Our Rotary Club offers Members varied opportunities for growth and involvement!

Meetings:  Our meetings, held in the bright and inviting Northwood Hall each Monday at 12:15 p.m. (except for holidays) last until 1:30.  During this time Members (most of whom arrive around noon) dine together at tables of six having a chance to chat about whatever interests them.  At 12:30 the Club has a thirty-minute period of announcements, short presentations, and “Happy Bucks” time, when Members contribute to charity because of particular successes such as birthdays, anniversaries, business promotions, etc. Happy Bucks contributions range from $1.00 to hundreds of dollars; a “Sergeant at Arms” also extracts fines for particular incidents involving Members during the period since the last meeting.  Of course, fines are never levied that are onerous to any Member.

Then, at 1:00 p.m. a program is presented, almost always by a visitor.  Guest speakers range from internationally known or federal-level personages to interesting locals, but all usually have an interesting subject and story to relate.  These are a highlight of the week.  Meetings always adjourn at 1:30.

Committees: Most Club work is done by committees, and every Member is assigned to one or two. Members indicate each Spring to the incoming club president which committee his or her preference for assignment. Some committees are quite active; others only have a project or task once or twice a year. Committees are in each Rotary “Avenue of Service”, including Club Service, Community Service, International Service, and Vocational Service.

Socializing: Rotary’s structure doesn’t allow any Club to be overloaded with people from any one business or profession, and there are lots of opportunities to get to know folks from all over the range of interests and ages. “Rotation” among businesses is how the organization got its name, and Members can be fined (with a smile) if they stick too much to dining at one table with buddies, although a few diehards still dine only at one table (6 people out of 150+). There are outside activities for socializing, including an annual ski trip, an organized potluck dinner at Members’ homes, an annual day traveling by volunteer Members’ boats for a picnic lunch, and various other events and excursions.

Networking: There’s nothing wrong with getting to know business and professional leaders, and gleaning information about them and their business through Rotary, although our Four-Way Test code of ethics prohibits us from taking unfair advantage of such a connection. Many younger Rotarians have found a lifetime mentor among our Club’s outstanding citizens! It may sound like bragging, but there are few Bellingham gatherings that have as much knowledge and authority as this Rotary Club! Our Members are all leaders in their activities.

All Demographics: Our Members range in age from late 20’s to a few in their 80’s, and one in his 90’s! Likewise, some are quite wealthy while others have more modest means. Gender, religion, race, culture are all irrelevant: what really matters is character and whether the Rotarian is a leader (or growing young leader) in his or her field. While some are at a meeting in suits and ties, others are in work-clothes.