Rotary gives back to residentsPublished 12:05pm Saturday, January 15, 2011
Wednesday as I sat at my weekly meeting of the Fergus Falls Noon Rotary Club I couldn’t help but think about how lucky I am.
I was learning about a trip three Fergus Falls High School students had taken to China and what great ambassadors the three had been for our community.
A week ago we heard the life story of our newest member Andrew Olson, and a week prior to that we met a fine young man from Pelican Rapids who was working on his Eagle Scout badge.
As I looked around the room I saw 50 of the best friends a guy could have. It’s that fellowship with local men and women that I am proud to share in.
I say that because January is Rotary Awareness Month. Many people in Fergus Falls might not know much about Rotary and the good that our club members do throughout the community.
Your contact with Rotary might come only when we’re selling something. Throughout the year we sell peaches, roses and tickets to our annual spaghetti dinner where you get to experience Rod Ebbersviller’s famous spicy spagetti sauce.
We appreciate your contributions and do some pretty cool things with the money we raise.
Just this week we made a donation to a Fergus Falls Girl Scout troop and committed to the Dollars for Scholars program one dollar for every point scored by the Otter boys and girls basketball teams during the first half of their home games.
As a club, we believe in advancing literacy. The Fergus Falls Noon Rotary donates a dictionary to every third-grade student in Fergus Falls, including those students who attend parochial schools.
And last January we helped send Fergus Falls resident Rena Stigen to Quito, Ecuador, on a cultural ambassador scholarship where she pursued a better understanding of the Spanish lanuage.
The Noon Rotary Club is a generous contributor to the Mark Olson Scholarship fund that is presented annually to a local high school student, and the Wes Waage Scholarship fund presented to a local college student.
In recent years, our club members have built and funded a patio at Hillcrest Lutheran Academy and have plans in the works for a project at the Lakeland Hospice House.
We’re a great bunch of men and women who care a lot about service to our community — and will welcome with open arms other community members who share in our philiosphies.
Our president is Mike Westergard at StoneL and our incoming president is Scott DeBrito at Security State Bank. Either would be happy to discuss membership with you.
Next Wednesday, Otter Tail County District Judge Mark Hansen will visit our club to discuss the challenges facing the local court system.
I invite you to come on over to the YMCA at noon next Wednesday to be our guest and learn what Rotary is all about.
You’ll hear a good program and while you’re at it you’ll meet some of Fergus Falls’ finest or renew some old friendships.
I hope to see you there.
Jeff Hage is the managing editor of The Daily Journal. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.