The Rotary Foundation 101
Ray Leaycraft
Past President of The Rotary Club of Estes Park
Ray and his wife, Cindy, have been married for 53 years. They moved from Texas to Estes Park in 1995 and lived in Estes Park for 27 years. In 2022 they moved to Highlands Ranch to be closer to their family. They have one daughter, Sandy, who is married to Rob Hunt. Sandy and Rob have 2 sons, Austin and Toby. Ray and Cindy say their grandsons are the real reason they moved to Highlands Ranch! Sandy and Rob are co-owners of The Links Golf Course in Highlands Ranch.
Ray was a police officer for 28 years, serving 22 years on the Garland, Texas Police Department. After moving to Estes Park in 1995 Ray served on the Estes Park Police Department for 6 years. Ray retired from police work in 2004 and then worked as a property/casualty insurance agent in Estes Park for 10 years.
Ray has been a Rotarian for 28 years, joining the Rotary Club of Estes Park in 1996. He served on numerous committees, was club secretary and served as club president in 2008-2009. Ray also served in several capacities for District 5440:  Assistant Governor, District Protection Officer, District Governor selection committee, Rotary Leadership Institute Facilitator and as the District 5440 Rotary Foundation Annual Fund Chair. Ray transferred his membership to the Estes Valley Sunrise Rotary Club in 2011 and was a member of that club until moving to Highlands Ranch in 2022.
Ray and Cindy are strong believers in The Rotary Foundation, both are Bequest Society members. With support from Cindy, Ray reached Major Donor status regarding contributions to The Rotary Foundation. Ray is extremely happy that since moving to Highlands Ranch, Cindy has now joined Rotary, both are members of Highlands Ranch Sunrise Rotary Club.
"I've always felt that The Rotary Foundation is very confusing and hard to be able to get a full grasp on it's complexities.  This presentation is about the basics and I try not to get into too much detail."
Our program this week will be held in person, but a Zoom link will be provided. Click on the link below to be admitted.
Meeting link:  
Rotary Weekly Luncheon
Place: American Legion
 Time:  Lunch served from 11:30 - 12:00
 Cost:  $20
 Parking:  American Legion and the church only

As a courtesy to our members, please silence your cell phones during the meeting.
Thank You!
This Week's Luncheon Menu
RSVP needed for Rotary lunch.
********ATTENTION:  NEW  RSVP DEADLINE***********
Rotary Lunch Menu for Thursday,  February 1st:
Chicken alfredo, mixed veggies, salad, breadsticks.
RSVP to Karol: before 12 noon, Tuesday.
Meeting Notes for January 25, 2024
President Karen Thompson called the meeting to order.  
Gregg Jurgens read the Invocation.
Karen led the Pledge of Allegiance.
We sang “You’re a Grand Old Flag”, accompanied by Madison Casey.
Welcome to Jack Overly and Paula Edwards on Zoom
Guests of Rotarians: 
  • Miriam Deffenbaugh is a member of Gary Nelson’s church, Shepherd of the Mountains, and she brought a memory book for us to write messages to Gary.  She visited him Saturday and he is still upbeat and welcomes visitors.
  • Pete Sumey introduced his wife, Lois.   It’s her birthday so we sang to her.
  • Bill Brown visited us from Sunrise Rotary. 
  • Scott Thompson introduced Isaiah Johnson of the Bank of Estes Park
    • He has visited us three times.  
    • He intends to join our club!
  • Karen says we have two of the new hearing assist headsets today, 2 more to come.
    • Our new sound equipment has arrived
    • Mark Lee will set it up when he gets back to town. 
  • Annie Slack said our May 30 Social will be with Sunrise Rotary at High Peak Camp out Highway 7.  
    • She took a count of who would be interested in a hay ride that they offered. 
  • Tara said we can use volunteers to evaluate our scholarship applicants starting Feb. 16. 
    • You have 2 months to do it and can work at home online.
  • Beth Weisberg had several topics:
    • Our club had voted Happy Money in January
      • for homeless immigrants in Denver
      • Many have been housed but they still have needs.
    • Community Service Committee meets after this meeting today
      • It has voted to contribute project funds to Denver homeless
      • It will decide details today and then submit to our club Board. 
    • Community Service new project is coming from last week’s program on the EP High School Career and Technology Education program. 
      • The new auto shop program needs $4,800 for a tool set
      • The program is popular and there is a student waiting list. 
    • Beth said we need to call one hour before to get permission to visit Gary Nelson.
      • Phone the nurse station at 586-3352. 
    Beth Weisberg
  • Scott Robbins reported Duck Race kick off meeting is taking shape at Ridgeline Hotel.
    • We need a new overall Named Sponsor.
    • Today, zoom Duck Race Governance Committee at 5:00 led by Lee Lasson.
    Scott Robbins
  • Karen asked for anyone who volunteered to be a pall bearer for Gary to tell her. 
    • He has asked several but doesn’t have all them written down.
    • Rotary Foundation International asks that we all do our $100 donation annually.   This can be done online.
Joke by Scott Thompson – a story on aging was brilliant.
Happy Money:
  • Joann Batey put in money for homeless.
  • Scott Thompson is happy that the sale of Dave Evans home finally closed after two years.
  • Beth Weisberg says Happy Birthday to Lois Sumey and kudos on Pete’s singing.
  • Wayne Newsom is happy for Lois.
  • Scott Robbins is happy in general for all this club does and he supports Gary.
  • Karen put in money for the homeless. 
Annie introduced Jim Austin who told us about Shelter Boxes for disaster situations. 
  • Our club has funded two in about 18 months-ahead of our goal of one per year. 
  • He added that Bright Christmas supported 125 families this year including 254 children.  
  • These numbers have been growing back to pre-Covid levels.
We closed with the Four Way Test.
Madison Casey, scribe
Welcome Sam Van der Werf
Sam Van der Werf
Here is a picture of Sam Van der Werf, our second son. He was born on November 17th, 2023. Recovery has gone well and we are excited about the new addition to our family.
Ben Van der Werf
Barry and Mary Hannigan In Concert
Barry and Mary Hannigan
Last Saturday, the Oratorio Society of Estes Park treated the community to a concert featuring local professional musicians Barry Hannigan on the piano and Mary Hannigan on the flute. The talented duo presented a concert of classical music featuring pieces ranging from C.P.E. Bach to a Francis Poulenc Sonata for Flute and Piano and an encore of Vocalise by Rachmaninoff.
During Barry’s piano presentation of Sonata in A Major by Schubert, the special talent he has for playing the left-hand bass clef really came through. When Mary played the Cantilena portion of the Sonata for flute, her extraordinary tone and gentle notes were beautiful. The presto giocoso section sent her fingers flying with each note clear and concise.
Together Mary and Barry balance beautifully, never overplaying each other, but letting us all appreciate their virtuosity. It was great to see some of our fellow Rotarians there.
Thank you, Barry and Mary for sharing your gifts with our community.
Chuck Bonza
Virgil Holtgrewe Recognized
the 2024 National Western Stock Show
Virgil Holtgrewe
Vigil was recognized this week at the Stock show for not only volunteering for the National Western Stock Show since before the volunteer program began but for 48 years straight. He was a founding member of the volunteer program as it is today.  Our Rotary Club is fortunate to have a member like Virgil, who not only contributed to the Stock Show in this way, but also to the founding of RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards) within Rotary. Many will benefit into the future because of his efforts.
Virgil fell in love with the Stock Show in 1970 after attending for the first time as a member of the Denver Agriculture and Livestock Club. Soon after, he began volunteering, working dozens of jobs over the decades to help the show run smoothly. As a retired worker in farm management, born and raised on a farm in southeast Nebraska, the Stock Show has provided him with a community within agriculture and livestock.
Chuck Bonza  11768896
Gary Nelson
A Rotarian That Will Be Missed
Gary joining Rotary  in January   Gary at President's Night
          with Kevin Mullin, his Sponsor      in June                                     
Gary announcing his illness    His CaringBridge Photo
in October                           in December
May He Rest In Peace
Rotary District Conference 2024
Steamboat Springs, CO
We're excited to announce the opening of registration for the 2024 District 5440 Conference to be held May 16 to 18, 2024 in Steamboat Springs. Since attendance will be limited by the number of auditorium seats, we wanted to give everyone an equal opportunity to register. Click on thishttp://District Conference Link where you will find the Conference Program, a detailed list of Conference Information, and a link to the registration page on the District website.
The Conference is being held at the Steamboat Springs Colorado Mountain College campus. The Grand Finale will be at the lodge at the top of the Steamboat resort gondola including dinner, music, and dancing.  Other highlights of the program are:
  • Home Hospitality on Thursday evening, followed by Decadent Desserts at the historic Olympian Hall at Howelsen Hill.
  • Night on the Town, including $50 vouchers for dinners at restaurants of your choice.
  • Optional Wine and Cheese Tasting on the Rotary Boardwalk by the Yampa River. (ticketed only)
  • Great speakers, including our Rotary International Director Dan Himelspach, and UC Health Director of Workplace Wellness Dr. Justin Ross.
  • The World Café, Exchange Students, Silent Auction items donated by Clubs, and a Live Auction.
Here is a short video about the conference – (less than 3 minutes):
Please register soon to secure your place and I hope to see you in Steamboat Springs.  There is a block of rooms being held at the Holiday Inn for $129 per night and plenty of other accommodations around town at Hotels, Airbnb’s, and VRBO’s.
Steve Sehnert
District Governor 2023-24
What a Wonderful Organization Rotary Is
Rotary International is one of the largest service organizations in the world. The mission of Rotary is to provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders.  The Rotary Club of Estes Park was formed by community leaders over 100 years ago and serves the community through many avenues, the largest being the Duck Race that raised $196,000 last year and over $3M since its inception. 
My mentor and Father-in-Law, Wayne Newsom was a member, so I decided it would be good for business if I also joined.  In 2009, shortly after moving to Estes Park to begin my real estate career, I joined The Rotary Club of Estes Park. Nothing could have prepared me for such a life altering event.  As I became entrenched in Rotary, I found out what a wonderful organization it really is.  On an international level, Rotary is striving to end Polio which was a major disease that only exists in a few locations today.  Rotary strives to serve others by assisting with major water and sanitation projects all over the world. 
On a local level, after the flood in 2013, our local club, through several grants, helped families in Glen Haven replace and repair their water and sanitation systems.  The Duck Race plays a very large part in the funding of the 63 participating organizations. If not for the Duck Race, many may not be operational. I joined Rotary for the business but remain an active member because of its mission. 
The Rotary motto is “Service Above Self”, one which we can all live by.  Rotarians follow the four-way test when making decisions: 1) Is it the Truth? 2) Is it fair to all concerned? 3) Will it build goodwill and better friendships? 4) Will it be beneficial to all concerned?  Many times, when I need to make a tough decision, I will see if it passes the four-way test before choosing the right path.  If it fails even one statement, I will not proceed. 
Scott Thompson
If You Need Help Getting on Zoom
Read Below
If the link to the zoom meeting is not working, follow these steps for an alternative way to connect to the meeting:
  1. Start the zoom program on your device
  2. From the Zoom program, go to the Home screen and click on the Join button
  3. Enter this meeting ID to join the Rotary Zoom meeting:  798 570 7369
  4. Click on the Join button and you will be admitted into the meeting
If you don’t see the Zoom program in your task bar, click on the magnifying glass icon in the task bar to search for it.   Type zoom in the search field and press enter (or return).   Double-click on the zoom program that is shown at the top of the search results and go back to step #1.
Mark Lee
From The Chaplain
Do you know a Club Member who needs assistance? Maybe a ride to meetings, or just a phone call to keep in touch? Please contact Bill Smith 970-420-1033 or
Find Your Rotary Member Number
Do you know your member number?  I will be inserting two members' numbers in the Spoke somewhere each week.  If you find your number and let me know, I will add a dollar to the Happy Money jar.  Have fun reading the Spoke!
Bulletin Editor
Anne Slack
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2023 - 24 R.I. Theme
Create Hope in the World
February 1, Duty Roster
Invocation: Barry Hannigan
Song & Pledge:K. Thompson/Casey
Guest Intro: Chris Davis
Scribe: Barry Hannigan
Greeter: Chris Davis
Program Intro: Anne Slack
Meeting Set-up: Scott Thompson
February 8, Duty Roster
Invocation: Pete Sinnott
Song & Pledge: K. Thompson/Casey
Guest Intro: Scott Thompson
Scribe: Madison Casey
Greeter: Scott Thompson
Program Intro: Anne Slack
Meeting Set-Up: Mark Lee
Feb 01, 2024
Paul Harris Donations
Feb 08, 2024
Junior Achievement
View entire list
Upcoming Events
Rotary Club Board Meeting
Feb. 06, 2024
5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Rotary Club Foundation Meeting
Feb. 15, 2024
1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Duck Race Distribution Night
Feb. 29, 2024
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
View entire list
Birthdays, Anniversaries
Member Birthdays
Barry Hannigan
January 11
Bill Smith
February 1
Sarah Walsh
February 3
Mike Connolly
February 5
Pete Sumey
February 7
Paula Edwards
February 9
Longley Parker
February 18
Carl Robicheaux
February 14
Gregg Jurgens
February 14
Larry Williams
February 14
Jay Harroff
February 17
Join Date
Dave Boon
January 3, 2003
21 years
Bill Smith
January 8, 1987
37 years
Wayne Newsom
January 10, 1980
44 years
Pete Sumey
January 14, 2004
20 years
Sarah Walsh
February 2, 2012
12 years
Barry Hannigan
February 17, 2022
2 years
Dennis Gellhaus
February 22, 2018
6 years
Executives & Directors
President Elect
Past President
Club Administration Director
Community Service Director
Fund Development Director
Fund Development Director
International Service Director
Membership Director
Big Duck
Youth Services Director
Foundation Officers/Directors


Jim Whiteneck

Vice President

Barry Hannigan


Tara Moenning


Gregg Jurgens


Jack Boatman


Tara Moenning

Ernie Altick Program

Ben Van der Werf


Madison Casey


Tom Gardner

Ben Van der Werf

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