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Welcome to the Vernon Rotary Club

Service Above Self

We meet In Person
Wednesdays at 12:00 PM
Asian Avenue Restaurant
4101 32nd St ( hwy 97)
Vernon, BC
Home Page Stories
At his last Wednesday meeting at the Rotary Club of Vernon, he was lauded and honoured for his many years of exemplary “Service Above Self”, he was “hatted” with a complimentary cap and received the Club’s banner. 
In Vernon, Fred was an active Rotary volunteer at the Canadian Blood Service clinics and he participated in community service, some of which were social activities such as Oktoberfest.
2021 December 01 DG Richard and Official Visit    Our club is honoured with the Official Visit by D5060 DG Richard DeRock and Robin.
This is the first visit since, well, you know, March 2020 when the world stopped rotating on it axis and we all took a deep breath and masked up. With the borders somewhat opening, DG Richard was able to make plans to visit the Canadian Rotary Clubs.

2021 11 11 Rotary wreaths at Cenotaphs.
The Rotary Club of Vernon places wreaths in conjunction with the Royal Canadian Legion at the Vernon Cenotaph and at the Coldstream Cenotaph.
Attending in Vernon was Rotarian Derek Hall and Past Rotarian Bob Weatherill arranged the wreath in Coldstream.
Our Club awarded the Paul Harris Fellowship to Gary Soles for his assistance in obtaining our Global Grant. Derek Hall did the honours.
For the back story, see previous report on our clubrunner web page dated May 10, 2021 Rotary Global Grant – “A happy teacher receives bookshelves and chairs for her new library” by Stewy Stuart.
On a warm, okay, it was a HOT DAY in Polson Park at the Bandshell, a band had assembled and the usual crowd of Rotarians shuffled in.  The band consisted of Stewy Stuart as drummer, a keyboardist and three guitarists.  Great show guys and thanks.The occasion was the Rotary Club of Vernon usual Wednesday meeting except that that no lunch, no speakers, but cupcakes were served.

The handover included these boxes and bags. 
Dick Bartel from the Rotary Club of Vernon invited fellow Club member Otto Rieve to a bloodletting at the Canadian Blood Service donation event in Vernon, BC. Dick has been a constant donor, he has donated more than 120 pints of his blood.  
Otto Rieve had 112 donations before he was previously not allowed to donate because of his world-wide travel. Now, because of Dick’s urging in these Stay-At-Home Times, Otto was allowed to donate again for the 113th time.
A Local Partnership Aids Literacy in Rural Zimbabwe
The Rotary Club of Vernon and the Zimbabwe Project Society have teamed up to help approximately 7,600 school children in rural areas of Zimbabwe by putting in 25 libraries complete with books, bookshelves, tables, and chairs. Training of librarians will also be provided so that the investment can reach its full value to the local villages.  Cost of this project will be about 98,000.00 US.
Nicholas V Troll bought an ice cream cake to present to the Vernon RCMP on behalf of the Rotary Club of Vernon to thank the police for its service. To receive the cake and bars was Watch Commander - Colby Attlesey.
The cake was bought from Dairy Queen who responded by also donating a box of Dilly Bars.  Otto Rieve attended and photographed the event. 
Bob Blacker, PDG 5040 spoke on theWrite to Read Project. 
  Left to right - Aide-de-Camp Bob Black and Lt Governor Steven Point
The Write to Read Project BC is and equal partnership between participating indigenous communities, Rotarians, Government House, and the volunteers of the Write to Read Team. It brings together people who have an interest in increasing literacy equity through access to literacy materials for rural and remote indigenous communities.
President Angela led the discussion and asked each Zoom attendee to discuss the topic “What do you want the Club to look like in 2020/2021?”
Members shared their thoughts of the future of the Rotary Club of Vernon.  Some referred to past Glory Days, some wanted more members, a very few talked about the necessity to seize the opportunity to change and mould Rotary for the future.
Today’s Agenda as announced by President Angela: Some members telling stories around Christmas, some games, and no songs
Jack Peters recited a Christmas scene “I saw Christmas”, Stewy Stewart related a cherished family Christmas story about  family member Uncle Harry and the tradition of No, it did not end up being a Charlie Brown tree.

Some members of the Rotary Club of Vernon individually and the Club itself chipped in to raise $1,000 for the Salvation Army that operates the Vernon Food Bank.  Otto Rieve and Russ McMurchie posed for the virtual donations at a Salvation Army Kettle.
Sure, this has been an ‘unprecedented year’ and these are ‘extraordinary times’ particularly for those in need, alone, suddenly unemployed, or otherwise without means of support and homeless. It is concerning to note that within fifty (50) km of Vernon, there are nine (9) food banks.
During the photo op, shoppers noted the goings on and many more participated by putting money in the kettle. Thank you also for the kettle lady for posing with us.
Nicholas Troll has been attending our meetings, he looks forward to them, and was inducted today.  Nicholas is interested in Community Service.  I asked him to send me a picture and a little bit of information about himself and when he shares that with me, I will post and disseminate that.
Randy Wilson works in insurance (Classification is Insurance) and he has lived in Vernon for about twenty years.  He fears that the economy of Vernon and the North Okanagan will shrink along with population aging and numbers declining. For Rotary Service, Randy is interested in Community and International Service. 
SUSIE LOW – UNABLE TO ATTEND on Zoom and will be inducted later.
12:40 Otto Rieve introduced Wendy Aasen, Executive Director, Literacy Society of the North Okanagan.  The topic title was … Well, Literacy and the Work and Programs of the Literacy Society.
  • Literacy is important, it creates meaningful jobs, improves health, reduces crime, and raises inclusiveness
  • Builds Hope, Confidence, and Connection
PDG D5070 Tracey Vavrek our presenter via Zoom, a Zone 28 & 32 trainer's topic is “Transformative Change”.
Rotary is being reshaped and the transformation has been underway for some time, even before COVI-19. People (Non-Rotarians) want to give back.  We need more Rotarians to do the work that Rotary needs to do, but people work if there is a sense of belonging. What is the Value Proposition for Young Professionals? What will cause them to partner with Rotary or, better yet, become Rotary Members?

National Seniors Day is October 1

"This is an occasion for all Canadians to join in celebrating older adults across Canada—whether a parent, a co-worker, a neighbour or a friend. In these trying times during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Canada is proud to acknowledge the lifelong contributions our nation’s seniors have made and continue to make to their families, communities and society."

Since so many ROTARY members are in the Very Mature category, we, The Rotary Club of Vernon, join in recognition of the contributions made by our seniors. The Rotary Club of Vernon has for many years hosted 67 consecutive Spring Breakout for Seniors, a dinner, entertainment, and dancing event cost-free to Seniors.  The 2020 event would have been the 68th time that the Rotary Club of Vernon held this event.
2020 August 12 Meeting – Jennifer E. Jones RI Pres for 2022-23; PDG Shery Chamberlain, Carin Smith on HANWASH
Today, Otto shared the great news that Jennifer E. Jones, a member of the Rotary Club of Windsor-Roseland, Ontario, Canada, has been nominated to become Rotary International’s president for 2022-23, a selection that will make her the first woman to hold that office in Rotary’s 115-year history.
Presenters PDG Sherry Chamberlain (Kamloops West)and Carin Smith (Wenatchee) informed us on HAMWASH, WASHRAG and Rotary International and their activities on clean water and sanitation.
Our first meeting in person for a sit-down lunch after many months in Social Distancing or even Physical Isolation. As to handshakes, there were some, particularly for the PHF award presentations and the usual "Grip and Grin".
Still, it was a pleasure and a great relief to meet again.
PDG Jack Peters, Multiple PHF
Also to Collin FIEGUTH and Richard McCumber
10 Members and two guests meet online for a Wednesday meeting of the Rotary Club of Vernon
This was billed as a promotion of the Zimbabwe Project Fundraiser "Dinner" and that is what most of this meeting was about.  The fundraiser for Zimbabwe Project is on Facebook Saturday June 06 from 7PM to 8PM.
Rotary business was an update on the progress of a Global Grant application to apply for Rotary International funds and the use of District funds for the Zimbabwe project. 
No picture being available to the writer, I include a picture as the RC Club of Kaloor D3201 distributes COVID-19 supplies.jpg FROM RI
Essentially eight (8) club members were on the online meeting moderated by President Angela. My summary is:
Zoom meetings – Access is always the same.
The Rotary Foundation (TRF) – Global Grant application is underway by Rtn Gary Soles of some Kamloops Club.
Blood bank – still one, need only on member per shift at the Blood bank
Directors’ meetings – Janis will circulate minutes to all members.
Finances and Expenditures – Stewy will prepare an Outlook for the club’s status of cash at June 30, 2020 year end.
Agenda – Angela will report on the structure or routine of the Zoom meetings.
The Rotary Club of Vernon, BC will continue with its traditional kickoff to the Christmas season by hosting the 67th Rotary Carol Festival.

“Start your holiday season off with the magic and beauty of the 67th annual Rotary Carol Festival, taking place at the Vernon Performing Arts Centre this December 7th and 8th“ , announced Festival Chair Klaus Grieser.  Mobile 250.540-4956 

"Come and bring your family and friends to one of three shows and hear the holiday songs of over 40 local talented choirs and solo artists”.
The first 3 editions of Ride for Rotary were a great success; approximately 50 participants from 12 countries attended and had a wonderful experience.
For January 2020 we are planning to make it bigger and better by adding a four-wheel drive option. Our aim is to promote International Fellowship and exchange Rotary views.  The funds raised by this event will completely go to The Rotary Foundation.
In January 2019 Otto Rieve participated in Ride 3 when the ride route was from Mumbai (Bombay) to Mangalore. "Aside from Rotary Fellowship, Friendship and Fun, it is great value for the price and supports Rotary in India. I was amazed by the way Rotary is done in India and the results that they achieve", enthused Rieve.
For Otto Rieve, the presentation of a “Multiple” Paul Harris Fellowship is a special event in a Rotary Club and Otto was surprised to be the recipient of such a pin from our club’s past president.
Otto knew about Multiple PHFs and knows his donations to The Rotary Foundations but since he had not asked for his pin to be sent, he had not expected to be presented with another Multiple PHF pin.
North Okanagan Neurological Association (NONA)  
Saturday, June 22, 2019
Paddlewheel Hall, 7813 Okanagan Landing Road, Vernon, BC V1H 1H2 
Cocktails at 5:30, Dinner at 6:30
$80 Per Person 
Or call ticketseller at  250-549-7469. 
Please get your tickets soon for an entertaining evening and help support your community at the same time! Bring family and friends! We have 150 tickets, 3 corporate tables and one title sponsor table to sell.  
The Rotary Club of Vernon hosts an annual Lobsterfest – a great dinner paired with live music. This year’s event will feature the music of Cod Gone Wild and will take place at Paddlewheel Park Hall on Okanagan Lake in Vernon. 
Lobsterfest proceeds will be directed to the North Okanagan Neurological Association (NONA). NONA provides a variety of child development services to over 700 children and their families in the North Okanagan.
For more information on this event, call Brian Butt at 250-549-6656
The Rotary Club of Vernon, BC will continue with its traditional kickoff to the Christmas season by hosting the 66th Rotary Carol Festival.
“Start your holiday season off with the magic and beauty of the 66th annual Rotary Carol Festival, taking place at the Vernon Performing Arts Centre this December 1st and 2nd , announced Festival Chair Klaus Grieser. 
"Come and bring your family and friends to one of three shows and hear the holiday songs of over 40 local talented choirs and solo artists”.

Motorcycle Ride supporting PTSD treatment for Military personnel and other First Responders.

2018 08 21


The Rolling Barrage is a Canadian coast-to-coast motorcycle ride that started in Halifax NS and ends in Victoria BC.  The 2018 ride went through Kamloops and I, Otto Rieve, joined it there and, the next day, rode with the group to Aspen Grove before I broke off and headed home to Vernon.

Raising funds and creating awareness for 


  • Soldiers and veterans, 
  • LEO's (Law Enforcement Officer), and,
  • First Responders (Fire fighters, Ambulance, etc.)


with PTSD. 


Some sufferers, to relieve their suffering, commit suicide but more of that later.


Most of these types of rides of which I am aware are US rides, a lot of them are for Viet Nam veterans and, laterally, Afghanistan vets.  The idea of these rides is to take to PTSD sufferer and help take them out of their isolation and to integrate them in civil society.  See 


In Kamloops we rode off from the meeting point and were escorted by RCMP vehicles which leaped ahead and stopped all traffic at intersections.  Once on the road to Merritt, one cruiser lead the Rolling Barrage to Merritt where we were received by an honour guard of Canadian Legionnaires and firemen with the biggest Canadian Flag that I had seen. 


After the welcoming ceremonies and time for coffee and doughnuts (Oh Yes!) the ride set off for Langley BC.  When I left the ride I felt sad for the sufferers and hopeful. 


SUICIDES - Since the start in Halifax – August 06, 2018– There have been seven (7) suicides 

    Six (6) Canadian Forces

    One (1) Police

as of August 21, 2018.


 I hoped that I had done something useful with my time and the money that I donated. 



Four teams set out to play this 9-Hole golf course but after their rounds and when the golfers came into the clubhouse, there were numerous Diners waiting for them and waiting for their meal.
Ahh, golf - yes, a good walk ruined.  Why do so many golfers hate themselves, their clubs and the course?  Can these people be trusted to "Truthfully" report their low scores? But, yes, we have a test for that.

The Rotary Club of Vernon hosted our annual Lobsterfest on Friday, June 1, 2018  This great dinner paired with live music from Cod Gone Wild took place at The Schubert Centre in Vernon. For the fourth year in a row, Lobsterfest proceeds will be directed to the North Okanagan Neurological Association (NONA). NONA provides a variety of child development services to over 700 children and their families in the North Okanagan.





NONA Child Development Centre 


Friday, June 1, 2018
Schubert Centre, 3505 3oth Avenue, Vernon 
Cocktails at 5:30, Dinner at 6:30
$75 Per Person 

Purchase tickets at Ticket Seller:

The Rotary Club of Vernon hosts an annual Lobsterfest – a great dinner paired with live music. This year’s event will feature the music of Cod Gone Wild and will take place at The Schubert Centre in Vernon. Get your tickets for an entertaining evening and help support your community at the same time! 

For the fourth year in a row, Lobsterfest proceeds will be directed to the North Okanagan Neurological Association (NONA). NONA provides a variety of child development services to over 700 children and their families in the North Okanagan.

For more information on this event, call Jacqueline Brooks at 250-540-5218.


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Welcome to the Vernon Rotary Clubs newest member, Pat Brochart, who was inducted into the club on Wednesday, April 25th, 2018.

Pat is a proven community leader, specifically interested in working with youth. He has volunteered at many community fundraisers and events over the years and is currently in a leadership role with the Leo’s Youth Group.

Welcome Pat, we look forward to a lot of fun and fellowship while doing good work in our community.



The Spring Online Auction is now live and ends at 3:00 pm on April 30, 2018.  The Auction has something for everyone: advertising, jewelry, beauty treatments, dining out, fitness, getaways, gravel and golf, PLUS gift certificates, baskets and cards of all descriptions.  I have attached a poster.
Here is your link to the auction site:
We invite you to register an account and check out all the items.  We will be adding new items throughout the month so check back often.
Please bid in round numbers only – NO CENTS. 
If you have any problems registering, please contact me.
Please forward this email to all your friends & family!
Sylvia Arneson
Office Administrator
United Way of North Okanagan Columbia Shuswap
3304A - 30th Avenue
Vernon, BC  V1T 2C8 
Tel: (250) 549-1346  Fax: (250) 549-1357


Attached are the photos of the 2018 March 14 Seniors Breakout. .  Another successful event and number 65 Seniors Breakout.



Rotary Club of Vernon

PRESS RELEASE November 16, 2017

Three Great Concerts of Seasonal Songs & Christmas Carols Feature Local

Performers December 2nd and 3rd, 2017

Vernon, BC: Thursday, November 16, 2017 - A long standing and popular pre-Christmas tradition in Vernon since 1952, the 65th Annual Rotary Christmas Carol Festival returns to the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre on December 2 and 3, 2017

The three concerts are on Saturday, December 2nd at 2 pm and 7 pm, and on Sunday, December 3rd at 2 pm. Admission is by cash donations only rather than by food donation. Entertainment will be provided by more than 20 groups including a cross-section of local children’s, church and community choirs, as well as musicians and vocal ensembles.

This season’s special guest entertainer and headliner will be Brandon Schmor. From “Brandon Schmor developed his technique and signature playing style with inspiration from other artists and the piano itself. Schmor’s performances meld elements of wild Jerry Lee Lewis style boogie, with timeless blues, jazz, and classic rock to create a lively show for everyone to enjoy.

The Carol Festival enables the Rotary Club of Vernon to provide a venue for the many talented singers in the North Okanagan and to provide partial financial support for the annual Spring Breakout for Seniors held every March. Net cash donations plus funds from the Rotary Club of Vernon provide the funds for the Seniors Spring Breakout. The Breakout is a free dinner and dance with entertainment and live music organized for over 500 local seniors and is very popular in the Vernon community.

Since it was chartered in 1925, the Vernon Rotary Club’s sponsored community assets such as the Rotary Pier including train travel; student scholarships; and improvements to local historical sites, museums, parks and playgrounds. More recent projects include activities include the Vernon Regional Hospital “Tower of Care”, Salvation Army Food Bank, Hospice House, and North Okanagan Neurological Association (NONA).

The Rotary Club of Vernon has participated in and made contributions to Rotary International projects such as Polio Eradication, Haiti earthquake relief, peace and reconciliation, women’s health and global access to clean water. Visit and for more about Rotary and its efforts to eradicate polio.

“Through the support of generous local sponsors and volunteers from the Rotary Club of Vernon, the Carol Festival’s net proceeds go directly to the Breakout for Seniors”, said Festival Chair Klaus Grieser.

For more information, please visit or @RotaryCarolFestival or contact Carol Festival Chair, Klaus Grieser Mobile 250.540-4956 

Back to where it all began, the 55+ BC Games are back in Vernon for another year.

The 55+ BC Games is an annual multi sport event produced by the BC Seniors Games Society for 55+ population of BC to participate in the 20 to 29 individual Sports. 

Rotarians from the Rotary Club of Vernon stepped up and volunteered to serve the athletes with food and drink.

PS Otto was there and cooking, he was just the photographer and no one took his picture.  wink

Calling all Vernon Rotary Club Members. You & your spouse/partner are invited to attend
the induction of our new 2017-18 President, Aidan Northcott.
this very special dinner will be held at the Castle at Swan Lake, at the log cabin. 
Cost is $25.00 for a lovely steak dinner, cocktails at 5pm and dinner to follow
around 6pm.
Please park in the lower Atlantis parking lot directly to our north and enjoy the easy walk
from their up to the cabin
BYOB, see you there.
SAVE THE DATE AND GET YOUR TICKETS BEFORE THEY ARE ALL GONE. You wont want to miss this, Vernon Rotary's annual Lobsterfest is coming up quickly, Saturday June 3rd to be exact. With a great Lobster or steak dinner and lively dancing to Cod Gone Wild, you can go wrong. This years event will be held at Paddle Wheel Park, cocktails at 5.30 pm and dinner at 6.30pm. For more information or to get tickets visit
 President Jacqueline announced to the club that this years winner of the "Friendship & Fellowship" award that is extended at the District Conference went to none other than our own Pamela Owen. President Jacqueline was happy to accept the ward on Pam's behalf at the Conference and as seen here was expressing her concern over having not been able to present it to Pam yet as she was afraid she was going to accidentally break it before it could be handed over.
Pam shows integrity both in her work and personal life. She is always positive and a real team player. She gives 100 % even when she doesn't have it to give. She is so deserving of this award and we are blessed to have her in our club.

For over 64 years Vernon Rotary has hosted the popular Seniors Spring Breakout. This event provides an evening of fun, food and fellowship to about 500 seniors each year. This year Spring Breakout will be run in partnership with the Halina Center, a partnership that we hope will continue for a long time to come.

By joining forces with the Halina Center, Vernon Rotary will create an experience for seniors who are ready after a long winter of being shut in, to get out and enjoy some fun and fellowship. “The Halina Center offers so many services and opportunities for seniors in our community and they understand their needs” notes Vernon Rotary President Jacqueline Brooks “The partnership is a natural fit.”

This year Rotary-Halina 55+ Spring Breakout will be held March 8th at 5.30 pm. Please note due to Rec Center renovations to the front (east) entrance, all drop offs and entries will be at the west entrance.

Tickets can be purchased for 2.00 each at the Halina Center or the Schubert Center, this will include an evening of dinner, entertainment and dancing.

Alright its time!! The Site is up and open for BIDS!! Grab yourself a cup of coffee, sit down, register and let the bidding start on some great items that have been donated by members and businesses of our lovely community.

All proceeds go back to help programs/projects in the community

Two local organizations join forces for a good cause

Its almost March which means two things:

1. Its almost spring
2. Its Online Auction time.

This year we have partner with the United Way to bring you one spectacular Online Auction.

Your donation to this event is something that will continue to provide our community with much needed services.

The Spring Online Auction will run from 9 a.m. Wednesday to 3 p.m. March 31 .

There will be services, products, items, experiences and gift certificates donated by local merchants and community members.

Watch our facebook and Vernon Rotary website for the link to the auction as well United Way website....

Countdown is on.....


Great time had by all at Halina Senior Centre's Traditional Christmas Luncheon catered by "Topping Expectations" back in December









Join us Wednesday November 23rd as we have Amy Webster from Volinspire joining us! 

Happy to have Amy Webster from Volinspire come join us for our Rotary Meeting as our Guest Speaker.  Volinspire is a  is a Community Engagement platform that brings volunteers, charitable organizations and businesses together to build stronger and more connected communities. They feature inspiring people and businesses who volunteer their time and/or money to make an impact in their local community.  The stories on their webpage are so inspiring and I cannot believe how much people in the Okanagan do for the local community as well as Internationally. 


The Annual Jail and Bail !! The event starts off with an Off-duty RCMP members arresting local perpetrators before they face judge Mike Caira in a kangaroo court, and then they’ll be thrown in the slammer to raise bail in the form of donations for Cops for Kids ! Money raised from this event will help Cops for Kids fund much needed medical equipment, specialized therapies, learning tools and mobility aids for children within southeastern B.C.!! Vernon Rotary was happy to help with Inspector Gord Stewart-the Operations Officer at Vernon North Okanagan Detachment Bail- ... Hope he made bail before dinner ....

Upgrades Completed For Boys & Girls Club

The west entrance of Vernon's Okanagan Boys and Girls Club has received a face lift and some access control improvements.
The 43-thousand dollar project was funded by the regional district, the province and a 15-thousand dollar donation from the Vernon Rotary Club,
Along with an expanded front office area, the upgrades include a redesign of the west entrance to provide the Boys and Girls Club staff the ability to control who comes into the building.
“Access control allows us to better manage and safeguard the kids in our programs,” says Kirstie Blanleil, Okanagan Boys and Girls Club Area Director. “We are grateful that the Province of British Columbia was able to help supplement the funding from the Regional District to make this project happen.”
Vernon Monashee MLA, Eric Foster, is delighted with the outcome. “The Okanagan Boys and Girls Club provides such a tremendous service to our community,” says Foster. “I am happy to hear that these improvements will make such a significant difference to the Club’s day to day operations.”
“The Okanagan Boys and Girls Club provides a number of important community services, including after school care and low-cost recreation programs,” said Juliette Cunningham, Chair of the Greater Vernon Advisory Committee to the Regional District. “These services meet a real need in the community, and the Regional District recognizes the importance of ensuring that they remain strong and effective.”

Wednesday November 23rd- We have Sue Beaudy as our Guest Speaker! 

This Wednesday's meeting, Nov. 23, will feature Sue Beaudy who is the Director of Development at the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation. She will talk 
about The Light and Bulb Campaign as we kick off the Christmas Season!

64th Rotary Carol Festival

A most beloved Christmas tradition and definitely the kick off to the holiday season, the Carol Festival returns to the Vernon Performing Arts Centre in early December. 
Since 1952, the Annual Rotary Christmas Carol Festival has provided a performance venue for many local community choirs, musicians and vocal ensembles to perform.
Admission for the general public is by donation and proceeds provide financial support for the Rotary Spring Breakout for seniors held every March. 
This year there will be three live concerts of seasonal songs and Christmas Carols, with two concerts on Saturday December 3rd at 2pm and 7pm, and one on Sunday, December 4th at 2 PM. 
Our special musical guest this year will be Anita Baturin, accompanied by Brian McMahon on bass, Jim Leonard on piano, and Greg Baturin on drums.
 You won’t want to miss it!
For more information, check out our Facebook page at or @RotaryCarolFestival
You can also contact Pam Owen at 250-260-0008

Great Day at O'Keefe Ranch. We are always happy to help. This time we helped with the Restoration of the original street lamps! After a full days work the kids wanted to know when they can come back and help again!! Great way to spend a Saturday!

NONA CLUB HOUSE                                                                                

First of all we would like to thank EVERYONE who came out and supported this Lobster Fest 2016 -100% of the money raised that evening was donated to NONA- Each year, NONA helps more than 700 families in the North Okanagan with their child’s development. The need for more space with appropriate resources is driven by the increasing number of children and youth who are being diagnosed each year with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Today we were able to present NONA with a check to help them reach their goal of building a new clubhouse.

We look forward to seeing everyone for Lobster Fest 2017 where our goal is raise $10,000 to help support NONA's need for a new clubhouse

You are never too young to change the world 

 I read an article recently sharing some key points about the Presidential New Generations Conference in Rosario, Argentina a few years back. One young speaker in particular stood out to everyone. Lucia Gomez Garcia, only 9 years old, shared this with the group:
“Many people may think that kids our age are too young to change the world. Then I ask: At what age should we start? School has not taught that to me. Should we be more than 30 years old? Maybe people aged 18 to 30 could do it? Perhaps adolescents between 12 and 17 could do it ? Let´s have a look at the example of Malala Yuosafzay. She was only 13 when she claimed freedom of education for women in Pakistan.  
My idea to CHANGE THE WORLD is that Rotary increasingly continues to support New Generations. We are kids, do small things, but working with other kids our age, we can generate similar ideas in other people and achieve results that will allow us to realize that IT IS POSSIBLE to change the world for the better.
If you remember, when you were kids and you were asked what you wanted to be when older, you said: firefighter, police officer, doctor, teacher. You naturally chose service-oriented professions. So, young people and Rotary leaders, you have the keys in your hands, so that when you ask a child what he or she wants to be when they grow up, they can answer: “I want to be a Rotarian.”
Speeches like this touch our hearts and make us more aware of why we need to give prominence to youth in Rotary. -  Next time you are on route to a Rotary Meeting instead of bringing that Friend or Co-Worker perhaps bring your son or daughter or even reach out and invite your friends' child.   You could be introducing your next Rotary President 
You wont want to miss it!! It is time again for Lobsterfest happening Friday June 3rd at the Schubert Centre.
Lobster dinner only 65.00 and steak dinner 55.00. Then dance the night away to the live music of Cod Gone Wild.
All proceeds go to support NONA, a much needed facility in our community.
for tickets call Jacqueline at 250-540-5218
Seniors Spring Breakout.
The history of the Spring Breakout goes way back. Originally established by the Rotary Club of Vernon in 1952, this evening of dinner and entertainment was set to happen right before Christmas as there were so many seniors post war that were spending that time alone. It was a time for them all to come together, enjoy a good meal and companionship. The first event hosted 85 seniors with 47 Rotarians serving and entertaining for the night.
 It was a huge success, so much so that here 64 years later the evening hosts up to 500 attendees. Now Rotarians volunteer their time to pick up and deliver those who would not otherwise be able to get out themselves as well as serving a fine meal and an evening of wonderful entertainment. This event has truly become a highlight for a lot of seniors who by this point in time after a long winter are in need of getting out and doing something fun and engaging.
The event itself is funded by kind sponsors and donors who care deeply about our aging population, as well as proceeds from one of Vernon Rotary Clubs longest running fundraisers, The Carol Festival. The event will be held at 5.30 pm on March 9 this year at the Rec Center. Admission is free to all seniors, and doors open at 5pm.
Of special note this year is the fact that the Rec Center is doing renovations to the front (east) entrance and so all drop offs and entries will have to be at the west entrance location.
I know without question our dedicated Rotary Group are excited to pick up and host this great community event to honor our seniors.


PDG Jack Peters;

At the young age of 82 and after 40 years of service (37 with perfect attendance), Jack announced to the club that he would be resigning from active duty.

Jack has taken on many tasks in the past 40 years, things such as assisting with the formation of new local clubs, Club Service Director for this club, Vocational Service Director, President Elect, Club President, served on several club committees, and finally crowned it all with District Governor. But it didn’t end there, he attended the international convention in Seoul Korea, was invited to visit the Universal Eyesight Operations in India for 24 days, attended many zone training meetings and went to the Rotary International assembly Meeting and swearing in ceremony in Dallas Texas.

These are just among some of what Jack has done, the list is endless and exhausting, I could go on for pages, but the thing that impresses me the most is that this man who has given so much for community and world improvement credits his companion and life partner Betty for remaining by his side through it all.

In June of 2015 at the Rotary District conference in Kelowna BC, he received the coveted “RIPVP Harold R Henderson Award” in recognition of his service to District 5060 over many years and many types of service.

Mr. Jack Peters is a true gentleman, a giving man who clearly has a large capacity for service above self. At the November Annual General Meeting of the Vernon Rotary Club, Jack was awarded a life time membership followed by a standing ovation by his peers who clearly have the world of respect for the man.

Well done Mr. Rotary, if the world had a fraction of your moxie, it would be a much better place. It is our sincere hope to see you “almost” as much as usual.

Approximately 300 items are expected to be offered in this year’s version of the Annual Rotary Online Christmas Auction. The public is encouraged to do their online Christmas gift shopping to buy
great items and support a very worthy cause. All proceeds from the Auction go back into the community by helping the Rotary Club of Vernon sponsor many important projects. As one of the Club’s major fund raisers, it raised over $20,000 last year.
The Club’s local activities include supporting the Vernon Regional Hospital, the Salvation Army Food Bank and Hospice House, as well as improvements to historical sites, museums, parks
and playgrounds. Contributions are also made to international projects such as Polio eradication and Haitian earthquake relief. Without the generous contributions of local businesses such activities would not be possible. Examples of valuable items include hotel stays, Tim Horton’s coffee for an entire year, golf packages, restaurant gift certificates, as well as smaller items such as jewelry, tools, toys
and more.
This year’s online auction takes place from Friday, November 27th to Monday, December 7th, 2015. All items up for bid along with photos are listed on the Christmas Auction website (www. and can be pre-viewed now. Bidders are encouraged to check the auction website frequently to update their bids.
Please help ensure the resounding success of our auction this year, forward to everyone you know! Thank you
For more information, go to or contact Janice Foster at 250-306-2090.


The Carol Festival has been a long time tradition for Vernon and this year will be the best yet!
We are very fortunate to have the following sponsors:
Vantage One Credit Union
Nixon Wenger LLP
Johnston Meier Insurance Agencies
Kal Tire
BC hydro
Morning Star
Vernon & District Performing arts Centre
Ratio Coffee & Pastry
A special thank you for being community leaders and community builders.
We couldn't do this without your support
Hello Fellow Rotarians!
We are having our next Rotary Pub night on Wed, October 14th  at 6pm.  (*** in lieu of the noon meeting--- so please don’t go to the hotel at lunch!—I repeat—there is NO noon meeting that day!)
Please join us for an Entertaining night at the Cattlemen’s Club Restaurant, on the fun, old fashioned O’Keefe Ranch!
We will be having a great dinner buffet of Chicken, Ribs, Salads, Roasted potatoes, and desserts too.
(coffee and tea included)   Dinner is $20 per person, taxes included.    Dinner will be served at 6:30pm.
Since it is a PUB night--  we will be honouring our newest members with a free drink on us!
All other drinks are at the cost of the members.
We will be honouring and welcoming our newest members:  Willi Moore, Brian Langner, George Weiher, and Aidan Northcott.
Please feel free to come out and bring a guest or your spouse to this very fun night! (yes, kids are welcome too)
****Please RVSP to Pamela Owen (
     by Monday, Oct 12th at the very latest
John Hogarth Cowboy Poet
Rotarian John Hogarth (aka Cowboy Poet Jesmond Jake) dropped by to read his moving historical poem honouring the Vernon Rotary Club at their 90th celebration evening. The poem reviewed the history of the Vernon Rotary Club. See below:


2015 Jan 10

Andrew Kern always loomed large and went out to play with the Big Dogs – no small measures for this guy: go big or go home.

My first encounters with him were in the late 70s and one of the things he did then was restoring a big red Buick Wildcat convertible with a big 455 V8 engine if I remember . A few months ago I was able to tell him that I remembered that car. Andrew seemed pleased with my remembrance of his car.

Last summer 2014 Andrew and I were on a motorcycle trip from Vernon to the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah where Andrew wanted to run his motorcycle (boosted by NOx, nitrous oxide) on the salt. Yes, of course we talked about “The World’s Fastest Indian” motorcycle that New Zealander Burt Munro spent years building and successfully raced and set speed records.

For Andrew to be able to run his motorcycle on the salt flats, we became aware that the Speed Week of the week before was cancelled because of heavy rains -rains in Utah on the Bonneville Salt Flats? Yes, and there was still quite a lake on the salt flats but there was an area where motorcycle speed runs were being made. To get to the timed speed runs, Andrew and I were informed that we would have to run our motorcycles through the salt brine lake.

Andrew went in without hesitation and set up a bow wave of salt water as he rode very carefully through the lake but I hesitated until I thought that if Andrew did run a timed speed run with his NOx boosted motorcycle, I might come in handy to collect parts. In I went into the water, set up my own bow wave of brine and followed Andrew. It turned out that he couldn’t run his motorcycle for safety reasons and he and I spent a few hours looking into the tents of the racers and talking bikes.

At the end of the first day on the Bonneville Salt Flats we had to ride our bikes through the salt water again to arrive at dry land and subsequently to a car wash to hose our bikes down and try to remove most of the salt.

Andrew raced his other motorcycle on the drag strips; it too was NOx boosted. Big cars, big motorcycles, and big pickup trucks are things that Andrew cared for deeply and were his passion during those years when I knew him.

Otto Rieve


Vernon BC Rotary's photo..

Vernon BC Rotary's photo.Vernon BC Rotary's photo.
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Vernon, BC: Wednesday, February 04, 2015 - The Rotary Club of Vernon announces its 90th Anniversary and the receipt of its Charter in April 1925.  While the Club will celebrate its Anniversary all year long, the special kick-off event is the dinner on February 27, 2015 at the Schubert Centre.

Celebration - 90th Anniversary of Rotary Club of Vernon

                                                      Friday February 27, 2015      Schubert Centre Main Hall   5:30pm Reception       6:15pm Dinner

The members of the Rotary Club of Vernon have enjoyed 90 years of Service and now we CELEBRATE!

This event is not a "sanctioned" event, just possibly of interest for a dinner and a local cul5tural event.  See the website

for more information and pictures or call Mackie house manager Christine Kashuba  

Mackie Lake House Manager   250-545-1019



On Friday, August 15 at 6 pm “The Kings” on the Grass will entertain you with rockin, poppin' country feelin' original music and will throw in some of their classic cover tunes as well.

You'll enjoy the dynamic duo Dawn and Robert King who recently released Dawn’s debut album “It's Time To Shine” (Robert wrote all the songs)! The album is getting great reviews and awards both for Dawn, the vocalist, and for Robert the songwriter.

Tickets for this concert will be available through Ticket Seller $15 for the concert, or $40 for the concert and a picnic supper by Gumtree Catering.

Dear Fellow members

I take the liberty of sending this to you to promote Rotary fellowship among Vernon Rotarians:

A Message from Givonna DeBruin:

Otto...I've invited my Rotary Club [Silver Star] to attend as a fellowship event.  Please consider inviting your [Vernon} club to join us!  Givonna De Bruin

Forwarded Message from Mackie Lake House:

Hi all,

We’re trying something new with this concert…tickets are available at Ticket Seller and you can pre-order the picnic supper Tarragon chicken salad – served on a bed of greens, Tarragon chicken salad with homemade herb biscuit & gourmet dessert with advance purchase by August 12th. The music is upbeat and fabulous, so it will be a truly Okanagan experience! 

Please pass this on to others you think might be interested!        

See you soon,   Christine Kashuba     

Mackie Lake House Manager   250-545-1019

The 17th Annual Father Daughter Ball will be at 5pm, Friday, Sep 19th, 2014, at the Best Western Vernon Lodge.


For the past sixteen years, the Kiwanis Club of Vernon – Four Seasons has sponsored an annual Father Daughter Ball.  At their invitation, the Rotary Club of Vernon Silver Star has agreed to take over operation of this event, and to direct the proceeds to local childrens’ charities.

The 17th Annual Father Daughter Ball will be at 5pm, Friday, Sep 19th, 2014, at the Best Western Vernon Lodge.  This is a formal event, giving proud fathers & daughters (age 6+) an exciting “dress up” evening with a dinner, dance, 5x7 portrait, prizes, selection of a “princess,” & a silent auction -- all for $135 per couple.  Tickets for additional daughters or friends are $50.  In past years, tickets for over 200 people have sold out.


At our first (I believe it was) RC Vernon meeting in January 2014, our Past President and "Nancy Boots These Boots Are Made for Walking" Pamela Owen paid $5 bucks and announced her new work position. 

 Pamela is Mobile Account Manager at Vantage One Credit Union in Vernon.  As a Mobile Account manager, Pamela has 22 years experience in Home Financing.

 I suppose that, as Mobile Account Manager, Pamela meets with clients outside of regular banking hours and locations. Pam waxed enthusiastic about her new job as she spoke about her new position.

 Congratulations to Pamela on your new role with VantageOne.

Eric Foster: “BC’s Skills for Jobs, a Blueprint".

Wednesday June 11, 2014 Guest Speaker at the Rotary Club of Vernon: Eric Foster, MLA and Liberal Whip.

 Introduced by his wife, Janice, Eric's topic was “BC’s Skills for Jobs, a Blueprint".  Janice told us that Eric was born in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.  They met there in Grade 8 but went their separate ways for some time.  But it was inevitable that fate intervened and they met later on and married.

The "We" below is a communication that I received from Rent-A-Geek in Vernon. You may have received prior information.  Check your own sources or call Rent-A-Geek in Vernon.  Otto Rieve

We have been getting lots of calls from Windows XP users regarding the "end of life" alerts they have been receiving from Microsoft.  There are also lots of reports in the media about how XP will instantly become a target for cyber-criminals who have been holding off on attacking known XP vulnerabilities until Microsoft stops updating on April 8.  As such,  we wanted to take a minute to clear things up for those of you still running XP.  


Presidential Citation for Vernon Club during PP Pam’s Year as President


Assistant Governor Derek Hall presented Past President Pamela Owen with the Presidential Citation certificate. This certificate is issued by the RI President’s office.


WELL DONE, Pamela, and thanks from all of your Club’s members for your hard work and leadership. 


Rotary Clubs must complete one mandatory activity and at least four of nine additional activities. All of the activities must be undertaken and finished between 1 July 2012 and 31 March 2013.


The Assistant Governor must review and sign the completed form to certify the Club’s achievements then send it to the District Governor. District Governors report the names of the qualifying Rotary clubs in their districts online through the Rotary portal.

Rotary came to BC in 1913 when the Rotary Club of Vancouver was chartered.  It is therefore the Mother Club for all Rotary clubs chartered in BC after that. Mascot Andrew was there for the festivities and celebrated.

Mascot Andrew celebrated the Rotary Club of Vancouver’s 100 years Anniversary. The Celebration began on April 16th, 2013 with RI President Sakuji Tanaka speaking to a joint Rotary Club of Vancouver and Vancouver Board of Trade luncheon which Andrew was unable to afford.  President Tanaka left Vancouver for Evanston and more Rotary work.


Andrew arrived in Vancouver for the Dock Party on the Convention Plaza on Friday, the Showcase on Saturday and concluded with a Celebration Gala in the Vancouver Convention & Exhibition Centre on Saturday April 20th. 


Andrew was amazed and filled with wonder.

Not being sleep-deprived as opposed to his handler, Andrew was impressed by his first convention, the 2013 June 23 – 26 RI Convention in Lisbon.  As RI President Sakuji Tanaka noted, volunteers come together to do good in the world; working together, these volunteers accomplish so much.

Portuguese sailors in 1542, blown onto Japan by strong winds began what turned out to be 500 years of a peaceful and prosperous relationship, the two nations never having been at war with each other.  Lisbon is A Harbour For Peace, peace being the theme of this 2013 convention. Under President Tanaka’s leadership, three Peace Forums were held in Berlin, Hiroshima and Honolulu. 

The opening plenary session which includes the impressive flag ceremony and an entertainment feature is followed by three more days of meetings.  Each day has plenary sessions in the morning followed by breakout sessions in the afternoon. Speakers at the plenaries include renowned speakers.  This year we heard Leymah Gbowee, 2011 Nobel Peace Laureate; 2013 Global Alumni Service to Humanity Award Recipient Dr. Harminder Singh Dua; and Jane Goodall, PhD, DBE, Founder of the Jane Goodall Institute and UN Messenger of Peace. 

Rotary’s service and fellowship makes every convention a life-enriching experience.

"Jordy” Geuffroy, an exchange student from eleven years ago, came to visit her club and Rotary parents. Jordy and her husband Andreas are on their honeymoon and they now reside in Dresden Germany. While visiting Vernon, they are staying with Martin and Frances Vegt.

After her exchange year in Vernon 2001 - 2002, Jordy continued her studies and qualified as a doctor in pediatrics one year ago. Andreas is an engineer working in parts materials design and components to lighten parts and components assembled into automobiles and airplanes.

Martin and Frances Vegt visited Jordy seven years ago in Germany and met shortly last year in The Netherlands while the Vegts were there for a family event.

Jordy was pleased to present her husband to the Rotary Club of Vernon and to be visiting Rotary friends in Vernon.


 In December 2012 the Rotary Club of Vernon funded, in partnership with the Leadership Class at Vernon Secondary School, a food drive. Students who brought in food donations were entered into a contest to win an Apple iPad.

What's notable about the picture is that it was taken on the last day of operations at the old VSS brick school. As part of the decommissioning of the old brick school, teachers and former students could buy a brick from the old building and/or a part of the Gym floor and for a donation, have their name inscribed thereon.

 Our Mascot Andrew Kern is off to the Left Coast to celebrate the Rotary Club of Vancouver’s 100 years Anniversary. President Pam entrusts Mascot Andrew to Otto Rieve, bids Andrew farewell and a safe return to Vernon, BC 

  • Friday, April 19 - A celebration of 100 years of Rotary in BC, an evening of fun, music, and Rotary profile at the Jack Poole Plaza in Vancouver featuring a special lighting of the Olympic Cauldron for the evening. Everyone invited!
  • Saturday, April 20 - Showcase of Rotary Clubs and Projects from throughout BC - Vancouver Convention & Exhibition Centre, Vancouver
  • Saturday, April 20 - A gala evening event with a world renowned speaker and Mascot Andrew’s first Black Tie Event


The 100 Years Celebration Events Team is pleased to release plans for the 100 Years of Rotary in BC Celebration, planned for April 2013. Mark these dates on your calendars and plan to participate in the greatest show of Rotary that our area has ever seen. Theme for the week - Leadership Through Service.

  • Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Vancouver Board of Trade Lunch meeting with Rotary International President Sakuji Tanaka in Vancouver,

  • Friday, April 19, 2013

Community Celebration Event, 5:30PM to 10:00PM at Jack Poole Plaza, Vancouver Convention & Exhibition Centre. This free event will celebrate Rotary and is open to everyone.

  • Saturday, April 20, 2013

Rotary Showcase, 12:00 PM to 4:00PM at Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre. Open to all Rotary Clubs in British Columbia. Free admission.

  • Saturday, April 20, 2013

100 Years of Rotary Gala, 6:00PM to Midnight, Ballrooms at the Vancouver Convention & Exhibition Centre.

Gala Tickets on sale now, pricing $175 per set or $1,750 table of ten (early bird pricing to March 15). Book a table for your club now at or by phone to Jessica at 604-783-1487

The Rotary Club of Vernon's Online Auction for 2012 was concluded with a great deal of success.  This project being the Club's major fundraiser, it was time to thank some of the workers and volunteers that contributed to that success.

On December 14, our mascot Andrew assisted by PP Trevor McMorran, Klaus Grieser, Otto Rieve and David Naismith delivered six beautiful poinsettia plants to Johnston Meier Insurance Agencies Group to personally thank Todd Meier and his Team for the office space and their volunteer hours. Administrative duties included logging in the donations, recording the bids, determining the highest bidder at the conclusion of the auction and then distributing the auction items.

Our Rotarian member Peter Tassie is a civic-minded conservationist at heart.  For his work, Peter received the Community Service Award from the BC Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists in October at the AGM in Victoria.

Along with the award, a video was created and shown, overwhelming Peter who has worked professionally as a planner for RDNO and as a volunteer or member of many local groups, service clubs and charities.

Peter joined Rotary in Vernon in 1974 and has been a member for 38 years.

Award info from a report in The Morning Star 2012 Nov 18

The August 22, 2012 meeting was called to order in an orchard in Coldstream near Vernon, B.C.  Our host and member Peter Tassie talked about growing up there in the 1930’s and 40’s, operating an orchard then and comparing it with present day management.  

Their home was built as a foreman’s residence about 1912 and then added onto in the next decade as the former owners, at one time in Vancouver, moved onto the property. The property was acquired by Peter’s family in 1930 and was then about 40 acres. On it was a barn built about 1912, well constructed and still in very good condition. It is now on an adjacent property, but the new owner has restored it to very much its original condition.

Orcharding in the old days was quite different from what it is today. 

There was a question at the Directors' meeting about starting a Young Peoples’ group and this message is to alert you to Interact which is a Rotary program for High school aged kids.  

Take a look at www. and then find “Students and Youth” to learn about Interact.  I think that an Interact club should be part of our New Generations program.

Fifty years of Interact

 After 30 years, Raymond Democrito Canete Mendoza, a former Rotary Exchange Student, returned to Vernon to visit with the Rotary Club.    As a student he stayed with Harvey Gee and family during his time in Vernon.   While visiting in Vernon in October Raymond attended the weekly meeting on the 24th.

Raymond presented a gaily decorated jitney (bus) model of the type that is seen on Manila streets.


President Pamela announced the naming of our new mascot at the Wednesday July 25, 2012 meeting. The tally is in for our monkey mascot:  By a large margin, the name, Andrew Kern was selected.  

Many jokes as well as an apt response from Andrew Kern The Lawyer followed this announcement.  President Pamela suggested that members should take Andrew Kern The Mascot to local make-ups.

President Pamela also announced that make-ups for those taking Andrew Kern The Mascot to make-up meetings an be entered into a pool from which a winner will be drawn every two months.  A prize, yet to be determined, will be awarded to those entering the draw.

Detailed rules will be codified and promulgated.  First draft of these rules will be by Andrew Kern The Lawyer.

(Your lowly ink-stained scribe suggests that a stand-in be acquired and if a member is travelling overseas, say, the stand-in mascot be taken along and a picture of the stand-in Andrew Kern The Mascot be made and emailed to the Rotary Club of Vernon. Otto Rieve.  Just saying)


PDG Jack Peters is a Multiple PH Fellow and three daughters also became PH Fellows today. Betty has been a Paul Harris Fellow since 1991.

Today we had a Special Presentation:  PDG Roger Perry made a special presentation - a Paul Harris Award – on behalf of Jack and Betty Peters to their three daughters, Sandra, Sheila, and Sharon. 

PDG Roger gave reasons why the Paul Harris Award is so critical and listed some of the important work that is done throughout the world because of this award.  Because of Jack and Betty Peters’ awards, some very worthwhile contributions will be made toward projects in Nigeria, Thailand, and Guatemala. 

Sandra's husband, Brad, Sheila's husband, Ken, and Sharon's husband, Clint, and Jack and Betty's granddaughter, Monisha were present. 

Jack Peters became a Multiple Paul Harris Fellow and was presented the Multiple Paul Harris Award by PDG Roger Perry.  Congratulations to Sandra, Sheila, and Sharon on becoming Paul Harris Fellows and to Betty and Jack Peters for their generosity.

Jack Peters’ Life Story   
President Shane, Fellow Rotarians and Guests,                                                
I hope you will enjoy this story of my life, which is sometimes happy, sad or funny.

I was born October 14, 1934, in Osler, Saskatchewan, on our mixed farm 20 miles north of Saskatoon.  The CN Railway ran between our two quarters of land.  This line went from Saskatoon to Prince Albert. The railroad was always a source of excitement for our family of ten, four boys and six girls and I was number six in the lineage.

The ancestors of both my Mennonite parents, Henry Peters and Elizabeth Wiens originally came from Holland in the 1600’s.  They lived and migrated through Germany which was then Prussia, then moved to Ukraine for 80 years.  In 1874, they migrated to Manitoba and in 1896 they came to Saskatchewan.

On our parents’ Saskatchewan farm, our childhood friends occasionally came over after school or on weekends.  There was play then but our chores always came first. 

Gillian Wong, our recipient for a music scholarship, came to speak to us today. She was awarded this scholarship for her participation in the Vernon Music Festival and receiving top mark in her grade, ARCT.

She has been playing music from the age of 3 when she started to play piano and violin. At times, she practiced piano with her father who would play the right side and Gillian would play the left side with two hands because her hands were too small.

"Thank you very much", Gillian Wong 

          Our team lead by Peter Tassie triumphed over R C Kalamalka at the 2012 Spelling Bee sponsored in part by Kal Tire, Tolko Industries.  RC Vernon took an early lead over RC Kalamalka but due to questionable moves by the club that was sponsored by our club, Kalamalka managed to tie. However, Vernon managed to prevail in the tie breaker.
·         Peter Tassie spoke on the Spelling Bee Challenge, held earlier in the day, sponsored by Kal Tire with the proceeds to the Vernon Literary Centre. Our club team was one of 20 teams, each of 8 people, and the members were Carol Schroeder, Betty Gaudet, Murray Smith, Shane McMorran, Lorne Rosnau, Stewy Stuart, Gord Gregorson and Peter Tassie. Although the team didn’t win, they ranked close to the top, and enjoyed the fun and companionship of participating, as well as supporting a worthwhile project.
·         Peter thanked the club and team members for the opportunity to be on the team, all the more enjoyable because it was his 85th birthday, following which the club brought forward a birthday cake, served to all members.

     Randy Kazemir introduced the program, consisting of representatives of the Global Education Class at Clarence Fulton Secondary School, with the objective of participating in a variety of beneficial community projects.
     The group leader, Hana Ouchi, introduced the other representatives – Marshall Kazemir, Nicole Balmer, Jamee Petterson, Lisa Stewart and Jessica Houghton – each of whom described a community project including the Salvation Army, the Lavington Elementary School, the Black Prince Cabin, etc.
     The class is to travel to Nicaragua in about three weeks, where they will stay for about a month and be associated with an orphanage there and construct a verdularia or produce shed.

      The group was thanked by Stewy Stuart.

·         Peter Tassie spoke on the Spelling Bee Challenge, held earlier in the day, sponsored by Kal Tire with the proceeds to the Vernon Literary Centre. Our club team was one of 20 teams, each of 8 people, and the members were Carol Schroeder, Betty Gaudet, Murray Smith, Shane McMorran, Lorne Rosnau, Stewy Stuart, Gord Gregorson and Peter Tassie. Although the team didn’t win, they ranked close to the top, and enjoyed the fun and companionship of participating, as well as supporting a worthwhile project.

·         Peter thanked the club and team members for the opportunity to be on the team, all the more enjoyable because it was his 85th birthday, following which the club brought forward a birthday cake, served to all members.

PAG Carol Schroeder has uploaded her pictures to ttps://
Click on this or copy it to your browser to see the pictures. 

Below is the story that I sent to our District 5060 Newsletter editor and it may or may not be included in the next "Roundup".

The Club’s members wined, dined, and entertained almost 500 Local Area Seniors for a Free Evening of Dinner and Live Entertainment.  Most seniors danced part of the night away to music by the Backyard Band.

The Club sponsors this event which for 50 years has been free to Vernon Area seniors, the proceeds for which come from the Club’s funds and contributions from the Christmas Carol Festival.

      In front of President Shane McMorran, members of the Rotary Club of Vernon, visitor and guests, PDG Jack Peters inducted RCMP Inspector Jim McNamara of the Vernon Detachment of the RCMP as member of the club. Jim’s classification has something to do with ‘policing’.  

     PDG Jack at the podium: “President Shane, Rotarians, guests and friends, Jim,  please stand and join me at the front.”  While Jim was walking to jack’s side as requested, Pres Shane waved to the assemblage to rise and applaud the inductee.  The startled members not being accustomed to this way of doing things, nevertheless rose and applauded.

     PDG Jack took this interruption in stride and went on with the Induction.


This is a quick reminder about the literacy webinar coming up on 28 February. It will be a great opportunity to learn how your club or district can develop a strong, sustainable literacy project in light of March, Rotary Literacy Month.

  To see more or tp register, please select one of the options 2011ThemeLogo_Small:

Russell Shortt of the Rotary Club of Vernon has been delivering donuts to the members of the club and as a consequence has helped Rotary deliver polio vaccines to children of the world.

Since 2010, through the efforts of Russell the Donut Man, club members have enabled the club to donate $600 over the years. At a cost of US$0.10 for the cost of the polio vaccine and US$0.50 for delivery, the cost of 60 cents per immunization has been provided to 1,000 children who will no longer be lamed or worse by polio.

The Rotarian magazine of March 2012 ran a series of pictures of a pizza or a candy bar crossed out with a red bar and explanation that if the reader cut out one HALF of a candy bar, the cost of that could save one child from polio.  The same message attached to a crossed out pizza pie is that the cost of a WHOLE pie can deliver polio vaccine to 33 children.

 The Registered Music Teacher of Vernon presented a Gala Festival Recital at All Saints Anglican Church on Sunday March 4 which showcased all the Top Students who participated in the previous 6 day festival.

Performances included Vocals – both Classical and Musical Theatre and Piano – all to the delight of family and friends. Repertoire and Awards ranged from grade 1 to ARCT. Awards included a cheque presentation to Gillian Wong, by Rotarian Otto Rieve of the Rotary Club of Vernon for receiving highest marks at the ARCT level.

The Vernon Rotary Club is now on Twitter, Facebook and You Tube.

Vernon BC Rotary is @VernonBCRotary on Twitter

Vernon BC Rotary is also on Facebook

Go to our Facebook page.  Once we have 30 fans to our Facebook page, we can have a more simple web link like this: so encourage people to go to our page and click the "Like" button.

Vernon BC Rotary is VernonBCRotary on You Tube

Our social media marketing plan is to increase awareness of the club and it's activities, and by doing so, increase interest and membership.

Pssst....Pass it on!  Let your friends and aquaintances know so that they can keep up to date on our activities and maybe even join the club

On Wednesday, November 24th, the Rotary Club of Vernon hosted guest speaker Ms. Leah Goldstein who is a personal trainer and motivational speaker currently residing in BC. A former professional cyclist, Leah retired from thirteen years on the pro road race circuit in the spring of 2010, following an accident in which she broke both of her arms. At that luncheon meeting, Leah stated that her latest goal  was to participate 2011 Race Across America (RAMM). And participate she did!!

Known as "the World's Toughest Bicycle Race," the formidable 3000 mile course took her from Oceanside, CA to Annapolis, MD over the course of 10 days beginning June 15th and ending on June 24th. Almost half of all solo riders never even finished what was the 30th anniversary version of the race, but for Leah just finishing was not enough. Leah dominated the Female Solo racer category, leading from start to finish. She was the first woman across the  line in a time of 11 days, 4 hours, 41 minutes. Her finishing time and average speed of 11.13 mph was the fastest since 2001.

At the Wednesday, June 22, 2011 weekly meeting of the Rotary Club of Vernon, the Club was presented with two prestigious District Awards by AG3 Carol Schroeder. The awards presented were for Best Club Project: Community Event, as well as a Presidential Citation.

The Community Event was the Spring Break-out for Seniors which was organized by Byron Beck.

The Presidential Citation recognizes clubs that have been effective in meeting the Rotary's Four Avenues of Service:

     1. Club Service

     2. Vocational Service

     3. Community Service

     4. International Service

The Presidential Citation is awarded on President Klinginsmith's behalf by a club's local district (5060). It is awarded to a club as a whole, not to any indivdual member.

President Rina Wheeldon received the awards from AG3 Schroeder on behalf of all Club members.

The following letter was received by Otto Rieve from Hauke Mueller following his visit the Wednesday, June 22, 2011 Club luncheon:

Dear Otto and the Rotary Club of Vernon:

Thank you so much for the warm welcome that the Rotary Club of Vernon gave Christiane and me today at the Rotary lunch. It was indeed a very special occasion for me to be back and to visit you fellow Rotarians after such a long time.

I was born in Essen and became a Rotary exchange student in Vernon during the school year 1982/83. I attended grade 12 at VSS. Vernon turned out to be the perfect location for me, who loves to do sports and any kind of outdoor activity.

I stayed with four families during my exchange year: the Hunters, the Hickenbottoms, Betty and Jack Peters, and Betty and Harvey Gee. I was taken to the Rockies, to Shuswap Lake, to Vancouver and many other interesting places. In the winter I skidooed with Jack Peters and in the summer Harvey Gee took me waterskiing. And so I could go on and on...

After my exchange year was over I went back to Germany. I finished high school and went through law school. After that I married Christiane and we had two daughters, Hannah and Luise, now 19 and 17 years old. I then got a job with the Coca-Cola Company and we moved to Berlin.

Luise has spent the last year in Vernon, too. She was an international student at Kalamalka High School and she stayed with Alan Gee and his family, who used to be my host brother when I was in Vernon with the Gee family. Alan and his family visited us in Berlin two years ago as did Betty and Harvey Gee, and Betty and Jack Peters who visited us in Germany some years ago. My family and I have also hosted three exchange students in Germany.

Looking back, the Rotary exchange programme, the opportunities and the friendly people I met while I was on it all those years ago, were pivotal and defining to me for many good things to come. I cannot emphasize enough how thankful I am, especially towards my host families.

All I can say is that we would love to return part of the favours. If you or any of your family members were to travel to Germany and if they may be looking for a place of contact in Berlin, we would be happy to host or support them in any way we can.

Thank you very much again and all the best regards,

Christiane & Hauke

The Rotary Club of Vernon's annual Lobsterfest was held on Friday, June 17th, 2011 at the Shubert Centre located at 3310 - 37th Avenue. Doors opened at 6:00 pm and diner was served at 7:00 pm. This highly popular event was open to all Rotarians and their families and friends and very well attended. Carol Schroeder (AG3) organized the event and was the MC for the evening. The lobster "openers" extraordinare were Byron Beck and  Russell Shortt. Bob Blakely, Bob Weatherill and Stewey Stewart provided the entertainment on both banjo and/or guitar, with Bob W. leading a few rounds of singalongs. Door prizes (including a massive FIVE pound "Homerous Americanis"), games and raffles added to the night's fun.

The Rotary Club of Vernon's annual Lobsterfest will be held on Friday, June 17th, 2011 at the Shubert Centre located at 3310 - 37th Avenue). Doors open at 6:00 pm and diner will be served at 7:00 pm.

The menu for the evening is as follows:

          Fresh whole Atlantic Lobster - $35

          Steak - $25

          Chicken - $25

          (Each includes salad, diner bun, dessert, and choice of wine, tea or coffee)

Door prizes, games, raffles and entertainment will also add to the night's fun.

This highly popular event is open to all Rotarians and their families and friends.

For more information, please contact Carol Schroeder at 250-545-8499.

Day 22: Friday - June 3rd, 2011 

At the end of a 12,000km ride such as this to and from New Orleans, vehicles and particularly motorcycles need serving for oil, tires and miscellaneous repairs.  In my case, the Kawasaki didn’t like the water that I must have pumped with the gasoline that I purchased at the US small town or highway gas stations. Maybe it was the methanol that is added to gasoline in some of the US gas and methanol attracts water.  In any case, the Big Kawasaki was occasionally sputtering on the return trip from New Orleans and this sputtering became worse as we rode in rain and snow in Montana. The bike would always start, however.  In Missoula on Day 18 Tuesday - May 30, 2011 Marc and Elisabeth had gone west to go home and I had decided to stay overnight in Missoula.  The next day I headed north on Highway 93 and the bike ran fine on the way to Cranbrook BC.  When I left Cranbrook on Thursday June 2, all things were well – weather and motorcycle  - but the water in the tank eventually brought travel to a halt.  Somewhere between Golden and Revelstoke I pulled off the road and had BCAA tow me home to Vernon.  The bike has since been serviced, it is running well again and I am planning my next trips.


Life is a journey and not a destination and it will soon be time for me to once again point the motorcycle in a direction – it doesn’t matter what direction or where I go since The Ride Is The Reason – and see where the road takes me and what events and adventures I may encounter there. Let the journey continue.

Day 21: Thursday - June 2, 2011

The weather was good and I looked forward to my last day of riding on this trip and to arrive home in Vernon, BC.  I was glad to be coming home and to see my place again and to sleep in my own bed.  Nevertheless, I also knew that once I had unpacked and was back into the routine of home, I would soon be eagerly planning my next ride or my next trip. Highway 93 was in good shape and traffic was light, the views were great and I stopped often at historical markers.  Life was different for those early immigrants. 

Day 20: Wednesday - June 1, 2011

The day was designed to be a day with family. Since my boots had leaked in the rain and snow in Momtana and I had had wet feet, I took an opportunity to visit the local Harley Davidson dealer to shop for boots.  Marc had H-D boots, of course, and was happy with them so I though I would give them a try.  The store didn’t have my size so I went to a boot repair store who promised to have my boots ready for the next morning, which he did.

Day 19: Tuesday - May 31, 2011 

The day in Missoula, MT dawned gloriously clear, the sky was blue, dappled with a few puffy clouds and the temperature was cool – just great for motorcycling in the high plains of Montana. After the snow of two days ago, the drizzle of rains yesterday and the necessity to be cautious and wear rain gear coming out of Red Lodge to Missoula this was a ride to which I looked forward.

I loaded up the bike, fired up and headed out for Highway 93 north for Canada and to see my daughter and her family in Cranbrook, BC.  After the humidity of Louisiana, the dust of Texas and the dryness of Utah, it was a wonderful feeling of coming home to the pines and the mountain air. The mountain tops still had snow on them and the views were great.  I stopped often to take pictures – just appreciating, the ride and this day of being alive. I crossed into Canada at Roosville and changed my GPS display from miles to kilometres.

At my daughter’s house I was angrily greeted by Amos the dog who had been neutered just a couple of days ago.  He was wearing a hood and he was not happy – I could only sympathize.  My daughter and grandsons were happier to see me.

Day 17: Sunday - May 29th, 2011

It was 38 degrees farenheight when they woke up in the morning with hard rain and the east entrance to Yellowstone, NP closed.  Elizabeth picked up the dog and they left in the cold and rain.  The plan was to ride around Bear Tooth Pass (it was closed due to the storm)and on to Belfair, MT. They would then make for Red Lodge and on to Columbus, Montana then head over to Gardner, MT and the north entrance to Yellowstone. Climbing out of Cody, the rain turned to snow at the 5000 foot elevation, but changed back to rain after they dropped back down.  Going from Belfair to Red Lodge involved a climb back up to 6000 ft, and it was snowing hard coating the road. Of course, motorcycles do not have windshield wipers so travelling in inclement weather is hazardous at best. Otto soon had sleet accumulating on his moustache.


Day 18: Monday - May 30, 2011 

While there was still snow on the ground in the morning, the roads were wet but black from the rain and plowing so they headed out.  Somewhere around Big Timber, MT Otto’s Kawasaki acted up and started missing.  The loss of power kept him to the side of the road and Elisabeth followed.  After discussing the situation and the bike starting again and suddenly running smoothly he decided to set off again. Shortly after the missing problem recurred and Otto left the freeway and attempted to limp along a side road. Elisabeth set off to catch Marc, but her cell phone was once again dead.  The electrical short was manageable if the rain held up.  He met Marc at a McDonalds, Elisabeth bought a new phone and they eventually set off again. Once they arrived at Missoula, MT, Otto decided to play it cautious for the remainder of his trip. He therefore chose to stay for the night in Missoula and to simply head north to Canada in the morning.

Day 16: Saturday - May 28th, 2011

It was raining in the morning when they left North Platte and Otto was forced do don his rainsuit gear for the first time. They headed West on Highway 20 through Scotts Bluff, NB and into Wyoming, again passing through lots of green countryside. They cruised through Casper, on to Shoshoni, and then north to overnight in Cody, WY.  It was a beautiful ride. The reason they came to Cody was so Elisabeth could pick up a Corgi dog at the animal shelter for her niece.

Day 15: Friday - May 27th, 2011

They continued north on Highway 83 out of Texas, through Oklahoma and Kansas and to North Platte, Nebraska. There was a lot of flat green farmland and numerous oil wells in all three states, although the part of Nebraska was quite hilly. There had been a lot of rain and the snowmelt that had caused flooding along the North Platte River. Many mosquitoes met their demise n their windshields and helmet visors.

Day 14: Thursday - May 26th, 2011

On Thursday, they left Brookshire and rode Texas Highway 36 northwest through Texas hill country and up into the very picturesque Pan Handle stopping in Childress, TX.

Day 13: Wednesday - May 25, 2011

Marc’s wife  Lori left to catch plane back to Seattle at 04:30am.  He and Otto, with Elizabeth following in her car, left at 8:30 am via the Gulf of Mexico route through the Bayou country, Port Arthur, TX and up to a little place past Huston called Brookshire, TX.  This was not the return route that they had originally planned (North on the Mississippi River to the Naches Parkway and on to Nashville, TN) which they altered because of the many tornados in the area. 

They did not see any signs of the BP oil spill, but it was interesting to see some the houses and buildings (but not churches…) up on stilts or pilings. The TV was full of flood warnings about the rivers north of the area, but while there were high waters, particularly after the release of water over the spillways, they saw no actual flooding.

Day 12: Tuesday, May 24, 2011

On Tuesday morning, they went to the WWII National Museum, followed by more of the House of Friendship. At the second plenary session held in the afternoon, Bill Gates spoke about PolioPlus. He requested all Rotarians to tell everyone about PolioPlus and how close we are to eradicating the disease. He said that the last 1% is going to be the toughest, so don't give up and keep the donations coming. This will be a monumental achievement.

Day 11: Monday - May 23, 2011 

Plenary Session #1 dealt with Katrina Revisited, Understanding Generation Y, Rotary's Role in South Africa and there was entertainment by a high school choir from South Africa.  In the afternoon there was the IYFR Open Forum on Rule Changes. Otto took a bus departure immediately after to the Southern Yacht Club for dinner and the IYFR AGM. After all the formal meeting business was concluded, there was still time to socialize and to see old friends and to meet new IYFR members from around the world. Many invitations were extended to come visit and sail. later that evening it was off to Deanie's on Bourbon Street again.

Day 10: Sunday - May 22, 2011

In the morning, they all went to pick up their registration packages at the convention site and to attend the House of Friendship, a gathering place which has booths of Rotary clubs and some of their activities plus there are vendors dealing in various things Rotary.  There they met some Rotarians from South Africa and Istanbul. 

Everyone went to the convention centre to attend the Opening Ceremony and Plenary Session with its very touching flag ceremony involving all the countries in which Rotary is located. After the festivities, they took a cab to Commanders Palace in the Garden District and walked around seeing the sights a little on Bourbon Street. They then caught a trolley back downtown, walked the Riverwalk back to the Convention and caught a shuttle back to their hotel. They went for lunch at the Crescent City Brewery where they had delicious New Orleans meal of raw oysters plus lobster salad. Later on, after more sightseeing, they met up with several Everett Rotarians at Drago's for a drink and then caught the River Trolley to the French Market area for dinner at Stanleys and Biegnet and finally coffee at Cafe Du Monde.

Day 9: Saturday - May 21, 2011

On Saturday, some of the riders took a long drive north of New Orleans, across the 29 mile long Lake Pontchartrain Causeway and wandered around the countryside and thru some small towns and bergs. Some of the houses were very elegant and the yards large and well kept. They then turned back across more Louisiana as far as Interstate I110 and finally returned south to New Orleans. There was till a great deal of water coming thru the flood gates in Lake Pontchartrain. Elizabeth, Otto, Marc, and Marc’s wife Lori then had dinner at Deanies in the French Quarter where they happened to run into DG Penny Offer from District 5040.

Day 8: Friday - May 20th, 2011

All the riders from the various routes congregated at the parking lot of the local Baton Rouge Harley Davidson Dealer at 9:00 am for a coffee fuelled meet and greet. They were joined by several local IFMR riders as well. In all, there were a total of 52 motorcycles and drivers, as well as many passengers and guests.

At 9:30 am, eight Blue Knights (local off-duty policemen on motorcycles) arrived to escort everyone for the 85 mile parade into New Orleans. Along the way on the Interstate, many state troopers as well as numerous police from the various cities they passed blocked intersections to ensure their safety. Everyone eventually arrived en masse at the Convention Centre where they were greeted by a huge crowd of Rotarians and photographers. They parked, posed from some photos and then went inside to be welcomed by RI President Ray Klinginsmith and Rotary Foundation Vice-Chair john Germ.

A brief cheque presentation ceremony was held where IFMR-NA’s Bob Shriner announced that almost $50,000 had been raised through the Ride for Polio endeavour. This was met with great applause by the hundreds of people in attendance.

A video of the event may be viewed here:

Day 7: Thursday – May 19, 2011

Otto and Marc rejoined the main pack at their hotel and everyone left Plano, Texas at 7:30 am.  There was some conflict between the directions they had and what their GPs instructed them to do to avoid the horrible Dallas traffic.

The weather was overcast, but warm and they were expecting rain later on in the day. Nonetheless, it was great weather for a riding in the morning. By noon it warmed up to being sultry.  The group crossed the last of Texas and entered Louisiana at Shreveport then headed south to Baton Rouge. They crossed over the dreaded spillway that had on the news, but did not see any homes flooded out.

Day 6: Wednesday – May 18, 2011

The morning got off to a slow start as one of the California Group, Jean, had to have her Harley Davidson picked up by the local dealer to have it worked on.  She was able to get it started, however, and rode it to the dealer herself to have a mechanic analyse it. It seemed to be a reoccurrence of a problem she had had a few years ago. Everyone left around 10:00 am, but soon Jean was pulling over to the side of the road again. Marc and Otto followed her into a Dairy Queen where she tried to restart her bike. It would fire, but not run. The Harley dealer agreed to tow her again though. Everyone decided that since she was in good hands and there was not much further that anyone else could do to help her at this point, so they headed out to rejoin the main group. Everyone then roared off to Plano which is a suburb of Dallas, Texas.

Marc and Otto stayed at Marc’s friend Jim’s (an old college friend) for the night, while the remainder of the group checked into the hotel as planned. Everyone was to meet up again in the morning for the ride to Baton Rouge.

Day 5: Tuesday – May 17, 2011

Everyone woke up bright and early in the morning in Taos, New Mexico and Otto promptly had a flat tire. They eventually found a small motorcycle shop in the vicinity but the mechanics could not be of much help, so Otto just re-inflated the tire and headed for the Kawasaki shop they knew was in Santa Fe. Unfortunately, that shop did not have a new tire either. So Otto then called ahead to the dealer in Albuquerque who actually had one so they again re-inflated Otto’s tire and headed off. Everyone finally arrived in Albuquerque around noon and, following the necessary repairs, it was nearly 3:00 pm before they got back on the road again. Once on Interstate I40 they rode hard for Amarillo, Texas.

Day 4: Monday – May 16, 2011

Marc, Otto and Elizabeth apparently had spent too much time in the Zion and Bryce National Parks yesterday so they had to ride hard in order to make up some time. They rode from Torrey, Utah to Taos, New Mexico via Lake Powell, then down the Moki Dugway to Bluff, Utah and on into Arizona and finally New Mexico via Highway US64. They summated a 10,500’ pass in New Mexico. There was still a lot of snow at that elevation, but it was very beautiful country to ride through. They then crossed the Continental Divide where at that point all the snow melt was now running toward the Mississippi River. Tomorrow the Seattle Group hopes to be in Amarillo, Texas to rendezvous with the California ride group.


Day 3: Sunday - May 15, 2011

The Seattle Group left Boise, Idaho in the morning and followed Interstate I84 through to Buell. They then turned south on Highway US93 and passed through Jackpot and Ely, Nevada. The three riders ended up spending the night in the very old mining town of Pioche, Nevada. They reported having great weather, but it was a little windy at times and they had to dodge a few brief showers. The road was very good and there was little traffic. Their plan for tomorrow is to pass through Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks and Lake Powell, hopefully making Farmington, New Mexico by the end of the day.


 Day 1: Friday - May 13, 2011

Otto and Marc left Everett and headed to Ellensburg to meet Elisabeth who was to follow them in her SUV. This allowed her to act as a support vehicle. Elisabeth had previously ridden from Leavenworth, WA to Los Angeles and then along Route 66 to the 2005 RI Convention in Chicago, IL.

Day 2: Saturday – May 14, 2011

IFMR members Marc Baker, Otto Rieve, and Elisabeth Saunders (the Seattle Group) hit the road early in the morning and ended their first day on the road at Meridian, ID. IFMR members Bob Shriner, Charlie Foote, and Blair Campbell also reported that they were now in Albany, NY and would depart on their trek to New Orleans early the next morning.

Otto Rieve departed Vernon on May 10th for New Orleans, LA as part of the International Fellowship of Motorcycling Rotarians Ride for Polio in support of Polio Plus. Otto will be driving more than 5,000 kms on his Kawasaki Vulcan motorcycle to attend the Rotary International Convention taking place in New Orleans later this month. Of the estimated 100 riders gradually making their way to the convention over various planned routes, he was one of the highest fundraisers and received over $2,100 in generous contributions from local donors in support of Rotary's continuing efforts to eradicate Polio worldwide.

The Group Study Exchange (GSE) Team from Bangladesh District 3280 arrived in District 5060 on Sunday, May 1st. The Team finally arrived in Kelowna after experiencing some delays along the way.  They begin their exchange there, moving onto Kamloops on May 6th and then arriving in Vernon on May 11th.

Team members include Shohid Chowdhury (Team Leader),  Ishrat Jahan Akhond, Ishrat Ismail and Sharif Islam. A fifth member of the team, Jannatul Ferdous, has still not obtain her Canadian travel visa as of yet, but it is hoped that she will be able to join the team in Vernon at some point. After leaving our area, they will next travel to Princeton , Oliver and Osyoos. Unfortunately, the none of the team received their US travel visas in time and will not be able to visit the US side of District 5060, nor the District Conference in Ellensburg. The team's last few days will therefore be spent in Salmon Arm/Revelstoke/Chase before departing May 27th from Kelowna.

The Rotary GSE program is a unique cultural and vocational exchange opportunity for business people and professionals between the ages of 25 and 40 who are in the early stages of their careers. Since 1965, the program has provided inspiring vocational, educational, and cultural experiences for more than 70,000 men and women.  The purpose of a Group Study Exchange is to promote international understanding and goodwill through person-to-person contact. The program provides travel grants for teams to exchange visits in paired areas of different countries. For four to six weeks, team members experience the host country's culture and institutions, observe how their vocations are practiced abroad, develop personal and professional relationships, and exchange ideas. Team members also share personal knowledge of their own country and experience the customs and lifestyles of another.

In a typical four-week tour, applicants participate in five full days of vocational visits, 15 to 20presentations to Rotary clubs and other groups about their home country, 10 to 15 formal visits and social events, two to three days at the district conference, three to four hours per day of cultural and site tours, and three to four hours per day of free time with host families.

The Rotary Foundation provides a round-trip air ticket, and local Rotarians in the host country provide meals, lodging, and group travel in their district. Team members pay for personal and incidental expenses.

The O'Keefe Ranch continues to benefit from the Rotary Club of Vernon's generousity. Many Club members have donated thier time and attended work parties during the last four weekends, beginning April 9th and concluding on Rotary at Work Day on April 30th. Russel Shortt is the Work Day Coordinator. We are currently helping develop the children's playground. The O'Keefe Power Tractor Club donated an old tractor which has been partially burried as a play-on. The playground equipment that was purchased by the Club last year has been fully assembled, as well as a new 2011 play barn. Later this summer, the Club will provide a sandbox and benches.

The Rotary Club of Vernon's own Pamela Owen recently took part in the April 17, 2011 edition of the Vancouver Sun Run. The Sun Run is the second largest timed 10k road running event in the WORLD and this year over 50,000 participants lined up to challenge themselves over 10,000 grueling metres of pavement. Pamela improved her time over last year with a blistering 01:12:08, no doubt due to her new (faux) Leopard skin running shoes.

Tara Brautigam, April 07, 2011, The Canadian Press

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan - Canada's fight to eradicate polio from Afghanistan seemed within reach when it was announced three years ago. But hopes of having the debilitating disease wiped out by now remain a work in progress, having fallen victim to the precarious security situation, particularly in the south. The ongoing battle to defeat a disease that has been eliminated nearly everywhere else in the world speaks to how difficult it is to make basic advances in a country wracked by a generation of war. It is also a reflection of its persistent instability, despite nearly a decade of NATO battlefield victories against the insurgency.
The annual Rotarians at Work Day is rapidly approaching on Saturday, April 30th. The vision of the program is to have every Rotarian around the world participating in a service project of some kind on April 30th. This year, the Rotary Club of Vernon will once again descend upon the O'Keefe Ranch to help assemble some playground equipment, also donated by the club.

Almost 30,000 Rotarians and volunteers from 35 districts worldwide rolled up their sleeves to improve their communities as part of Rotarians At Work Day last year. William Jenkin, AG9 of District 5060, is the Rotarian at Work Day Chair. Historically, our district has been #2 in both clubs and Rotarian participation WORLDWIDE for the past few years. William is requesting that Rotarians identify a specific club project and let him know ASAP at or 509-778-2482.
Kim Carter, official Ombudsperson for the Government of the Province of British Columbia addressed the weekly Wednesday meeting of the Rotary Club of Vernon on March 23rd, 2011. President Rina Wheeldon welcomed her to the meeting and Peter Tassie introduced her to the audience.

Carter discussed the role that the BC Ombudsperson plays in Provincial government administration and the work that her office performs on behalf of all citizens of the Province. She stated that her focus was to ensure fairness for all individuals when accessing government services, particularly in how they are treated.

The Ombudsperson conducts indepth and impartial reviews of all complaints. Her office does not have any formal power to make orders or require action, but does have the ability to make official recommendations which are usually taken very seriously.
Kim Carter, Ombudsperson for the Province of British Columbia, will be address members and guests of the Rotary Club of Vernon on Wednesday, March 23, 2011. Carter will be discussing the mandate of the Office of the BC Ombudsperson and the role that she plays in ensuring public citizens are dealt with fairly and openly by the Government of the Province of British Columbia. She will also be explaining the type of work that she does around the Province and the process that is available for individuals to raise concerns if they believe that have not been treated fairly by the Provincial administration.
The 2011 edition of thee Rotary Club of Vernon's Annual Spring Break-out for Seniors took place on the evening of Wednesday, March 16th at the Vernon Recreation Centre. The parking lot was full as nearly 500 enthusiastic local area seniors lined up early to take part in one of Vernon's most popular "Welcome to Spring" events after a long cold winter, prompting the Rotary greeters to open the doors earlier than the official 5:00 pm time originally scheduled.
Otto Rieve, BC Ride Captain for the International Fellowship of Motorcycling Rotarians Ride for Polio, is pleased to report that efforts to obtain sponsorships for the upcoming fundraising ride to New Orleans, LA for the International Rotary Convention on May 19th are progressing.
Rotary Club of Vernon member Otto Rieve and Rotary Club of Richmond Sunrise member Yvonne Hardwood recently traveled to Seattle, Washington to attend the Post Seattle Boat Show Dinner hosted by the Cascade Fleet at the Seattle yacht Club.

The January 29th, 2011 gathering featured a presentation on the topic of modern electronics for boating. As always, the food, educational talk and fellowship met true Rotarian standards of excellence and many friendships were revisited, renewed or established.
Some 58 Rotarians, their spouses, Inner Wheel members and guests celebrated the Chinese New Year at the Golden Crown Restaurant on 3006 28th Avenue in Vernon on February 4th. In honor of the Year of the Rabbit according to the Chinese Zodiac, Pamela Owen attended in bunny attire and read out the astrological meaning behind the twelve animal signs on the Chinese Calendar.
The Rotary Club of Vernon's Annual Spring Break-out for Seniors takes place in the evening Wednesday, March 16th, 2011 at the Vernon Recreation Centre (3310 37th Avenue). The event, highly anticipated by Vernon's seniors, has been held for more than 50 years and is a free dinner and dance with live entertainment. Nearly 500 local seniors will enjoy a delicious complimentary meal with wine, served by Rotarians themselves, followed by entertainment. Door prizes, dance performances and live music will round out the evening. This year the dance floor will once again be packed, with the ever popular Backyard Band playing.
The International Fellowship of Motorcycling Rotarians (IFMR) recently announced plans to organize group motorcycle rides to the 2011 Rotary International convention in New Orleans from several different parts of the Canada, the United States and Mexico. The Ride for POLIO PLUS is a special effort to help raise awareness and promote donations in support of Rotary's continuing effort to eradicate polio everywhere in the world. The funds raised will help match a dollar-for-dollar $200 million grant to the Rotary Foundation for the POLIO PLUS campaign from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
At the weekly Rotary Club of Vernon Wednesday meeting, incoming president Shane McMorran gave a presentation on Alzheimer's disease and related dementia. He showed a brief video entitled "Jan's Story" which chronicled the gradual decline of a vibrant young woman stricken with early onset Alzheimer's disease and her family's struggle to come to grips with her deteriorating condition and fate.
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