Home Page Stories
Tonight Stratford Rotary held its first in person Bingo Night at the Baldwin Center. The event was well attended and everyone had a great time, especially the winners. All attendees were given their bingo cards for the ten games. Prizes ranged from gift cards to $25 to $100 prizes. There was a 50/50 Raffle and the winner of the raffle took home $160. Congratulations to all the winners.
Refreshments and Snacks were available for purchase throughout the event.
Special thanks to the Bingo Committee, Paul and Stacie Tavares, Harold Watson, Dominic Mantuano, Pat Patusky, and Osi Rosenberg. Thanks to the students from the Rotary Interact program at the local high schools.
Thanks to Max Rosenberg, who was the number caller all evening, and who entertained us with his humorous quips during the number calling.
Todays speaker, via ZOOM, was CEO of Your Tech Department, LLC Sam Disrally. He is a Cyber Security Expert, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, Author, Community & Network Builder, Founding Partner, COO at Your Tech Department & Your Tech Life Family of Companies
Sam's company deals with many facets of the technology industry focusing on the IT and Security areas. Sam's informative presentation was  related to individual ways to protect against Viruses, span and scammers. There was a question and answer period after the presentation.
Thank you to Rotarian Jim Simon, Stratford's Democratic Registrar of Voters, who explained the Early Voting System and the many issues that the Registrars must overcome. 
This is the first year Connecticut will have early voting.  The dates for the Primary in April will be set around the Easter Holidays. 
Early Voting will be at the Baldwin Center Studio Wing with direct access from 10-6 pm.
Thank you John Miksad for your informational presentation on the World Beyond War non-profit organization.
World BEYOND War was founded on January 1st, 2014, when co-founders David Hartsough and David Swanson set out to create a global movement to abolish the institution of war itself, not just the “war of the day.” If war is ever to be abolished, then it must be taken off the table as a viable option. Just as there is no such thing as “good” or necessary slavery, there is no such thing as a “good” or necessary war. Both institutions are abhorrent and never acceptable, no matter the circumstances. So, if we can’t use war to resolve international conflicts, what can we do? Finding a way to transition to a global security system that is supported by international law, diplomacy, collaboration, and human rights, and defending those things with nonviolent action rather than the threat of violence, is the heart of WBW.  Our work includes education that dispels myths, like “War is natural” or “We have always had war,” and shows people not only that war should be abolished, but also that it actually can be. Our work includes all variety of nonviolent activism that moves the world in the direction of ending all war.
World BEYOND War currently coordinates dozens of chapters and maintains partnerships with nearly 100 affiliates around the world. WBW functions through a decentralized, distributed grassroots organizing model focused on building power at the local level. We don’t have a central office and we all work remotely. WBW’s staff provide tools, trainings, and resources to empower the chapters and affiliates to organize in their own communities based on what campaigns resonate most with their members, while at the same time organizing towards the long-term goal of war abolition. Key to World BEYOND War’s work is the holistic opposition to the institution of war at large – not only all current wars and violent conflicts, but the industry of war itself, the ongoing preparations for war that feed the profitability of the system (for example, arms manufacturing, weapons stockpiling, and the expansion of military bases). This holistic approach, focused on the institution of war as a whole, sets WBW apart from many other organizations.

Thank you Jeffrey Fletcher for your information presentation on the recently opened Ruby and Calvin Fletcher African American History Museum here in Stratford.

The exhibit is a collection of family artifacts that reflect decades of turbulent times for African Americans in the United States during the period of slavery and the Civil Rights movement. It brings visitors up close and personal which is an experience that many have only read about in history books or seen in movies.

The exhibit embraces the teachings of tolerance, diversity, unity, and educating people that there was a time when imagery played a significant role in how African Americans were perceived. The artifacts and memorabilia may seem to be difficult to view but they are a part of African American history that needs to be told just as much as the triumphs which were made by African American pioneers and trailblazers. 

The exhibit is an opportunity to begin honest conversations regarding a rich and strong history which has historically been maligned. The Images of America exhibit is an experience that will leave lasting impressions and memories.   

The Lunch was a great success thanks to Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus.  They were quite a hit.  Samantha Aurelia and Jessica Alexander from the Stratford School System did a great job organizing the day.  The School's Strive Program members bought the gifts and wrapped them.  Special Thank you to Roger Salls who took pictures of all the youngsters with Santa which was a welcomed addition.  See picture below.  More to come next week.  Thank you all for making this a great success again this year.
Thank you to Marie Allen for her insightful presentation on the Southwestern CT Agency on Aging, (SWACAA). The agency has numerous programs aimed at assisting the ageing community of Connecticut. There are too many programs to mention here. Marie went over the Mission of the agency and how to volunteer, donate or help out in other ways.
For more information on their numerous programs go to https://www.swcaa.org.

Off the Streets Bridgeport applied to the Stratford Rotary Club for a grant to continue their programs to help the homeless find a place to live. The grant was approved and Gerard Agoglia was presented a check for $500.00 by Sharon Palumberi at the noontime luncheon at Acapulco's Restaurant in Stratford.

Their Mission is: To Help the Homeless Off The Streets, One-Person-at-a-Time. Off The Streets Bridgeport (OTSB) provides support to the homeless and those at risk of becoming homeless in the Bridgeport, Connecticut – Fairfield County area.

Operating with:

  • 100% volunteers – no paid staff
  • No Office Space
  • 95% of funding goes directly to supporting the homeless
Thank you to the Living in Color group for presenting to the club at todays lunch meeting. Living In Color explained their future plans for their group. Living in Color applied for a Rotary Grant and was awarded $500.00

Thank you Elliot Sloyer for your informative presentation on the Wheel It Forward program.

Our Vision

To change the way people from all socio-economic backgrounds think about the availability, use, and reuse of durable medical equipment - thereby improving quality of life, saving hundreds of millions of dollars, and keeping billions of pounds of DME out of landfills. To create, template and operate a branded lending library where people who need durable medical equipment (DME) can borrow it, and where people who have lightly used DME can conveniently donate it to benefit others, and the environment.

Wheel It Forward combines technology - systems templates and tools, with community engagement volunteers, to operate a branded library where people can seamlessly donate and borrow DME. We attract lightly used DME through various channels and employ best practices to sanitize, repair (when needed) and efficiently lend out DME to those who need it. We generate demand by reaching out to the medical community to raise awareness for this resource.

Thank you Kate Sheehan from the Stratford Library for sharing and demonstrating the latest technology available at the library. This new technology was made possible by a grant from the Rotary Club.
Every year the Stratford Rotary Club purchases Turkeys for Sterling House Community Center for distribution around town. This year Rotary purchased 200 turkeys and 30 turkey breasts. On Saturday morning, November 18th, Stratford Rotarians delivered over 130 turkeys and fixin's for Thanksgiving dinners to residents around the town. 
Wes Haynes, Executive Director of the Merritt Parkway Conservancy, told the story of the origin, construction and impact of this historic road that changed the design of American roads and life in Fairfield County, the challenges it faces, and what is being done to ensure its future as a safe and beautiful drive.

The Merritt Parkway Conservancy is a non-profit, member- supported organization committed to the protection and stewardship of Connecticut's largest and most heavily used cultural resource, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and a federally designated Scenic Byway.

Our District Governor, Christene Freedman, was our guest speaker after a rousing rendition of the National Anthem by Dominic Mantuano.  We now have a real flag.  Christene spoke very eloquently about the Rotary Foundation and the District Managed Grants.  When she was at the Wilton YMCA, she was able to obtain a DMG to teach swimming.  Those classes greatly impacted Jordan's life; he went from deathly afraid of the water to a lifeguard.  DMG grants have made a difference in our club as well. 

She also discussed the theme for this year's RI President, Mental Health.  A committee has been formed at the District level.  She discussed her father, Charlie, and his fight with depression and his family not realizing it.

In addition, she talked about next year's theme for District Governor Robert Friend: Peace.  Something with special meaning today.  Thank you to all who attended.

John Corb strikes again all the way from North Carolina.  It rained on the Shredding Event.  We still had a steady stream, and Osi Rosenberg did a great job publicizing the event, not to mention the $400 worth of paper shredding she brought with her.  Special thanks to Osi and Ramon Pons for arranging the event and to Patty Diorio from Sikorsky Credit Union for the publicity in their newsletter and the signs they made.  Thank you to Billy and Debbie Scheck for using their truck to dispose of the boxes and to Catherine Proto for using the cones.  Thank you to Paul Tavaras for bringing the Rotary tent.  And a Very Special Thank You to the Interact youth who stayed out in the weather and gave us oldies a break.  Last but least, thank you to all the Rotarians who came and worked in the rain.  There are too many to mention here, but you know who you are.  Hopefully, we will hear soon about how well we did.
Bob David was our guest speaker, discussing the History of the Roosevelt Forest. Stratford is one of four towns in Connecticut that owns and operates a Forest. The Town of Stratford is very fortunate indeed to be one of the few towns or cities in the nation to have its very own forest. Located at the end of Peters Lane, off James Farm Road, this beautiful 401-acre forest is part of our town's excellent park system.

Roosevelt Forest was set up during the depression in the 1930's from land purchased by then Stratford Town Manager, Donald D. Sammis. It was developed, in large part, through President Franklin D. Roosevelt's W.P.A. program, designed to provide jobs for legitimate public projects. The park was established to provide recreational opportunities for townspeople, and to protect the watershed, wildlife, and beauty of this fine example of mixed deciduous forest.

Included in the forest system is a lovely pond, various wetlands, and, for the user's benefit, there are picnic tables, a picnic shelters, and walking paths. Hiking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing are all enjoyed here. There is also a youth group camping area that can be reserved by youth groups such as the Boy Scouts.

Without a doubt, the outstanding feature of the forest is its natural flora and fauna. Roosevelt Forest is a wildlife sanctuary and it has most species one would expect to find in a typical Connecticut mixed deciduous forest, including both coniferous (pines, spruces, etc.) and deciduous broadleaf hardwoods (maples, oaks, etc.). Lovely trails, some marked, lead one to the wonders of nature. Deer, small mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and much of Connecticut's birdlife can be observed within the forest. Trees, ferns, and wildflowers abound.
Thank you  Stephen Fine, from the Melanoma Education Foundation.  He founded the Foundation soon after his son died from Melanoma Cancer at a very early age.  Mr. Fine has spoken to 200 Rotary Clubs since June regarding this subject.  Melanoma can be fatal as early as 10 years old.  Most are lost between the ages of 11 -36.  It can appear anywhere on the skin, especially where the sun doesn't shine.  There are 190,000 new cases per year.  Usually, there are no symptoms.  Most are caused by blistering sunburns under age 20, exposing skin normally covered to strong sun and tanning beds.  Changes in moles can be an indicator, especially in thickness or a new mole.  We should thoroughly check our bodies every 3 months.  Sunless.com has recommendations for sun protection items.  Melanoma cancer can be fatal if not caught early and strikes at any age.
Thank you Melissa and Claire from CARTie presented a PowerPoint regarding their Art Museum Bus, which will be at Vicki Soto School this year.  They introduce the kids to what they would see in an art museum, and the kids do hands-on projects.  CARTie has submitted a grant request to the Club.  They will have an Open House on Saturday, September 23, from 6-8 p.m. at Wells Hollow Farm in Shelton.  All are welcome to attend and learn more.
The Golf Outing went very well this past Saturday.  We had 63 golfers, a record.  A special thank you to co-chairs Mike Suntag and Jeff Krause and our sponsor, Tammie Crainich of Total Mortgage.  In addition, thank you to Two Roads and Dockside Brewery for their contributions.  Also, thank you to our volunteers - Catherine Proto, Sharon Palumberi, Stephanie Philips, Chris Green, Osi Rosenberg, Barbara Heimlich, Jack Cratty, Gary Jacopian, Jim Palumberi, and Chris Agathos.  Of course, thank you to Short Beach Golf Course and Nikki's Restaurant.  We are still auditing the final figures, but should clear over $2,000.
Stratford Rotary Club is so honored to have been awarded the Superintendent’s 2023 Friend of Education Award! We look forward to continue our partnership with our schools to better serve our community. Thank you Stratford Public Schools & Superintendent, Dr. Osunde 
Stratford Rotary hosted the South End Community Center Bike Rodeo today. Bike safety was a priority, and Rotary donated bike helmets to all the children. The children were treated to hot dogs, chips and a beverage along with water bottles, pens and wrist bands donated by the Stratford Police PAL.
Harold Watson instructed the children on how to safely ride their bikes along with how to properly wear their new helmets. Dominic Mantuano oversaw conducting the competitive games.
Special thanks to Jeff, Gary and Joe who worked the grill and to Paul, Barbara, Stephanie, Joe Gresko, Pat, Amy, Elizabeth, Sharon, Jack, Chris, Catherine from Sterling House who donated the hot dogs, Jennifer, who supplied the rolls and Dominic who brought the chips.
The event is always a lot of fun and the kids had a great time.
Thank you Fran Sinish. You did a great job coordinating the event.

Thank you Aliah Curry for you excellent presentation at todays luncheon.

Her presentation centered mainly around seniors and some of the issues that may affect them in later years such as balance, leg and foot issues like neuropathy. Also dangers around the home, throw rugs being a major cause of falls. She handed out pamphlets showing exercises that can be done safely in the home. Ms. Curry, a Stratford Rotarian, owns Oasis Physical Therapy at 3380 Main St, Stratford, CT 06614-4860.

Services offered are physical therapy with the intent to fix your unique problem with a specific solution. And to give you the opportunity through health, to generate wealth, and maximize relationships with your loved ones." Orthopedic, neurological, and all functional movement disorder diagnoses Certification in LSVT BIG & PWR for people with Parkinsons' Vestibular Rehabilitation Vertigo (BPPV) Dizziness Concussion Rehabilitation Sports Rehabilitation Post-Surgical Worker's Compensation Injury Instrument-assisted Soft-tissue Mobilizations/Cupping COVID-19 Recovery.

Congratulations to Lou DeCilio on becoming a Stratford Rotarian. He was sworn in by Stephanie Philips at todays lunch meeting at Acapulco's Restaurant in Stratford Center..
After the swearing in Lou gave a brief review of his life, education, job history and the numerous places he and his wife have lived. Lou is now Stratford's Republican Registrar of Voters.
Welcome to our Club!

Service Above Self

We meet In Person
Tuesdays at 12:15 PM
Riverview Bistro Restaurant
946 Ferry Blvd
Stratford, CT 06614
United States of America
4th Tuesday is a Zoom Meeting
Club Executives & Directors
Rotary Foundation
President elect/Membership
Vice President
Deputy Treasurer
Immediate Past President
Executive Secretary/Director
Club Sergeant-at-Arms
Club Director
Club Director
Club Director
Photo Albums
Upcoming Events