, the amount of raw material required, and explained the process beginning with the setting up of and operating molding machines to the adding of metal and other synthetic parts through the use of sophisticated robotics and automation.  Gary invited the attendees to a plant tour following the meeting.

At the plant, Gary showed an array of Adkev products from interior center console modules for Honda and Toyota cars, to engine and electronic components.  The group then toured the production area where Rotarians observed mass production of various injection molded parts for numerous foreign and domestic customers, the intricate assembly by programmable machines, and the “zero defects” quality control approach achieved through the use of sensors, lasers, and other precision equipment.  Adkev produces over 400,000 pieces of injection molded parts every day, which is in excess of 100,000,000 pieces annually. Dedicated trucks leave Adkev daily for Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas, Michigan and Canada.  The key to Adkev’s success is the quality of product produced and the processes that are in place to prevent any defects from reaching the customer.


Rotarians asked wide-ranging questions about transportation, the labor force and skills needed, impact on economies ($12 million in salaries are injected locally), various risks to the business, and new technologies.   The tour was most informative, and the Rotarians appreciated learning about this important Newton County corporation.

































The Kentland Rotary had a informative program from Mike Rowe, Park Board President, regarding the newly opened community pool. Mike indicated approximately 500 showed up for the Grand Opening Saturday and Sunday enjoying the many new features of the pool. After the discussion Mike gave the group a tour of the pool and pump/filter room, explaining from start to finish how the water entered the pool, chemicals where applied and then discharged into the pool area. Mike indicated with this being a new pool the water has to be filtered completely every two hours compared to four or more in the previous pools. If was interesting to know that the new pool doesn’t hold much more water than the old pool, but the layout is much more functional.

The community should be proud of the new swimming pool and the many years of enjoyment young and old will have. The Kentland Rotary would like to thank the Park Board, Town of Kentland and many dedicated individuals who have made this vision into reality.





Extension Educator Speaks To Rotary

Rotarian Tim Lohr invited Deb Arseneau as the guest speaker for the August 11 Kentland Rotary Club meeting.

Arseneau is the Health & Human Sciences Educator with Purdue Extension in Newton County. She passed out a flyer that outlined ten of the most important programs that she is working with in the county. Five of these programs were for adults and five were designed for youth.

She highlighted a program called a Matter of Balance that was designed to help older adults manage falls and increase activity levels. She also spoke of a Dining with Diabetes program that will be taking place during September at the Kentland Public Library. This four night educational program and cooking school will help adults with type 2 diabetes control their blood sugar to feel better and reduce risk of health complications.

She then spoke about programs for youth. A Yummy Curriculum is a 5-part nutrition education program that incorporates nutrition education, food safety tips and physical exercise into each lesson. This is offered to first graders. Captain Cash is an interactive educational program designed to teach basic financial management skills. This is offered to third graders. Block Parties were a new addition last year. Parties can be arranged for local Head Start classrooms and preschools. Adults can guide children’s early learning experiences and use blocks as tools to support their development.

Arseneau wrapped up her presentation talking about activities that took place in the Domestic Arts building at the Newton County Fair. Besides all the regular cooking and craft competition displays, they also hosted Story Hour at the Fair for children and held a fun grab bag craft making activity for adults.

The Kentland Rotary Club meets at the Steve Ryan Community Center every Monday at noon.









On Monday August 4, 2014 the guest speakers at the regular noon meeting of the Kentland Rotary club, invited by Rotarian John Cook, were Gregory Myers, managing editor and Greg Perrotto, marketing manager for the Newton County Enterprise.

Mr. Myers comes from southern Illinois with 13 years of newspaper experience and has just completed his first month at the Enterprise. He is excited about this job opportunity and the growth potential of the newspaper.

He and Greg discussed their focus on hyper-local news stories, North and South Newton school news and sports. Being halfway between the Chicago and Indianapolis news markets there is a need to fill this gap in local coverage.

A redesigned Newton County Enterprise is being planned with more color and new format and their website is being updated.

Gregory encouraged organizations and individuals to contact him about events and newsworthy stories that he may not be aware of as a newcomer to the area. His goal for the Enterprise is to provide better, more comprehensive area coverage for his readers.





At the Kentland Rotary Club meeting on Monday, July 28, Dr. Jay Brinkman presented a program in honor of the bicentennial year of the Star Spangled Banner.
The song was originally written as a poem with four verses entitled "Defense of Fort McHenry" by a 35 year old lawyer named Francis Scott Key on September 14, 1814 after he had witnessed the bombardment of Fort McHenry on the Chesapeake Bay by the British navy the night before. The music was added later that year from a well-known British tune called The Anacreontic Song.
The Rotary program was focused on why the Star Spangled Banner took 117 years to become our national anthem. It was Major League Baseball that first popularized playing the Star Spangled Banner at the beginning of events in the late 1880's. Not until 1931, when an act of Congress that was signed by President Herbert Hoover, did the Star Spangled Banner become our "official" national anthem.
The presenter suggested that it was the growing popularity of radios in homes in the late 1920's and into the 1930's that fueled the pressure to designate a national anthem.





Kentland Rotary Club Program

Kentland Rotary Club Scholarship Chairperson, Roberta Dewing, had the program on Monday, July 21 at noon at the Kentland Community Center with two of the four Kentland Rotary Club South Newton Scholarship Recipients.  The two recipients that were able to attend the program were the $2,000 Ross Memorial Scholarship recipient, Kyra Barrett and the $1,000 Rotary Vocational Recipient, Kayla Cirak.  Both young women talked to the Rotarians about what colleges were they were planning to attend and what course of study they will be undertaking in the fall. Ms .Barrett will be attending Ball State University to study Hospitality & Event Planning.  Ms. Cirak will be attending Valparaiso University to study nursing.  The other two Rotary Scholarship recipients, Zach Willhite & Trevor Lowe were unable to attend due to prior commitments.  Rotarian Roberta Dewing  mentioned that the Kentland Rotary Club started out with one Rotary Scholarship at $750 back in 1994 and then after the Rotary Club began their Truck Raffle the club was able to increase the amount and number of scholarships given each year.

















Kentland, IN - On July 14th Katie Hall, CASA Director, from Crossroads CASA spoke to the members of the Kentland Rotary. CASA which stands for Court Appointed Special Advocate, is a volunteer program that has been in Newton County since 2010. Community members make up the CASA program and they advocate for the abused and neglected children in our county. A CASA volunteer is trained by the Director and sworn in by the area Judges before receiving an abuse and neglect case. Anyone can become a CASA volunteer as long as they are at least 21 years of age and can pass a background check. "There is a high numbers of child abuse and neglect that occurs in our counties," stated Katie Hall. "A CASA helps the children by advocate for a safe, forever home." There are children on a waiting list for a caring person, a CASA, to step up and advocate for their needs.
If you are interested in becoming a CASA volunteer please contact Katie Hall at the CASA office at (219) 866-0843 or You can find more information on CASA by checking out or Crossroads CASA advocates for abused and neglected children in Jasper, Newton, and Benton Counties. Crossroads CASA is also a member of the National CASA Association and Certified by the Indiana State GAL/CASA Office.  

The Rotary club of Kentland meets every Monday at noon at the Steve Ryan Community Center in Kentland, IN.





Kentland Rotary Club sponsored Youth in Government & Business Day on Monday, April 28 to expose students to the world of local government & business. During the morning high school students from South Newton job shadowed local county officials & participating businesses where they learned what went on in the county offices & in the area businesses. At noon the students, the county officials, & business leaders joined the Rotarians for lunch.  After the meal the students spoke briefly about themselves and the offices they visited.  Kentland Rotary Club has been sponsoring Youth in Government & Business Day for over sixteen years.  Roberta Dewing, chairperson of the Vocational Committee, appreciates the support of Cheryl Link, teacher at South Newton, the school corporation,  local county officials, and business leaders who participated in this activity.  Any county official or business wishing to participate next year may contact Roberta Dewing for more information.

Those students participating were Brittany Baker, Patience Jones, Brittany McCormick, Megan Vissering, Margarita Cruz, Kaycee Nagel, Rebecca Sanchez, and Aric Deno.

Those officials & businesses participating were Newton County Surveyor, Chris Knochel, Circuit Court Judge Leach, Newton County Treasurer Diane Veld, Newton County Auditor Sharon Dewing, Newton County Sheriff Tom VanVleet, and Rogers Group Susan Daniel.





The Kentland Rotary Club learned about the 3-D printing process from Jim Butler of Butler Tool and Design located in Goodland.  Jim presented a video demonstration of how 3-D printer also known as laser sintering is done.    The end product is designed in 3-D by a computer software program.  The data is fed to the printer unit itself. Objects printed are made with powder plastic materials that are spread in a thin layer on top of the last layer.  A computer controlled laser, tracing a cross-section of the object onto the powder at about one thousandth of an inch at a time. The laser heats the powder which fuses the particles in the powder together into a solid form. Temperatures need to be controlled within one degree.  This process continues over and over until the entire object has been printed.  When the object is fully formed, it is left to cool in the machine before being removed.  Many different objects can be made by the device at the same time.  Several hours are required for the process.  Many products for aerospace, NASCAR, and the automotive industry are built this way.  Thanks to Rotarian Don Wilson for hosting the program.

The Rotary is also assembly cabinets for the Trinity United Methodist Pre-School and will providing food vouchers in cooperation with the Kentland Chamber of Commerce and the Kentland Retail Merchants.  Rotary members will be carrying out groceries at Murphy ‘s Food King on Saturday December 21st from 8 am to noon.  Donations will be accepted for additional funding to the Kentland Food Pantry.




Dan Ryan, District Membership Chair and member of the Demotte, Indiana Rotary Club, presented the program at the March 24 meeting of the Kentland Rotary Club, held at the Kentland Community Center.
Mr. Ryan discussed the challenges that Rotary, as well as other civic and service organizations, face in attracting and retaining members in the 21st century. He presented the results of a study of Rotary membership demographic trends, and suggested approaches that we might consider to encourage new members to become more active and involved in the Kentland club. 
The Kentland Rotary Club meets every Monday at noon, Central time, at the Kentland Community Center on North 4th Street. Contact any Rotarian or call (219) 869-1058 for more information.



At its March 17 meeting, the Kentland Rotary Club heard a presentation from Danielle Sands, County Extension Director and 4-H Youth Development Extension Educator, about ongoing 4-H and youth activities in Newton County, her primary area of responsibility.  Doug Morgan introduced Danielle, reminding members of Danielle’s presentation several years ago on Geographic Information Systems (GIS) while employed in the Newton County Surveyor’s Office.  She developed an interest in this area as a result in working for the office during the summer following her junior year at South Newton High School.  Following graduation, Danielle attended Tri-State University (now Trine University) in Angola, earning undergraduate degrees in Criminal Justice and Psychology.  She then became GIS Technician in the Surveyor’s Office and later GIS Director for the county.  During this period, she also worked toward and completed a Master of Public Administration degree from Indiana State University, with emphasis on Human Resource Management.  As a result of Sue Frischie’s retirement and her own interest in 4-H, having been a long-time participant, Danielle sought and was hired as Extension Educator. 

Danielle stated that 4-H participation usually begins in the second grade and continues until middle school when other activities may compete with 4-H, although many youth complete 10 years of participation.  There are currently 408 young people participating in 4-H.  Enrollment takes place through pool parties and activity nights at area high schools, where families and kids can meet people from all 4-H clubs, see different projects, and learn about the many activities that occur in 4-H. 

Purdue Extension emphasizes school-based programming and as a result many programs are conducted throughout the year by the Educators. One program in particular, called “Kids in the Kitchen,” began years ago to help third graders read recipes, use kitchen tools, and cook various foods.  There were eighteen Lake Village participants in 2013, attending four classes during which breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack recipes were followed.  Danielle wants to continue to promote this program and further develop interest in gardening, which can provide useful knowledge and a source of food for their family. 

The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) curriculum teaches interactive, experimental learning, which Purdue Extension encourages through National Youth Science Day.  “Maps and Apps” is a program Danielle excels at, due to her previous positions, and she attempts to turn youth into geospatial thinkers as they design and map physical objects and solve community problems.

4-H Junior Leaders are a group of 7-12th graders who meet monthly  to tackle various projects and community service efforts, mentor first-year 4-Hers, help families and veterans, and strive to “make the best better.”

Danielle recently returned from attending the “Indiana 4-H Youth Development Academy” in Indianapolis which focused on creating a constructive, learning environment and critical thinking skills for kids of all ages as well as providing tools for the adults and volunteers who work with the youth.  She is looking forward to applying these concepts locally. 

Recent local Purdue Extension events include “Color Me Green” 5k walk/run at the fairgrounds (which raised nearly $1,000), “Clover to Clover” (4-H overview for first-year members), Jr. Leaders, and livestock workshops. Danielle also talked about the upcoming “engaging volunteers” activities to recognize the 101 volunteer leaders who head the eight 4-H clubs and other project and activity groups throughout Purdue Extension programming. 

She also provided an overview of the areas covered by her colleagues in the Newton County Extension Office, such as nutrition education by FNP Assistant Nancy Jo Prue, healthy people/healthy communities programs by HHS Educator Deb Arseneau, and agriculture programs by ANR Educator Andrew Martin.

The Rotary Club enjoyed Danielle’s presentation and enthusiasm and thanked her for her leadership and for making a difference in Newton County.  Danielle was hosted by Doug Morgan.   In other Rotary news Jim Schoen president elect attended President Elect Training at Kalamazoo MI last weekend.  





On Monday March 3, 2014, Mike Blanding and his wife Melissa were guest speakers for the Kentland Rotary luncheon.  Mike discussed the future of their company INTX Microbials LLC and the merger last fall with Verdesian Life Sciences LLC of Cary, North Carolina.  INTX has been a local employer in Kentland since 2002. They sell biological organisms and seed inoculants that are manufactured, packaged, and distributed from their Kentland facilities. The INTX products are distributed all around the world.  Mike states that the future of agriculture is focused on continued improvement of water and air quality, as well as producing safe to use and consume crops for consumers. In today's world they must meet an increasingly scrutinized regulatory system. Microbial technology provides a high-tech delivery system to seed and soil, that is both safe and environmentally friendly.  He also states that the Kentland location is ideal for any form of agriculture related product manufacturing due to the centralized Midwest location.  The recent merger with Verdesian will open doors to a wide variety of research and development. Verdesian owns an extensive product pipeline well in excess of 100 newly patent protected products to help continue the growth of their business here in Kentland.  Mike and Melissa are both 1991 graduates of South Newton High School. Mike is a 1996 graduate of Purdue University, School of Technology.  The Blanding's have three children. Mike is a sixth generation operator, of the McCarty family's Newton County farms.





Kentland Rotary Club held their semi-annual Pancake, Biscuit and Gravy Breakfast on Saturday March 1, 2014.

The Kentland RotaryClub thanks all those who came out for the breakfast and made this event a great success. The Covenant Federated Church Food Pantry was selected as the beneficiary of the proceeds of this event. The approximately 75 breakfast lovers that came out donated free-will offerings totaling  $1,000.00. After expenses the club estimates that a donation of approximately $ 850.00 will be made to the food pantry.

The Rotary club expresses their appreciation to the generous vendors who helped with this successful event: Murphy’s Grocery Store, Good Table Restaurant and Devon’s Restaurant. The Kentland Rotary club also expresses their appreciation to the Trinity United Methodist Church for hosting the event at their beautiful facility.

The Kentland Rotary club looks forward to hosting another breakfast in the fall for another worthy cause.



Kentland Rotary Club Meeting:  Feb 17, 2014

Rotarian & VISKASE® Quality Engineering Manager Greg Hall presented the program at the Kentland Rotary Club on Monday, Feb. 17. He spoke about the history of VISKASE® and presented a video showing how hot dogs and casings are made.   The video was filmed for the TV show Food Tech, which was originally aired on the History Channel in April 2010.

VISKASE® began as the Visking Corporation back in 1925, in the Chicago Union Stockyards.  The company was founded by Erwin O. Freund, who discovered that he could make a sausage casing that could be used to replace animal intestine casings.  By accident, he discovered that when the cellulose casings were removed from the cooked hot dogs that the sausages retained their shape and were firm---the skinless sausage was born!

Today, VISKASE® manages a global sales and distribution network that reaches virtually every country of the world.  VISKASE® employs over 1,300 people in its manufacturing and distribution facilities in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia.


The Kentland Rotary Club meets at the Steve Ryan Community Center every Monday at noon.






Rotarian Tim Lohr introduced Vickie Lambert as his guest for the February 10 Kentland Rotary Club meeting.  Lambert is the Director of the Newton County Adult Learning Center, which is located in the Newton County Government Center in Morocco. The purpose of the Learning Center is to provide residents of Newton County assistance in furthering their education so that they may better their opportunities for employment.

            Lambert explained that Adult Education programs in Indiana had historically been under the direction of the Indiana Department of Education, but in 2010 that was shifted to the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. Along with this shift came an increase in focus to offer more assistance to the unemployed as well as providing guidance to young people who had not received a High School diploma and where in need of GED training.

            Lambert then shared about the changes that took effect at the beginning of 2014. The state of Indiana, as well as many other states, have changed from the General Education Development (GED) exam to a Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC). TASC is a national test for a diploma for those who have not completed high school. Lambert stated that it was still too early to say for sure how much different the preparation for the new test will be compared to the old. She is hopeful that Newton County will be added as an official testing location, so that local residents will not have to travel to Lafayette or Portage to take the test.

            In addition to education assistance offered at the Morocco site, Lambert travels to the Newton County Jail twice a week to work with inmates. Several inmates have passed their GED exam over the past few years.

            The Kentland Rotary Club meets at the Steve Ryan Community Center every Monday at noon.




Rotarian & Kentland Public Library Director Roberta Dewing presented the program at Kentland Rotary Club on Monday, Feb. 3.  She spoke about the Kentland-Jefferson Twp. Public Library.  

The library's service area is the town of Kentland and Jefferson Township.  The library's operating fund for 2013 was $241,500 and the library's per capita expenditure is $87.00.  The community is able to check out from the library the following:  Books, Magazines, Audio Books, Videos, Art Prints, EBooks, and downloadable audio books & videos.  Also available are computers for the public that access the Internet & Microsoft Office software and the library offers Wi-Fi.. Throughout the year the library offers a variety of programs for all ages.  Currently in the library's collection there are 30,835 books; 718 audio books, 858 videos, and 92 art prints. 22,066 items circulated in 2013.  Patrons with a valid Kentland Public Library card may download eBook titles, audio books, & videos through the Indiana Digital Download Center. Patrons with visual or a physical disability may have access to digital audiobooks through the Indiana Talking Book Library. For the month of February, Kentland Public Library borrowed an eReader kit from the Indiana State Library that contains seven ereaders and a talking book player. Don't have an eReader yet?  Stop by the library and get a hands on  experience with the ereaders in our ereader kit.





On Monday January 20, 2014 Rotarian Darrell Fredrickson introduced Alan Washburn as his guest speaker for the day.  Mr. Washburn,  a local farmer, is an Indiana State Fair board member. He is responsible for the Pioneer Village. During the meeting Washburn spokeabout the 65 Million dollar renovation of the State Fair Coliseum in Indianapolis.

The renovation, according to Washburn, is 2 months ahead of schedule. He expects it to be finished by April 1of this year.. During the upcoming Indiana State Fair, August 1 -17, 2014, the new Coliseum will host concerts, livestock judging and will be the home of IUPUI Basketball and Indy Fuel Hockey, amongst others.

One of the mandates for the renovation was to recycle as much material as possible. Washburn told his audience that with the exception of one dumpster load that could not be recycled, all the other materials were recycled. One example of this recycling effort is the fact that parking lots have been created from recycled concrete out of the Coliseum. The renovated venue will be ADA accessible and will seat 8200 spectators which is 200 more than before the renovation. The venue has a new sound system and score board, as well.

The Kentland Rotary Club meets at the Steve Ryan Community Center every Monday at noon.

On Monday January 20, 2014 Rotarian Darrell Fredrickson introduced Alan Washburn as his guest speaker for the day.

Mr. Washburn, a local farmer, is an Indiana State Fair board member. He is responsible for the Pioneer Village. During the meeting Washburn spoke about the 65 Million dollar renovation of the State Fair Coliseum in Indianapolis.

The renovation, according to Washburn, is 2 months ahead of schedule. He expects it to be finished by April 1of this year.. During the upcoming Indiana State Fair, August 1 -17, 2014, the new Coliseum will host concerts, livestock judging and will be the home of IUPUI Basketball and Indy Fuel Hockey, amongst others.

One of the mandates for the renovation was to recycle as much material as possible. Washburn told his audience that with the exception of one dumpster load that could not be recycled, all the other materials were recycled. One example of this recycling effort is the fact that parking lots have been created from recycled concrete out of the Coliseum. The renovated venue will be ADA accessible and will seat 8200 spectators which is 200 more than before the renovation. The venue has a new sound system and score board, as well.

The Kentland Rotary Club meets at the Steve Ryan Community Center every Monday at noon.



Rotarian Kirby Drey has been quite busy installing a new A/V system for the Rotary room at the Steve Ryan Community Center in Kentland. This past Monday during the club’s regular lunch meeting Drey showcased some of the capabilities of the new system.

The guest speaker for the meeting was David Heninger of Conagra Foods in Rensselaer. Heninger joined the meeting via video conference on the club’s new A/V system. Conagra’s Rensselaer plant  employs 187 employees who work in seven different shifts  with each shift containing somewhere between 25 and 15 employees. The plant produces microwave popcorn and has an industry leading safety record of which Heninger is very proud.  After the presentation club members and Heninger engaged in a lively Q&A session.

Club president Candace Armstrong encouraged Rotary members to ‘think outside the room’ when it comes to recruiting future program speakers!The Rotary Club of Kentland meets every Monday at noon at the Steven Ryan Community Center in Kentland.




Kirby Drey Treasurer of the Kentland Rotary Club presents check for proceeds to Peg Rhanor of the Kentland Food Pantry.  Peggy's husband Ron is picture on the left.  The Rhanor's alone with a lot of other volunteers staff and stock the Kentland Covenant Federated Food Pantry each wee,.



Members of the Kentland Rotary Club bagged and carried out groceries at Murphy’s food store the Saturday before Christmas. This event was a fundraiser for the food pantry at the Covenant Federated Church. Over $750.00 was received in tips!Kentland Rotary Club treasurer Kirby Drey presented Lon and Peg Rhanor of the food pantry with the check a day or so before Christmas.

At the regular Rotary Club meeting on Monday December 23, new club member Henry Senefelder III presented his classification speech to the club. Members learned that Henry originally is from Buffalo, NY, and has spent his entire professional career in the financial industry with the FDIC, local banks, and as an asset valuator. Senefelder III, who is a CPA, currently is employed at Kentland Bank and resides in Kentland.The Rotary Club of Kentland meets every Monday at noon at the Steven Ryan Community Center in Kentland.




The Kentland Rotary Club hosted a Tracy Smith Celebration on Monday December 16th in the Steven Ryan Community Center.   Approximately 100 people joined in the celebration with refreshments and a chance to here Tracy share his philosophy, reminisce about his days in Kentland,  encourage the youth to work hard and everyone to give back to their community.  Donnie Smith, Sandy Smith, and Jamie Smith, and Todd Reid joined Tracy Smith on his Kentland adventure. Tracy shared slides of the 2013 IU Baseball team, visited with classmates, teammates and interested community members.  Coach Smith dedicated most of his presentation to answering questions from the audience.  Tracy also autographed items that people brought to the event.  Several items of IU memorabilia items were auctioned and the $1700.00 in donations and auction proceeds will be distributed to the Brook, Goodland, and Kentland Little League Baseball associations.  Tracy received a mini Hillerich & Bradsby baseball bat from the Kentland Rotary in appreciation for his support of the local youth.  Thanks to Chris Bell and the South Newton athletic department for the popcorn, Murphy’s Food King for help with the food and drinks.  Rotarian Jim Schoen organized members Darrell Fredrickson, Brandt Stum, Kirby Drey John Cook, Doug Morgan and Rev. Ed Vanwijk to grill, serve, and publicize the event. The Rotary Club members set up the chairs at their noon meeting on Monday and put them away at the end. Also thanks to Town of Kentland for the use of the Community Center and the sound resources. 





Where- Steven Ryan Community Center Kentland (501 N Fourth St., Kentland, IN)

What- The Kentland Rotary Club will host Tracy Smith for a presentation to interested community members. Tracy will share his career from Little League, IU Head Baseball Coach, and College Baseball Coach of the Year.  He will also sign autographs.  There will be free popcorn, hot dogs, chips and soft drinks courtesy of donors.

Why- Fundraiser for Brook Baseball Association, Goodland Baseball Association, Kentland Baseball Association and South Newton Baseball Program

Who- Brook, Kentland, Goodland Baseball Associations players, parents, and fans.  South Newton Baseball Program, Other interested persons.  

Donations accepted- All the proceeds from donations and auction will be shared equally with the Brook Baseball Association, Goodland Baseball Association, Kentland Baseball Association, and the South Newton Baseball program. Individuals and businesses can also donate by sending check made payable to Kentland Rotary and mailed to:

Kentland Bank

Attn: Rotary

PO Box 145

Kentland IN, 47951









The Kentland Rotary Club met at Hazelden Country Club near Brook, IN on December 2 for their Annual Meeting and Seventy-Fourth Anniversary. A social hour was enjoyed from 5:30 -6:30 pm after which the members and guests sat down to a scrumptious dinner featuring salad, chicken, pork tenderloin, green beans, potatoes, wild rice, and apple cobbler.

Rotarian Dr. Jay Brinkman led the gathering in the singing of several Christmas Carols.

President-Elect Jim Schoen led the ‘business’ portion of the meeting.

Past presidents Darrell Fredrickson and Kirby Drey were presented with tokens of appreciation for their leadership.

The Guest Speaker for the evening, District 6540 Governor-Elect Steve Sorenson, a member of the Rotary Club of Fowler, expressed appreciation for the Kentland Club’s service to the community. Sorensen went on to share his passion to eradicate poverty and hunger in our local communities, which will be the platform for his District 6540 Governorship starting in July 2014.The Kentland Rotary Club meets every Monday at noon at the Steve Ryan Community Center

On Monday December 16 from 6 – 8 pm the club will host an event with Tracy Smith, coach of the Indiana University baseball team, at the Steven Ryan Community Center.

Tracy will share details of his career from South Newton athlete to College Baseball Coach of the Year at IU. Admission is free. There will be free refreshments as well. Donations will be accepted and all proceeds from donations and an auction will be shared with the Brook, Goodland, and Kentland Baseball Associations and the South Newton Baseball program.



Rotarian Mel Ward presented his guest Stan Olszyk who shared stories of his life, focusing on his service in the US Army and Air Force. Stan shared that he recently had gone on an Honor Flight to Washington DC and was privileged to place a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington Cemetery during that trip.During WWII Stan was not quite finished with basic training when he, at age 18, and thousands of others were called up to join the war in Europe, specifically the “Battle of the Bulge”. Stan traveled on the “Isle de France” to the Firth of Clyde and then Glasgow Scotland, from where he took a train to Southampton and a ship across the English Channel to join the 69th Division in early 1945, replacing a division that had been in the battle for a couple of months already.

Stan was in the machine gun section and he related several, sometimes graphic, stories of his experiences.  Stan was involved in the battle for Leipzig where his sergeant was shot and killed, falling on top of him, in Stan’s words, “he falling on me probably saved my life.” After the war Stan joined an ordinance company. “In 1947,” Stan said, “the Air Force was formed,” which he joined in 1958. He was stationed in Alaska, Newburgh NY (Stewart AFB,  Syracuse NY,  Vermont at the Ethan Allen AFB, in Thule Greenland, the US Air Force’s northern most base: 750 miles north of the arctic circle. Next Stan got to, in his words, “thaw out” for a couple of years in Homestead Florida.  He then went to England – where he met his wife -  then Castle AFB in California, South Korea, and finally Columbus Ohio, after which he retired from the service.

Interestingly, Stan joined Ethan Allen furniture company’s distribution center in New York, later moved to California, and eventually Kentland, from where he retired. Besides his impressive service to our country, Stan also excelled in sports, specifically bowling, baseball, and golf.  Thank you, Stan,  for your service to our country!

In other Rotary News Tracy Smith will be returning to the Steven Ryan Community Center on Monday evening December 16th from 6-8 pm to share his career with the public.  Free refreshments will be served and admission is free also.   There will be an auction with some autographed memorabilia. Donations will be accepted and all proceeds will be given to the Baseball Associations in Brook, Goodland, and Kentland and the South Newton Baseball Program.  



The November 4th guest speaker at the Kentland Rotary Club luncheon was Tim Belstra, owner of Belstra Milling in Demotte. His company recently opened the Pig Adventure at Fair Oaks Farms.  According to their website the Pig Adventure literally throws open the barn door to let everyone see what goes on inside a modern pig farm. The tour is included with the Fair Oaks Dairy Adventure. Guests will have the chance to visit the interactive visitor center and learn interesting facts about the history of swine production and the science of raising hogs today.  There are views of the farrowing barn and  gestation barn.  Over 17,000 people visited this educational exhibit the first month. This is a great attraction for our area.  Mr. Belstra was the guest of John Fredrickson.




Rev. Ken Vance, a missionary pilot and serves in Ndola, Zambia, Africa presented the Program at the noon luncheon meeting of the Kentland Rotary on Monday October 21st.

Rev. Vance is involved with the needs of the people he serves by providing both jobs and the production of food through agriculture. The first agricultural practice started in Zambia through the mission station was a woodworking shop. The mission station partnered with the equivalent of our forestry department in Zambia to harvest the rare species of trees for carpentry uses. He also mentioned that they are big in banana and aloe vera production but it takes two years to produce the first crop of bananas and shade for the aloe vera. So they start families raising chickens so they can have food and income in just 6 to 8 weeks. Aquaculture for fish farming is also utilized if communities are close enough to a dependable water source. Widows, outcasts in their society, are given sewing classes and a machine for an income source. Rev. Vance reminded the members of the proverb that states, you can give a person a fish and they can eat for a day, or you can teach a person to fish and they can fish for a lifetime. He stated then, but if you are involved with the needs of the people, you will better understand how to serve them best.  

Rev. Vance and his wife Debbie are visiting the States to officiate at their son’s wedding in Georgia. Rev. Vance grew up in Earl Park and attended Benton Central Schools. They have a son Joshua and a daughter Stacy both living in Marion, IN.  Reverend Vance was the guest of Chris Knochel.



Want to know how the new Affordable Care Act will affect health care delivery.  Dr.  Steven Witz,  the Director of the Regenstrief Center for Healthcare Enginering at Purdue, which is privately funded but draws on University resources in engineering and other disciplines,  will be the featured program at the noon, October 14th Kentland Rotary Club Meeting at the Steven Ryan Community Center in Kentland.  Dr. Witz is an individual with a real command of issues including the Affordable Care Act and also the future of healthcare delivery.  He speaks plainly and clearly with a nonpartisan bent to his audience.   The website to check out the Center and Dr Witz is and I would encourage you to look at it.  Click on the About tab which will describe the center but you can drop down and click on People: Staff to check out Dr. Witz and other associated personnel.  This is a truly flagship and prestigious Center for Purdue. He is not going to help people sign up to ACA, but will evaluate it in the context of it's impact short and long term on the entire industry, and more importantly how he sees health care delivery in the future.  Kentland Rotary is expecting a large turnout for this program so please make a reservation (no charge) for the meal and program by contacting a Kentland Rotarian or by calling John Frischie at 219-474-6483



15 Kentland Rotarians served pancakes and sussage to 110 individuals on Saturday September 21st. It was a great time for the Kentland Rotarians to come together to serve the community while raising money for the Kentland Jefferson Volunteer Fire Department. The Trinity United Methodist Church was a great place for early raisers to come together and enjoy some time visiting while eating some delicious pancakes. In the end $ 800 will be donated to the brave volunteers of the local fire department.

The Kentland Rotary club plans on continuing the Pancake breakfast fund raising event for local organizations. The Rotary would like to specially thank the following who where generous sponsors of this event, Murphy's Food King, Good Table Restaurant, Devon's Catering, Dunkin Donuts, Starbucks, AgVenture D & M, and Kentland Bank.  Watch for the Blue Banners and Ads for the next Pancake Breakfast.



Left Darrell Fredrickson Right Mike Rowe

Mike Rowe Chairman of the Parks Board shared an update on the new Kentland Pool at the Rotary meeting on Monday September 16th.  Mr. Rowe informed the group that the old pool structure has been removed and the Park Board is re-evaluating the plans. The Newton County Highway Department demolished and relocated the debris with a reduced fee from the landfill.   Changes in State law from the onset of the project have mandated changes on how the wading section and the main pool filtration and water circulation must work.  The Board continues to work with the designer to create a plan that can be bid on by different contractors for different types of pool infrastructure.  The fund raising for the pool is continuing with about $48,000.00 to go.  Donations should be made at the Kentland Town Hall.  Donated funds are being tripled by donors that have agreed to match donations with a 2 to 1 ratio.  Therefore every dollar donated turns into three. Mr. Rowe indicated the Board is working to keep the cost reasonable but yet build a pool that will last and support the needs of the community.  Darrell Fredrickson was the host for the program.



The Kentland Rotary Raffle winner for a truck or $20,000.00 this year was Dene Mattocks of Rensselaer Indiana.  Dene’s number was pulled from the 450 numbers on Monday September 2nd in Kentland.  The 2nd prize winner of $1,500.00 was Lori Weiss of Kentland. Robert Garza of Crete, Il received the prize of $750.All of the 450 tickets were sold again this year.  Al Emond Jr. Indianapolis, John Hall Kentland, David Gurthridge Boswell, Tom Suiter Earl Park, Brandt Stum Kentland, Daniel Molter Kentland, and Mary Madison Lake Village, all received $150.00 prizes. The Kentland Rotary Club would like to thank Emerson Sondgerath Motors for their support in this project.   The Club would also like to thank the Newton County Fair and the Earl Park Fall Festival for the opportunity to sell tickets during their events. Most of all the Kentland Rotary Club would like to thank all of those that purchased a ticket. Proceeds from the raffle have funded over $150,000.00 in scholarships and additional donations to the Kentland Food Pantry, Kentland Fire Department, and other local charities.  



Left Jim Schoen   Right Grace Clark

Grace Clark was the speaker for the noon meeting of the Kentland Rotary on Monday August 26th. Grace is starting her Junior Year at Indiana Wesleyan University in Marion IN. This summer she spent 2 1/2 weeks in Cambodia as part of a mission trip from IWU studying Human Trafficking and took part in a Pastors Retreat. They spent most of their time in Phnom Penh working with two groups, Chab Doi and Daughters of Cambodia. Chab Doi is trying to determine where the Trafficking is taking place and stop some of the sources. Daughters of Cambodia are working with the girls to train them in other jobs, such as Shops, Spa's, and Cafe's, so they can learn to support themselves.

       Facts about Cambodia:

·         No middle class, poor and rich

·         36% of the population has access to safe drinking water

·         Largest nation for Human Trafficking

·         43% of the Victims of Human Trafficking are 12-17 and for sexual exploitation

·         Rats outnumber the people 2 to 1

Human Trafficking also includes the promise of higher paying jobs, that normally doesn't occur or and opportunity to get out of debt working for no pay. It is very hard to break the cycle due to the need for money and the fear of being punished for trying to leave.

In other Rotary business President Armstrong reminded members of the Rotary Pancake Breakfast on September 21st.   The signup sheet for Earl Park Festival was filled to complete the Rotary Truck Raffle Sale.   John Frischie reported that the Kentland Food Pantry was in need of a freezer and Steve Portteus offered one that remained in the Bonnell Building.  Rotary members Steve Portteus, Tim Lohr, and John Frischie along with Dennis Morgan and Rick Yates assisted in the delivery of the freezer to the Kentland Food Pantry on Tuesday. 





Mike Davis (Left) John Cook (Right)

Mike Davis, President of Agventure D&M, was the guest speaker at the Kentland Rotary Club recently.  The seed company was started 30 years ago when Mike Davis and John Cassidy teamed up and began operations in Oxford, IN.   As the business evolved the headquarters was moved to Kentland in 1989 and 5 years later Agventure D&M began with Mike Davis and Mike Mullen.

The seed company relies on local sales people to market their corn, soybeans and alfalfa seed so that the best genetics for each area can be selected. The local connection is important because of the fast changing technology incorporated in today's seed, as farmers can get help choosing the right product for their particular field.  This growing network of independent sales people spans the four states of Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, and Tennessee. John Cook was the host for the meeting.

In other business Rotary President Candace Armstrong announced the Pancake Breakfast that will be held on Saturday September 21st  at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Kentland.  Proceeds will be used to fund a Rotary donation to the Kentland Jefferson Volunteer Fire Department.    John Frischie Membership chair reported on the District 6540 Membership Seminar he attended on August 17th at the Plymouth, Indiana Library.  Rotary has changed attendance and membership policies to be more flexible and enable more community members an opportunity to participate in the activities of Rotary Clubs. 




The Kentland Rotary club's weekly meeting on July 22 was another fun and rewarding experience for those in attendance. After lunch, which is catered by Devon's, the club celebrated four members that were recognized for their continued generosity to the Rotary Foundation, Jim Schoen, John Cook, Steve Portteus, and John Frischie who each received Paul Harris fellow pins.  Next the club welcomed and accepted new member, Henry Senefelder III. 

John Frischie, Assistant Governor for District 6540 introduced Christina Dougherty the new Rotary District Governor of District 6540 (Northern Indiana), who spoke about the focus for this Rotary year: "Engage Rotary, Change Lives." She stressed that District leadership is there to support local Rotary Clubs and that they want to be a sounding board for the ideas generated by individual clubs. She complimented the Kentland club on their continued fun and engaged involvement in the greater Kentland community especially by the club's Scholarship Program that is funded by the club's annual Truck Raffle.  Christina also acknowledged Kentland Rotary as one of the top clubs in supporting the Rotary Foundation.  It is always exciting to meet the new Governor and learn of her experience. Christina R. Dougherty was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and raised in St. Clair Shores, Michigan.  After graduation from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan with a Bachelor of Music degree, she moved to Chicago, Illinois, to begin her career as a Junior High general music teacher in La Grange Park, Illinois.  Christina has enjoyed a career as an educator, performer and arts administrator, which led her to receive a Master in Management degree from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois.  Currently she is a Holistic Practitioner at the Indiana University Health La Porte Hospital and the Namaste Center for Holistic Health in La Porte, Indiana.  She has been the Coordinator of Development for the St. Louis Arts Council, Director of Sales for Urban Gateways: The Center for Art in Education in Chicago, Executive Director to the Chicago Youth Symphony, Business Manager of the Chicago Old Town School of Folk Music, and Conference and Training Seminar Consultant for the International Network of Performing Arts.  She has also been an instructor in the graduate education departments of St. Xavier University and Aurora University in Chicago, and a voice instructor at St. Louis university in St. Louis, Missouri and the American College in Chicago.

Christina has performed with the Opera Theatre of St. Louis for ten years and as a soloist with the St. Louis Symphony and Kansas City Lyric Opera.  She has been a section leader of the Chicago Symphony chorus.  The Missouri State Council of the Arts awarded her a grant to perform a two-year statewide solo concert series.  She was awarded a scholarship by the American Business Women's Association and has been entered into the International Who's Who of Musicians and Who's Who in Education.

Christina and Douglas E. Busby, a physician and minister, have been married for 21 years, and their combined families consist of six adult children and their families of 10 grandchildren. Christina is Past President of the Rotary Club of La Porte and Past Chair of the La Porte Rotary foundation, Assistant District Governor, a Paul Harris Fellow and a Rotary Benefactor.  She is past Chair of Musical Arts Indiana in South Bend, a member of the Board of Directors of the La Porte Symphony and a member of the International Fellowship of Rotary Musicians.Christina has had an exciting career as a classical singer and continues to perform.  She enjoys gardening, sailing and loves to cook but for the next year, her husband Doug, will be the family cook.  She will spend the next year in the leadership role for District 6540 and will attend all 55 Clubs during the year. 

Guests are always welcome at the club's Monday noon meetings. Upcoming programs include:

July 29 - a brainstorm session about membership and service.

August 5 - Morgan Ulyat - performing artist, who will share about her voice studies at Ball State University and her recent internship in Italy.

John Frischie

Kentland Rotary Membership Chair




Photo: Rotarian Jay Brinkman, left, hosted guest speakers Jerry and Jan McVey at the club's regular Monday noon luncheon meeting.

At Monday's noon luncheon meeting, Jerry and Jan McVey, residents of Donovan who have opted for an active retirement, informed club members about a mission outreach ministry of the United Methodist Church called Nomads. Nomads is an acronym for Nomads On a Mission Active in Devine Service. Their guiding principle is found in James 2:17: "In the same way, faith by itself, if not accompanied by action is dead."

Nomads are people who are retired or close to retirement. They enjoy RV travel and they need a meaningful purpose and personal mission. They want to share their Christianity with others and use their skills in service to others. Jan who is a retired Nurse worked at Iroquois Memorial Hospital and more recently at the IMH clinic in Kentland with Dr. Florido. Jerry was a maintenance specialist at Littlefuse Manufacturing in Watseka before retiring 10 years ago. Since they enjoy RV travel and wanted a meaningful retirement with a shared Christianity, becoming Nomads was an easy decision for the McVeys.

Nomad projects include: building projects, maintenance, repairs, new construction, office work, painting, child care, sewing, and gardening. Work on homes of needy families is not uncommon. Projects last up to three weeks. The work day usually starts with devotions. The Nomads receive no pay and pay their own expenses. They do, however , receive a place to park their RVs with water, electricity and other RV necessities. The work week is limited to four days so there is time for some sightseeing and exploration of the region near their project.

The McVeys have been active with the Nomads for the last 5 years. They have taken part in two missions each year for a total of 10 missions. They described a recent trip and mission to Pharr, Texas. The project was to recondition the small house of a lady in her 80s, which she occupied with her granddaughter and three great grandchildren. During their three-week stay the Nomads assigned to the project replaced the roof, repaired bathroom walls, added a shower stall, sink, medicine cabinet, and a much needed bathroom door. The living room and kitchen got new floors, and interior rooms and the exterior of the house were painted. Two new windows were also installed. Grandma was absolutely delighted.

To fund their projects the Nomads pay yearly dues. They also receive funds from Churches (United Methodist) and individuals. They have conducted successful auctions. To learn more about the Nomads and their service visit or call (toll free) 1-866-466- 6237 .

Brandt Stum
Kentland Rotary Club




Rotarian Mel Ward, center, hosted quest speakers Christopher Curry, left, and Chuck Bohlmann, right, at the Club's regular Monday noon luncheon meeting. Chuck Bohlmann, CEO at the Iroquois Memorial Hospital in Watseka, and Chris Curry, Chief Operating Officer (COO) at IMH are former IMH employees that were asked to return by the Hospital board after an absence of 4 years. After leaving IMH in 2008, Bohlmann took a position representing and negotiating for 50 hospitals in Illinois and ended up as a senior vice president of a small rural hospital in Ohio. Curry spent his intervening time at a large hospital facility in Chicago. Both men felt that they had gained insights and experience that make them better at their jobs at IMH today.

Chris and Chuck are responsible for the daily operation and management of the hospital. As CEO and COO they assemble a staff of the best medical professionals possible and provide them with the atmosphere that allows them to be as efficient and productive as possible on the job.

Iroquois Memorial has 350 employees. There are 143 Nurses. In addition to the hospital in Watseka, there are three IMH clinics. There is a clinic in Gilman, one in Milford and also one in Kentland. The Kentland Clinic opened 21 years ago and in 1997 moved into a new building that was built as a medical facility. It has a staff of 14 led by Dr. Florido. There are two nurse practitioners, Deborah Morgan and Chantel Anderson. They have up to 9,000 ER visits a year. That works out to 30-40 a day.

Keeping a Hospital in a rural setting staffed with top notch medical professionals is often difficult. It's a hard sell to attract recent graduates of medical schools and nursing schools. So, Chuck and Chris decided they needed to grow their own staff. To do that they have employed youth considering medical careers during summer vacation. They also provide scholarships for those serious about a medical career --- with a commitment to return to Iroquois Memorial.

Making sure that the hospital is providing the best possible medical care is also a responsibility of the CEO. Advances in medicine and technology provide better and safer health care. An example is the addition of a 160 slice Toshiba Aquilion Prime CT scanner that is capable of 3-D images. It is much, much faster and safer than it's predecessor.

Iroquois Memorial recently affiliated with Presence Health, the State's largest Catholic Health System with 12 hospitals. The partnership will give access to visiting specialists to expand the services of IMH. IMH bridges the geographic areas of Presence Health's existing hospitals in Kankakee, Urbana and Danville. Bohlmann feels that the partnership with Presence Health will strengthen Iroquois Memorial's ability to serve the health care needs of the communities they serve. Although they are committed to working with the other hospitals, the local hospital board will still determine what happens at IMH.

Brandt Stum
Kentland Rotary Club




Rotarian Jim Schoen, right, hosted guest speaker Kelly Kepner, Director of Benton County Economic Development, at the regular Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Ms. Kepner brought good news of a new business venture in Sheff in near by Benton County.  The Appalachian Railcar Services, Inc. of Eleanor, West Virginia, a company that specializes in the maintenance and storage of rail cars, found that the 3 1/4 mile long disconnected Norfolk Southern line that extends from 700N. to 900N. and into Newton County would be an ideal fit for its railcar services.  When a new building is completed and the old tracks are restored, an investment of circa 1.1 million, the spur will connect with the Kankakee, Beaverville & Southern Railroad (KBSR) north of Earl Park.  There will be approx. 20 new jobs with good salaries.  Welding skills might be helpful, but the State is also committed to helping to train new employees.  When hired and trained workers will be maintaining railcars such as:  covered hoppers, coal cars, open-top hoppers, boxcars, gondolas, center beams, air operated bottom dumps and coil cars. 


Appalachian Railcar Services had first contacted the White County Economic Development Organization looking for a feasible site for their maintenance service, but no suitable sites were found in White County.  So, Connie Neininger, Director of White County Economic Development, referred ARS to Benton County where the abandoned Norfolk Southern rail facility meeting their needs was found.  While all of the details have not yet been worked out,  Benton County workers have been busy clearing brush and laying a gravel driveway at the site---- a promising sign of good things to come. 


Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club    




Chris Kowal, Director of the Center of Professional Selling at Purdue

At the Monday noon luncheon meeting, Rotarian Brandt Stum, left, hosted guest speaker Chris Kowal, Director of the Center of Professional Selling at Purdue University in West Lafayette. Doctor Kowal introduced himself stating that after finishing high school he felt that he wasn't smart enough for college. So he went to work in real estate sales after being advised by a relative not to and was surprisingly very successful. Then he met a young women who convinced him that he was smarter than he thought and he should give college a try. He did, and a few years later he had earned a PH. D. from the University of Connecticut, had married the young woman who had advised him to try college, had three children, and was an assistant professor at Purdue University. The young woman was right.

Dr. Kowal's topic for the day was "Understanding Charisma". Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary defines charisma as --- a personal magic of leadership arousing special popular loyalty or enthusiasm for a public figure. A couple of individuals that most would agree exhibit charisma are former President Bill Clinton and talk show hostess, Oprah Winfrey. Clinton said that he remembers his stepfather as a gambler and alcoholic who regularly abused his mother and half-brother to the point where he had to intervene multiple times with the threat of violence to protect them. Oprah stated she was raped at age nine and became pregnant at 14; had a son that died in infancy. Both Clinton and Winfrey had the ability to read and understand emotions and connect with others. They had acquired the the ability to assess a difficult situation and deal with it effectively.

Kowal suggests that we are not born with charisma. I'm inclined to believe, however, that some individuals just have innate gifts that most of us do not have. There are behavioral habits one could develop that would help one connect more effectively with others. Active listening for example --- hearing the needs of others would help. Also the ability to read non - verbal clues. When shaking hands, a firm grip and also touching a shoulder and pulling an individual closer is a warmer approach. The waitress who taps you on your shoulder and calls you "Hon" is perhaps more likely to receive a larger tip. There are, obviously, many things that one could learn and practice to be a more effective communicator and more successful on the job and off of the job. Dr. Kowal had an attentive audience and he did give us tips that could make us more effective in our daily endeavors.

Brandt Stum



Photo:  Steve Portteus, right, introduced the program speaker, the Reverend Ed Van Wijk of the Trinity United Methodist Church of Kentland, at the club's Monday noon luncheon meeting.  

Monday's program speaker, Rev. Ed Van Wijk, who is also a Rotary Club member, reported on a spiritual retreat that he attended in April at the Abbey of Gethsemani near Bardstown, Ky.  It is customary for the Methodist Church to encourage its Pastors to occasionally take time for spiritual renewal.  Since the Abbey of Gethsemani is not all that distant and was highly recommended by one of Pastor Ed's colleagues, he registered to attend an April Monday through Friday retreat.  

The Abbey of Gethsemani which is affiliated with the Cistercians Order of Strict Observance, was founded in 1848.  It's the oldest monastery in the United States.  There the Trappist monks follow the Rule of Saint Benedict (c.480-547) that requires the monks live a contemplative life of faithful prayer and work. 

The renowned Abbey of Gethsemani monk, Father Thomas Merton, stated that the monastic milieu offers a place apart " to entertain silence in the heart and listen for the voice of God --- to pray for your own discovery."  

The daily schedule is quite rigid for the monks (approx. 48) and the retreatants.  It begins at 3:15 am with prayer, singing and worship and continues until 8:00 am when the monks go to work until noon.  After lunch it's more worship and prayer until it's time for supper.  After supper there's more religious formality until the monks retire for the evening after 7:30 pm.  Guest and retreatants may participate in the ceremonies if they want, and that's what Rev. Van Wijk did.  

From 8:00 am to 12:00 pm the monks work to support themselves and the abbey.  There is a herd of Holstein cows that the monks tend to.  The milk is used to produce hand-made Trappist cheeses that are sold at an on site store and also by mail order. In addition to the cheeses, the monks also make fruitcakes and fudges, some of which are flavored with genuine Kentucky Bourbon. There are also art objects that the monks have hand crafted that are sold at the store. 

Guests are always welcome at the abbey.  Hospitality maintains a prominence in living the monastic tradition.  As outlined in Saint Benedict's Rules for Monasteries, the guest represents Christ and has a claim on the welcome and care of the community.  There are weekday retreats and weekend retreats that one can register for.  There are no set fees for lodging or meals.  Only a donation that the guest can afford is all that  is expected.  

Reverend Van Wijk  felt that the four days he spent at the abbey were very beneficial --- a chance for spiritual renewal.  Wandering the abbey's 2000 acres of woodland and fields afforded time for reflexion and prayer.  While the monks were at work, Pastor Van Wijk spent time in the abbey's library reading Thomas Merton's autobiography, The Seven Storey Mountain, and learning about the Trappist Order of monks.  


Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club



Photo:  Doug Morgan, right, hosted guest speaker Cheri Gayfield, Managing Editor of the Newton County Enterprise, at the club's Monday noon luncheon meeting. 


On this day, after almost twenty years of employment at the Newton County Enterprise, Cheri Gayfield was supposed to be gone to the KV Post in DeMotte, a sister newspaper to the Enterprise, to work as a staff reporter.  The move, of course, makes a lot of sense because she lives in DeMotte and probably wouldn't miss the daily commute to Kentland at all.  Fortunately for Doug Morgan, she was still available to speak at Monday's meeting. 

Cheri is very familiar with Rotary and has been quite helpful in getting the club's message out over the years.  It's a fact that the Kentland Club has in the past tried to recruit her as a member.  But she has always declined, rightfully thinking that the responsibility of meeting a Monday newspaper deadline and attending a noon luncheon club meeting don't really mix well. 

There have been times when the Rotary contribution to the newspaper ---- a photo and a paragraph or two --- has been bumped and didn't appear in the next week's edition. But that's understandable.  There is a lot of competition from such events as the Alumni Dinner, the County Fair, parades, festivals, SN homecoming, NN homecoming, local sports, local government and much more that people want to know about and buy a newspaper for.  Cheri mentioned that they try to have a balance between articles and advertising. Advertising pays the bills.  So the decision on what to cut is pretty easy.  What determines if a photo is in color or not?  When an advertiser wants his or her ad to be in color, then the rest of the photos on that page will be in color.  

Contrary to a recent trend of the demise of some print publications, the small town news publications are holding their own.  The Enterprise is affiliated with the KV Post of DeMotte, the Rensselaer Republican, the Morocco Courier, the Brook Reporter and the free shoppers' guides, the Indiana Spirit and The Guide for those living north of Kentland. That's not the entire list. There is also a connection to the Twin States Publishing Family.  That includes the Watseka Times Republic and the Chronicle of Hoopeston. 

Apparently Cheri's replacement had a change of heart and consequently Cheri is still in Kentland holding down the fort after bidding farewell to all the local readers.  We all hope that another replacement will be found soon, so she can go to the KV Post and home to DeMotte.  The Kentland Rotary Club would like to thank her for letting us spread the word of Rotary, and we wish her well in the future.  

Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club




Photo:      Rotarian Tim Lohr, left, introduced Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) recipients Devan Whaley, Sierra Swartz, Michela Rieck and Sam Wernert at the April 29 noon luncheon meeting of the Kentland Rotary Club. 

The South Newton High School RYLA recipients attended leadership training activities held from Friday, April 19th through Sunday, April 21st at YMCA Camp Tecumseh near Brookston.  RYLA is Rotary's leadership training program for young people.  It emphasizes leadership, citizenship, personal growth and aims to 

Demonstrate Rotary's respect and concern for youth

  • Provide an effective training experience for selected youth and potential leaders
  • Encourage leadership of youth by youth
  • Recognize publicly young people who are rendering service to their community

The South Newton students worked with approximately 150 other RYLA recipients from the 55 Rotary Clubs in Rotary District 6540  (Northern Indiana) to enhance their leadership skills. It wasn't all work for the camp attendees from South Newton, however.  They found the leadership activities to be fun and they especially enjoyed the experience of meeting and working with the award recipients from the other schools.  On the return trip from camp, it was reported that the South Newton students were very excited and all were hoping to be able to attend next year's RYLA Camp. 

Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club

Photo:      Rotarian Tim Lohr, left, introduced Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) recipients Devan Whaley, Sierra Swartz, Michela Rieck and Sam Wernert at the April 29 noon luncheon meeting of the Kentland Rotary Club. 


The South Newton High School RYLA recipients attended leadership training activities held from Friday, April 19th through Sunday, April 21st at YMCA Camp Tecumseh near Brookston.  RYLA is Rotary's leadership training program for young people.  It emphasizes leadership, citizenship, personal growth and aims to 


  • Demonstrate Rotary's respect and concern for youth
  • Provide an effective training experience for selected youth and potential leaders
  • Encourage leadership of youth by youth
  • Recognize publicly young people who are rendering service to their community

The South Newton students worked with approximately 150 other RYLA recipients from the 55 Rotary Clubs in Rotary District 6540  (Northern Indiana) to enhance their leadership skills. It wasn't all work for the camp attendees from South Newton, however.  They found the leadership activities to be fun and they especially enjoyed the experience of meeting and working with the award recipients from the other schools.  On the return trip from camp, it was reported that the South Newton students were very excited and all were hoping to be able to attend next year's RYLA Camp. 


Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club



Rotarian John Frischie, right, hosted guest speaker Samantha Paschal, a Purdue University biochemistry Lilly scholar from Huntington, at the club's Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Paschal is one of 20 college students selected to serve as a National Collegiate Agriculture Ambassador by the Collegiate FFA for the 2012 - 2013 school year.  As an FFA Agriculture Ambassador Samantha makes presentations to elementary school classes through high school classes and community organizations such as the Kentland Rotary Club. The purpose of the presentations is to create an awareness of the importance of agriculture and its sustainability.  

Compared with other nations of the world, American families spend a smaller percentage of their income for food than families in almost every other nation.  In the United States a family will spend roughly 10% of its income on food while in Pakistan a family would spend 46%.  In spite of our abundance, there are still children here (one in five) that don't have an adequate diet.  

In order to meet the nutritional needs of the world's population in 2050, Paschal stated that the criteria of a 50 - 100 - 70 magic ratio need to be met.  In 2050 the world's population is expected to increase to 9 billion.  To feed everyone, those involved in agriculture production need to produce 100% more than today.  Since there won't be much if any more farmland available, scientists and researchers at our universities and also those in commercial food production will need to discover the technology necessary to produce    70% more on the same available farmland to feed the world.  

Paschal closed her presentation with this quote attributed to Albert Einstein,  "Your imagination is your preview of life's coming attractions." 

This coming summer Samantha will be participating in the National Farmers Union internship program in Washington, D. C. 

Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club




Seen here are the South Newton juniors and seniors who participated in the Kentland Rotary Club's Youth in Government and Community Day program: Front row, left to right, Brittany McCormick, Holly Ordway, Kim Carcamo, and Kyra Barrett. Back row, Emily Potsch, Brittany Baker, Destiny Hopkins, and Kayla Cirak.

The Monday noon luncheon meeting featured the Kentland Rotary Club's annual Youth in Government and Community Day program. Rotarian Roberta Dewing with the help of South Newton teacher, Cheryl Link, organized the event which was held in the Friendship Commons of the Trinity United Methodist Church in Kentland. The high school students were paired with local government office holders and business leaders whom they job shadowed for the morning during a typical workday. Later, at the noon luncheon, they reported on their experience, revealed a little about themselves and their plans after graduation.

The participating government office holders and business leaders were: Circuit Court Judge, Geryl Leach; Newton County Auditor, Sharon Dewing; Newton County Clerk, Janice Wilson; Newton County Surveyor, Chris Knochel; Newton County Prosecutor, Jeff Drinski; Emerson-Sondgerath Motors representative, Debby Shufflebarger; CPX - S & S Plastics, Inc., representative, Valerie Zarse; and Moments in Time Photography proprietor, Megan Shufflebarger.

Roberta Dewing encouraged all of the high school participants to be sure to apply for a Kentland Rotary Club scholarship to help them achieve their educational goals.

Brandt Stum
Kentland Rotary Club

Seen here are the South Newton juniors and seniors who participated in the Kentland Rotary Club's Youth in Government and Community Day program:  Front row, left to right, Brittany McCormick, Holly Ordway, Kim Carcamo, and Kyra Barrett.  Back row, Emily Potsch, Brittany Baker, Destiny Hopkins, and Kayla Cirak.


The Monday noon luncheon meeting featured the Kentland Rotary Club's annual Youth in Government and Community Day program.  Rotarian Roberta Dewing with the help of South Newton teacher, Cheryl Link, organized the event which was held in the Friendship Commons of the Trinity United Methodist Church in Kentland.  The high school students were paired with local government office holders and business leaders whom they job shadowed for the morning during a typical workday.  Later, at the noon luncheon, they reported on their experience, revealed a little about themselves and their plans after graduation.


The participating government office holders and business leaders were:  Circuit Court Judge, Geryl Leach; Newton County Auditor, Sharon Dewing; Newton County Clerk, Janice Wilson; Newton County Surveyor, Chris Knochel; Newton County Prosecutor, Jeff Drinski; Emerson-Sondgerath Motors representative, Debby Shufflebarger; CPX - S & S Plastics, Inc., representative, Valerie Zarse; and Moments in Time Photography proprietor, Megan Shufflebarger.  


Roberta Dewing encouraged all of the high school participants to be sure to apply for a Kentland Rotary Club scholarship to help them achieve their educational goals.


Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club



Photo:  Left to right, Russell Collins, President Newton County Community Foundation, Kristen Ziese, Executive Director Jasper Foundation, Inc. and Newton County Community Foundation, and Dr. Jay Brinkman, Foundation Chair Kentland Rotary Club

Rotarian Dr. Jay Brinkmen hosted guest speaker Kristen Ziese, Jasper Foundation, Inc. and Newton County Community Foundation Executive Director, at the Monday noon luncheon meeting.  With a PowerPoint presentation, Ziese explained how a community foundation functions and makes a difference.  A community foundation provides a vehicle for donors who wish to better their community to create a source of assets that will meet the ongoing and changing needs and interests of the people living in the community.  A community foundation does not conduct programs of its own, but supports the new and existing programs of nonprofit organizations for the betterment of the community. 

In Newton County the Community Foundation has been a significant source for support for many scholarship recipients and charitable nonprofit groups.  Responsible granting of funds carries out the charitable interests of the Foundation's donors and enables their giving to improve the quality of life in the community. 

The Foundation makes grants that meet the changing needs of our communities in five areas of interest:  

  • Education
  • Arts and Culture
  • Preservation of historic and culture resources 
  • Human Resources 
  • Health     

Donors consist of individuals, families, organizations and corporations who are interested in providing financial support to charitable agencies and programs serving local residents.  Money donated stays in the community.  The Foundation is overseen by a volunteer board comprised of local leaders who use their expertise to fund our changing needs. 

Donors can receive a significant tax savings. They are advised to consult a professional financial or legal advisor to determine how they can maximize these benefits.  Donations are pooled with those of other donors and invested.  The principal is never touched.  Thus, the endowment continues to give in perpetuity.  

For more details visit or contact Kristen Ziese at    


Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club



At the Monday noon luncheon meeting Rotarian Greg Hall, photo, entertained fellow Rotarians with some fun facts and myths associated with the celebration of St. Patrick's Day.  St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, died on March 17,  A.D. 461.  But did you know that he wasn't even Irish? He was born around A.D. 390 to a wealthy family in Roman England.  His birth name was Maewyn.  At the age of 16 he was kidnapped into slavery and brought to Ireland.  After 7 years of tending sheep, he escaped on a pirate ship to a monastery in Gaul (France) and converted to Christianity. 

In 432 he returned to Ireland as a missionary.  There he spent the rest of his life converting the Irish to Christianity.  Patrick became a bishop and after he had died he was named Ireland's patron saint.  In Ireland after his death, Patrick was largely forgotten.

Irish immigrants in the U.S. created the large celebrations that we know today.  Eighteenth century Irish soldiers who fought in the Revolutionary War held the first St. Patrick's Day parade.  The celebrations became a way for the Irish to connect with their roots after they moved to America.  

Do you know what Trifolium dubium is?  That's the wild-growing three-leaf clover that some botanists consider is the official shamrock.  Legend has it that St. Patrick used the three-leaf clover (or shamrock ) to explain the Trinity: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

The tradition of dyeing the Chicago River green started in 1962.  The parade organizer Steve Bailey, head of a plumber's union, thought it would be a good idea to use a green dye used to trace possible sources of river pollution to turn the entire river green on St. Patrick's Day. They tried it, and people like it, and so began the tradition.

There is the myth that St. Patrick banished snakes from Ireland. Although there are no snakes on the island today, there probably never were any.  The icy ocean waters surrounding Ireland are much too cold to allow snakes to migrate from England or anywhere else.  Since snakes often represent evil in literature, when it is said that Patrick banished the snakes from Ireland, it is symbolically saying he drove the evil, pagan ways out of Ireland. 

In the mid-1990s the government of the Republic of Ireland began a campaign to use Saint Patrick's day to showcase Ireland and its culture. On March 17, 1996 the first St. Patrick's Festival was held in Ireland. Its intent was to attract tourists to the Emerald Isle.  Since the inaugural event, it has been quite popular and has continued to grow attracting tourists from all around the world.  This year's St. Patrick's Day celebration in Dublin included Purdue University's 331 member strong "All American" Marching Band.  Check them out on Youtube!

Today, the tradition  of St. Patrick's Day parades, packed pubs, and green silliness has invaded Ireland with full force. The Irish figured out that the popularity of St. Patrick's Day is a good way to boost spring tourism.  

Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club         




Rotarian Jay Brinkman,left, introduced guest speaker Tom Clifton,right, at the  Rotary Club Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Clifton, a lab technician in the mineral separation lab of Purdue University's Physics Department, presented a powerpoint slideshow featuring his five-week-long cultural adventure in the fall of 2012 that took him to the People's Republic of China and Mongolia.  While working on a project with the Chinese at Purdue using isotopes of chlorine which are superior to carbon dating to date the existence of the Peking Man, it was discovered that he was roaming around China 250,000 years earlier than previously thought.  As a reward for his work on the Peking Man project, the Chinese National Earthquake Administration invited Clifton to China to work with Chinese geologists and teach them how to pick sample rocks and how to do the chemistry and hard math involved in identifying the minerals in the rocks.  

The Chinese geologists led Clifton to several important geological sites looking for rocks and even to some that where in Mongolia where  Caucasians and  Americans are a rare sight.  Some effort was also devoted to the study and prediction of earthquakes.  

Fourteen years ago, in 1999, Clifton was the recipient of an adult scholarship from the Kentland Rotary Club.  He used the scholarship at Ivy Tech in Lafayette where he enrolled in classes that would be accepted for credit on Purdue's West Lafayette Campus.  After two year's of study he smoothly transfered to Purdue, where he studied geology and geophysics.  This all led to his present employment as a lab technician in the mineral separation lab.  

Although Clifton's adventure was for the most part related to his work, you couldn't avoid getting  really close-up contact with Chinese Culture.  There was some time for tourist attractions, but Tom really wanted to visit a museum featuring the Peking Man. The Peking Man exhibit included a photo of those who had worked on the more accurate dating of his existence.  Tom thought it would be cool to have a photo of himself standing next to the photo that included himself.  Unfortunately, that didn't happen and he spent his limited time walking on the the Great Wall with his Chinese geologist friends.


Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club




Rotarian John Frischie (l.) hosted guest speaker Donya Lester (r.) at the Rotary Club Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Lester, who is the Executive Director of the Purdue Agriculture Alumni Association, is also the Director of Engagement for the Purdue College of Agriculture.  She said that she devotes 75% of her time equally to each endeavor which would suggest that she either has poor math skills or that she is very busy. Since she had just returned from Washington D.C. where she was a member of a committee that was expressing the concerns of land grant colleges to our representatives and senators in regard to budgeting, my guess is that it's the later. 

Actually, things at Purdue's College of Agriculture are going well.  The current department enrollment has reached a high of 3,289 students.  This represents roughly 8% of the 39,256 students at Purdue's West Lafayette Campus.  The fall freshmen enrollment was 499 students and the graduate student enrollment has increased to 631.  Eighty percent of the undergraduate students in agriculture are from Indiana.

The Purdue College of Agriculture has a track record of developing innovative products and programs not only for here in the United States but also for countries that struggle to provide sustenance for their inhabitants. Thus, the recent $65 million anonymous donation to the College of Agriculture, the largest donation in Purdue's history, makes good sense . It also makes good sense that the donation is without restrictions.  That gives the experts in the Purdue College of Agriculture the flexibility to tackle problems they deem to be the most urgent and seek solutions that will be the most beneficial.

Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club




Rotarian Darrell Fredrickson (L.) hosted guest speaker Kyle Cessna (R.), Benton County Purdue Extension Associate Educator, who spoke at the Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Cessna, who graduated from Purdue University last May, oversees the Agriculture & Natural Resources program that concentrates on educational opportunities to assist local agribusiness managers in the production, management, and marketing of their agriculture enterprises.  He also serves as a 4- H Youth Educator.  

 The Purdue cooperative Extension Service provides informal educational Opportunities for all people in Indiana... Financial support is provided jointly by County, State and Federal governments.  Extension Educators serve  as the link between research and practical application of ideas that help people solve their problems.  Educational opportunities are available in each Indiana county in areas of agriculture/ natural resources, community development, health and human sciences and 4- H youth development.  Cessna recommended the first Purdue Extension Small Farm Conference to be held March 1 & 2, 2013 at the Hendricks County Fairgrounds, Danville, Indiana.  Small farms are farms with $250,000 or less in annual agriculture commodity sales.  91% of the nations farms fall into this category. Check it out at

 The Kentland Rotary Club would like to thank everyone who ventured out and helped make our inaugural Pancake Breakfast a huge success.  We had a net profit of $1095 plus $81 in donations that will go directly to the local food pantry at the Covenant Federated Church in Kentland.  Contributions from Murphy's Food King and the Good Table Family Restaurant in Kentland and also Devon's Restaurant in Rensselaer and Starbucks in West Lafayette assured the club of a handsome profit.  This is money that will go to support local Rotary projects which include:  College scholarships to South Newton graduates, Adult scholarships for college, Christmas food baskets, Kentland Food Pantry, Mobile Food Truck, and Rotary Youth Leadership awards.  We are especially thankful for the use of the Friendship Commons at the Trinity United Methodist Church --- it was the perfect venue for our event.  Based on the success of our inaugural Pancake Breakfast, you can expect an encore.  Hope to see you there next year!

 Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club





At the Monday noon luncheon meeting Michael Cruz (L.), Executive Director of CDC Resources, Inc., informed club members about the services and support they provide for individuals with disabilities and their families in Northwest Central Indiana.  Comprehensive Development Resources, Inc. was originally founded by parents in 1953.  It is a 501 c3 nonprofit corporation governed by a volunteer board of directors.  CDC serves primarily Benton, Carroll, Jasper, Newton and White counties with its main service hubs in Monticello and Rensselaer.  Their goal is to nurture the talents and skills of those who are less able toward becoming productive citizens. 

 CDC helps individuals with disabilities become independent citizens through services designed to meet their needs.  Those services include:

  •  Work center services that combine vocational training with paid work experience leading to employment in the community.  Many individuals with disabilities can make valuable contributions in the workforce and not only have an income but also build self-esteem.  CDC offers packaging, assembly, clerical, salvage, document destruction, commercial janitorial and woodworking products to area businesses. CDC maintains service for INDOT at two Rest Parks, and has several commercial custodial contracts in the area.  They also operate thrift shops in Monticello and Rensselarer and are hoping to locate a third thrift shop in Kentland.  
  • CDC maintains and supervises three group homes and also four facilities with apartments for adults with disabilities.  The subsidized housing units provide homes for low-income individuals with impediments.  The Kent Village in Kentland is typical of the housing facilities.
  • Day services at CDC's hub facilities provide instruction in daily living skills, socialization, basic education, pre-vocational skills and meaningful activities for adults with severe disabilities.  There is a strong focus on self-sufficiency and survival skills as well as positive social instruction. 
  • The agency operates a fleet of 32 vehicles to make service available across the entire service area.  Because clients often don't drive and there is often no public  transportation available, it is necessary to maintain a transportation fleet even though it is expensive.     

The agency depends on Medicaid funding, county supports, grants, thrift shop profits, the generosity of donors and local community funds to cover its operating expenses which exceed $5 million annually.  For more details about CDC Resources, Inc., visit their website at  Michael Cruz was the guest of Rotarian Roberta Dewing (photo). 

 Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club









At  the Monday noon luncheon meeting Rotarian John Cook (photo) treated club members to a slideshow of a November 2012 trip to Cuba.  John and his wife Joan, co-owners of Travel Discoveries, Ltd. in Kentland and Watseka, led a group of 30 travelers on a seven-day trip leaving from Chicago to the Republic of Cuba.  Cuba, an island country which lies only 90 miles from Florida, was visited by Christopher Columbus in 1492 and claimed for the Kingdom of Spain.  In the 1960s, after a turbulent history and a revolution, the island became the Republic of Cuba, a communist country first ruled by Fidel Castro (now 87) and more recently by his brother Raul (now 85).

In the early 1960s, when the Soviet Union was helping Cubans establish missile bases on the island, the United States didn't exactly approve and leveled sanctions on Cuba that still exist to this day.  The sanctions have effectively limited progress and restricted the lives of Cubans, and consequently a visit to Cuba is a trip in effect into a different world.  

Recently the political climate has begun to thaw.  For the last year and one half Cuba has opened its borders not to tourists from the U.S., but to "study" groups that are allowed to take educational tours. Citizens from Canada or Europe had already had the opportunity for Cuban travel with fewer or no restrictions. Collette Travel Service, the company that organized the trip, has to apply to the Department of Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) for renewal of its license to operate tours in Cuba.

The  trip was well received, and the Cooks are planning to take another group to Cuba next year, January 19-27, 2014.  There are travelers who have already committed to going.  The tour will be longer (nine days) and instead of staying just in Havana with day trips, there will also be a three-day stay in Trinidad, and a  greater chance to see more of the country. 

Would you enjoy strolling the cobblestone streets of Trinidad with its pastel-colored houses or visiting a former sugar factory and estate in the beautiful "Valley of Sugar Mills"?  How about taking in the Bay of Pigs Museum in Playa Giron for a history lesson or examining the home of Ernest Hemingway, Finca Vigia (Lookout farm), where the author lived and worked from 1939 to 1960?  Would an evening cruse through the streets of Havana in one of the antique American Cars from the 1950s (yank tanks) be your idea of fun?  If any of this has aroused your curiosity, you should contact the travel experts, John and Joan Cook, at (815) 432-6121 or (219 474-6666.

On Saturday, Feb. 16, the Kentland Rotarians will be serving a Pancake Breakfast from 6:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Kentland (adjacent to Cast Park).  Tickets can be purchased at the door or from Rotary Club members for $5.  Children 3 and under are free. Come and visit with your neighbors and help support Rotary projects. 

Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club




Jim Staton, left, Regional Director for the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, described the Corporation's mission at the Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Pictured with Staton are Rotarians Jenn Whaley, center, and Mel Ward, right, who together hosted the program. Staton explained that the main focus of the IEDC is getting manufacturing companies and businesses to relocate and stay in Indiana.  It's his job to market the state as a place to grow and expand, as a good place to do business.  As a right-to-work state, a state with low corporate taxes, resources, and a central location at the crossroads of America, Indiana does offer an attractive package.  Available tax abatements, tax credits, infrastructure grants and grants to train a skilled workforce are additional incentives to entice a business to start up or to relocate in Indiana.  New and relocated businesses bring new life and prosperity to Indiana communities.  


On Saturday, February 16, 2013 Kentland Rotarians will be serving a Pancake Breakfast at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Kentland (adjacent to Cast Park). Tickets can be purchased at the door or from Rotary Club members for $5.  Children 3 and under are free.  Come and visit with your neighbors and help support Rotary projects.  


Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club







Rotarian Kevin Wiley, center, hosted guest speakers South Newton basketball coaches Steve Stitz, left, and Jim Sammons, far right, at the Monday noon luncheon meeting.  


After two consecutive very disappointing basketball seasons, South Newton made a coaching change, not to something new, but to something with a history of success.  They rehired former head coach Mike Hall who has a proven formula for small school basketball success.  According to JV coach Sammons, during his previous 20 year stint at South Newton, head coach Mike Hall's teams had a winning percentage of 58%. They won 5 Sectional Titles and played McCutcheon for a Regional Championship before the change to a class system. Certainly respectable for a small school. 

 The present South Newton basketball team features only three senior players with substantial varsity experience and mostly underclassmen with promise but a lack of  experience.  Although the Rebels have won only two games so far this season, that's a big improvement over the last two seasons.  Judging from coach Hall's past record, we can expect that the players will gain more confidence, become more competitive and achieve what it takes to win high school basketball games. 

 On Saturday, February 16, 2013 The Kentland Rotary Club will be serving a Pancake Breakfast from 6:30 a.m. --- 10: 00 a.m. at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Kentland (adjacent to Cast Park).  Tickets can be purchased at the door or from Rotary Club members for $5 for adults.  Children 3 and under are free.  Come and visit with your neighbors and helps support Rotary projects.  

 Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club





Chris Knochel Travels to Washington DC with Father on Honor Flight

At the Monday noon luncheon meeting of the Kentland Rotary Club, Rotarian Chris Knochel (photo) talked about his experience as a guardian escorting his father, Dale, on an October 15th Honor Flight for WWII and Korean War veterans to Washington D.C.  After the death of his wife, Joan, the 84 year-old Dale was at first reluctant to commit to going and had to be persuaded.  Eventually, he agreed to go, with his son, Chris, accompanying him as his guardian and his son, Chuck, serving as a guardian for another veteran making the journey. 

 Upon their arrival at the Baltimore-Washington International Airport, the veterans were each given a wheelchair to ride and they would be propelled at each site visited by their guardians.  As the veterans were rolled through the terminal to the red, white and blue buses that would ferry them to D.C., both Chris and his father were especially impressed by the number of people, adults and children, who greeted them.  The outpouring of thanks and appreciation continued throughout the day at every site the group visited and it continued until the contingent arrived home in Indiana to a rousing welcome from relatives and others at the Purdue Airport.  Chris commented about how well everything had been organized, "They had everything down to a science."

 Dale Knochel enlisted in the Army in 1946 at the age of 18.  He wanted to do his part for the country and he also knew that he would have to serve his time sooner or later.  He was sent to Korea.  Although World War Two was officially over, it was still hazardous duty.  Since the Japanese had taken and occupied Korea, its status for the future had to be resolved by the victorious Allies.  At the Potsdam Conference in July- August 1945 it was decided to divide Korea into a communist North- and a western - oriented South Korea.  Since the North and South Koreans were unable to reconcile their differences peacefully, those sent there to help with the restructuring suffered casualties---as many as 7 to 8 a day.  Dale served in Korea until 1948, when he was discharged.  The Korean War began in June 1950 and lasted until July 1953. 

 Chris, who returned home exhausted, commented that his father had never talked much about his military experience at home. His father had also never encouraged his sons to consider the military as a career option. Chris did mention that after the Honor Flight journey, he had a much greater appreciation for his father and the other veterans and their service to our country. "It was wonderful to have been part of it."

 Knochel was accompanied at the meeting by Randy Pruden, local news and businessman, who had been instrumental in recruiting local veterans and raising funds for their flight.  Pruden became involved with Honor flight after experiencing how excited and appreciative World War II veteran of the Normandy Invasion, Gordon Gadson was after a Honor Flight he had taken from Chicago in August of 2010.  Pruden commented, "How could one not want to be involved?"

 Pruden mentioned that he is again recruiting veterans for the next Honor Flight out of West Lafayette.  He is hoping to recruit 10 to 12 veterans from the Kentland area.  He is also helping to organize a May 18th fund raising event that would include a softball tournament, a cornhole tournament and possibly a shotgun start  best-ball golfing event. He's hoping for 5-6 vendors who will donate some of their profits to help pay the expenses of the next group of Honor Flight honorees.  Those who are interested in any aspect of the next Honor Flight honoring WWII and Korean War Vets should contact Randy Pruden at 219-208-9231.  

 Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club





Candace Armstrong President, Greg Hall Secretary, Jim Schoen President Elect, Kirby Drey Treasurer

The Kentland Rotary Club held its annual meeting at Hazelden Country Club on Monday December 10.  Club members and guests gathered to elect 2013-2014 officers, present recognition and hear from Dan Ryan, District 6540 Rotary Foundation Board Chair.  President Kirby Drey opened the meeting and Roberta Dewing offered the invocation.  Introduction of members and guests followed.  The group enjoyed a delicious meal and celebrated the season with songs led by Jay Brinkman.  Kirby announced that the Rotary will be distributing $1000.00 worth of food vouchers for needy families in the southern Newton county area.  These vouchers can be redeemed at Murphy's Food King on Saturday December 22.  Kentland Rotary members will be sacking groceries and collecting cash donations for the Kentland Food Pantry that day. The following officers were elected for terms beginning July 1 of 2013:  President Candace Armstrong, President Elect Jim Schoen, Secretary Greg Hall, and Kirby Drey Treasurer. 

 Dan Ryan presented remarks on the progress of Rotary's Polio Eradication Program.  The worldwide polio program originated in 1979 with the end of new cases in the United States. At that time there about 500,000 cases worldwide. Thanks to over 1 billion dollars raised by Rotary clubs worldwide and an incentive grant of 355 million from Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation the number of cases reported in 2012 is down to 213!  Rotary members travel worldwide on their own funds to help vaccinate.  

 Mr. Ryan recognized the Kentland Rotary Club for its support of the Rotary Foundation.  Kentland had the highest per member giving in District 6540 in 2009-2010 and 2011-2012.  

 Roberta Dewing was recognized as a Paul Harris Plus 2 donor.

 John Frischie

Kentland Rotary Club






Rotarian Brandt Stum, right, hosted guest speaker Chris Sigurdson, Assistant Vice President for External Relations at Purdue University, at the Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Sigurdson's presentation was titled "Purdue:  So What, Who Cares?"  This, of course, got the attention of his audience, especially those who graduated from Purdue, and also those who have sent or are presently sending their children to Purdue.  Well, come to find out, it's Purdue that cares.  Purdue wants its clients, students and parents, to know the truth.  

 Is a Purdue degree worth the effort and expense it takes to get?  For most graduates, it certainly is.  The demand for Purdue graduates ranked 4th among leading Universities.  In 2011 General Electric recruited 25 Purdue electrical engineers.  Unfortunately many of us don't have the interest or ability to become electrical engineers.  In that case, it might be advisable to pursue one's passion if one is lucky enough to find it.  Although it may not pay as much or be that much in demand, one will have little difficulty sticking with it.

Of course it's not news to most of us that college has become very expensive.  The present in-state tuition for a year at Purdue is $9,000.  Out-of-state students pay $28,000 and international students pay $30,000.  This makes it possible for Purdue to provide excellent facilities and excellent cutting-edge programs.  Out-of-state and international students in a sense help to pay the way for in-state students.  

 Purdue is one of 150 land grant colleges, the original intent of which was to educate everyone with ability and not just the offspring of the wealthy.  That is still a mission of Purdue, but it does seem that it has become more difficult in recent years for the students that don't get a lot of financial support from home.  Our expectations have changed.  Today the dormitory rooms  are not always shared with one or two other students.  We've come to expect amenities such as air- conditioning and maybe even a private bath.  A computer and other expensive technological equipment are an absolute must.  Purdue still tries to follow the original intent of the land grant colleges, but the times simply require more expense. 

 The average student loan debt for graduating students at Purdue is $27,000.  Purdue graduates have a default rate of 1.4% which is considered good.  If you graduate and land a good job, then the student loan debt is maybe not too much of a burden.  The most expensive diploma is the one you don't complete.  Then you will be saddled with debt that you probably won't be able to repay. 

Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club






At the Monday noon luncheon meeting Rotarian Jim Schoen, right, hosted guest speaker Karen Moyars of Fowler who spoke about The Prairie Preservation Guild and its efforts to restore the Fowler Theatre.  When the theatre was built in 1940 it was a state-of-art facility with grandiose decorating and all the technological marvels of the time.  The theatre was one of the most ornate and impressive movie theaters in the region.  It was, in fact, one of only five movie theaters in the entire country to premier "Gone with the Wind".  

 Over the years, the theater had fallen into disrepair, and in the spring of 2001 it was no longer showing movies.  When the owner at that time was planning to sell what he could of the architecturally still valuable pieces and convert the theater into a warehouse, Karen Moyars and several other volunteers decided it was time to act.  They formed The Prairie Preservation Guild, a not-for-profit group dedicated to rescuing the historical theater and keeping the cost of entertainment in the community low.  

 In 2001 The Prairie Preservation Guild purchased the Fowler Theatre for $30,000.  Funding was obtained from the Indiana Historic Landmarks Foundation in the form a $2,000 grant and a $60,000 line of credit to purchase and stabilize the building.  The structure was deemed to be an excellent example of art modern architecture (Art Deco) worthy of being preserved.  The building was stabilized and with considerable hard work from dedicated volunteers cleaned up and reconditioned until it was suitable to reopen. 

 In December 2001 the Fowler Theatre reopen with a free movie for Christmas and since that time, movies have been shown every weekend.  The Prairie Preservation Guild has operated the Fowler Theatre entirely with volunteers.  No one has received a salary to date.  There is a sign-up sheet in the lobby of the theater where individuals, families, and community groups add their names to a list of those willing to donate their time to sell tickets, to operate the concession stand, to run the projector, and to clean up after the show.  

 The cost of a show has been kept low because a major goal of the Preservation Guild has been to provide entertainment to the community that would be affordable to families.  The cost of an adult ticket is $5.00 and for children under 13 is $3.00.  This is significantly less than what the movie complexes in Lafayette or Rensselaer charge. The concessions are also reasonably priced.  It's a short trip for most of us in Newton County to Fowler.  There's no reason not to go enjoy a movie and support this unique venue.  Movies are shown every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  To check out what's playing, visit You'll be glad you did!  





Rotarian Doug Morgan, right, hosted the program for Monday's noon luncheon meeting.  Pictured with Morgan are Sandra Harmon, center, a co-owner with her husband, Dennis, of Harmon's Services & Electronics, Inc. in Brook, and Ryan Maners, her Verizon Wireless account manager from Indianapolis.  Maners presented a slideshow that showcased the features and apps of various new smart phones, tablets and electronic devices that are available at Harmon's store.  Many of the features are those that business people nowadays find almost indispensable.  


Harmon's Plumbing, Heating & Air-conditioning was started by Donald Harmon 1971 in Brook.  In 1992, Dennis and Sandy, who than managed the Brook location, became the Verizon Authorized Retailer  offering cellular service to Newton and Jasper counties.  In 1995, Dennis and Sandy purchased the Brook location from Dennis' father, Donald Harmon.  With the combining of the existing Verizon Wireless retail sales with the service business, the name then changed from Harmon & Sons to Harmon's Services & Electronics, Inc.  The business focuses on service which is one of the good reasons for patronizing a local rural entrepreneur. 


Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club





 Dan McKay Shares Internet Radio with Kentland Rotary


Rotarian Tim Lohr, left, hosted guest speaker Radio Guy Dan McKay at the Monday noon luncheon meeting of the Kentland Rotary Club.  McKay who grew up in Los Angeles got his start and acquired his passion for radio as a 19 year old working for the cowboy-singer, Gene Autry.  Autry, who owned a television station, also owned several radio stations and a baseball team.  In 1992 after receiving a job offer from a client, he traveled to Indiana to work as a DJ and programing manager, first for WGLN in Lafayette and later for WIBN FM.  The latter position he held for 10 years before its broadcasting tower fell in 2009 after a guide wire was severed by a farm machine.  Since WIBN's broadcasting capabilities were then zero, they no longer needed Dan's talents and he found himself without a job.  Because no one was hiring at the time, in 2010 Dan decided to launched Greater Lafayette's first Internet radio station network.  His Internet station has an adult contemporary format and features Dan McKay in the mornings, News Channel 18 local headlines, National Network Radio news, Paul Poteet weather and Clayton Duffy sports.  The station has gained much popularity and has grown to a daily average of 8,200 hits per day.  A typical AM or FM station for the most part has no accurate way of measuring how many people are listening.  Since launching 479xx, Mc Kay has started a second station,, that features Today's Hits and programing that is more in tune with the Purdue student crowd. To listen to and, all you need is your laptop, desktop, smartphone, or mobile device. 


The two Internet stations are Dan McKay's first entrepreneurial venture.  According to Dan, it has been going well even though it is pretty much a one man show.  Dan does the programing, is a DJ, an advertising salesman, a bookkeeper and a billing clerk.  An Internet station doesn't need a tower and has superior broadcasting capabilities to an AM or FM station and has an almost unlimited range.  McKay feels that it is the wave of the future.  New cars will soon be equipped to access the Internet.  The URLs are and  Check them out!  And last but not least, Dan McKay is a member of the Fowler Rotary Club.         


Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club




 Jenn Whaley Offers Insight on Celiac Disease


The October 15, 2012 Kentland Rotary program was led by Jenn Whaley who spoke about celiac disease and living gluten free.  Jenn was diagnosed in 2007 with celiac disease. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder triggered by consuming a protein called gluten, which is found in wheat, barley and rye. When a person with celiac eats gluten, the protein interferes with the absorption of nutrients from food by damaging a part of the small intestine called villi. Damaged villi make it nearly impossible for the body to absorb nutrients into the bloodstream, leading to malnourishment and a host of other problems including some cancers, thyroid disease, osteoporosis, infertility and the onset of other autoimmune diseases.

The only treatment for celiac disease is to maintain a gluten-free diet for life. There are no medications or surgeries that can cure the disease.People can live with the genes of celiac disease and have no problems for a very long time. Stressful events like pregnancy, surgery, or severe emotional distress can trigger the onset of the disease. Jenn claimed that it was over a 15 year process for her to become diagnosed celiac.  She was misdiagnosed for many years due to what she felt was lack of knowledge about the disease and the wide array of symptoms that may mimic other diseases or issues, such as IBS, chronic fatigue syndrome and rheumatoid arthritis. Because it is a genetic disease, she also had her children tested, and her daughter, Madeline, was also diagnosed with celiac shortly after Jenns diagnosis in 2007.

Living a gluten-free lifestyle hasn’t been easy, but is getting easier as companies are getting more and more good gluten free products on the shelves as well as restaurants are developing gluten-free menus. Locally, Monical’s makes a gluten free pizza, and Earl's Dining in Brook also provides gluten-free offerings as well as Redbridge Gluten Free beer made by Budweiser for those who must eat gluten-free. Her daughter is provided a gluten- free meal at South Newton thanks to the cooperation of the school cafeteria director, Chris Barce. Jenn explained different products that contained gluten that you wouldn’t think would have any wheat, barley, malt or rye in them.   Some chap sticks, soy sauces, toothpastes, medications, broths, deli meats, spices do contain gluten. One with celiac must read labels carefully on everything in order to avoid items with gluten.  Jenn provided the Rotarians a handout with facts about celiac disease from the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NCFA).

·         One in 133 Americans has celiac disease.

·         Three million Americans across all races, ages and genders suffer from celiac.

·         Celiac disease is hereditary, so all first and second degree relatives should be screened.

·         95% of celiacs are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed with other conditions.

·         6-10 years is the average time a person waits to be correctly diagnosed in the United States.

·         The burden of undiagnosed celiac disease over a four-year period is estimated to be almost $4,000.

·         Celiac disease can lead to a number of other disorders including infertility, reduced bone density, neurological disorders, some cancers, and other autoimmune diseases.

·         There are NO pharmaceutical cures for celiac disease.

·         A strict gluten-free diet is the only treatment for celiac disease.

·         The gluten-free marketplace is growing at a rate of 28% a year!




Kentland Rotary Hears  Bernie Markley of BA Markley &

Associates in Watseka


Rotarian Tira Howaniec (right) invited Bernie Markley of BA Markley & Associates in Watseka to speak at the Kentland Rotary Club Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Markley, a man of many interests, is the Board President of Sugar Creek Symphony and Song and also the Choir Director at the First United Methodist Church in Watseka. Although he has had formal training in opera, his topic for Monday's meeting was the Woodmen of America Fraternal Financial, the third largest of circa 200 fraternal societies in the United States.  You might ask, "Just what is a fraternal society?"  The answer is that Modern Woodmen is a membership organization that sells life insurance, annuity and investment products not to benefit stockholders but to improve the quality of life of its stakeholders ---members, their families and their communities.  Through social, charitable and volunteer activities its members qualify Modern Woodmen as a 501C8 tax-exempt fraternal society.  The Modern Woodmen have supported disaster relief, college scholarships, tree planting, volunteer programs, education programs and more.  The Watseka Camp of Modern Woodman, which offers fellowship and community service opportunities for its members, sponsors the Kelly Miller Circus to raise funds for community projects.  Money raised this year went to the Watseka  firefighters to help build a training facility.  The Woodmen have contributed to disabled adults, Toys for Tots, and needy families needing essential care.  Their good neighbors program built ramps for area handicapped.  The Woodmen have made a difference by donating crossword puzzles and word search books to local nursing homes.  They have planted trees in four nearby counties. That includes trees planted in the Donovan Park and in Watseka's Veterans Memorial Park.  Bernie Markley has been employed by the Modern Woodman of America for 23 years.  It was founded by Joseph Cullen Root in 1883 in Lyons, Iowa .  Today, its headquarters is in Rock Island, Illinois. 




Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club




What happened on October 1st

The program for the Monday noon luncheon meeting was presented by Rotarian Greg Hall (photo).  Hall quizzed club members over historical events that occurred on October 1st starting with Alexander the Great's defeat of Darius of Persia in 331 BC. Needless to say, no one present remembered this historic event.  As Greg's questioning progressed to more recent times, club members, however, acquitted themselves as being fairly knowledgeable.  Do you remember that the first broadcast of The Tonight Show Staring Johnny Carson occurred on October 1st, 1962?  Do you remember Carson playing Carnac the Magnificent, a psychic who could clairvoyantly divine the answer to questions in a sealed envelope?  The answer was always an outrageous pun.  Here's a sample:  "Baja"...  What sound does a sheep make when it laughs?"    or  "Camelot"...  "Where do Arabians park their camels?"   Greg's questions easily filled the speaker's time slot and kept members entertained as they refreshed their memories of past events. 

Rotary International is a service club with a membership of over 1.2 million men and women.  Its motto Service Above Self conveys the humanitarian spirit of its members in 34,000 clubs worldwide.  Rotary always welcomes new members.  To learn more about Rotary, visit  To experience Rotary firsthand, contact the Kentland Club President, Kirby Drey, at 219-474- 5155.

Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club



New KEDC website introduced.

At the Monday noon luncheon meeting, Rotarian John Frischie (photo) reported on the progress of a website he is creating for the Kentland Economic Development Commission (KEDC).  As a member of the KEDC composed also of John Cassidy, Dave Ryan, and Mel Ward, Frischie's efforts as webmaster are to promote the community of Kentland as a desirable place to live and to do business.  Although there was no access to the Internet in the meeting room, Frischie was able to show with his laptop and a  projector how the KEDC website is progressing.  There were sections that inform about many facets of life in our small community:  Quality of Life, Education, Government, History,  Weather, and a Community Calendar.  Plus there were several other links to local websites, including those of churches and businesses.  Dave Ryan listed his Top Ten Reasons to live in Kentland.  Jenny Washburn wrote an interesting account of the 100 year history of the Kentland/ Jefferson Township Library. Frischie is committed to the project because he likes Kentland, feels it needs to grow, and feels he can help.  Although the website is still a work in progress, by visiting you will discover that there is a lot of useful information available.  Frischie has been amazed by the number of people wanting to submit an article or story.  If you are also so inclined, contact the webmaster, John Frischie, at . 


 Brandt Stum 

Kentland Rotary Club



CEO of Hamstra Group Shares Story at Kentland Rotary

Kentland Rotary Club had the opportunity to meet Mitch Van Kley, Executive Vice President and CFO of The Hamstra Group from Wheatfield, Indiana.  Mr. Van Kley will also serve as the new Chairman of the Board of the Kenbancorp.  Hamstra Builders began building private homes and have expanded into multifaceted Hamstra Group that performs services in the areas of construction, property management, real estate development, and also operates various businesses. One of their recent ventures involves the purchase of Sandy Pines Golf Complex and the addition of private condos on the property, a sports theme restaurant, and the construction of pavilion for weddings and other events. Hamstra Group also owns and operates a golf cart dealership and an automobile dealership.  They have constructed airport hangers, libraries, drug stores, grocery stores, shopping centers, restaurants, medical offices, education facilities, factories, dairy structures, and are currently constructing two satellite Veterans outpatient clinics in Las Vegas, NV.   Hamstra Builders have left their mark in Kentland with the construction of the CVS building, Ice River Springs Plant, and the recent upgrade of the Kentland Library.  Mr. Van Key explained that their business success is related to valuable employees.  The Hamstra Group has 20 employees with more than 25 years of experience each.  Mitch was the guest of Darrell Fredrickson.


Thanks to everyone that purchased a Kentland Rotary Raffle ticket and supported our effort to raise funds for scholarships and other charities. Thanks also to Emerson Sondgerath Inc. for there support of our annual raffle.

2012 Kentland Rotary Truck Raffle Winners

1st Prize

$20,000 or Truck Albert Edmond / Hammond, IN

2nd Prize

$1,500.00 Brandt Stum / Kentland, IN

3rd Prize

$750.00 Shannon Cothran / Brook, IN

4th Prize

$150.00 Sheri Morgenson / Milford, IL

5th Prize

$150.00 Patrick Wirtz / Fowler, IN

6th Prize

$150.00 Sharon Butler / Fowler, IN

7th Prize

$150.00 Jeff Vissering / Brook, IN

8th Prize

$150.00 Larry Schellenberger / Earl Park, IN

9th Prize

$150.00 Merle Murphy / South Bend, IN

10th Prize

$150.00 Denis Sutter / Hallsville, MO



Mike Davis Visits Kentland Rotary Club

Rotarian John Fredrickson, right, hosted quest speaker Mike Davis, left, at the Rotary Club Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Davis, representing Fine Food LLC dba Old Colonial Inn, reported on the progress of the reopening, updating and restoration of the Old Colonial Inn in downtown Kentland.  The Fine Food LLC dba Old Colonial Inn is a joint project of Mara and Mike Davis, and also Kathy and John Cassidy.

 Mike described the project as a two-stage process ----- one of destruction and one of construction.  Of course, when renovating a building that originally opened as a hotel in 1898, one would expect some surprises.  Some are unpleasant, but there are also others that will help give "the old girl" a new life.  For instance, when conferring with the insurance auditor it was discovered that since the building is no longer used  as a  hotel, a firewall next to the staircase leading to the hotel rooms was no longer necessary. The wall was removed, thus making the hallway slightly wider.  The removal of the wall also pleasantly revealed a beautiful staircase worthy of the expert restoration it will receive.  Also in the destruction process of tearing out walls to make space for new restrooms, an original sketch of a man dated 1874 was discovered. No one can explain its significance, but it will be incorporated into the room decor.  It was also discovered in the destruction phase that it was structurally possible to divide the large back dining room into three rooms. This will allow for some flexibility in addressing the needs of patrons. 

 Having had the good fortune of a tour of the construction site, I can state that the rejuvenation of the Old Colonial Inn has not been a cosmetic or superficial effort.  For me the Old Colonial had unique special ambiance which is now being  greatly improved. The remodeling work, which is being done mostly by local artisans, is first class.  You' ll be impressed! 

 The owners are hoping to be open for the Holiday season this year.  The restaurant will have an experienced staff, including some former employees.  They plan to be open Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.  They plan to have a slightly broader menu, but most of the old favorites will be available.  Be sure to include the reopening of the Old Colonial Inn in your holiday plans. You' ll be glad you did!  

Submitted by Brandt Stum



Peggy Rhanor Shares Food Pantry Need with Rotary

Rotarian Roberta Dewing, left, hosted guest speaker Peg Rhanor at the Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Peg, the manager of the food bank at the Covenant Federated Church in Kentland, informed club members about the services of the food bank and also of the Mobile Pantry Program.  Rhanor, with the help of several very dedicated parishioners, has been serving those in need practically every Monday for over eight years. This last July the food bank provided food for 725 clients, and consequently supplies have been almost totally wiped out.  


Twice a month a trailer is pulled to and from Food Finders in Lafayette in order to replenish supplies.  It will sometimes return with almost 5000 lbs. of groceries and household supplies.  At 19 cents a pound and free produce, it's a bargain.  However, if you do the math, each load will cost close to $1000.  A 5000 pound load will last the food bank two weeks.  To cover this expense, they have to rely on the generosity of local churches, businesses, service clubs, Chamber of Commerce, and private individuals. 

 The food bank will be changing its distribution schedule.  Instead of being open every Monday, they will be open only on the first and third Mondays of each month.  Clients will receive portions large enough to help them through a two-week interval.  The food bank does not discriminate.  Everyone who comes and registers can be assured of being served.  The food pantry does have to limit how much they distribute in order to be able to serve all that come.  No one, however, is turned away.  

 Rhanor also announced that the Mobile Pantry Program is scheduled again for Wednesday the 26th of September.  Food Finders will be sending a loaded truck to Kentland for a "farmers market " style of distribution.  All clients self declare that they meet the income levels set by the Indiana State Department of Health.  There are no other restrictions.  Although the Mobile Pantry Program is generously supported by Kraft Foods, Land of Lakes, Ceres Solutions, and Food Finders, the food bank still needs $500 to bring the Mobile Pantry to Kentland.  When the Rotary Club Board of Directors meets, it will be discussing how the club can help.  



Rotarian Candace Armstrong (left) hosted guest speaker Michelle Dresbaugh, Newton County Chief Probation Officer, at the Monday noon luncheon meeting.  Michelle talked about the origin of the practice of probation and gave an overview of how it is implemented today here locally.  She first revealed that John Augustus of Woburn, Massachusetts is generally recognized as the first true probation officer.  In 1841, Augustus attended police court to bail out a "common drunkard," the first probationer.  The offender was ordered to appear three weeks later for sentencing.  When he returned to court, accompanied by Augustus, he was a sober man. To the astonishment of all in attendance, his appearance and demeanor had dramatically changed.  Augustus thus began a 18 - year career as a volunteer probation officer.  He is credited with establishing some of the basic concepts of modern probation. 

 The concept of probation spread gradually throughout the United States.  The first juvenile court was established in Chicago in 1899.  Today all states offer both juvenile and adult probation.  

 In Newton County there are three full-time officers and one administrative assistant.  Angelique Watkins is the juvenile probation officer.  Dustin Burns handles the adult substance cases, and Michelle handles the adult non-substance cases.  These are some of the duties of the probation officers:  supervision of clients, performance of drug screens,  preparation of reports for the court, and maintaining positive relations with service providers, judges, attorneys, and other probationary departments.  

 Salaries which were substandard prior to 2003 are now similar to those of a public school teacher.  Probationers (unless indigent) pay probation users fees which help pay to run the probation department and supplement salaries.  

 Dresbaugh described a typical day as including court in the morning, sign up for new probationers after court, and appointments  with probationers when such things as money, counseling, GED, etc. would be discussed.  Michelle likes to ask about a probationer's personal life in order  to better understand the client.  There is never a boring day.  A probation officer has to be able to multi-task effectively and be flexible because plans are often railroaded by something more urgent. 

 Michelle finds working with probationers with home detention more difficult than working with those with jail time.  There are simply more temptations, plus more potential for grief among members of the household (spouse, significant other/ children/ parents).  Seventy-five percent of those sentenced to home detention complete the sentence successfully.  Most violations are for alcohol or positive drug screens or new charges-----rarely for escape.  

Here are a few of the standards one would have to meet to qualify for a position of probation officer in Indiana:  1. A probation officer shall be at least 21 years of age.  2.  A probation officer shall be an American citizen.  3.  A person who desires to take the examination for prospective probation officers shall have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university.  4.  A person who submits an application to take the examination for prospective probation officers shall be a person of good moral character.  

Once hired, probation officers are required to have 12 hours of Continuing  Education every year, plus IRAS/YAS (risk and needs assessment) recertification every 3 years.  The probation officer fulfills an important role in helping many individuals find their way in society.  You have to admire the officers that can do it well. 

Brandt Stum

Kentland Rotary Club



Dr. Jay Brinkman shares Vocational Service

Rotarian Dr. Jay Brinkman (photo) who had arranged for the Indiana Vortex Chasers (IVC) to speak at the Monday noon luncheon, had  them cancel at the last moment.  Undaunted by this predicament, he decided to fill the program role himself.  He chose a topic he was very familiar with ----- himself, his family and his profession.  We learned that he grew up in Colfax, in McLean County, Illinois.  His father farmed, but later turned to agricultural sales.  His mother was a home economics teacher, and he has one brother.  

 After high school, Jay was a pre-med student at Illinois Wesleyan in Bloomington - Normal where he graduated with a bachelor of science degree.  He was a track and field athlete and for a while held the school record for the 400 meter dash.  

 After graduating he married his wife, Diane, who also had grown up in Colfax.  They then headed to Marietta, Georgia where Jay enrolled at Life University which specializes in chiropractic and health science.  Diane worked at a local hospital.  Jay completed his degree in chiropractic medicine in three years, taking classes straight through without any breaks.  He graduated first in his class.  

 Jay took and passed his board exams in Indiana. He then started to build a practice in West Lafayette, but at the same time he also helped the chiropractor in Kentland who was having health problems.  Eventually the Kentland chiropractor, Dr. Feaster, offered to sell his practice.  It was an offer that Brinkman couldn't refuse and he jumped at the opportunity to purchase the already established practice.  

Jay and his wife of 33 years have lived in the community for 26 years.  They have four adult children. Tyler, the oldest, is married, lives in Oregon and works as a land surveyor.  A daughter, Maggie, is married and lives in Wisconsin.  She has a son named Mason.  Two of the Brinkman children live in Champaign, Illinois.  A daughter, Laura, is a licensed message therapist.  A son, Caleb, wants to follow in the footsteps of his older brother and is studying to become a land surveyor.  Dr. Brinkman was a member of the South Newton School Board from 1992 to 2004 . He has been a member of the Kentland Rotary Club for 24 years practicing faithfully the Rotary motto of Service Above Self.



Newly appointed Rotary District 6540 Governor, Judy Walker of Hammond, Indiana, visited the Monday noon luncheon of the Kentland Rotary Club.  She is pictured here with District Assistant Governor, John Frischie (left), local Club President, Kirby Drey, and District Governor nominee, Steve Sorenson of Fowler.   Governor Judy who is a Professor Emerita of music from Purdue University Calumet in Hammond, and was executive director of the Northwest Indiana Symphony for six years following her retirement from academia, told her Rotary Story about how she became involved with Rotary. She congratulated the Kentland Club for being the top Club in Rotary Foundation giving per member in District 6540 for the 3rd year in a row. She also encouraged local club members to attend two events during the current Rotary year:  the 2012 Rotary Foundation Dinner in Elkhart and the 2013 District Conference next April in Merrillville.  Governor Judy who earned a bachelor's degree in music education, with an emphasis on choral music, from the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign, closed the meeting by directing the club members in an enthusiastic singing of the Rotary Club Four-way Test.  Are you the missing piece?  Rotary welcomes new members.  If you are interested in attending a club luncheon meeting, contact Club President, Kirby Drey at 474-5155.



Newton County Fair Contestants Visit Kentland Rotary

Five of the twelve contestants competing for the title of Miss Newton County Fair visited the Monday noon luncheon meeting of the Kentland Rotary Club.  Those attending were (l to r) Courtney Rainford, Mandi Olson, Kayla Leach, Shelby Crone and Shay Britzke.  The young ladies have been meeting every Friday since the last Friday in May preparing for the Queen competition with the guidance of Amanda Shedrow and Sara Conn, both former Miss Newton County Fair Queens. 


The competition will take place on Monday, July 16 at 8:00 p.m. at the Newton County Fair Grandstand.  Contestants compete in several events: Interview, Professional wear and evening Gown.  Poise, ability to converse and stage presence are among the evaluated skills. Miss Newton County 2012 will receive a $1000 scholarship from the Newton County Fair Association.  She will also receive the use of a car for the fair week from Emerson-Sondgerath Chevrolet Buick in Kentland, and of course, a trip to Indianapolis to compete for the title of Miss Indiana State Fair.  


At Monday's meeting the Queen candidates introduced themselves and fielded questions from club members.  They also had questions of their own for Club members.  One such question was, " What does the Rotary Club do?"  It was a question that Rotarians proudly and gladly answer.  Rotary International is a service club ---- the first of its kind founded over 100 years ago in Chicago.  Rotary's main objective is service---in the community, in the workplace, and around the globe.  The 1.2 million Rotarians who make up the more than 34,400 Rotary Clubs in nearly every country in the world share a dedication to the ideal of Service Above Self.  


Rotary's most significant success story is its effort to eradicate polio worldwide.  Presently there are only three remaining polio-endemic countries----Nigeria, Pakistan  and Afghanistan.  Since it is possible to eradicate the crippling disease of Polio for good, Rotary International is determined to continue its efforts. 

Locally, the annual truck raffle has been the club's most successful project.  The proceeds of the raffle go to help students graduating from South Newton and area adults to achieve their educational goals.  This last year $4,500 was awarded to adults, and the graduating high school seniors received $7,000 in scholarship aid. Since 1994 the Kentland Rotary Club has given away a grand total of $155,600 in scholarships.  The success of the raffle can be attributed largely to very generous local support.  

The Kentland Rotary Club (photo) with the faithful support of Emerson-Sondgerath, Inc. is now raffling a 2012 Chevrolet pick-up truck to replenish its scholarship fund.  Discounted raffle tickets will again be on sale at the Pun' kin Vine Fair.  Purchase a ticket, and you will have a chance to win a 2012 Chevrolet pick-up truck or $20,000 cash or other smaller prizes.  The winners names will be drawn at the Kentland Bank on Monday, September 3, 2012 at 12:00 noon.  Only 450 tickets will be sold.  Be sure to get yours soon.



Kentland Rotary Hears Relay for Life story

Gaye Hoffman Ford, Co-Chair shared the success of the Jasper Newton County Relay for Life held in May at South Newton High School with Kentland Rotary members and their regular noon luncheon meeting at the Steven Ryan Community Center on Monday June 25th.  Relay for Life is an overnight event that celebrates, remembers, and fights back in the ongoing battle with cancer. The event includes sponsors and teams and focuses on events during the relay.  This year’s event raised over $40,000 for the support in the fight against cancer.  Worldwide over 3.5 billion has been raised and is second only to the American government in support.  There were 45 cancer survivors, 560 luminaries, and 256 participants at the May 19th and 20th event held on the track at South Newton.   The key to success for Relay for Life are the volunteers and the sponsors that organize and support the overnight event.  The program begins with a survivors lap and is followed by the relay and closes with a fight back ceremony.   Teams of walkers find sponsors and walk during the night and are able to view luminaries placed around the track in recognition of friends or family members whose lives have been touched by cancer.   The funds raised are used locally to connect to a cancer information specialist, peer support, lodging, transportation, and financial and insurance questions support to those persons or family members that are dealing with cancer.  There were seven new teams this year and Relay for Life is looking for more participants next year.  Jay Brinkman was the host for the day and also delivered the invocation for the morning Relay for Life event.



June 18 Kentland Rotary Club Nanshan Aluminum Extrusion Plant

Rotarian David Asher, left, hosted Monday's guest speaker, David Kummer, who is the Human Resources Manager for the new Nanshan aluminum extrusion plant being constructed south of the Tippecanoe Mall at the intersection of highway 52 and Veterans Memorial Pkwy in Lafayette.  Shandong Nanshan Aluminum Co., Ltd. is investing over $100 million for the greenfield development of the large scale aluminum extrusion facility.  It is the first large scale greenfield, soft alloy plant to be constructed in the U.S. in some 40 years.  Although a Chinese firm, Nanshan is not a state owned firm. 

The facility is being built in "Nanshan Time".  Nanshan time is a company reference for moving quickly.  In January 2011 the company selected the construction site, made a public announcement and began to design the facility.  In May 2011 earth work was begun, and in May 2012 Nanshan received its certificate of occupancy.  It took only 13 months.  Normally such a large project would take at least 3 years.  The plant is large.  To get an idea of how large the 600,000 sq. foot plant is, imagine the 16 football fields that would fit under its roof. 

Production is expected to start in August after the installation of a 5,000 US ton Italian extrusion press.  This will be followed by the installation of a 9,200 US ton German SMS Meer press with a hand off to production expected January 2013.  These huge presses will produce highly engineered aluminum shapes for commercial customers.  One such customer, Wabash National, uses various aluminum shapes to assemble its semi-trailers.  They are just across the street (Parkway) from Nanshan. 

At this time there are about 40 employees.  At full build out and production, Nanshan expects to employ between 150 and 200 employees.  It will have a talented workforce that will be paid according to their skills.  Employees will also receive health insurance that is paid 100% by Nanshan and has no deductibles.  

Lafayette was chosen for several reasons:  The location is almost the center of the aluminum market with a good interstate infrastructure and easy access in any direction to cover markets.  Lafayette has a high quality labor pool with low cost compared with the East or West coast.  Having a world class engineering school like Purdue for a neighbor was also a big plus.  Also, Nanshan  America corporate headquarters is conveniently in not too distant Chicago.  And last, but perhaps not least, the president of Nanshan America, Lijun Du, holds a master's degree in business which he earned from the Krannert School of Purdue University.   



Muscatatuck Urban Training Center

Rotarian Candace Armstrong (photo) presented the program to the Kentland Rotary Club at its regular noon luncheon meeting on Monday, June 11th.  She talked about her recent experiences at the Muscatatuck Urban Training Center.  Armstrong visited MUTC as part of the Indiana State Bar Association's Leadership Development Academy.  Twenty-five lawyers from across the State participated in the inaugural year of the Academy running from January through May at five separate venues covering a diverse range of topics.  


     MUTC,located near Butlerville, is a full-immersion contemporary urban training environment.  Located at the former Muscatatuck State Developmental Center, MUTC now provides a realistic training experience for civilian and military organizations.  Armstrong shared photos of her tour of a portion of MUTC, which includes 1,560 training structures. MUTC is also home to the military's only accredited high school, the National Guard's Patriot Academy.  More information on MUTC can be found at


     Major General R. Martin Umbarger shared information with the Academy on the Indiana National Guard.  Indiana has a proud history of service which continues today with personnel deployed abroad and also responding here in the United States.  Troops aid in the counter drug task force and with emergencies like hurricanes Katrina and Rita.


     Armstrong also shared her experience at a unique Afghan Cultural Dinner.  As part of this dinner, Armstrong was able to speak with Afghans serving as role players, national guard troops from Colorado and U.S. civilian foreign service officers.  Prior to dinner, guests were invited to learn a traditional Afghan dance.  The meal (which Armstrong reported was fabulous) was take seated cross-leg on the floor without silverware ---- eating with the right hand only. 




Left to Right   Patty Wisniewski, Jeff Manes, Brian Kallies, Tom Desch

Kentland Rotary Previews "Everglades of the North"

The Kentland Rotary had the opportunity to preview the movie “The Everglades of the North” at its regular noon luncheon meeting on Monday June 4th. The Kankakee River and the surrounding marsh are the subject of a documentary being filmed by Producers: Patty Wisniewski, of For Goodness Sake Productions in Valparaiso, Jeff Manes, a Sumava native and free lance reporter for the Post Tribune, Brian Kallies, a free lance producer/camera/editor and native of Cedar Lake and Tom Desch,a free lance producer/camera/editor originally from Hersher IL are the team that have created this project.  The project started in 2009 and they have been filming interviews with scientists, farmers, historians, and other local individuals that have helped share the history of the Grand Kankakee Marsh.


According to the website of the Grand Kankakee Marsh Restoration Project “The greatness of the marsh that once covered a large part of northwest Indiana is well documented. The marsh was one of the largest freshwater wetland complexes in the United States, encompassing 500,000 acres in eight counties.


Wetlands and prairie habitats were intertwined with the Kankakee River as it meandered its way from South Bend to the Illinois state line, taking a 240-mile course to cover the 75-mile distance. The meager fall of only five inches per mile combined with the numerous bends created a giant wet prairie environment. Wildlife and plant life thrived, as did the activities that these resources supported.


The Grand Marsh supported a local economy that was built around waterfowling and fur trade. With waterfowl in abundance, sportsmen came from all over the world to hunt. There are many accounts on record of the great bounty harvested from the Marsh, with stories about barrels of frog legs and railroad cars of wild game destined for the Chicago markets.


Change in the Marsh came with development. As human populations grew, so did the need for land. The fertile soils of the river bottom provided some of the finest ground for growing crops. A mammoth effort to drain the area by channelizing the river transformed the Grand Marsh from a great producer of wild things into an impressive producer of grain.  Where once a local economy was supported by those that employed the Grand Marsh for a rich bounty of fish and game, a thriving farming community emerged.  As wildlife habitat was replaced by agriculture, the wildlife was displaced”.


The documentary will be shown on Indiana Public Television outlets across the state through the presenting station Lakeshore Public Television later this year.  Patty stated that this has been an “exciting project and this team along with the Izaak Walton League and the many sponsors and members of the communities within the Kankakee Basin have made it possible."


The major sponsors for this program include: The Izaak Walton League, The Lake Heritage Parks Foundation, The Efroymson Family Fund, a CICF Fund,  South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority, The Legacy Foundation,  The Dean and Barbara White Foundation, The Newton County Community Foundation, The Jasper Foundation, Inc., Waterfowl USA,  Dorene and Jerry Hammes, Albert's Jeweler's, The Nature Conservancy, South Shore Arts/Indiana Arts Commission, and The Jimmy F. New Foundation.  Don Wilson was the Rotary host for the program.



RYLA Campers attend Kentland Rotary Club May 7


Four South Newton Students were selected by the Kentland Rotary Club to attend the RYLA Camp (Rotary Youth Leadership  Awards) held at Camp Tecumseh the last weekend in April.  Kimberly Carcamo, Aric Deno, Courtney Deno, and Zack Willhite shared their experiences in leadership development and team building activities.  According to the Rotary District 6540 website, “Malcolm McClure spearheaded establishing the first Rotary Youth Leadership Award camp in District 6540 in 1987. Since then, the district has held this event each spring. RYLA is a leadership camp for high school sophomores and juniors. Held at Camp Tecumseh each year, the camp offers an excellent learning environment and provides outstanding counselors for the students. The outdoor activities include a multitude of simulations, called initiatives, each designed to help students work together to understand and hone their leadership and communications skills. RYLA is an excellent, easily managed project for clubs and an excellent opportunity to develop the youth of your community. The cost is only $200 per student and is paid by the club.  There are no expenses for the students”. 

 The students presented a PowerPoint slide show highlighting some of their activities at the camp.  Local RYLA campers all shared positive comments and indicated that the camp should have been a week long.  They have formed a Facebook page and continue to communicate with other campers.  RYLA Camp certificates were presented to each student by Kentland Rotarian Steve Portteus.  Ms. Laura Bossaer, South Newton Guidance Counselor accompanied the students to the Rotary meeting held at the Kentland Depot.  Kentland Rotary will continue to work with the students to establish a RYLA Club in the Kentland area.




C-SPAN Archives Director Asst. Professor Robert Browning

Robert Browning, associate professor of political science and communication and director of C-SPAN Archives was the guest program at the Kentland Rotary Club.  According to the Purdue website, Robert Browning, associate professor of political science and communication, began teaching at Purdue in 1981, his father, a C-SPAN enthusiast, urged him to watch the coverage, saying it would benefit the courses he taught. Years later, after a chance meeting with C-SPAN founder Brian Lamb and a discussion about the useful resources C-SPAN could provide and  thus Browning became the founding director of C-SPAN Archives, which is housed in Purdue Research Park.


Mr. Browning began by sharing the history of C-SPAN which is an acronym for Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network, and how it first came to rural America because it was received in homes via satellite which was not common in urban areas.  The cable channel is non-partisan and broadcasts a live feed from the floor of Congress.  This novel idea of broadcasting speeches was promoted by Newt Gingrich in the early 1980’s as a way to get the minority’s opinion to the public. The cameras are owned by the legislative bodies and C-SPAN receives the feed and broadcasts to the nation. Most people don’t realize that most of the Senators and House of Representative members are usually in committee meetings and not present in the chamber.   Thus the cameras always focus on the speaker and the viewing public must understand that there are few people present and that the Representative or Senator is speaking mainly to the camera.  Members of Congress return to vote and check the board to see how their allies voted before casting their vote.  Aides are viewing the proceedings on the floor from their offices and can notify Senators or Representatives that a vote is near or it is their turn for a speech.

This novel idea of broadcasting speeches was promoted by Newt Gingrich in the early 1980’s as a way to get the minority’s opinion to the public.

 Purdue became involved because Brian Lamb, C-SPAN founder challenged Purdue staff to archive the proceedings and Robert Browning began developing the archiving process.  The actual media is no longer housed at Purdue but is still available.  C-SPAN and the archiving process has eliminated the opportunity for the members of Congress to edit their speeches to eliminate mistakes.  That was a common practice prior to the live coverage and archiving of the video.  Assistant Professor Browning was the guest of Brandt Stum.



Youth In Community Day 2012

Kentland Rotary Club sponsored Youth in Community Day on Monday, April 23 and hosted a luncheon at the Trinity United Methodist Church in Kentland.  The Kentland Rotary Club is excited to expose students to the world of local government and local businesses.  During the morning, high school students from South Newton job shadowed local county officials to learn what are the duties of the various offices and local businesses to see how various businesses operate.  At noon the students, county officials, and business owners joined the Rotarians for lunch.  After the meal the students spoke briefly to introduce their hosts and explain their career and college goals.  They also described their experience and some of the information they had learned.  Kentland Rotary Club has been sponsoring Youth in Community Day for over fifteen years.  Roberta Dewing, Chairperson of the Kentland Rotary Scholarship/Vocational Committee appreciates the support of Cheryl Link, teacher at South Newton, the school corporation, the local county officials and local businesses who participate in this activity.



Ray Chambers, Director of Newton County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) updated the Kentland Rotary Club on new aspects of emergency preparedness in Newton County.  He explained that many new services have been under the Emergency Management department.  Many of these changes have come since 911 and the incorporation of Federal Emergency Management (FEMA) since hurricane Katrina.  Basically NCEM is responsible for coordinating mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery for any disaster that might strike in Newton County. These risks could include weather, flooding, hazardous materials, transportation accidents, bio-hazard, epidemic, and earthquakes.  Recent improvements include making Newton County one of the first 14 counties in Indiana to be labeled a Storm Ready County.  This process required multiple warnings and brought about the use of Blackboard Connect to allow businesses and individuals to be notified of weather warnings, boil orders, and other emergency information via phone and or email.  You may have noticed the signs on the major entry points of the county.  When severe weather is probable trained spotters are deployed in strategic locations for visual reports.


Mr. Chambers also is working on improving the tornado sirens to be backed up with a system to notify EMA of sirens that do not work during tests and also to make additional attempts to signal a warning if the first attempt fails.  The only way EMA is notified now requires a phone call from someone in an area reporting the siren did not work. 

The EMA has also formed a District Task Force Emergency Response Team that shares responsibilities and equipment with other northwestern Indiana counties.  They have all trained at the Training Center in Southern Indiana and were deployed to Clark County during the recent tornado outbreak.  Ray Chambers was the guest of Steve Portteus.





Kate Molter shared her discovery and humanitarian trip to the Blue Mango Trust in the Theni District of Tamil Nadu, India.  Blue Mango’s objective is to run a sustainable business by and for marginalized women who are disabled, deserted, widowed or living with AIDS. The difference in culture from the United States to India is significant. Kate shared that the women involved in this project are shunned by their culture because their fate is blamed on them.  Once a women is divorced she cannot remarry and those with disabilities, AIDS, or deserted must fend for themselves.  Blue Mango’s goal is to develop self esteem and offer training and business opportunities to allow the women to be successful.  Women are first accepted to the program and then trained.  Products are then produced on their skills which is somewhat different from our tradition of selecting someone that can do a certain job.  Blue Mango produces various personal attire items, jewelry, toys, and other marketable items.  They are marketed in 10,000 villages in India and worldwide with Fair Trade Organizations.  Mrs. Molter stated that all sewing machines are treadle models because the surge in use of air conditioning causes the electricity to be shut off during the day to Blue Mango.  Child care is provided at Blue Mango for all of the children of those women working there.  The women are not allowed to wear shoes while in the building at work.  The Blue Mango workers have now begun to share their income with less fortunate by participating in the Rice and Sambar Project.  Kate shared pictures of local women making the bricks to construct their building, Hindu Temples, and a Ghandi exhibit.  Mrs. Molter was the guest of Doug Morgan.



Jim Butler, Goodland Town Council President explained that Goodland now has two water towers on the ground in pieces, the one that collapsed and a new one.  Butler was the guest of Jim Schoen at the Monday noon luncheon meeting of the Kentland Rotary.    The Goodland tower fell around 11 pm and

water pressure was restored by 9:30 on Tuesday morning.  Mr. Butler was very appreciative of the support of the surrounding towns.  Donations of bottled water, equipment, fire support were some of the items he mentioned. Fortunately no one was injured in the collapse although one person was walking nearby and ran to escape the water.  He also impressed that Senator Lugar’s office contacted Goodland to offer assistance.


President Butler shared the technical process of restoring water pressure with no storage tank.  Water is stored in overhead tanks and the height of the tower and piping restrictions determines the pressure at the user’s faucet.  The tank was normally filled in the evening and was full when it collapsed.  Engineers and the insurance companies involved are still determining the cause but land has been purchased for the new tower and construction will begin soon.  Goodland recently received a $150,000.00 Emergency Community Water Assistance grant from the United States Department of Agriculture. 


In other Rotary news, Kentland Rotary President Elect Kirby Drey participated in President Elect Training Seminar (PETS) in Kalamazoo, Michigan March 15-17.   The three day session featured intense training for incoming presidents in areas of leadership, organization, future vision and motivation.  Keynote speakers included incoming International President Sakuji Tanaka, Japan, Past International President Rick King California, and Fred Sorrel Past District Governor from Windsor Ontario.  The conference included President Elects (PE) from Districts, D6290, D6310, D6360, D6380, D6400 and D6540, of Rotary International.  These districts represent parts of Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Ontario Canada.  PE’s are required to attend this training session and this year’s list of attendees included one incoming President from Sitka, Alaska! 


Breakout sessions allowed participants to receive training from experienced Rotarians and share questions and concerns they might have.  District 6540 sessions were lead by District Governor Elect Judith Walker and current Governor Mike Crabill.  Kirby was asked to submit goals for his year as Kentland Rotary President and was sworn in by Past International Rotary Director Fred Hahn during the closing session on Saturday morning. 

John Frischie Assistant District Governor Elect also attended the sessions.  John will work with the Demotte-Kankakee Valley, Rensselaer and Kentland Rotary Clubs during the coming year.



Kentland Rotary President Elect Kirby Drey participated in President Elect Training Seminar  (PETS) in Kalamazoo, Michigan March 15-17.   The three day session featured intense training for incoming presidents in areas of leadership, organization, future vision and motivation.  Keynote speakers included incoming International President Sakuji Tanaka, Japan, Past International President Rick King California, and Fred Sorrel Past District Governor from Windsor Ontario.  The conference included President Elects (PE) from Districts, D6290, D6310, D6360, D6380, D6400 and D6540, of Rotary International.  These districts represent parts of Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Ontario Canada.  PE’s are required to attend this training session and this year’s list of attendees included one incoming President from Sitka, Alaska! 


Breakout sessions allowed participants to receive training from experienced Rotarians and share questions and concerns they might have.  District 6540 sessions were lead by District Governor Elect Judith Walker and current Governor Mike Crabill.  Kirby was asked to submit goals for his year as Kentland Rotary President and was sworn in by Past International Rotary Director Fred Hahn during the closing session on Saturday morning. 

John Frischie Assistant District Governor Elect also attended the sessions.  John will work with the Demotte-Kankakee Valley, Rensselaer and Kentland Rotary Clubs during the coming year.



Kyle Conrad shared his passion for Civil War history with the Rotary at Kentland’s March 5th noon luncheon meeting.  Mr. Conrad reviewed the commitment of Newton County to the war effort. A total of 249 men served from Newton County served in the war. Newton County was formed in 1860 and these 249 men represented almost 10 per cent of the county’s population.   Troops from Newton County served in several regiments with the most notable being Company B of the 51st Indiana, Company B was made up entirely here in the county and mostly of Newton County men. This group was formed by John Ade and met at the Brook School located on the current site of the Brook Iroquois Library. 


Many of these soldiers were not buried in Newton County but many were returned here or died while living in Newton County.  Kyle shared stories of connecting different bits of information that confirmed locations of these Veterans.  Record keeping in past times was sketchy and often funeral records for another person give a clue.  There may be a name of a soldier but no burial record.  However a later burial record may indicate that a known person was buried next to her brother thus matching the name of a soldier that served in the Civil War.  Mr. Conrad has worked to receive a grant to mark all G.A.R (Grand Army of the Republic) in Newton County.  More information can be found at the Newton County Historical Center in Kentland.  Mr. Conrad was the guest of Tim Lohr.



John Balvich Past District 6540 Governor and owner of WIBN, WLQI, and WRIN radio stations received a call from staff members that WIBN was down.  This news was not unusual because  power outages sometimes caused a disruption in broadcasting services.  However this time the station was really down because the tower was on the ground and had crashed through the transmission building due to farm equipment hitting a supporting guy wire.  Mr. Balvich noted the various problems the outage caused including the loss of listeners and advertisers.   The outage started on April 17th 2010 and continued until July 27.  John shared pictures and explained the connections needed to transmit a signal to the tower location from the studio and then on to the public airwaves.


Mr. Balvich answered questions regarding the how the music format is delivered and the process for broadcasting local news and sports events.  John is a member of the Rensselaer Rotary Club and served as District Governor from July 2008- July of 2009 and continues to be an active Rotary member.  He was the guest of Greg Hall.



The Kentland Rotary Club learned about saltwater shrimp raised 600 miles from saltwater and just a few miles from Kentland from Karlanea Brown, Co-Owner of RDM Shrimp located on Highway 18 near Fowler, Indiana.   Karelanea explained the process of growing saltwater shrimp from Pl’s (Post Larvals) that arrive in an oxygen rich bag of 50,000 to the retail marketing of 25 to 28 count shrimp about five months later.  RDM is the sixth of eight sites raising saltwater shrimp in the United States.   They are continuing to refine the process and have achieved a 90% survival rate of the Pls and have expanded the operation.  They first moved to Benton County to raise hogs but the pork market was unfavorable and they began researching other uses for their buildings.   They also have greenhouses and use some of the heat from these structures to warm the shrimp farm when needed.  


RDM Shrimp farms use a zero exchange aerobic heterotrophic system (ZEAH).  They begin by running water thru several filters to take out unwanted bacteria, algae, and viruses.  After the tanks are filled salt is added and the water is reused and no hormones, chemicals or antibiotics are ever added. This system makes the water as close to the shrimps own natural habitat minus all the pollutants.  The shrimp arrive by truck from an SPF (specific pathogen free) hatchery in Florida at 11 days of age.  The shrimp spend 30 days in nursery tanks and are then moved to grower tanks for four months until they are ready for harvest.  Ms. Brown stated that the shrimp should be cooked with the heads on and then peeled after cooking.  There is no mud vein to remove because of the clean growing environment.  Since this process is relatively new, RDM Shrimp is working with Purdue Aquaculture Department and various other growers and equipment companies.  They market to retail customers only and are open 9 am to noon Monday through Thursday, Friday from 9am to 7pm, and Saturday 9am to noon.  Karlanea was the guest of Kirby Drey.




Purdue Wrestling Coach at Kentland Rotary


The news at the Kentland Rotary Club on the morning after the Super Bowl had nothing to do with football but focused on Purdue’s victory over IU on Sunday in Big Ten wrestling.  Purdue Wrestling Coach Scott Hinkel was the guest speaker for the noon luncheon meeting.  He shared the story of his career that began when he was cut from his high school basketball team.  Mr. Hinkel focused on wrestling and received Ohio All State recognition which led to a scholarship offer to wrestle at Purdue.  He became an All American wrestler while attending Purdue and receiving his BS and MS degrees.  Mr. Hinkel accepted a position to coach wrestling and teach Social Studies at Central High School in East Chicago.  The success of program earned him the invitation to return to Purdue as an Assistant Wrestling Coach and he became the 13th Purdue Head Coach in 2007.  Coach Hinkel explained that high school wrestling moved him from his initial plan of working in an automotive factory in the Cincinnati area after high school graduation to a degree from Purdue and a successful wrestling and coaching career. 


Mr. Hinkel stated that the Purdue Team focuses on graduation, integrity, and then success in wrestling.  Very few wrestling receive a full scholarship and they are expected to work to help pay their expenses. Team members are encouraged to participate as a volunteer at Purdue and in the community.  In May of 2011 Purdue’s Akif Eren was named a recipient of the prestigious N4A Wilma Rudolph Student Athlete Achievement Award, honoring the Boilermaker senior for overcoming great personal and academic odds to achieve academic success while participating in intercollegiate athletics.  Mr. Hinkel shared a video of Akrif’s story with Rotary members.  Mr. Hinkel’s resume and dedication to giving students a chance to succeed is exemplary.  Scott was the guest of John Frischie.


Kentland Rotary Enjoys Head Start Program


The Kentland Rotary Club got a “Head Start” on 2012 with the program presented by KIRPC (Kankakee Iroquois Regional Planning Commission) Head Start Director Belinda Gutwein and Ms. Wanda Knochel Translator/Interpreter for the Goodland Head Start Program.  The program serves eligible low-income children ages 3-4 in a preschool setting with emphasis on school readiness skills.   Twenty students are served at the Goodland site with an additional 34 students enrolled at the Roselawn site.   The student’s day begins at 9:30 and ends at 1:30 pm Monday through Thursday.   KIRPC operates Head Start Programs in Jasper and Pulaski counties also.   All of the KIRPC sites served a total of 170 children were served during 2011.  There were 135 families below the100% poverty level and there were 80 two parent families and 76 single parent families in 2011 programs.    Head Start is federally funded program for low income children and their families.  It began in 1965 as part of the “War on Poverty” under the Johnson Administration.  The children’s health and nutrition needs are support while enrolled in the program. Ms. Monjon works with the Family Services program providing translation and family engagement in the education program.   Parents are expected to volunteer with classroom support time and are involved in the decision making process of KIRPC Head Start.  Ms. Gutwein and Ms. Monjon were guests of Rotarian Chris Knochel. 

Jay Brinkman Rotary Foundation Committee Chair presented Doug Morgan with a Ruby pin recognizing his continued support of the Paul Harris Fellows program.  Kentland is only one of two clubs in Indiana that has 100 percent participation in the Paul Harris support program. 

The February 6th Rotary meeting will feature a representative of the Purdue Wrestling Program and anyone interested in attending is encouraged to contact John Frischie at219-474-6483 for details.


 Western Governors Indiana Highway sign just North of Kentland

Did you watch WGUI in the tournament last night?  Ms. Ginger Walker and Ms. Kristi Smith Public Relations Coordinators for Western Governors University Indiana told the Kentland Rotary Club that the University has no sports teams, no campus, and they hold their graduation in the State Capitol.   WGUI opened in Indiana in 2010 with the support of Governor Mitch Daniels and no state funds.  WGU Indiana is supported by the Lumina Foundation for Education, Lily, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.  According to the WGUI’s website, WGU Indiana is an online, competency-based university designed to expand access to higher education for Indiana residents. Established by the state of Indiana in partnership with Western Governors University, WGU Indiana is designed to serve the needs of Indiana citizens. WGU Indiana offers more than 50 accredited BS and MS degrees in high-demand career fields and has about 1,700 students at the current time.  Seventy six graduates were recognized during the ceremony at the Indiana State Capitol in August. 

There are students from 91 counties enrolled in 53 online, competency-based degrees offered by WGU in Indiana in areas of Education, Business, Information Technology, and Health Professions.  Newton County is the only county with no enrollees.   WGUI is non-profit and the tuition is less than $6,000.00 per year and students can proceed as fast as they reach each competency.   Most students that enroll are currently employed and are seeking to complete a degree that was interrupted by life experiences.  The average age of the graduates this past August was 40; the youngest grad was 22; the oldest was 60.  Details can be found at or by calling 1.866.225.5948.

The Kentland Rotary Club is considering a scholarship to WGIU to encourage residents to enroll and complete their education.  Ginger and Kristi were the guests of Roberta Dewing.




Monday November 21 was a busy day for Kentland Rotary Club.   The Club donated $1,000.00 to the Covenant Federated Food Pantry to help with the growing need for food pantry items.   Volunteers distribute food items each Monday and served approximately 130 persons that day.  The week before Thanksgiving they served 167 patrons.  Peggy Rhanor indicated the need for supplies has increased and the cost of food items has increased also.   Food from the Pantry’s suppliers is priced per item now and no longer can be obtained on a per pound basis.  Much publicity has been given to the cost of peanut butter but other items have risen as well.  The Rotary Club also donated $500 to Newton County Community Services Christmas Food Basket Program.  There is always a need for supporting the organizations that provide needed resources for members of the community.


The theme of the Rotary meeting changed from food to flowers with the presentation of Dave Asher.  Dave shared the story of the “Tulip Trestle Bridge” that spans Richland Creek between the towns of Tulip and Solsberry, Indiana.  The span has 18 supporting towers and is 2,300 feet long.  The structure is the longest of its type in the United States and is the third longest in the world.  Construction on the bridge was completed in 1906 under the direction of the Indianapolis Southern Railroad.   The bridge is still in operation today and is operated by the Indiana Railroad Company today.  It continues to carry coal, corn syrup, and other products as they pass through Greene County.  Mr. Asher indicated the bridge was a good destination for a “day trip and picnic”.  The Indiana Railroad will provide an approximate time schedule to allow one to take photos of a train crossing the bridge.  




John Cook shared his recent trip to Cambodia with members and guests of the Kentland Rotary Club at the regular Monday, November 14th.  John and his wife traveled to Siem Reap to learn the history and enjoy the beauty of the historic places in Cambodia.  John shared that the people were friendly and enough English was spoken to make travel possible without an interpreter.  They did have a tour guide for portions of the trip.  One of the highlights was the temple Angkor Wat. The temple is one of the largest monuments to religion ever built and was constructed in the first half of the 12th Century and is well preserved.   There is a moat around the temple that is almost 100 yards wide.   Another highlight was the visit to Tonle Sap Lake. It is the largest fresh water lake in South East Asia and its area changes depending on the monsoon and dry season. During raining season from June to October, it has an area of 10,000 square Kilometers and it shrinks to 3,000 square kilometers during the dry season.  Chong Khneas is a floating village on the lake.  The buildings are anchored and rise and fall with the level of the lake. 

Mr. Cook also shared that Cambodia was part of the Khmer empire and evolved through the years with a series of changes that made it a French Colony from mid 1860 until 1953.  It was an area of turmoil until the mid 1990’s.  This period included the Vietnam War and genocide by the Khmer Rouge and the Pol Pot regime as portrayed in the movie “The Killing Fields”.  The government today is stable and John indicated it is a very safe place to travel.



Jessica Chapman, Coordinator for Center for Indiana Partnerships at St. Joseph’s College shared information regarding internships that are being provided for St. Joe students.  The project is funded by a Lilly Endowment Grant and provides opportunities for students to gain 120 hours of experience in the area of their interest.   Social service groups, law offices, art facilities, and financial offices are just some of the internships that have been completed.   Students are given a project of task to complete during the internship that may used to expand the social media exposure, graphics, or bring new technology to the host.  There is no cost to the host and the student receives a $500 stipend from the Lilly Grant for their efforts.   Internships can be completed on a flexible schedule and may even be completed during the summer while the student is living off campus at their home.  Many of the internships have been located near the St. Joe campus while others have been in Fort Wayne, Muncie, Indianapolis and other locations. Ms. Chapman encouraged Rotary members with opportunities for internships to contact her at the Student Development Office, Halleck Student Center, and PO Box 910 Rensselaer or by phone at 219-866-6116.   Ms. Chapman was the guest of Candace Armstrong. 

In other Rotary business Darrel Fredrickson, Rotary President inducted Jennifer Whaley as the Kentland Rotary Clubs newest member.  Jennifer received a certificate of membership and a Welcome to Rotary packet.   The Club also donated $1,000.00 to the Kentland Covenant Federated Food Pantry for their growing need for resources.  The Kentland Rotary Club Annual Meeting will be held on December 6, 2011 at Hazelden Country Club.  New officers will be elected to take office in July of 2012 and any revision to the Clubs Constitution and By-laws will be made.  Image


Dan Ryan, District 6540 Rotary Foundation Chair was the guest of Don Wilson for the regular Monday luncheon meeting of the Kentland Rotary Club.  Mr. Ryan began his program with recognition for the Club’s contributions to the Rotary Foundation during the past year that were presented at the District Foundation Dinner in Elkhart on November 4th.  He presented the club with certificates recognizing Kentland for contribution more than $2,000.00 to the Polio Plus Fund, over $10,000.00 in total giving, and over $150.00 per member.  Mr. Ryan made a special banner presentation recognizing Kentland Rotary as the top Club in the District in giving per member with a total of $571.00 per member.  He stressed that the goals and giving per member are important but the real meaning of the Foundation’s efforts are the human stories that go with each polio vaccination, clean water source, medical intervention, and each donation brings around the world.

Highlights of these programs include the team of heart doctors from the Indianapolis District that travel each year to a country and perform heart repair surgeries on children while training local doctors to repeat the process when they leave.  He also noted that the dreaded smallpox disease was eliminated worldwide wide with vaccinations and that the world was almost polio free due to the efforts of Rotarians in the past 20 years.  Polio remains a target in only the countries of Afghanistan, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan.  Rotary has almost reached the 200 million dollar match to the 355 million dollar challenge grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation donation to eradicate polio worldwide.  Mr. Ryan also shared the multitude of opportunities to join 1.3 million Rotarians around the world to place “service above self” and become involved in an International Rotary project.

In other Rotary news John Frischie reported that he attended the District Rotary Foundation Dinner at the Lerner in Elkhart, Indiana on Friday evening.  The Kentland Club donated one 2012 Truck raffle to the auction.  The keynote speaker Ken Johnson Chaplain for the Indianapolis Colts shared spiritual and motivational opportunities with the audience. Image



The Kentland Rotary Club met on Monday October 24th for its regular noon luncheon meeting at the Kentland Community Center.   Pastor Ken Marsh of the First Christian Church in Brook and Salvation Army Officer for Newton County presented the history of the Salvation Army’s increased focus on Disaster Relief following the 9/11 disaster.  At that time the Salvation Army was called on to provide food, drinks, and support at Ground Zero, the Pentagon, and in Shanksville, PA.   According the Salvation Army website The Salvation Army was closely involved with the recovery process for survivors in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington following the tragic events of 9/11.  Arriving within a half-hour of the first plane hitting the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City, The Salvation Army was one of the first relief organizations to arrive on the scene at "Ground Zero" and provided extensive support for relief workers and volunteers. The Army continued to support recovery efforts throughout the months-long clean-up process. In the months and years that followed, The Salvation Army assisted thousands of people impacted by the September 11 attacks with practical assistance as well as spiritual and emotional care.


Pastor Marsh explained that the need for food, water, and supplies for the relief workers and the families of the victims was overwhelming but the Salvation Army recruited donations and volunteers to support all three areas.  They learned from this tragic event that the ARMY needed to be prepared to deal with future events in a different manner. The Salvation Army's national disaster training program was inaugurated in 2004 through generous support from the Lilly Endowment.  Pastor Marsh participated in the training and shared his experience with the Kentland Rotary members.  He encourage more citizens of Newton County to join him in the training process so that our area can be prepared in the event of a major disaster in our area.   Pastor Marsh was the guest of Rev. Ed vanWyjk. 


In other Rotary business Steve Portteus reported that the Club had completed another successful Halloween Carnival and thanked the members that help with the project. 



Brandt Stum took the Kentland Rotary Club on a review trip of the past year’s Rotary activities with a digital photo presentation.  Brandt was the photographer and writer for the News Department of the Kentland Rotary Club this past year and he took the opportunity to highlight the programs and projects of the Kentland Club.   Some of the highlights depicted in the video display were The Truck Raffle that supported the $14,000.00 secondary and post-secondary Rotary Scholarships, while the Chicken Dinner with the help of Thrivent funded the $2,600.00 and $1,300.00 for the Covenant Federated Food Pantry, the Honorary Paul Harris recognition of Dave Murphy, and the Rotary Sesquicentennial Float   Each program speaker and program host was featured in the slides, as well as the Annual Meeting,  District Governors visit, and the new Cast Park Kent Pond sign. Brandt took the opportunity to move the meeting site to the Covenant Federated Church to take advantage of the digital video display equipment located there.   The Club would like to thank Brandt for sharing his talents and time to compose a news article each week for the past year.


In other business the Club continued sign ups and plans for the Fishing Pond at the Halloween CarnivalImage

 October 3 brought Mike Crabill, (pictured left) District 6540 Governor to the Kentland Rotary Club for the noon luncheon meeting.  Crabill met with the Board members at prior to lunch and the remaining Rotary members joined with him for lunch.  Mike is a member of the Elkhart Morning Rotary Club and will be serving until July 1, 2012.   He congratulated the local club for being the number one club in the District for donations to the Rotary Foundation and increasing club membership in the past year.  Mike also wanted to learn how the Kentland Club has been so successful with their Truck Raffle Project for funding local scholarships and projects. 

Mike challenged the members to follow International Rotary President Kalyan Banerjee of Valpi, India and work on personal goals based on the RI theme of “Reach Within to Embrace Humanity”.  Mr. Crabill suggested that each member consider a goal relating to family, community, and change.  He especially focused on the change theme and encouraged thinking outside the box to consider better ways of doing projects or even consider new projects that would be more beneficial to the community than ones that may have been conducted for years.  There are 33,000 Rotary clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas of the woImagerld.  District 6540 has 55 clubs in the northern third of Indiana.   


 The Kentland Rotary Club enjoyed an informative presentation by Stephanie Frischie Seed Collection Manager. In 1996 three key natural areas in northern Newton County—Conrad Savanna, Beaver Lake Prairie and Willow Slough Fish and Wildlife Area—were imbedded within a matrix of corn and bean fields. To improve the long term survival of the plants and animals on those natural areas, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) purchased 7,200 intervening acres from Prudential Insurance. This single purchase connected the three properties—a crucial step to ensure that plants and animals isolated on a single site would have a more natural bridge to interact, share genetic material and increase the vigor of the populations.  Located along the eastern extent of the Central Tallgrass Prairie, the Kankakee Sands Macrosite currently encompasses about 22,000 acres on either side of the Indiana/Illinois state line including Willow Slough according to the TNC website.   Much of the area was covered by Beaver Lake (once the largest lake in Indiana) until it was drained to produce corn and soybeans.  The property is infested with invasive species and controlled burns, manual removal, and herbicides are used to prepare for seeding.  A local farmer is using of the area for cattle pasture to attempt to replicated the harvest process that bison once provided. Seed is collected from sites on the property and other areas within 50 miles and grown in the TNC nursery near North Newton High School.  Much of the seed is handpicked but some can be harvested with a combine or seed stripper.   The seed is cleaned and combined in appropriate mixtures.  Senesac Fertilizer Inc. mixes the seed with age lime and approximately 600 acres are planted each January.  

Some of the land is still rented for agriculture production and the proceeds are used to pay local property taxes and fund the restoration project.  The Indiana DNR manages the hunting rights on the land.   Stephanie was the guest or Rotarian Patrick Leahy.

The Kentland Rotary Club also hosted a membership dinner on August 29th at the Kentland Depot.  Smoked ribs and a member carry-in provided the food and guests were introduced to the goals and mission of Rotary. 

 New Signage at Cast Park Donated by Kentland Rotary


The Kentland Rotary Club has received a grant from Rotary District 6540 for new signage and seating in the Kentland Parks.  Thanks to Greg Logan and the Kentland Town work crew fro installing the new “Cast Park Kent Pond” sign in front of the Kentland Depot.  The Kentland Rotary Club has received a grant from Rotary District 6540 for new signage and seating in the Kentland Parks.  Thanks to Greg Logan and the Kentland Town work crew for installing the new “Cast Park Kent Pond” sign in front of the Kentland Depot. 



The Kentland Rotary Club has completed two exciting meetings in the recent weeks. The Kentland Rotary Club welcomed its 2011 scholarship winners on Monday August 15th at the regular noon meeting at the Kentland Community Center.   Heather Milke attending IU, Bethany Wiltfang attending IVY Tech, Chalyse Weiss Brinkman IVY Tech, and Kameron Deno Purdue joined club members for lunch as the guests of Ron Humphrey and Roberta Dewing Rotary Scholarship Committee Chair.   The students were given the opportunity to share their post secondary plans with the Club members.  They also shared their interview experience with the Kentland Rotary Scholarship.  Pharmacy and Nursing were the most prominent career choices among this year’s recipients. Image


 Kentland Rotary Meeting August 22, 2011



The Club members were treated to an international experience on August 22 when Rotary Secretary Greg Hall shared his photos and experiences on a recent trip to France.  Greg and his wife Joyce visited historical sites at Epinal, Nancy, and Paris.  Greg and Joyce traveled to Paris via a high speed train and took a double deck bus tour of Paris, with stops to visit to Notre Dame, and the Eifel Tower.  Mr. Hall shared the beauty of the Eifel Tower and its twinkling light display at night.  Joyce took the opportunity to visit Nancy which is located about 240 miles East of Paris.  She enjoyed an exciting train ride and toured the historic sites of the area.


Greg attended the Rotary Club meeting of the Epinal Rotary Club  and was given a club banner to bring to the Kentland Club.  He will be sending a Kentland Rotary banner to the club in exchange.  Epinal has a population of 35,000 and is located on the Moselle River about 250 miles Southeast of Paris. 






Jody Melton Executive Director of the Kankakee River Basin Commission shared the mission of the KRBC with the Kentland Rotary Club members on Monday August 7.   He was the guest of Chris Knochel Newton County Surveyor and members of the KRBC Board.   KRBC’s website states that, Perhaps no major river in Indiana has been of more discussion, debate and study than the Kankakee River.  The Kankakee River has been at the forefront of Indiana's history, first as a wildlife paradise inhospitable to man's settlement, then as the focus of a drainage movement in the 1800's that changed the character of the Kankakee River Basin forever. The 90 miles of the Kankakee River in Indiana from St. Joseph County near South Bend to the Indiana and Illinois state line. The Kankakee River is the drainage outlet for 1.9 million acres in Northwest Indiana, of which 1.6 million acres of cropland.”  The KRBC was established to coordinate development in the Basin and has, since established, sought to plan and coordinate the many environmental demands placed upon the Kankakee River, its tributaries, and all the land around it. This includes flood control and drainage, as well as recreation, water quality and supply, hunting and fishing, wetlands preservation and upland soil erosion.  The Kankakee Basin in Indiana comprises 1.9 million acres of which almost 1.6 million has been used as cropland.
The Kankakee River forms the northern border of Newton County and the Iroquois River is one of its main tributaries so it has a major effect on the residents of the county.   Originally the Kankakee drained the Grand Kankakee Marsh but over the years the river has been straightened to improve the water movement and allow the creation of farmland and residential areas. Mr. Melton commented that Indiana paid for blasting of a natural limestone shelf in Illinois to improve the water flow and remove a natural dam that hindered drainage.  Levees were also built along the Kankakee to protect these areas from flooding.   Melton emphasized the constant effort by Illinois and Indiana is needed to prevent the river from returning to its natural meandering course and once again creating a wetland and marsh once again.
In other business President Elect Kirby Drey announced that less than 100 tickets remain for the Kentland Rotary Truck Raffle.  He also reminded members of the August 29th Rib dinner and carry-in to introduce potential members to the Kentland Rotary Club activities and members.Image


August 1, 2011


Alligator poaching and fast flowing water rescues were just a few of the adventures shared by First Sergeant Dan Dulin of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources at the Kentland Rotary Meeting on Monday August 1st.   Officer Dulin highlighted the duties of Indiana Conservation Officers and explained how their training prepares them for much more than watercraft, ATV, hunting, and fishing code enforcement.  DNR officers conduct water rescues and evidence searches in natural bodies of water.  The DNR also has a canine unit trained to find firearms.  This unit found the weapon used at a southern Indiana school shooting earlier this year after other attempts were unsuccessful.  The DNR also protects Indiana Ginseng crop from poachers conducting illegal harvest and sale of the valuable root crop.  DNR Officers typically work through the local Sheriff’s Department for dispatch.  Officers also conduct safety workshops and work with students in local schools, 4-H clubs, and at Indiana DNR properties.  Dulin noted that DNR officers are dispatched to other parts of Indiana and to other states.  He helped in the days after hurricane Katrina and that gave him the opportunity to discover the alligator poaching violation mentioned earlier in this article, a crime  thankfully not relative to the State of Indiana.  Officer Dulin was the guest of John Frischie.


In other Rotary news Darrell Fredrickson, Rotary President announced tentative plans for a new member rib dinner later this summer.  President Fredrickson and International Committee Chair Jay Brinkman presented the Paul Harris Fellowship to Pastor William Hall for his support and dedication to the goals of Rotary International and the Kentland Rotary Club.



John Frischie

Public Relations Committee Chair

Kentland Rotary Club

First Sergeant Dan Dulin (Medium)



The Kentland Rotary Club meet for it’s regular Monday luncheon meeting and the Kentland Community Center.  John Fredrickson scheduled a tour of Vector Inc. with Rick Heyde and Gary Webster for the program. The informative tour included the different departments in the plant and included an informative discussion of the processes and the scope of the packaging materials they supply around the world.  Rotary members expressed excitement that a new industry had come to Kentland to utilize an empty facility and employ local people.  The former Viskase building in owned by INTX Inc. and houses part of its Kentland operation also.  The Kentland Rotary would like to thank Rick, Gary, and Vector Inc. for their hospitality.


The value of the “Welcome to Kentland” signs was evidenced this past weekend.  Kris Munsch. a new Rotary member from Kansas City, Kansas saw the Rotary Club sign as he entered Kentland on Saturday August 23rd.  Kris was challenged by his fellow Rotarians in Kansas City to meet Rotary members across the United States and it appears that Kentland Rotary was his first stop. He visited Hopkins Hardware and asked Steve Thomas for the name of a Kentland Rotarian.  Kris shared his story, a birdhouse kit,  book  and a banner from the Kansas City, Kansas Rotary Club with Rotarian John Frischie.  Munsch is a high school wood shop teacher and  has developed the “Birdhouse Project” to help individuals deal with grief from the loss of a loved one.  He is traveling to all lower 48 states and placing birdhouses with appropriate people and places.  Kris actually placed one near the Whitehouse in Washington D.C. on the 27th of July. 

DSCN0437 (Medium)Vector Tour Medium



The Kentland Rotary Club began a new year of service in the Kentland area.  Outgoing President John Frischie installed the new slate of officers and board members.  Serving in the 2010-11 year will be:  Darrell Fredrickson President, Greg Hall Secretary, Kirby Drey Treasurer and President Elect. The Kentland Rotary Board includes the officers and Tim Lohr, Roberta Dewing, Jay Brinkman, Steve Portteus, and John Frischie.  John Frischie thanked the outgoing board members for their service and efforts.  During the past year the Club has added three new members, donated $1312.00 to the Covenant Federated Food Pantry and $2588.00 to the Rotary International Polio Plus Project.  The Club also sent seven personal care items to our troops in Afghanistan and donated to the Rotary Club of LaPaz Bolivia for their amputee project.  The Rotary Club donated approximately $15,000 to local students for scholarships.  These activities were funded with member donations and proceeds from the Kentland Rotary Club Truck Raffle and the annual chicken dinner at the Kentland Oktoberfest.  The Kentland Club was also recognized as the only Club in District 6540 of Rotary International with the Presidential Citation with Distinction from President Ray Klinginsmith of Rotary International.  


Candace Armstrong, John Cook, and John Frischie were recognized by Jay Brinkman, Foundation Committee Chair for their participation in the Paul Harris Fellows program.


Other business of the day included an update on the Truck Raffle.  Sales have begun and response has been strong.  A special thanks to Emerson Sondergrath Incorporated for their continued support of the Truck Raffle Project.

2011 12 Officer Medium




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