Stories

Posted by Carolyn Kofler
You may remember Gabriel (“Gabe”) Layne, Lt.Governor for Key Club Division 18.  Early into his term he spoke to our members at our regular meeting.  A confident young man, poised and focused, he spoke several minutes without notes and impressed us all.  Gabe is now an outgoing Lt.Governor.  In his final email to Division 18 Key Clubbers he introduced the incoming Lt.Governor, Aitana Burman, the Lieutenant Governor Elect for Division 18.   He told members that next year they would be “in amazing hands.”
 
Gabe continued:  “Aitana is a current Junior at Pine View School in Osprey, Florida. She has been a dedicated member to the Kiwanis Family and remains very active in service to her school and community. I could not be prouder of Aitana, she will make an outstanding Lieutenant Governor and I cannot wait to see what she will make of Division 18! Get ready for an incredible 2018-2019 service year, Aitana is going to rock it!”
 
As sponsors Pine View’s Key Club we have become accustomed of being in awe of the accomplishments of “our” Key Club.  It’s an understatement to say we are proud of every member and certainly of Aitana as she begins her year as Division 18 Key Club Lt.Governor.  Rock on Aitana!
 
Carolyn Kofler
Past President, Siesta Key Kiwanis
 
 
Aitana Burman "Rocks" - It Must be True, Lt. Governor Gabe Said So Carolyn Kofler 2018-04-04 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bill Irish
 
Members (well, most of the members) of our new K-Kids Club at Wilkinson Elementary show off their new shirts, front and back views!  The front of the shirt has the KI K-Kids logo.

The design on the back of the shirt was selected by the club members. Members were asked to create a design addressing the K-Kids Four Core Values: 
 "Character Building, Leadership, Inclusiveness, and Caring."   They then voted on the design they liked best. The majority selected Kailey's design.  (Kailey is the Club's president.)   
 
In case you were wondering, the much taller blond "K-Kid" at the back is Faculty Advisor Anne Hill.  And that's President Kailey facing the camera in the photo at the right. 
 
 
 
 
Bill Irish,
Kiwanis Advisor
 
PS:  Earlier we received a very nice "thank you" note from the Club's members.  Here it is -
 
WES K-Kids Show off New Club Shirts! Bill Irish 2018-03-23 04:00:00Z 0
The current annual "Club and Condo" food drive spans the Kiwanis year - October 1st 2017 to September 30th 2018.  Last year (2016-2017) the drive resulted in just over a two ton donation to All Faiths Food Bank.  Co-chair Marianna Ehmke reported donation at our last meeting in September and said that if we could raise 4,000 pounds for All Faiths, why not 5,000 pounds?  So this year's goal is 5,000 pounds.  Given that we're almost 40% into the year, we thought it appropriate to post a progress report.
 
"OK - So how we doing?"  Well, as of March 21st Co-Chair Carolyn Kofler reported the donation total is 2,465 pounds - approaching 50% of our goal ,suggesting that we're on track to meet our end of September target of 5,000.  As good as that sounds we need to maintain the larger perspective:  (1)  Donations increase during "season" as visitors move in and out of condos on Siesta Key.  Expect donations to fall off as summer approaches.  (2) Our Club begins our summer meeting schedule in July when members go on vacation (really?  to where?).  So during the summer we expect member donations to slow.  AND THEN (3) The drive received a year-end holiday boost from the law firm of Williams, Parker, Harrison, Dietz and Getson.  John Moore, Past President of Sarasota Kiwanis, worked with Carolyn to put a collection box in his firm’s break room with great success! 
 
And by happen-stance Carolyn’s bank, the Bank of America (BoA) branch at S. Tamiami and Stickney Point, had a full collection box and asked Carolyn if she could arrange to transport the food donations from their customers to All Faiths.  The short answer was “yes, of course.”  Even better she's been back many times since.  In short, our Club and Condo Food Drive is on track but we must keep our eye on the goal.
 
Maybe we should change the name to the “Club and Condo and BoA and Williams, Parker, Harrison, Deitz and Getson” Food Drive.  The again, maybe not.
 
Doug Griffin
Food Drive Progress Report - March 21st 2018 2018-03-02 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Bill Irish
K-Kids at Wilkinson are officially underway.  Sixteen students met on February 8th to form the club.  They discussed K-Kids core values, developed project ideas and elected officers for the school year.  Club officers left to right in the photo are:
President - Kailey Barker
VP - Sailor Scott
Treasurer - Elijah Letteral
Secretary- Amani Aldrich
 
Secretary Amani should look familiar to many of our members.  She’s the granddaughter of Carmen Ramsey, our club’s speaker chair and humorist.
 
Congratulations to all the Wilkinson K-Kids, the Club officers and especially to faculty advisor Anne Hill.
 
Bill Irish
K-Kids Advisor
K-Kids at Wilkinson Elementary School Bill Irish 2018-02-10 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Mary Lynn Desjarlais
The first Bringing Up Grades (BUG) assemblies of the year were a grand success with 77 children receiving recognition.  As Principal Susan Nations stated "It is not an award, it is a recognition because you EARNED it".  Each grade had their pictures taken by their proud parents with their certificates held proudly.  Each BUGs recipient received a Certificate (suitable for framing), a BUGS refrigerator magnet and a coupon from Albritton's for a free soft serve ice cream.
 
The children were coached to come up to the stage, say "Thank You", hold their right hand out to shake hands and to look the other person in the eye.  The children were so cute as they had to remember to look us in the eye.  Wilkinson School is teaching the children how to succeed in the real world and the importance of a good hand shake.
 
The BUGs Assemblies were held on two mornings:   For Grades 1 &2 on the 18th,  Clark Lauren, Steve Stonecipher and Mary Lynn Desjarlais were there.  For grades 3-5 on the 19th, Bill Irish, Carolyn Koefler and Carmen Ramsey participated.  Thank you Bill for the event photos.
 
Mary-Lynn Desjarlais
BUGS Chair
Wilkinson Elementary January BUGS Assemblies Mary Lynn Desjarlais 2018-01-21 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones on Dec 30, 2017

As family and friends looked on, 40 Pine View High School students received pins, certificates, and welcoming handshakes as new members of the PVHS Key Club at the Club’s Nov. 27th installation ceremony held at Selby Library.  Gabriel Layne, Lt. Gov. for Key Club’s Division 18, spoke about the importance of Key Club and community service, and Clark Lauren gave a brief overview of the Kiwanis Family of clubs and our club’s sponsorship of the Pine View club.  

Later, led by President Nema Puthanveetil, all the members recited the Key Club Pledge “…to uphold the objects of Key Club International” and “…To build my home, school, and community…,’ before devouring snacks and a sheet cake inscribed with “Congratulations” in the icing.

 

 

Clark Lauren,
Pine View Key Club Advisor

2017-2018 Pine View Key Club Installation Joy Horne-Jones 2017-12-30 05:00:00Z 0
December 9th found many mighty members merrily mustering money for the Salvation Army at the Landings Publix,   They included John Masters, Carmen Ramsey, Ann & Jim Mattson, John Prince, Marianna Ehmke, Joy Horne-Jones, All Haab, Peter & Nancy Kiziu, Doug Griffin, and Shirley & Joe Sikora.  Joe chaired the event and sent us the photo below, L-R:  Pete, Joe, Shirley and Nancy.  Note the fashion statement being made by our outer-elves!
 
Publix customers on the whole were generous this year, perhaps indicating the strength of the economy.  It’s either that or our Kiwanis sincerity and charm.  Many customers who donated Saturday had comments about the Salvation Army, Kiwanis, the costumes and Christmas.  Here’s one:
 
A handsome gentleman with a Boston accent, easily in his sixties, perhaps early seventies, inserted a clutch of bills into my kettle.  I thanked him for his generosity, and as we shook hands, he told me about his Grandmother.  It was a cold winter in Boston in 1932 when his Grandmother was burned out of her apartment.  She was on the street with nothing.  He said the Salvation Army was there with blankets, provided food, some clothing, gave her shelter, and pocket money.  A few days later the Army found her an apartment and she moved in to restart her life.  “Every winter she’d tell her grandchildren the story and made it clear that we were never, ever, to pass a Salvation Army kettle without putting in money – even if we only had a penny.”  He then wished me Marry Christmas, turned and walked to his car.
 
I’d bet that that was the best story that any of us on “kettle duty” heard that day. 
 
2017 Ring-In: A Salvation Army Story 2017-12-17 05:00:00Z 0
The Siesta Key Kiwanis Christmas Angels, supported by their namesake committee - Mary Lynn Desjarlais, Brian Miller and Carolyn Jones-Penn - last Wednesday delivered 86 gifts for deserving students attending Wilkinson Elementary School.  School Counselor Anne Hill and Home School Liaison Mercedes Bolduc were on hand to accept the gifts donated by our angels.   (Photo at right.)
 
Carolyn and Brian checked-in the gifts as members carried them into the meeting.  After Ann and Mercedes had been introduced,  project chair Mary Lynn announced  that all 86 gifts had arrived, wrapped and properly tagged, ready for delivery.  Ann and Mercedes thanked the Club and members for their generosity and support for Wilkinson.
 
Twenty-three members and guests attended the meeting.  Guest speaker Marcus Bradley delivered an informative talk on personal safety - at home, shopping and on the road.  At the conclusion of the meeting members helped Brian Mill move the Angel Gifts to his SUV for delivery to Wilkinson Elementary.
 
Congratulations to the Christmas Angels Committee for a successful result.  Thanks to the many members who supported the project with donations of wrapped gifts.
 
Christmas Angels: Wednesday It All Came Together 2017-12-10 05:00:00Z 0
Our 2017 Xmas Angel project is underway.  Anne Hill, School Counselor, and Mercedes Bolduc, Home School Liaison at Wilkinson Elementary School compiled a list of needy children at the school with the help of classroom teachers having day-to-day contact with the students.  At Wednesday’s meeting, Anne delivered information about each child and their “wish list" to the XMAS Angels committee – Brian Miller, Carolyn Jones-Penn, and myself.  (Left to Right in the photo below:  Mary-Lynn Desjarlais, Anne Hill, Carolyn Jones-Penn and Brian Miller.)
 
Anne spoke briefly to give everyone background perspective and underline the importance of the project to the children who will be receiving our gifts.  Perspective:   Fourteen children attending Wilkinson are homeless, and 80% are receiving free or reduced fee lunches. She said that last year several parents teared up as they were given the gifts their children would receive.  Anne told us “Your gifts are the only gifts many of these children will receive this coming holiday.” 
 
She concluded by thanking us for the many dimension of our Club’s partnership with Wilkinson -  BUGS, clothing drives, classroom sponsorships, toiletry donations, and the buddy benches.  Anne added that the school’s partnership with the Siesta Key Kiwanis Club provides additional resources so the school is able to do more for their students than would otherwise be possible.
 
Mary-Lynn and the Angels Committee then worked the room asking members how many children they would support with a gift.  That having been done, Mary-Lynn made sure everyone understood the gifting ground rules.  They are:
  1. Please be sure to spend within the requested range of $25 to $30 per child.  Spending more, while good intentioned, is very unfair to the other children.  Children talk and the extravagant gift one receives may spoil another child’s delight.
  2. You may buy more than one gift for your child, but honor the spending guideline.
  3. Please wrap the gifts.  If that does not work for you, give Mary-Lynn a heads up so the Angel committee is prepared to help.  However, do wrap (or bag) gifts if at all possible.
  4. If clothing is mentioned on you child’s sheet don’t hesitate to buy a requested toy and a clothing item.  Again, within the cost guidelines.
  5. Securely attach the gift’s family & child identification to the gift.  Use lot of tape. Nothing gums things up more than gifts that have lost their identification information.
  6. Finally – Please deliver the wrapped presents to the SKKC meeting on December 6th.   Anne Hill will return to accept them on behalf of the children.  Brian Miller is organizing the delivery to the school.  Bring presents in early so Carolyn Jones-Penn can track and inventory.  Also, bring a camera.  The presents and activity are a great photo-op! 
This year, 86 deserving students will be receiving Angel gifts from our members.  It is a signature project for our Club and is always one of my Kiwanis Ah-hah moments:   All of this anonymous giving.  ‘Tis the season and a reason we are Kiwanis.  It is also one of the reasons we are "The Mighty Siesta Key Kiwanis Club.”
 
Thank you,
Mary-Lynn Desjarlais
MLDesjarlais@gmail.com or (941) 302-1312
 
PS:  A reminder - there  will be no meeting Wednesday November 22nd, the day before Thanksgiving.  The next meeting is Wednesday November 29th.
Our 2017 XMAS Angels Project is Now Underway 2017-11-17 05:00:00Z 0
On November 1, 2017, members from Longboat Key, Sarasota, Bradenton, Cortez, North Manatee, Siesta Key, and the Aktion Club went to Der Dutchman in Sarasota for the Aktion Clubs 30th Annual Awards Luncheon. 
 
Mary Lynn Desjarlias was the emcee and did an outstanding job. Aktion Club President Adam C. called the meeting to order, Mackenzie H. led us in the Pledge of Allegiance, Caitlin P. sang God Bless America, and Melissa S. did the invocation. They all did a wonderful job. 
 
After lunch, Mary Lynn welcomed everyone and introduced the guests.  They included FL District Governor C. Todd Smith; Brad Jones, CEO of the Haven; AKtion Club District Administrator Trina Sessions;  Division 17 Lt. Governor Mike Labrano, Barbara Wear AKtion Club Advisor Emeritus; and Molly Brzica, wife of Pete Brzica, one of the Kiwanis members who founded the Haven's AKtion Club.  When Mary-Lynn introduced Florida District Governor C. Todd Smith, she asked all of us to say "OOOO" every time his name was mentioned. We were able to follow Mary-Lynn's instruction almost immediately when Todd rose to give his remarks and congratulate the AKtion Club members on their 30th Anniversary.   
 
Trina Sessions, presented the Certificates of Leadership:  Mackenzie H., received the Outstanding Service as Treasurer, Melissa S., Outstanding Service as Secretary, Robert N., Outstanding Service as Vice President, and Adam C., Outstanding Service as President. Trina then installed the new officers for the year 2017-2018. President; Melissa S., Vice President; Edward C., Secretary; Cindy P., and Treasurer; Adam C.  (Photo at left: Trina with Edward C.)
 
This was followed by announcement of the "Citizen of the Year."  Before presenting the certificate to the honoree, John Masters announced that henceforth it would be known as the "Barbara Wear Citizen of the Year Award" to honor Barbara for her 28 years of service as Kiwanis Advisor to the Aktion Club.   John and Barbara then presented the award certificate to Adam C.  Adam gave a very good acceptance talk and was very excited to receive this award.   (Photo at Right:  Barbara, John and Adam C.)
 
During the year, the Aktion Club does their own fund raising and they give charitable donation. Here is a list of their donations for last year. “The Haven” Hurricane Irma Disaster Relief Fund, “Mote Marine” Hurricane Irma Recovery Fund, “In Kind” donation, wheelchair accessible picnic table, and bench, Special Needs Prom, Miracle League Baseball and Selby/ADT “Fall Festivities.”  With matches, the donation total for 2016-2017 came to $3,000.  This is a group of capable special needs adults, and when you see what they can do, you know they are very special people.
 
We need to say "thank you" to Division 17 Kiwanis Club supporting the Haven's Aktion Club:  Anna Maria, Bradenton, Cortez, Lakewood Ranch, Longboat Key, Manatee Sunrise, North Manatee, Sarasota, West Bradenton and Siesta Key.
The Haven's Aktion Club 30th Anniversary Joy Horne-Jones 2017-11-12 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones
The Kiwanis Club of Siesta Key supports Sarasota’s All Faiths Food Bank in several ways.  One of them is our just ended annual food drive.  I asked  Co-Chair Carolyn Kofler for some story background.  She told me the drive was started in 2009 at the suggestion of then President Cindi Jackson.  Cindi asked Carolyn to chair the drive.  Carolyn hand delivered letters to condos on Siesta Key.  She got three  responses and collected just over 100 pounds of food for the food bank.  The drive did much better in 2010 with 647 pounds.  President Gary McDonald recognized the drive’s progress when he awarded Carolyn “Kiwanian of the year.”
 
The food drive pretty much went sideways with small increases for a couple of years.  One thing did change, in addition to solicitation from Condos, members were urged to bring food donations to our Café Baci luncheon meetings.  Then in 2015 Marianna Ehmke became Co-Chair.  Until then our food drive ended in the spring when the tourist season ended and Siesta Key condos went dark.  However, in a memorable moment during her food drive report, Marianna told us … “remember there are children who go hungry during the summer, our food drive is important and should continue.”  Then, she who must be obeyed, told us we would continue the drive through the summer until September 30 and that our goal was a ton of food.  Of course we continued but with some misgivings that 2,000 pounds was impossible.  However, in the end, the total for that drive was just over 2,000 pounds!  Looking back on that year we could see Marianna’s impact – reminding us at every meeting of the drive’s importance and identifying appropriate items in Publix’s BOGO list for the coming week.  Not unexpectedly, Marianna was recognized as the Club’s “Chair of the Year” for her leadership in the 2015-2016 food drive.
 
The Operations Manager at All Faiths Food Bank told us the 2,000 pounds of donated food translates into 2,600 meals.  Wow!  And what did our co-chairs do with that success?  Did they stay the course?  Nope, not these two - they doubled down and set the goal for the 2016-2017 drive at a seemingly impossible two tons – 4,000 pounds.  We were told it was simple – “If we can do one ton, we can surely do two tons.”
 
So how did the impossible 2016-2017 Club & Condo food drive work out? 
 
Well, Carolyn focused on Siesta Key condos.  John Masters and Joy Jones energized collections in the condos where they live.  A member donated money challenging Carolyn to purchase over a pound of appropriate food for every dollar he’d donated.  (In the end she turned the donation into two pounds for every dollar, and in the process set an example for member support.)  Co-chair Marianna focused on member donations and reminded us to contribute at every meeting.  The Club’s newsletter mentioned the drive in every issue and kept “score” with a graphic - the drive’s “Food-O-Meter.”  The end result – 4,116 pounds delivered to All Faiths’ warehouse during the year. 
 
Denise Cotler, All Faiths’ Chief Development Officer, commented on the result:
“All Faiths Food Bank is thrilled by the support it receives from the Kiwanis Club of Siesta Key, not just this year but over the long term.  Your continued donations of food are important anytime of course, but especially now when we are focused on hurricane Irma recovery in our area.”
 
When I asked Marianna how she thought the food drive went this year and if she thought there was anything different she could do, she said, “I thought all of our Mighty Siesta Key Kiwanians did their very best this year.  Some weeks were what I call light and other weeks made up for the light ones.  What I would do different, I’m not sure.  You know they say.  ‘If it’s not broke don’t fix it.’  I believe just asking every week and reminding everyone about the BOGO deals, was a big help, along with show and tell with what they can buy for $2.00 or less. All in all, I think we should just keep doing what we have been doing and we will reach our goal of 2.5 tons next year.  Thanks to everyone and the children thank you!”  ...... Two and a half tons?  Really,  two and a half tons?  Another impossible goal. 
 
OK, the October 3rd meeting is the beginning of the 2017-2018 drive.  Don’t just stand there, come, donate something.
Our 2016-2017 Club & Condo Food Drive – Getting Results With Goals and Positive Leadership Joy Horne-Jones 2017-10-01 04:00:00Z 0
Literacy Buddies is one of the programs individual members are encouraged to support and many do.  The new school year is beginning and Susan O'Carroll, the Literacy Buddy program coordinator at the Early Learning Coalition has sent reminder letters asking "Buddies" to reaffirm their support for the coming year.  Specifically, Buddies  are asked to receive a book request from a pre-schooler, buy a book in keeping with the child's request, write a note to the child, put everything in an envelope addressed to the child and turn it into our Club's program chair, Matt Anderson.  The book arrives at the pre-school addressed to the child.  It is opened with the class and over the next week or so each book is read to the children and given to the child to take home.  It's theirs to keep.  Paula and I have sponsored two buddies each school year for the past several years.  It never gets old.
 
This past summer, Susan O'Carroll announced the Literacy Buddy summer program and asked us to continue our sponsorship.  It was an easy decision - "YES."  Our summer program experience was pretty much like our previous involvement so I'd like to share it with you should you be interested in becoming a Buddy.
 
We received an envelope in the mail with a request from preschooler Alisa for a book about princesses.  Vuitton  asked for a book about watermelon.  We checked on line to see what age appropriate books were available.  Princesses were easy - they're everywhere!  Watermelon books however proved to be a challenge - a challenge easily met by the lady at Barnes & Noble who supports the children's reading section.  Books for pre-school children are very affordable, usually under $10.  After writing letters to Alisa and Vuitton ("we found a book we think you will like about a ....") we got the books off to Susan at Literacy Buddies.  A few weeks later we received thank you letters from the children.  Alisa's letter is here at the right.
 
Paula and I find there is a special reward for putting books into the hands of children, especially those who may not have books at home.  The literacy Buddy program makes this possible.  We encourage you to email Susan O'Carroll  (socarroll@earlylearningcoalitionsarasota.org) and become a Mighty Literacy Buddy for the coming school year.  There is still time to excite a child with a book.
 
Literacy Buddies - Still an Opportunity to Make A difference 2017-09-27 04:00:00Z 0
Joy is on vacation and while away she asked if I'd like to fill in for her so here goes:
 
Literacy Buddies is one of the programs individual members are encouraged to support.  "Buddies" are asked to receive a book request from a pre-schooler, buy a book in keeping with the child's request, write a note to the child, put everything in an envelope addressed to the child and turn it into our program chair, Matt Anderson.  Paula and I have sponsored two buddies each school year.  This summer Susan O'Carroll (socarroll@earlylearningcoalitionsarasota.org) announced the Literacy Buddy summer program and asked us to continue our sponsorship.  It was an easy decision - "YES."
 
We received an envelope in the mail with a request from Alisa for a book about princesses.  Vuitton  asked for a book about watermelon.  We checked on line to see what age appropriate books were available.  Princesses were easy - they're everywhere.  Watermelon books however proved to be a challenge - a challenge easily met by the lady at Barnes & Noble.  After writing letters to Alisa and Vuitton ("we found a book we think you will like about a ....") we got the books off to Susan at Literacy Buddies.  This weekend we received thank you letters from the children  Alisa's letter is here at the right.
 
Paula and I find there is a special reward for putting books into the hands of children, especially those who may not have books at home.  The literacy Buddy program makes this possible and we encourage you to speak to Matt Anderson or email Susan O'Carroll to become a Mighty Literacy Buddy for the coming school year.
 
Literacy Anybuddy? 2017-08-02 04:00:00Z 0
The last of the three Wilkinson BUGS assemblies was held on June 2nd.  BUGS of course is "Bringing Up Grades - a branded Kiwanis program what we support at Wilkinson Elementary.  I had never been to a BUGs program, so when I was asked to go to the last program of the year, I said yes.  There were four of us -  Mary Lynn, Linda, Clark and myself (Joy).  I decided to go down and sit with the kids and take pictures and the other three handed out the certificates and gift cards.  After the program Clark came up to me and said he had never been sitting out with the kids, so from where I was how did the kids seem to enjoy getting the certificates and gift cards?
 
Well they say a picture is worth a thousand words, and believe me they are.  This young lady smiled from the time her name was called, till she went back to her seat and when I turned around and looked she was still smiling after everything was done. 
 
I can't wait until next year when we start BUGS again.
The End of BUGS 2017-07-03 04:00:00Z 0
Summer has arrived.  Ask me how I know.  Well first off, we Mighty Kiwanians did not have a regular noon meeting on Wednesday, June 14th.  Instead we had Happy Hour!  We started gathering around 5:00 pm-ish at The Table Restaurant.   We need to thank Leaf for setting it up.  Between 4:00  and 6:30 The Table has $5.00 appetizers and selected drinks for a very reasonable price. 
 
Here's who gathered:  Mary Lynn, Linda, Leaf and Ange, Clark, Doug and Paula, Steve and Cindy, John Prince, Joe and Shirley, Peter and Nancy, Carmen, Carolyn and Chris, Jeanine partner Marcus and  her son Jack and of course me (Joy).  Photos: Right - Linda with Jeanine, Jack & Marcus; Below left - Joe Nancy & Shirley.
 
If you were not there, you missed out on a lot of fun and comradery.  We took up 3 large tables and yes we were a little rowdy, OK a lot rowdy, but still under control. We all stayed till about 6:30, then people started leaving. When I left ,John and Carmen were still there enjoying their last drink. 
 
A big thank you to everyone that came, and especially to Leaf - we all had a great time. 
 
But if you missed this Happy Hour, Carmen has arranged the next one.  It's scheduled for Wednesday June 28th 5:00 PM till 7:00 PM  at Harry's.  Two long tables will be set up for us in the back  of the bar area.  No special apps menu, but many great “starters” to share – generous portions. 67 large screen TVS and table side TVs in the booths for dinner afterwards.   Harry’s is located just south of Stickney Pt. Rd. on US 41 next to the Best Western.
 
Happily - Summer Has Arrived 2017-06-16 04:00:00Z 0
Friday afternoon a few Mighty Kiwanians gathered at the Sunset Pavilion on Siesta Beach with 30+ students, a few student family members.  (Siesta is “Beach 1” – a marquee location to recognize our Builders and Key Club student leaders.)  Also attending were hamburgers, hotdogs, buns, potato and macaroni salad, fruit, veggies, cookies, cakes, chips ….. you get the picture.
 
Events kicked-off with a Classic game of Rock/Paper/Scissors (RPS).  Everyone drew a bracket number out of a baseball cap, then wrote their name on the bracket board, the same kind of brackets they use for Basketball.  Once everyone finds the person in their bracket the fun begins. To move to the next bracket, a you have to win 2 out of 3 hands.  I quickly found out I am not very good at this game when I was eliminated in the first round!  Winners of the higher brackets receive gift cards to places like Starbucks and Walmart.  Alyssa Steinbaum was the “Classic RPS” grand winner and received a generous gift card for Walmart.
 
After the first game we focused on the picnic food.  At this time, President Clark asked representatives from each Club – Riverview Key Club, Pine View’s Builders and Key Clubs – to give a verbal report of recent activity and accomplishments.  These reports appear in “READ MORE” below at the bottom right.  Spoiler alert – they did amazing things during the 2017 school year.
 
After the food disappeared, Chair Drew Lowther announced that the second RPS game would be “Canadian Rules.”  No... ice and hockey sticks are not required.  I, and most others, had not heard of Canadian Rules so, Drew and Clark demonstrated.  (See the photo at left!)  In the Canadian version you start back to back, count to “3”, turn to face each other then pose.  The poses you had to pick from were a lady, a bear, or a hunter.  Now, the lady takes the hunter, the hunter takes the bear and the bear takes the lady.  If I remember correctly, Clark picked the hunter and Drew picked the lady so Drew won. 
 
In order to advance you had to win 3 out of 5 poses.  I did better and got to the second round before losing.  Here again the top bracket winners got gift cards and here again the overall winner was (drum roll) Alyssa Steinbaum.  Alyssa walked away with a lot of gift cards.  She seemed very happy.
 
There are some people we should single out for special thanks.  The first being the young lady that played the ukulele and sang.  Also Bill Irish, Fred Scheerle, Steve Stonesipher, Matt Anderson, President Clark and of course Drew for Chairing this project.  Not to be overlooked are the wives that came and helped.
 
I can’t wait until next year.  I’m going to work on my RPS game and win it all in 2018.
Student Leadership Recognition Picnic 2017 2017-05-06 04:00:00Z 0
Posted on Apr 28, 2017
BUGS (Brining Up Grades) is a Kiwanis branded program designed to recognize and encourage students who have improved their academic performance but who have not yet made the Honor Roll.  BUGS students at Wilkinson Elementary have increased a letter grade in at least one subject since the prior marking period.  Recognition comes at a school assembly.  At the assembly, BUGS students receive a certificate, a pin, and a voucher for an ice cream treat.  There are four marking periods and three BUGS assemblies in Wilkinson Elementary's school year.
 
The most recent BUGS assembly was held Friday April 28th.  Sixty-nine BUGS students in Grades 1-5 were recognized at an assembly that included presenters from our Mighty Club - Mary Lynn Desjarlais (Chair), Carmen Ramsey, Jeanine Gutauskas, Bill Irish, Tom Marini and Doug Griffin.  Also attending were many proud parents and grand parents.  Tom sat with the parents to take photos of the students showing off their certificates.  Afterward Tom reported that parents around him were excited that their children were being recognized for academic accomplishment.
 
The 2017 school year is the 3rd year the Mighty Siesta Key Kiwanis Club has run the BUGS program at Wilkinson.  It is one of the reasons our Club was recognized as "Partner of the Year," not only at Wilkinson, but for the Sarasota County School District.  Given this. the support of faculty and the school's administration BUGS looks like it will be a part of Wilkinson and Kiwanis for some time.
BUGS at Wilkinson - April 282017 2017-04-28 04:00:00Z 0
Posted on Apr 09, 2017
Imagine you are three years old.  You are in pre-school class, playing with your friends.  The teacher hands you a brown envelope that is ADDRESSED TO YOU.  In it is a book that is about a thing you like, and it has YOUR NAME in it.  The teacher reads the book to the class, and then you get to take the book home.  It is YOURS.  It is the FIRST BOOK you have ever owned.  That is what it is like to be a pre-school student with a Literacy Buddy.
 
Ideally, children start learning in the home with parent-led activities, especially book reading, bed time stories and coloring books.  Yet for many children these activities do not begin until pre-school.  You may have noticed a sign in Barnes and Noble at holiday time.  It said that many children do not have books in their home.  This is important because a lack of age-appropriate books in a child’s home has been found to be an indicator that the child may not be ready to learn when beginning kindergarten.
 
The Early Learning Coalition of Sarasota County (ELC) seeks to ensure that children enter kindergarten ready to learn.  They have several approaches, one of which is their pre-school Literacy Buddy Program.
 
The Literacy Buddy program pairs pre-school children with adults.  It’s like pen pals.  The children make a drawing showing a book subject - for example “a book about cars.”  With teacher’s help the request is sent to the child’s “buddy.”  The buddy buys an age appropriate book about cars, writes a note to the child, adds a book plate with the child’s name to the book, and puts the book with the letter in an envelope addressed to the child at their pre-school.  For buddies in our Club, Matt Anderson collects the envelopes and delivers them to the ELC for distribution.
 
Buddies do this three times a year, so by the end of the year, involved children have at least three books of their own.  The Siesta Key Kiwanis Club has 15 buddies supporting the project.  Matt is both our Club project chair  and an ELC board member. Matt says the Literacy Buddy program helps create excitement for learning.  He also notes that buddies are always needed.  So please talk to Matt about volunteering to be a pre-schooler’s buddy.  You may change a life.
 
Joy Horne-Jones, Editor
  with Doug & Paula Griffin
Literacy Buddies Create Excitement for Learning Joy Horne-Jones 2017-04-09 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones
On March 23rd at noon, Clark, Carmen, Mary Lynn, Bill and myself went to the Volunteer Luncheon at Wilkinson School.  You may remember Bill Irish sits on the Student Advisory Council at Wilkinson as our representative.
 
This luncheon was to honor Wilkinson's volunteers.  Invitations were in 4 categories: Student, Adult, Senior and Business. We were in the "business" category.   That's because our Siesta Key Kiwanis Club won the Business Partner of the Year, not only at the school level but for the entire Sarasota School District.  We won on several levels.  We sponsored 8 class rooms through the W.A.V.E. program meaning we donated $100 per class room for supplies, so the teachers did not have to take money out of their pockets.  We also sponsor the B.U.G.s program, the "Christmas Angels" effort, and have been collecting clothing for the school's Clothing Drive.
 
It is nice to know our Kiwanis Club is making a difference and to be recognized.  We all received certificates of appreciation along with one for the Club shown here.
 
 
 
Volunteer Luncheon At Wilkinson Joy Horne-Jones 2017-03-26 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones on Mar 12, 2017
PINE VIEW KEY CLUB
 
We had a very nice surprise this last Wednesday at our meeting.  We had a full house and students from Pine View Key Club.
 
Left to right in the picture is:  Blanca Carey-Treasurer, Javier Aramayo-Sophomore Class Director, Soumya Kona-Editor, Nema Puthanveetil-President, and Aitana Berman-Secretary.  They will take their new positions in April after DCON at the end of March.
 
This is a very busy group.  They have done many projects and just a week ago had a fundraiser and made $900.00.  On Sunday the 12th they did a "Farm Share" food distribution with other Pine View service clubs including Peace-Jam, Interact and (our) Builders Club.
 
This is a group of amazing young people.  With young people like this, I believe our future is in good hands.  Keep up the good work!!
Pine View Key Club Joy Horne-Jones 2017-03-12 05:00:00Z 0
This was my first Pancake Breakfast with the Mighty Siesta Key Kiwanis Club, and did I learned a lot.
 
First of all we need to thank just about everyone in the Club and especially Steve Stonecipher for putting it all together.  If I remember correctly, Steve Chairs our Habitat Crew, but this was his first Mighty project.  I think he did an excellent job.  Kudos to the Riverview Key Club (photo at the right with Advisor Neil DeLorenzo) for donating their Saturday morning, taking orders, busing the tables, delivering the food and drinks and everything else they did.  All the people that donated items for the silent auction and the Chinese auction.  Thank you Leaf and Ange for inviting half of Siesta Key, they had a party of their own which was wonderful.  The one thing that made a lot of people happy was Clark printing labels so people would not have to write their names on the tickets for the Chinese auction.  Little things mean a lot.  And finally thanks to members who sold tickets, promoted the breakfast to friends, and came early to "work the event."
 
Now let’s get to the breakfast, food that is. 
 
Applebee’s provided pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage links, coffee, and juice.  What a lot of food!  The best thing is we did not have to cook or do dishes, and we all had a great time. This is one of our fund raisers and as of right now we made approximately $1,600.  I think that is pretty good, and like I said this is my first pancake breakfast here in Sarasota.  I'm looking forward to the next one!
 
WOW WHAT A BREAKFAST 2017-02-20 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones on Jan 22, 2017
On Saturday, January 21st, six mighty members headed out to Midnight Pass for an 8:00 am meet-up.  It’s that time of year to start cleaning up the road.  Six of us, a good size group included (L-to-R in the photo) Brian Miller, Bill Irish, Joy Horne Jones, Tom Marini, Steve Stonecipher and our one and only Doug Griffin.
 
So here we are, Tom had not been with us before, so Bill explained the rules.  The big one “No Biologicals” (aka: dog poop).  Then Bill handed out our long handle picker uppers, plastic gloves, and plastic bags.  We figured out who was going which direction and who was teaming up.  So off we went in the directions we had picked. 
 
Brian had just crossed the street and found a good ball cap.  So, he started out with a bang.  We found car parts, lots of cigarette butts, plastic bags, beer cans and bottles, candy wrappers, and others things.  Bill did find a sweat shirt, and I found one (1) sock.  Sorry we did not find a complete outfit. However, if you need a sweat shirt I am sure Bill will let you have one.
We figured we picked up about 75 pounds of stuff this time.  We have picked up more, but 75 pounds isn’t bad.
 
If you have not joined in on the fun, you really need to.  The people walking by and riding their bikes do say “Thank you”.  One lady told me because of us, we make her walk much better.  That really makes your day.
 
 
Midnight Pass Here We Are Joy Horne-Jones 2017-01-22 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Jan 15, 2017
Al Ernst was at his best Sunday at McCurdy's Comedy Theater.  He began the set by announcing that he is the "best comedian in his price range."  Most of us who were there would agree with Al, he is the best in any price range and Sunday proved it!
 
Most of his material comes from his life's experience:
  • He talked about his success at losing weight - "So far I've lost 106 pounds, roughly a sixth grader."
  • "I was home schooled and graduated when I was seven.  My folks told me they'd taught me everything they knew."
  • "I went to college on a football scholarship to the University of Phoenix."
  • His description of Christmas eve services at his mom's First Baptist Church in Georgia included a description of his preventing his elderly mother from offering loud, snarky comments about other parishioners by pinching off her oxygen tube.
  • Discussed his use of "Grampers" - Pampers for old men - to avoid the long bathroom lines at a football game half time.  
  • One of his best, and endearing, pieces was his experience of being a Big Brother to a 5 year old boy and somehow finding himself coaching a T-ball team.
 
This performance was of course our fundraiser to support Wilkinson Elementary School.  Principal Susan Nations, her husband and several teachers were in the audience.  A good number of members attended with friends and guests.   That's guests Jane and Andy Reeves with Peter and Nancy Kiziu in the photo at the right.  Carmen Ramsey Chaired the event and Matt Anderson created the flyers.  
 
If you missed the show Sunday, Al will be at the IHOP in Dalton Georgia all next week.
It Was Indeed a "Good Laugh" 2017-01-15 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Dec 29, 2016
Wilkinson Elementary, Sarasota, is a Title 1 School with an enrollment of 450 children in Pre-K through 5th grade.  The relationship between Wilkinson Elementary and Kiwanis began when Guidance Counselor Cara Soliday visited the South Sarasota Kiwanis Club in the fall of 2013.  She spoke to the members with the result that the South Sarasota members - led by Mary Lynn Desjarlais - launched the “Xmas Angels project” to ensure that students who might not otherwise receive presents would receive appropriate gifts.  (Several children asked for socks, underwear, and clothing – but most asked for toys.)  When the South and Siesta Clubs merged, the program continued.  During 2015, the 100 years anniversary of Kiwanis, the club voted to supply 100 children presents for our Xmas Angels project.  Our club has continued our commitment to help 100 children every year for this project.
 
In the fall of 2014 Mary Lynn Desjarlais suggested that Wilkinson run the Kiwanis branded program named “Bringing Up Grades” (BUGs for short).  Cara Soliday took the idea forward and BUGs was first run during the spring of the 2014-2015 school year.  The result was an increased student interest in academics.  The program was deemed a success and continued in 2015-2016 and is scheduled again for 2016-2017.
 
A new Principal (Susan Nations) came to Wilkinson during the summer of 2016.  She initiated an “Adopt a Classroom” program, asking parents and others to provide funding for individual classroom teachers so they could needed buy supplies.  Such supplies are often purchased by the teachers with their own money.  Our Kiwanis Club came forward and agreed to sponsor 8 classrooms.  As a result we were offered a seat on the Wilkinson School Advisory Committee (SAC for short).  Bill Irish takes that seat as of January 2017.
 
In the past, teachers have reported children in their classrooms with clothing issues – clothing not appropriate for winter temperatures, inappropriate size, damaged, etc.  The school administration has responded by scheduling a clothing drive for January.  Linda Prenosil is chairing our committee supporting the drive.
 
 
In summary:  Our Kiwanis Club’s support for Wilkinson Elementary has grown from the initial Xmas Angels to include BUGs, Adopt a Classroom, a SAC seat, and the children's clothing drive. That's because it’s what we do, we’re Kiwanians and “Kids Need Kiwanis.”
Wilkinson Elementary - Our Partnership Strengthens Doug Griffin 2016-12-29 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Dec 05, 2016

Our Habitat crew has been at it again. On November 19th, the crew headed out to paint the third home in the project. In the crew was Past President Doug Griffin, President Clark Lauren, Leaf Wanless and Steve Stonecipher.  (That's Leaf in the photo at the right.)  That Saturday was a nice day, not too hot with all the windows open and the big fans going.  One good thing about painting for Habitat, the walls are all one color.  Makes painting go much faster. You start with the garage and then go to the inside of the home.

If you have not been to see the houses are you should go and see them. They are very nice homes, nice looking outside and very efficient inside.  If you've worked on Habitat projects you know the materials and construction are first rate.

I think all of the people that have worked for Habitat this year need a pat on the back. It is not easy work, and it is for a good cause. I want to give a big THANK YOU to everyone.

Our Habitat Crew 2016-12-05 05:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones on Nov 20, 2016
WOW, I have had a busy weekend.  Let’s start with Friday.
 
I arrived at Robarts Arena around 6:45AM.  What a wonderful sight, veterans everywhere, young, old and in between.  Some in uniform and lots with hats showing their branch of the service.  It was a full house.
 
At our Clubs table we had John Price and his guest, Carolyn her husband Chris, her sister, and brother in law from Canada, Doug, Clark, Brian and me (Joy).  The young lady that sang the National Anthem and God Bless America did a wonderful job.  Our keynote speaker was, Rear Admiral U.S. Navy Retired, Thomas Logan Malone, Ed. D.  He did a very nice job also. 
 
We have a lot of veterans in our Club:  John Price, Royal Air Force from 1942-1946, Al Haab, U.S. Air Force from 1948-1952, John Wilson, Air Force National Guard 1948-1962, Dan Lundy, U.S. Army from 1952-1960, Stewart Horn, National Guard from 1959-1965, Leaf Wanless, U.S. Air Force from 1962-1983, Brian Miller, U.S. Army from 1969-1970, and Bill Irish, U.S. Army from 1970-1973.
 
Please give these men a BIG THANK YOU for all their service.
 
 
Now, let’s move forward to Sunday.  I arrived at Ed Smith Stadium around 11:30AM. What a bunch of people.  I waited for Marianna and Linda and we all went in together.  We were there for the Bowls of Hope. 
 
We got in and there were at least 20 different soups to choose from along with bread and desserts.  We all had different soups and we shared.  I will tell you Calvers has very good ice cream. 
 
We had a good time and the money goes to a good cause.  Thank you Marianna for suggesting we attend.
 
Veterans Day and Bowls of Hope Joy Horne-Jones 2016-11-20 05:00:00Z 0
Posted on Nov 06, 2016
My, my, my how time flies when you are having fun. The month of October, which Marianna gave us off from bring food is done and gone.
 
The holidays will be here before we know it and yes the kids need food.  Marianna is asking us to bring food that we would have at our own Thanksgiving Dinner, eg:  sweet potatoes, green beans, regular potatoes, gravy mix or canned, cream of mushroom soup, onions, dressing fixings and don’t forget the fixings for the pies.  Any heavy food will be appreciated. 
 
Then after Thanksgiving there is Christmas, then after Christmas as Marianne has said before, “The kids still have to eat”.  So please check your pantries for extra cans or jars and take advantage of the BOGO’s. Our goal is way over a ton this year.
 
Thank you all in advance for all you contribute.
 
 
FOOD DRIVE Joy Horne-Jones 2016-11-06 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones
On October 22, 2016, four of our members plus a spouse (Nancy & Peter Kizius, Bill Irish, Carolyn and our President Clark) headed to the Roy McBean Boys and Girls Club.  We also had Pine View Key Club Lt. Governor Sam and Brie, Booker High School sent several football players, the Downtown Club had JoRita taking names plus Barbara Yong, Terry, Larry, Joe, Vern Buchanan’s son and a few others.  There were also several staff members giving us a good group of people to do the work.
 
Our mission was to clear and clean the large lot next to the Boys and Girls Club.  The lot was very over grown and had to be cleaned before the mowing crew could even start.  There were many treasures found:  3 bicycles, a stroller, broken TV, shopping cart, upholstered chair, mysterious broken plastic parts, along with 4 or 5 bags of cans, bottles and plastic bags.  The big prize went to the full sized box springs. A cherry picker  was brought in to cut and clear palm fronds.  We filled a dumpster and had still had piles and piles of trash on the lot. 
 
It was a beautiful day to do this kind of work because of the mild temperature.  We were done by 11am and then we had pizza. 
 
A big thank you to all that helped that day.
 
 
KIWANIS ONE DAY Joy Horne-Jones 2016-10-30 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones on Oct 14, 2016
Fifty members and guests gathered at the Café Baci for the installation of new Officers and Directors.  Guests included SLP Faculty Advisors Marti Watson (SMS Builders Club) and Brie Shannon (Pine View Key Club).  It was a beautiful evening in Sarasota.
 
Gerard started the Ceremony with his usual enthusiasm and smile, welcoming everyone for coming.  We then had the invocation by Cheryl Stock, and the Pledge of Allegiance by Steve Stonecipher.  Matt Anderson then introduced the current and past Lt. Governors, past and present Club President, Key Club Officers, Aktion Club representatives, and the Key Club Lt. Governor.
 
Then we had dinner, we started with salad, then a choice of chicken, salmon, or eggplant ending with dessert.  No complaints were heard about the food.  After dinner and we all chatted with everyone at our table, the program started again with Mary Lynn installing the three new members, Katherine Johnson, Steve Stonecipher and myself (Joy Jones).  Mary Lynn did an excellent job and had everyone sing to us, “You’re in Kiwanis Now.”
 
Doug presented the Club Service Awards.  Marianna received the Board Member of the Year Award, Linda received the Kiwanian of the Year Award for her had work, energy and time she put into the Day of Hope, and I received the Outstanding New Member of the Year Award.  I was really surprised and thank you all again.
 
Carolyn, our new Lt. Governor, installed the new Officers and Directors for 2016.  The new Officers are:   Past President Doug Griffin, President Clark Lauren, Secretary Linda Prenosil and Treasurer Fred Scheerle.  The new Directors are:  Dan Lundy, John Ferrari, Mary Lynn Desjariais, Carmen Ramsey, Carolyn Jones Penn, Marianna Ehmke, and Peter Kiziu.  In the photo L-R:  Clark Lauren President, Doug Griffin Immediate Past President, Lt.Governor Carolyn Kofler, Treasurer Fred Scheerle, Secretary Linda Prenosil.  (Carolyn is holding a photo of FL District Governor Gary Frechette.)
 
President Clark then gave a great speech and then presented the Legion of Honor Awards.  There were five members that received the Award:  Mary Lynn Desjariais for 25 years of service, Bob Pretchner for 30 years of service, Brian Miller for 40 years of service, John Watson for 45 years of service and John Prince for 55 years of service.  Congratulations to all of you for all your years of service to the Kiwanis Club. 
 
 
After a great meeting and meal we were adjourned.  I will have to say it was a wonderful evening and a big thank you to all that put it together.
 
 
Installation Night 2016 Joy Horne-Jones 2016-10-14 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones on Oct 05, 2016
After Wednesday’s meeting I felt we needed to know what went into the effort that resulted in 2,018 pounds of food.  It took days short of a year to reach that goal and I began thinking about the people that worked get us there, Carolyn and Marianna.
 
Let’s start with Carolyn.  Carolyn got started with food drives during 2009-2010.  She remembers she collected 360 pounds, and every year after that the collection got bigger.  Carolyn went on to say that, after Marianna got involved the collections really improved.  Carolyn focused on members that live in condos, asking them to place a collection box in their clubhouse asking residents to donate food for the All Faiths Food Bank.  The people that helped on the condo side are Leaf Wanless, John Masters, Doug Griffin and myself.  During her report at last week's meeting, Carolyn announced plans to bring up the food drive at other clubs she visits as Lt. Governor. 
 
Now Marianna.  Marianna says she got started with the food drive with Carolyn when she read something in the paper about “No Food for the Children”.  This year our Club ran its holiday food drive from October 2015 through January 2016.  By January we had collected 700 pounds.  When Marianna gave her report in January she went on to say “what are the children going to eat now, so let’s continue."  And that is how we got to 2,018 pounds.
 
Marianna announced Wednesday that we are taking "a food drive vacation" - a couple of weeks off so we can talk to friends and neighbors about the food bank, and perhaps signup more condos. She finished with one last statement: “While you are lying on the beach, think about what YOU can do to help the hungry children.”  Don’t be surprised if this coming year our goal is 1.5 tons and “Bowls of Hope” is mentioned.  After all it is about children and children is what we (Kiwanis) are all about. 
 
Denise Cotler, the Senior Development Director at All Faiths Food Bank attended Wednesday's meeting.  After Carolyn and Marianna gave their report Denise spoke to the Club, thanking members and congratulating the Food Drive Co-Chairs on reaching the ONE TON goal.  She gave each an "official" All Faiths coffee mug and posed for a photo to mark the event.
 
Big thanks to everyone who helped make this year’s food drive a success and to Carolyn and Marianna for all they did.
 
 
The Food Drive Wrap-up Joy Horne-Jones 2016-10-05 04:00:00Z 0
On Saturday, September 10th the Mighty Siesta Key Kiwanis Club Habitat Crew arrived, mostly on-time, for the 7:30 am start at the Washington Court build just off 301 near MLK Way.  The crew that day was Steve Stoncipher, Joy Jones, Carolyn Jones-Penn and her friend Patti Jackson, Candy Anderson, Doug Griffin, and Mary Lynn Desjarlais.  Steve Chairs the Habitat Crew. 
 
This is the same Habitat Build that was the site of our “Kiwanis One Day of Service” in April.  It must be noted that Steve has personally logged more than 100 Habitat service hours there since April 2nd.
 
In April our crew was cutting boards and swinging hammers.  This time, the two Washington Court houses we had worked on were largely done except for floor tiles, electrical fixtures, and interior painting.  Steve assembled our Mighty Crew to paint the interior of one of the houses.  The crew arrived, received the pre-work briefing, general announcements, and the “how to paint like a pro” demonstration.  (Hey, we actually learned stuff.)  We then enthusiastically set to work with typical Kiwanian skill and had pretty much finished all but the front bedroom and the second coat on the garage by the 9:30 break. 
 
During the break we learned that the volunteers scheduled to paint the interior of the second house had not shown up.  So, what to do but to finish our assignment and pitch in on the second house.  Was the second house finished when we left?  NO, but when time ran out and clean up began, about 80% of the second house was painted, enough so other volunteers could easily finish during the following week.
  
A satisfactory result - mission accomplished and then some!
Habitat Crew Accomplishes Mission and then Some 2016-09-30 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones
 
Well our first Giving Challenge is over!  How’d we do? 
 
I’m going to start with some statistics: We had 39 online donations that will be matched 2:1, and 2 off line donations for a total of 41 donations.  Out of the 41 donations 29 were by Kiwanis members or spouses.  The average donation from members and spouses was $97.00.  The average donation from family and friends was a respectable $67.00.  
 
The total raised from members, spouses, family, and friends was $3,525.00.  The Paterson Foundation match for online donations is expected to be $6,650 increasing Challenge donations to $10,175. 
 
Before the Challenge the Club applied for a “Board Bonus”, which is an additional money incentive to encourage every Board member to donate which they did with smiles!!  The Bonus is competitive so it will be late October until we know the result.
 
Members who worked on getting our Foundation in the Giving Challenge were Doug Griffin, Fred Scheerle, and John Ferrari.  Past and present Board members were involved as well, making phone calls to potential donors on behalf of our Foundation.  You may have noticed lots of reminder emails were sent out.  It all seems to have worked!
 
A great deal was learned qualifying for the Giving Challenge and even more encouraging people to donate.  Things learned this year will serve us well for next year’s Giving Challenge.
 
I think we did quite well for our first year.  Our members, Board members (past & present), and the committee deserve our thanks and a pat on the back.
 
 
GIVING CHALLENGE RESULTS Joy Horne-Jones 2016-09-18 04:00:00Z 0
It's that time of year when Tamiami traffic slows, you have to cruise your Church parking lot looking for a space, and the Maitre D' at Cheers, the one who has greeted you warmly for the past 3 months, suddenly doesn't know your name.   "Yes" - it is beginning to look a lot like season and not just because snow birds Lyle and Elaine Brion are on their way to Sarasota. 
  
It doesn't seem that long since we last saw Lyle and Elaine, in fact we saw them a lot and not just at lunch meetings.  They've worked the Pancake Breakfast fundraisers at Applebee's with us and enjoyed the socials.  At least one Habitat House in Sarasota has benefited from the Brion service ethic.   Lyle told us once that our Club's "projects are fun and keeps the Kiwanis spirit going."  He also said something at a meeting two years ago that you'll find on the cover of your Mighty Club Directory: "A Kiwanian does something for children every day."  So true it had to be shared.
  
Our Club is fortunate that Elaine and Lyle have chosen us to continue their Kiwanis association while in Sarasota.  They are expected at Wednesday's meeting.  Please welcome back Lyle and Elaine Brion.
 
Return of the Snow Birds 2016-09-04 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones on Jul 31, 2016
 
HOPE KIDS SCHOOL READINESS
 
For those of us that don’t know last year was the 7th annual Back to School with Hope project.  The mission of this project is to serve the children in our school system, which are homeless, living in cars, shelters or on the street.  Many are in great need for the basics so with this project, they can begin the 1st day of school on an even playing field.  Pam Hawn is the CEO and the person that started Hope.
 
Last year 11 area churches participated in this day. What happens is one or two churches will do one week and so on and it will be finished before school starts.
Kiwanis has helped in the past at different churches and last year was the first year to help at the Sarasota Baptist Church, and this year we are at the Sarasota Baptist Church. 
This project is for children in need.  The children receive a registration form, they mark what they need, and they get to pick a time to arrive.  Everything is confidential and the Church works in partnership with Hope Kids. 
 
 
This year the Church will be in partnership with Lakeview Elementary and Fruitville Elementary and up to 175 children will be there.  This number does not include parents and siblings.
The program is broken down into different rooms and areas.  Each child will be able to have haircuts, see a dentist and doctor, have back to school pictures and family pictures taken, a back pack filled with school supplies, a gift card from Payless for school shoes and an Old Navy gift card for school clothes.  There will also be a prayer room and activities room.  A Church member has donated jeans for all of the children; another Church member has donated quilts for all.  They will also receive a bag of non-perishable food and there will be a sno-cone truck when they leave. The Fire Department will be there showing and talking about fire safety at home and school, and the Police/Sheriff’s Department will be there offering fingerprinting.
A Church member has donated all the food for the volunteer’s bag lunches and there are about 300 volunteers.
 
The Salvation Army donated the lunch food and Der Dutchman donated the breakfast food for the families, which includes the children, parents, and siblings.
 
This was my first year to help.  I went to the Church on Friday and helped Linda set up lots of things.  There were post-it notes everywhere in the kitchen and dining area.  We (Linda, her three grandchildren and I) stuffed 247 bag lunches.  We would have had 250, but we had a few OOPs with the bread.  It’s not like home with the 5 second rule.  However, we got it all done.
 
Saturday morning went back to church around 7:30am.  People were already there running around getting the last minute things done.  Finally, at 9 am we were ready.  I worked in the serving line with three other ladies, one of them being Marianna.  They may never let the four of us back in the kitchen again.  We were told we needed to take our act on the road and get embellished hairnets.  They were calling us the “Lunch Room Ladies”.
 
Not only did we have fun, we got to feed the kids.  Some were so shy; mom or dad had to tell us when they wanted to eat.  Your heart goes out to all of them. 
 
The Kiwanis family and family members volunteering this year are: Linda Prenosil, who is our leader for this project, Bill Irish who is our co-leader, Linda Irish, Candy Anderson, Dana Anderson, Mia Anderson, Mary Lynn Desjarlais, Doug Griffin, Joy Horne Jones, Carman Ramsey, Elisabeth Saxon, Marianna Ehmke, Leaf Wanless, Ange Wanless, and Neil Delorenzo.
Big thank you to Linda Prenosil for putting all her effort for this project and to all the volunteers that help make this project work. 
 
 
HOPE KIDS SCHOOL READINESS Joy Horne-Jones 2016-07-31 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones on Jun 12, 2016
I am learning so much from working on this newsletter.  When someone says bugs, my first thought goes to creepy crawlers, not “Bring Up Grades”
 
The B U Gs project is a branded Kiwanis program, which means the Mighty Siesta Key Kiwanis Club is not the only club that runs this project.  Our B U Gs project is at Wilkinson Elementary, which is a Title One School.   A Title One School is a school that has about 80% free or reduced meal programs.  B U Gs is for grades 1-5.  What the kids have to do to be recognized is bring up or maintain an A/B average.  For some kids that may be easy, but for others it may be extremely hard.  At the end of the grading period we (Kiwanis) make a really big deal for the kids that have succeeded in bringing up their grades.
 
At the June 1st B U Gs Day, there were 120 kids; remember that was grade 1-5.  They got a certificate with their name on it and gift cards.  This year they got a gift card to Applebee’s for a free ice cream and a gift card to Out Back Steak House.  I would have been tickled for free ice cream.
 
This year we had two members that had never gone to a  B U Gs presentation.  The member I talked to, Steve Stonecipher was excited and said he could not believe how happy the kids were to get a certificate with their name on it.  The younger ones did not know how to shake hands, but they all tried and all said “Thank you” and had big smiles.  Steve Stonecipher, Bill Irish, Carman Ramsey, and Mary Lynn all say the smiles are worth it!!!  You have to remember, this may be the only award some of these kids may get.  The B U Gs project is very rewarding and satisfying, not only for the kids but for the Kiwanians.
  
A big thank you to everyone involved in this project.
HERE COME THE B U Gs Joy Horne-Jones 2016-06-12 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Joy Horne-Jones
Hard Hats On for Kiwanis One Day of Service
 
We had a wonderful Saturday morning April 2nd working at the Washington Court Habitat Build. The weather was a little shaky but the rain held off until we had worked our 4 hours.  Habitat provided us with lots of water and snacks and lots of helpful instructions on what we were supposed to be doing.  I will tell you I leaned how to hammer a nail without breaking one of my own nails.  Very very helpful.  The members that were they that morning were, Joy Jones, Lyle Brion, Clark Lauren, Carolyn Jones-Penn, Fred Scheerle, Steve Stonecipher, Doug Griffin plus two Key Clubbers Samantha Gallahan and Mira Chauhan. We also had homeowners and "almost homeowners" working with us.  Prospective homeowners are required to put in so many volunteer hours to qualify for their home. After we were done, some of us went to the Hob Nob for lunch.  What fun.
 
Future Newsletters: 
If you have suggestions for what you would like to see in the newsletter please let our newsletter editor Joy Jones (hornejones@yahoo.com)  know.  Joy will be highlighting a club member once a month.  You could be next so don't be surprised if you get a call from her.
HARD HATS ON FOR APRIL'S KIWANIS ONE DAY Joy Horne-Jones 2016-05-05 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Doug Griffin on Apr 26, 2016
Our newest member, Joy Horne Jones, took Marianna's words to "BOGO for the Challenge" to her HOA - the Oakhurst Condo Association.    Joy  put a box in her club house for 2 weeks.  She put a notice on the bulletin board and announced it at HOA social functions.  Oakhurst owners responded with generosity and enthusiasm.  The box was full at the end of the first week and still donations came in.  (And they continue!)
 
No special box, a simple sign, together with a bulletin board notice and making an announcement at social gatherings generated food for many meals.  Straight a straight forward and effective model. 
 
The Campaign Against Summer Hunger ends on May 15th so there is still time to turn-on the owners in your HOA.
BOGO Box of Joy Doug Griffin 2016-04-26 04:00:00Z 0
Sponsors
 
 
 
 
Kiwanis Club of Siesta Key
PO Box 5485
Sarasota, Florida  34277