Rotary Club of Osoyoos

Business Meeting
Jun 29, 2017
Discuss Pancake Breakfast
Kim English and Arron McRann
Jul 13, 2017
"Building smart and caring communities", South Okanagan Foundation
Elly Contreras
Jul 20, 2017
Update on International Convention
Business Meeting
Jul 27, 2017
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Member spotlight: The power of the press
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Club Information

Welcome to our Club!


Building Communities Bridging Continents

We meet Thursdays at 12:00 PM
McKia's Restaurant
Best Western Hotel
5506 Main St.
Osoyoos, BC  V0H 1V0
District Site
Venue Map
Mailing address: Box 695, Osoyoos BC V0H 1V0
Home Page Stories

If you are feeling that you are not receiving the newsletters from each meeting, not to worry as you likely has been noted that the author has been AWOL on occasion!

Today was an excellent meeting as they always seem to be when Youth Exchange are involved. Guests Larry, Cory, Rob and Debbie joined members in hearing Carlo give his final presentation of his year in Osoyoos. He was very ably assisted in the visuals by Nina, last year's outbound to France.

Carlo was very relaxed and thorough in his talk, giving evidence to his overall growth over the year. In addition to the hair and facial growth, Carlo recognizes the personal maturing/growth  in himself over the time - an impressive young man!

And what a year. Travel included Vancouver x3, Disneyland, Lethbridge (Banff), a bus tour through our 5060 District and will hit Victoria next weekend, celebrating Canada Day there and the US July 4th day in Roche Harbour. 

His many 'firsts' in Canada included CFL and NHL games, fishing, snowshoeing, hunting and camping/trailering, and golf and squash games. His loved his school year, all in Oliver and we are so very proud that both he and Nina will be fully graduating next week. He is thinking that the whole graduation thing is pretty cool with Prom, Commencement Ceremonies and Dry Grad..and it is!

Performing in front of the school on his violin was clearly a highlight there as well and another would be his 'giving back' project which was fundraising with other local YE students raising $1300 for a Shelterbox. 

But the most memorable and significant component of his year was the time with his 3 host families (Melina Bondorin, Dianna Williams and Charlene and Boyd Turnbull) and all the host brothers and sisters that came with them. Wonderful people/families to live with and share their homes for Carlo and also very much appreciated by our Club for welcoming him into their homes and hearts. 

Well done Carlo!

Reminder that there is no noon meeting on July 6th, instead there will be a dinner at Spirit Ridge at 6:00pm where our new Club executive and Board will be installed. Mark your calendars - this is important!

Also for that calendar, note the pancake breakfast on July 1st at 7:00am for everyone and the bacon pre-cook at same time on June 30th at the Pizza Factory. 

Pam won the 50/50 (again!) and promptly donated it to Rotary Foundation (again!).


Have a great week that summer has just arrived.


Todays luncheon was a fun but 'still waiting for spring' meeting. Guests included Marie Angelica, Richard (Times), Dale (Oliver Rotary), our 2 YE students Carlo and Nina and Manine (Marize's daughter)  
Pres. Brian introduced our speaker Sarah Gilchrist from OSS. Sarah teaches Drama and Musical Theatre and English locally in various roles since 2012, having produced 4 musicals over that time, the most recent being Beauty and the Beast. 
Sarah is in the very early stages of tackling improvements to the Osoyoos Community Theatre, located at our Osoyoos Secondary School. She recognizes it as a great space and opportunity but it does need some upgrades. It is now mostly used as a venue for the Concert Series and choral presentations in addition to OSS student theatre.
The upgrades vary from small items, less than $1000 to major expenses like lighting which may run up to $100,000. We encouraged her to engage a theatre consultant to identify and prioritize the needs and then with that, develop an implementation plan. There are grants available and local fundraisers such as 'Adopt a Seat' - perhaps Rotary can get involved once the needs are clarified. 
Sarah was an enthusiastic, engaging speaker and it would be neat to think that we could work with her as plans firm up as it would be a worthy Rotary community project.
The meeting moved on to updates on our major fundraisers, the Golf Tournament and LOTB. Doug shared that the golf is starting to firm up with 60+ players confirmed and good progress on the huge support required for the day itself. The next two meetings will revolve around updates and assignments. Work your contacts for more teams/players and auction items but not to worry about the margarita machine any longer as Tracy donated one!
The vary best news though was Sandy and Tracy stepping up to co-chair the Lobster on the Beach event in September. What true Rotarians! There is still the co-chair position for pancake breakfasts available but batter hurry as there may be a rush!
A good meeting of 20 members and guests!


Today's lunch was a business meeting preceded by a Board Meeting so no speaker. Instead lots of discussion and information exchange around our goals and upcoming Rotary events.

Our guests included Mary Bellemare, a 9 year Rotarian from Dauphin, Manitoba. Mary shared an upcoming fundraiser for their Club that raised some $40,000 last year...the Manitoba MudRun. It is a 10km obstacle mud run in August in which we would be more than welcome to participate. Only an 18 hour drive from Osoyoos!

Jim shared that we are 94% there against our Foundation goal of $3000 and looking like we will make our Polio goal as well.  He led a discussion on community projects and the notion of taking on any more park projects would be put on hold until the natural playground is completed. There was strong support for trail projects identified around Osoyoos though, likely 2018/19  before we tackle them. 

Harold updated us on Save the Rhino backpack project with 5 of the 20 backpacks now funded at $300 each. Only 13 to go! He left the meeting to attend the District Conference in Kelowna at which he will man a booth to attract other club's support. The Chris Bromage 'concert' at JoJo's last week raised funds for more than 1 pack, in addition to being an incredibly well received/ entertaining performance.

In YE, the club needs to decide on the exchange program in 2018/19...we will not have an inbound in 2017/18. The process to allow this starts this June so think about whether we want it and how it will be supported and we will make a club decision in the upcoming weeks. 

That led to a discussion about chairs and co-chair volunteers. We need a chairperson for YE, co-chairs for LOTB, golf and pancake breakfasts. Members might want to think about taking on one before Lynda assigns them in her year!

Our Club will be hosting the YE students as they pass through Osoyoos on their week long bus trip through District 5060 and that translates into hosting lunch for them at the Golf Club next Thursday. So, no meeting at noon as we will share the time with the students...a more detailed message will follow.

Vaughn shared that Osoyoos Desert Society is holding a fundraiser for their much needed building project on May 6th. It is a Beer and Burger night at Sage Pub for $20 and will include a silent auction. He had tickets so let him know.

Ken let us know that the Area 27 racetrack has their grand opening on June 2-4th...more information to come.

Doug advised that the June Golf tournament is officially our top priority for the next 6 weeks. Sponsorships, auction items and participants require our attention and he will be emailing needs and updates regularly. Each member is expected to round up a foursome so lets get that one attended to first!

Most folk's happy bucks wished for warmer days - no surprise! Mike won the 50/50 and will assign that massive windfall to Rotary Foundation. 


Have some fun!

Better late than never? Especially as the meeting was so good, those who were there would enjoy reliving it and for those not attending, this is what you missed.

Pres Elect Lynda presided over her first Rotary meeting and was outstanding, setting the tone for the many, many more to come.  There were a number of guests, presumably all coming to take in the featured/famous guest speaker and they included Kathy Lee and Regis from Dauphin Man, Kim and Mark from Oroville, Gary from Abbotsford, Richard (Times), Cory (Oliver) and YE Carlo and Nina. 

Ron Leigh was our luncheon entertainer. As unaccustomed as he is to public speaking (!) our own Honorary Rotarian spoke eloquently on his very obvious love and expertise of jazz. April being jazz appreciation month,  Ron led us through some fascinating stories and history of jazz. He is a self professed jazz junkie, having hosted a jazz radio program in Calgary and still plays around with guitar, drums and alto saxophone. He has met many of the famous jazz artists and knows their stories intimately - he shared one large 1958 photograph of 57 notable musicians of players entitled 'Great Day in Harlem' and he could talk about all of them. 

Hope this is an annual April event...well done Ron.

In updates, Dave shared that at the Rotary Million Dollar dinner last Saturday, $2 million was raised that will go to Foundation and primarily to projects in the Okanagan Valley. Very impressive! Elly spoke about the Project Amigo project at which she and Romaro volunteer at and also where Ken Campbell participated as the auction winner at LOTB. She will be presenting at a future luncheon and will introduce a Canadian component to it in which members may want to participate. Stay tuned!

Also Harold reminded us of the performance coming up on April 21st at JoJo's where our own Chris Bromage will play from his album End of Empire. Chris will donate the first $300 to Save a Rhino backpack are limited so hurry. See you there at 6:45.

Under Youth Exchange, Carlo, Nina and I spent this past weekend in Penticton at a gathering of current inbounds and rebound students meeting with next years outbounds and giving them  and their parents coaching and encouragements. There was a new exchange program introduced as a complement to the existing one which will be for a shorter time (one month) and focus on a family-to-family exchange...more to come in September but does sound promising.

Finally there was talk about an upcoming Easter Pancake breakfast. The advantage of a late newsletter is that we can share that it did indeed take place and was an amazing success. It always continues to blow me away how folks flow to what needs to be done, do it so well and make all the breakfast guests make money! We sold 319 breakfasts which was our highest Easter volume and just as the bell chimed at closing time, we served the last cup of coffee and last strip of bacon - perfect. Thanks everyone!

Remember, no noon meeting this Thursday as there will be a fun social at the Golf Club that evening starting at 6.

The 50/50 was drawn by Gary of Abbotsford...he said he needed it!

A good pre-spring meeting! 25 members and guests thorougly enjoyed tons of fellowship and a very informative guest presentation by Ernie Dumais and Gail Barriskill from Highway to Healing. 

Pres Brian recognized all guests including Honorary members Roger C. and Ron L. who the latter is just home from snowbirding in Az. As usual Carlo was in attendance and it was noted that his 18th birthday is this Saturday. Harold, can you say '18'?

In updates, our PE Lynda and Oliver's PE Dale spent the previous weekend in Seattle at PETS (president elects training) and reported that the event was superb and welcomed by all the 700 attendees. The training, the speakers, the food (wine?) and networking all worked. Evidently the message that Lynda heard was that Rotary was expecting her to break a few traditional boundaries and do what she damn well wants to do in her upcoming year as President..... bring it on! The core message is to stretch the traditional boundaries in Rotary everywhere ~ a welcome message indeed.

Sandy shared that there was a 'Taste of India' fundraising dinner by the Westbank Rotary April 7th and suggested that we might make an evening of it with an Osoyoos Rotary table and she would organize transportation and coordinate tickets. Let her know if you are interested as it sounds like great fun and of course supports one of our fellow clubs. 

It was also confirmed that the March 16th meeting will be an evening social at which we will get to learn more of the amazing S. African trip, the project, travels and next steps. Mark your calendar for this evening and times and location will come luncheon meeting will be held on that day.  Now on to this day's presentation topic;

Highway to Healing (or H2H) is a charitable organization formed in Oliver in 2013 to compassionately assist families who have a child requiring medical care not available locally. It was initially formed to service the Oliver community but has just this week have expanded the area to include OK Falls and Osoyoos. Gail and Ernie are both directors of the Society - Gail was just recently named as President which is simply serendipitous as her sister will be President of our Rotary Club in June!

The concept grew out of a community vision idea by the Oliver Rotary Club and grew into a separate society in order to gain charitable status. It was modelled after two other successful organizations in BC performing similar functions, in Comox and Nelson. Basically, H2H  provides up to $5000 of funding per child under the age of 19 for travel expenses to obtain medical diagnosis and treatments and also serves to provide information about any other organization whose services can benefit the families in need. 

The list of fundraising events and donors is lengthly and impressive. Ernie and Gail were not openly soliciting financial support (but would not turn a donation down!) but did request that we think about someone who might represent Osoyoos in the newly expanded mandate. 

A good presentation and an organization that is worthy and could use our support.

Coyote hockey returns to Osoyoos with the first game in the 2nd round on Tuesday...Vaughn could always use more volunteers in the beer garden. 

Happy bucks was split between those loving the fact the ski season is still full on and those who were vibrating with news that the golf course opens on Saturday. The 50/50 ticket was drawn for Dale, our frequent guest from Oliver Rotary. 


Continue to think Spring!

Club Executives & Directors
Immediate Past President
President Elect
New Generations Director
Membership Director
Foundation Director
Sergeant At Arms Director
Programs Director
district grant writer
district grant writer