Seeking Sponsors for Fireworks Event 2023-04-09 07:00:00Z 0
Reception Honoring District Governor Scott Phillips 2023-04-09 07:00:00Z 0

Awards for Four-Way Test essay winners

High school and middle school students submitted essays discussing Rotary's Four-Way Test of the things we think, say and do:  Is it the TRUTH?  Is it FAIR to all concerned?  Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?  Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?  Click below for the winning entries.
Awards for Four-Way Test essay winners 2023-03-18 07:00:00Z 0

Holiday Event for West End Families

On Saturday, December 17, 2022, the Rotary Club of Ventura co-hosted a holiday event.  We distributed coats and toys to 347 kids, sponsored by a generous donation from SoCalGas.
Holiday Event for West End Families 2022-12-22 08:00:00Z 0

Historical Roots of Hanukkah

On December 14, 2022, club member Mike Schwartz gave a presentation on the historical roots of Hanukkah.  Latkes were served, followed by an exciting game of Dreidel.
Historical Roots of Hanukkah 2022-12-22 08:00:00Z 0

Holiday Social

The Holiday Social was held December 10, 2022, at the home of Betsy Chess.  Great food, fun, and fellowship!
Holiday Social 2022-12-11 08:00:00Z 0
West End Kids Holiday Event 2022-12-05 08:00:00Z 0

Can Tree

The Rotary Club of Ventura and individual members donated $2,100 to build three can trees in Figueroa Plaza 12/3/22 to benefit Food Share Ventura County.
Can Tree 2022-12-03 08:00:00Z 0

Coats for Kids

November 2022 will mark the nineteenth year of the Rotary Club of Ventura’s Coats for Kids Project. Again this year the Rotary Club of Ventura South joins in the effort. The clubs initiate the collection of coats at numerous locations. They will be cleaned or laundered by local businesses. Rotary organizes their distribution. In spite of the limitations of the Pandemic last year over 2500 coats were given to needy children and adults in Ventura County. This year Rotary hopes to collect 4000 coats and jackets. Recipients of the coats include the Boys and Girls Clubs, The Salvation Army, Casa Pacifica, Project Understanding, Westminster Free Clinic, Ventura County Rescue Mission, churches and other service organizations.
Coats for Kids 2022-11-12 08:00:00Z 0
Pacific High School Interact 2022-11-11 08:00:00Z 0
Winter Supply Drive 2022-11-10 08:00:00Z 0
Winter Social 2022-11-05 07:00:00Z 0


Representatives from SEEAG (Students for Eco-Education and Agriculture) presented at our meeting October 26, 2022.  SEEAG is sponsoring Farm Day November 5, 2022, where you can visit 21 different farms and agricultural businesses.  For information: 
SEEAG 2022-10-27 07:00:00Z 0

Keepsake Photo Book about Ventura Now Available

Coffee Table Keepsake Book
published by The Rotary Club of Ventura
An ideal holiday gift for everybody on your nice list - especially those who love Ventura!
As a fundraiser and a thank you to our community, the Rotary Club of Ventura has created a coffee table book highlighting our beloved town of Ventura. 
This gorgeous tome is a photographic story of our unique California town, San Buenaventura ~ Ventura. Created from selected works of 17 local photographers, this book vividly depicts why Ventura is such a wonderful place to live, work, and play!
The idea for this book was born in an effort to connect with one another and celebrate the beauty of the place in which we serve – Ventura, California! Special thanks are due to Rotarians Brenda Allison Hutchinson, who has overseen publication of the book, and internationally acclaimed photographer, Dan Holmes, who helmed the selection and layout of the gorgeous photos you will enjoy.
Rotary Club of Ventura is a part of Rotary International, a global network of over 35,000 clubs made up of 1.2 million neighbors, friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change – across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves. Solving real problems takes real commitment and vision. For more than 110 years, Rotary's people of action have tackled the big issues of our time such as literacy, world peace, clean water and healthy communities with passion, energy, and intelligence.
For more than 100 years, the Rotary Club of Ventura has been working to make Ventura a better place through “service above self.” When you purchase this book, you will be helping us in this mission.
This gorgeous keepsake book is $40 each (which includes tax.) Delivery of your book(s) order is free in Ventura County! For shipping beyond Ventura County, add $16 (flat rate shipping anywhere in US – up to 2 books.)
Books can be purchased via PayPal (below). For out-of-area shipping or discounts on 10+ book orders, please contact Brenda Allison-Hutchinson at or Dan Holmes at  Thank you!
Keepsake Photo Book about Ventura Now Available 2020-12-02 08:00:00Z 0

Ventura Rotary Awards $10,000 in Art Scholarships for "Perspectives on Peace"

The Rotary Club of Ventura recently announced the winners of the second year of its Perspectives on Peace Scholarship program.  Five high school seniors are being awarded a total of $10,000 in scholarships, based on their outstanding original art submissions around the theme of “Perspectives on Peace.” 
“There are several other very good scholarship programs for Ventura’s high school seniors based on academic achievement or financial needs”, said Connie Young, current Rotary Club of Ventura president.  “So, when we started this scholarship program last year, we sought to recognize and support the strong creativity and artistic talents of Ventura’s youth while encouraging self-reflection on a very important topic.  These bright minds represent our collective future and what they accomplished represents incredible inspiration and hope.”
“The scholarship program’s theme of ‘Perspectives on Peace’ was chosen both because we were quite curious to learn what high schoolers today feel about the concept of peace, and because Rotary International has recently made promoting peace one of the focal purposes of the organization worldwide”, reports Staci Johnson, Rotary Club of Ventura member and co-chair of the scholarship effort.  “Rotary, of course, has always been about peacebuilding but only recently started to really codify what that means both in our local communities and around the world.  So, whether we’re serving local disadvantaged kids by providing a warm jacket or a backpack and school supplies – or we’re helping to support a skill-training center for vulnerable young girls in rural Zambia – we are in fact promoting peace.”
The Perspectives on Peace Scholarship received 35 entries of original artwork from high school seniors representing Buena, Foothill Tech, Ventura, and El Camino high schools.  The submissions included paintings, drawings, mixed media, needlework, woodwork, photography, video and song.  Ten judges reviewed each applicant’s artistic rendering of their personal perspective on peace along with their recommendation from teachers, guidance counselors, or mentors.  “The creativity of these young adults is truly inspiring,” said Johnson, “and the judging process was a difficult one.”
The winners of the Rotary Club of Ventura 2020 Perspectives on Peace Scholarship are:
1st prize $5,000 scholarship:          Meghan Carter (Foothill Tech High School)
2nd prize $2,500 scholarship:         Sedrik Dedman (Buena High School)
3rd prize $1,500 scholarship:         Audrey Abbe (Foothill Tech High School)
Honorable mention $500:             Yalda Kotobi (Ventura High School)
Honorable mention $500:             Lindsey Johnston (Buena High School)
Due to Covid-19, a planned April exhibition for the winners and entrants within a larger Ventura Unified School District (VUSD) Art Showcase at the Ventura County Museum was cancelled.  However, the scholarship recipients were celebrated at a recent “virtual meeting” of the Rotary Club of Ventura, where they presented their winning pieces and shared their motivations for creating it. Also, in attendance was Dr. Roger Rice, VUSD Superintendent, Greg Bayless, Director of Secondary Curriculum & Instruction, and several high school art teachers and career counselors, and Savi Bhim, Rotary 5240 District Governor, who gave an inspirational talk.  The video highlights of this meeting can be viewed here.
To view and experience the Rotary Club of Ventura 2020 Perspectives on Peace Scholarship winners, please visit the full digital presentation, here:
“It is deeply moving to see the talent and artistic visions of these high school seniors and to help support them on their journey to higher education – and I’m proud to say that the Rotary Club of Ventura has committed to doing this scholarship program next year as well”, reports Young.  “We’ve been putting ‘Service Above Self’ right here in Ventura for over 100 years now.  Today, while we recognize our Club’s past, it’s our next 100 years that we’re most excited about.”
Ventura Rotary Awards $10,000 in Art Scholarships for "Perspectives on Peace" 2020-05-26 07:00:00Z 0 Peace Building,Scholarship,VenturaRotary

Coats For Kids Program has over 50 Drop-Off Locations

Now in its 15th year of helping provide clean warm coats to those in need, Ventura Rotary’s “Coats For Kids” project is seeking donations of used coats, jackets and heavy sweatshirts of all sizes. Donations can be made at more than 50 area business, school and office locations, including Trader Joes, Green Thumb Nursery, and all Ventura elementary schools.  For an interactive map, including nearest locations and directions, click to:
“It’s a great way to help out those in need, while also cleaning out your closets of coats that you or your children no longer use,” says project director, Kristin Taylor. “Simply drop them in the large marked box at any collection site.  We pick them up, and the wonderfully generous team at Persnickity Cleaners then professionally cleans them.”
“Not everyone can write a big check to charity, but many can find a coat or two in the back of the closet and then feel good about making a very real and practical difference to someone in their community,” says Club president Connie Young,  “We’ve collected, cleaned and distributed over 60,000 coats-for-kids over the past 15 years. With the weather turning cold and the number in need growing, we challenge the community to fill those donation boxes and help us collect 6,000 more this year!”    

After cleaning, the coats are provided immediately and throughout the year to various local organizations to ensure that someone truly in need can have access to a warm coat. These organizations include the Boys & Girls Clubs of Oxnard and Ventura, Project Understanding, Casa Pacifica, Rescue Mission, The Salvation Army, Sherriff’s Departments and local churches.  

“We’ll be collecting all month long, right up until the New Year,” says Taylor, “but the distribution and positive impact on those less fortunate will continue on all year long. It’s a lot of work, but the payoff is in knowing that we’re making a difference in the lives of others throughout Ventura County, one coat at a time."
Ventura Rotary gives thanks to the many merchants and schools that serve as drop off sites. From restaurants and banks, to dentist offices and gyms, these drop off sites assure that making a donation of a coat is easy!  "We're also very happy to have the help of our friends at the Rotary Club of Ventura South who are managing 10 of the drop off sites for the program this year," says Taylor. "This is truly a project by our community, for our community!"
The Rotary Club of Ventura is dedicated to improving the lives of others in our community. The Coats for Kids Program is one of several projects designed to meet this goal. Other annual projects of the Club include sourcing, filling and donating over 800 school backpacks to local children each year, and providing a Reference Dictionary to every third grader in the Ventura Unified School District.
Coats For Kids Program has over 50 Drop-Off Locations 2019-12-02 08:00:00Z 0

Walk for Kids

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Rotary Ventura was a very Proud Sponsor of this amazing event.
Thank you to all our amazing supporters and members!! 
Walk for Kids 2019-03-06 08:00:00Z 0

Project BackPack 

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Project backpack was a huge success! On August 11th, 2018, members of the Ventura Rotary club gathered to help stuff 866 backpacks with school supplies and distribute them to Ventura Unified Schools for students in need. The district identifies those students at each school and provides Rotary with their needs. We are happy to see the number has gone down in recent years. A special thanks to the East Ventura Rotary, South Ventura Rotary, and Lions club for your contributions towards this successful event.

Project BackPack 2018-08-30 07:00:00Z 0
Coats for Kids 2017-11-16 08:00:00Z 0
The Grace Centre - Our Global Grant Project is underway! 2017-11-10 08:00:00Z 0

End Polio 

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5 reasons Why we need to STOP Polio
1) To Improve Lives
16 million people are walking today who would have otherwise been paralyzed.
2) To Invest in the Future
If polio isn't eradicated, within 10 years, as many as 200,000 children could be paralyzed by it each year.
3) To Improve Child Health
Polio surveillance networks and vaccination campaigns also monitor children for other health problems like vitamin deficiency and measles, so they can be addressed sooner.
4) To Save Money
A polio-free world will save the global economy $40-$50 billion in health costs within the next 20 years.
5) To Make History
Polio eradication would be one of history's greatest public health achievements, with polio following smallpox to become only the second human disease eliminated from the world.
End Polio 2017-09-06 07:00:00Z 0
Ventura Rotary Video 2017-09-05 07:00:00Z 0

The History of Rotary Club of Ventura

How Our Club Started...
The first meeting of the Ventura Rotary Club took place on Wednesday, June 12, 1918 at the Hotel De Leon in downtown Ventura. James Briscoe, retiring President of the Santa Barbara Rotary Club, which had received its charter in January, 1918, and Byron Terry, a charter member of Rotary Club Number One, (Chicago Rotary Club, Mr. Terry actually knew Paul Harris), were present and explained the purposes of Rotary.
The History of Rotary Club of Ventura 2014-04-30 00:00:00Z 0

New Members

Recently we have had the honor to bring in new members: Amy Fonzo, Greg Abrams, Erik Dullenkopf, Ken Leandro, Mike Montoyo and Joe Schaaf to our Rotary family.  Please take the opportunity to introduce yourself to our newest members and “BE the friendliest” Rotary Club in the world! smiley
New Members 2014-04-09 00:00:00Z 0

Polio Fundraiser

The Polio Fundraiser in honor of Larry Emrich was a huge success! Under the leadership of Lynda Girtsman and Ellyn Dembowski; held at Doug and Randy’s home with the many cooks in the kitchen and the Ventura High School student volunteers; raised $7500.  AWESOME!!!  We were so pleased to have Larry in attendance at our last meeting.  We look forward to seeing more of Larry in the near future.
Polio Fundraiser 2014-04-09 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Rob van Nieuwburg on Feb 17, 2014
POLIO THIS WEEK Rob van Nieuwburg 2014-02-18 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Nanci Cone on Aug 11, 2011
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The idea hatched about seven years ago when Prudential realtor Ellyn Dembowski got together with a few friends, 50 backpacks and supplies they had purchased for the Boys and Girls Club.  The next year Ellyn got about $800 in financial donations from her Rotary club along with several volunteers.  The event grew each year to larger facilities and more backpacks.  The downtown Lions club wanted to do something similar and they joined us. 

The project has grown to include donating over 500 stuffed backpacks this year.  Julius Gius support was $3100; Lion’s Club members stepped up their support to $1500, and many Rotary of Ventura members and some community members made generous contributions of backpack items, took time to shop for everything, and donated money to make it all work.

The week before school starts the backpacks are delivered to area schools and the warm response is overwhelming!  Ellyn says, and the entire club concurs, “We all feel good because we know we’re making a difference!”

JUST IN TIME FOR SCHOOL - "BACKPACKS FOR KIDS!" Nanci Cone 2011-08-12 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Kristin Taylor on Aug 10, 2011
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The Commemorative Air Force Museum is a treasure of our county.  It has one of the largest collections of flying WWII aircraft of any aviation museum.

Fifty-five members of the club and guests attended the offsite meeting at the Commemorative Air Force Museum in Camarillo on Wednesday, August 10.   Attendees enjoyed an informative program and fascinating small group tours led by docents who are experts on WWII aviation.  Docents Jim Hinkelman, John Knopp and Charlie Carr conducted tours of the museum’s unique and distinctive aircraft and of the hanger where the aircraft is restored and maintained. 



Posted by Terry Schaeffer on Aug 02, 2011
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On August 3rd, 72 Rotarians and guests battled a traffic jam on good ole Ventura Freeway to make it to the National Weather Service (NWS) Forecast office in Oxnard.  There they split into 3 groups for the adventure, spending about 25 minutes at each station, then rotating to the next  area until they completed the 3-stage tour and lunch. 

Meteorologist in Charge Mark Jackson hosted the first group in the conference room.  Mark gave clear and interesting details of their operations and responsibilities, answered questions, and showed a video during lunch.  The catered lunch consisted of tuna, turkey and vegetarian sandwiches, potato/pasta salad, chocolate chip cookies, water and soft drinks.

Group 2 went into the impressive operational office/command center: the heart and brain trust of the NWS operation.   Forecaster extraordinaire Dave Sweet entertained and educated the visitors, taking them step by step showing what all goes into making weather forecasts for the public, aviation, marine and fire weather interests; he also explained the myriad of warnings as needed. 

Group 3 was taken on a tour of their outside museum by Eric Boldt.  Their impressive display consisted of remote mountain rain and snow gauges that noted not only rainfall but snow depth and water content.  This real time data is then sent directly to weather and river forecast offices.  Ocean and wave buoys were on display as were remote sensing fire weather equipment and their downlink from NEXRAD (next generations radar) on Sulfur Mountain. 



Posted by Maria Berntson on May 10, 2011
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The Ventura High School Interact Club Bake sale is always a favorite program!  Club advisors Melody Namikas and Jeff King introduced the students, who recounted some of the club's programs and accomplishments this year, including a new Easter Egg Hunt project for after-school kids at E P Foster School, and the donation of a Shelter Box for Japan. Several students also talked about their great experience at RYLA camp (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards).  Dylan Horwitz and Rotarian Dr. Todd Binkley served as auctioneers.

As usual, the bake sale was increditble:  one cake sold for $1,200, Cookies brought $550; when it was all over, the club had raised over $3,100 for Interact programs.  To top things off, Dylan announced that (school) advisors Samantha and Justin were both named as Teachers of the Year.

ANNUAL INTERACT CLUB BAKE SALE Maria Berntson 2011-05-11 00:00:00Z 0
Ventura Rotary Club Assisting in Philippine Relief James Deardorff 0
COLOR RUN Larry Emrich 0