Thursday Special: Voting and Competing

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The top prize for Thursday’s trivia test.

We’ll be doing double duty at Thursday’s dinner meeting — voting for a slate of nominees for the 2019-20 SRC Board of Directors, and competing in a friendly battle during the “5th annual Great North American Whizbang Trivia Test.”

To accomplish the former, we need a quorum of at least 12 SRC members to be present. To accomplish the latter, the more Rotarians and friends and family the merrier to take a crack at winning the title and a special prize.

So, as always, we need an advance headcount to be sure we have enough food on the buffet and seats around the tables. Please be sure dinner coordinator Debbie Brown (email: has your RSVP no later than Tuesday evening.

Meanwhile, here is the slate of nominees for 2019-20, with the possibility one more At-Large nomination will be made at Thursday’s meeting as permitted by our Bylaws:

Screen Shot 2019-03-28 at 10.32.11 PMSRC BOARD OF DIRECTORS NOMINEES

President: Phil Kellerman

President-elect: Dick Drumm

Vice President: Terry Brewer

Immediate Past President: Andy Leyhane

Secretary: Pat Bailey

Treasurer: Murray Forth

At-Large Members: Bill Dowd, Jim Leyhane, Roberto Martinez, Dean Calamaras


Checking in on Augie, our Bell Top pal

It’s been a while since we last looked in on Augie, the therapy dog SRC is helping support at the Bell Top Elementary School. It seems he has been very busy.

If you visit Augie’s blog, “Puppy With a Purpose,” you can catch up on what he’s been doing, from training sessions (see video above) to classroom and library visits, to fun times with the kids during a rather messy “color run,” to getting a haircut. In addition, you can find out how to purchase Augie T-shirts (see below) online. Soon, he’ll be celebrating his first birthday (June 8).

Here are just a few scenes of what Augie has been doing:

Spot the canine in the library.
Kind of messy fun in the color run.
When you’re finished, can we play?
Auggie is selling his T-shirts. (Note the name at the top of the list!)

Your ‘elevator speech’ and a follow-up

Elevator pitch
Do you ever mention Rotary to someone and they ask you what it’s all about?

We’ve all run into that situation from time to time, but some of us may be stumped for a way to succinctly explain it. May we suggest what we call our “elevator speech” — you know, what can be said in a quick trip between floors:

“We’re a volunteer community service organization of more than a million men and women who work to make our community and our world a better place for all.”

As a followup, you can suggest they visit our website at and click on “About Our Club.” That page will tell them a lot. (And, of course, there’s nothing preventing you from reading it yourself to brush up what Rotary and SRC are all about.)

We’ve started the countdown to SRC’s 5th annual Great North American Whizbang Trivia Test

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See that hefty tome above? A copy of it will go to the winner of the “5th annual Great North American Whizbang Trivia Test,” scheduled for 6:15 p.m. next Thursday, April 25, at Quigley’s. Start spreading the word!

(We were thinking of having alphabet soup and such brain-friendly foods as blueberries and avocados on the buffet table, but that might be too gimmicky. So, dinner coordinator Debbie Brown will get together with the Quigley’s kitchen staff to come up with an enticing alternative menu. Please remember to RSVP to her by email — — no later than next Tuesday, April 23, if you plan to join us. And remember, guests such as Rotaractors, non-SRC Rotarians, and non-Rotarians in general are welcome as well , but please let Debbie know in advance that they’re coming so we can provide sufficient food and seating for everyone.)

This year’s trivia event will see several format changes. Among them will be fewer categories, more tie-breaker possibilities, and a running-score tabulation so you know where you stand throughout the event.

Quizmaster Bill Dowd has created the categories and the questions in them to appeal to trivia players of all levels, from those who never have tried it to those who make a practice of hitting their local watering holes for trivia night competitions.

See you on Thursday. Bring a friend!

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Meeting Clipboard: 4/18/19

SRC ClipboardHeld at Quigley’s Restaurant
573 Columbia Turnpike
East Greenbush, NY 12061

Members Attending (15): Andy Leyhane, Jim Leyhane. Pat Bailey, Phil Kellerman, Bill Dowd,  Debbie Brown, Peter Brown, Debbie Rodriguez, Peter Berry, Terry Brewer. Geoff Brewer, Ray Hannan, Dick Drumm, Robert Martinez, Charlie Foote.

Guests (1): Betty Brewer.

Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 8.18.07 PMMEETING NOTES: President Andy greeted attendees. … Medical update: Terry Brewer returned this evening, recuperating well from knee replacement surgery. Murray Forth, who last week underwent the same procedure, is expected to return in a few weeks. … Project coordinator Debbie Brown reported that 106 baskets were delivered to Circles of Mercy for the organization’s annual Easter baskets drive for needy kids. Our partners this year providing a combination of donations, packaging, and delivering the baskets were the Greenbush YMCA, Cub Scout Pack 253, and the Danes Rotaract club. Thanks to them and to all SRC members and friends who donated basket items. … Jim Leyhane shared information on Rotary shirts available from Dawn Vavala and her Night Owl Marketing company. They come in 18 different colors and several different styles. See Jim if interested. …

Recycling IconA little more than $200 was raised at the most recent Rotary Home Cooking dinner, hosted by Dean and Doris Calamaras. This was the second event in the series, but we have no others on the schedule. Anyone who would like to create and host an event for May or June is asked to contact President Andy ASAP with details of theme and date. … Members were reminded to save the date of Saturday, May 18, for our next Recycling & Shredding Day (click on the link for details), a major fundraiser for youth scholarships and other community service efforts. Next week we will circulate a signup sheet for volunteers for the event. It’s a fun few hours for any who wish to participate, and a easy way to be involved in community service. …

Screen Shot 2019-04-10 at 3.48.04 PMTerry, who is the District Membership Committee lead, reiterated that he and Bill Dowd are working with Past District Governor Fred Daniels to help facilitate the resurrection of the Troy club that folded several years ago, leaving SRC as the lone Rotary club in Rensselaer County. Several options have been presented, including folding any interested Troy people into the existing Hudson Shores club (Watervliet, Green Island, etc.), or recreating a standalone Troy club with SRC as its sponsor. …. Phil Kellerman reminded everyone of the benefit concert scheduled for Thursday, May 9, at Quigley’s to benefit the Oley Foundation, a national nonprofit that provides education, advocacy, and networking opportunities to people living on home IV nutrition and/or tube feeding. The hour-long concert will feature music from a new CD titled “One Step Forward.” That week only, the club dinner will be held from 5:45 to 6:15 p.m., with the concert at 6:30.  Go here for more details. … Next Thursday, April 25, we’ll hold the 5th annual Great North American Whizbang Trivia Test (click on the link for details). Guests are welcome to this event which has had a different winner each year. This year’s winner will receive a copy of the “Jeopardy” all-time champ’s book, “Ken Jennings’s Trivia Almanac: 8,888 Questions In 365 Days.”

Screen Shot 2019-04-19 at 1.45.33 PMPROGRAM: Bill Dowd, who is working on a collection of his original short stories based largely on travels during more than four decades of journalism, read four of the stories to the audience.

They included, “Headed South In North America, and Vice Versa,” a trip to the Canadian border and to Mexico; “Into the Sort-of Rain Forest,” a strange interlude with wild boars and beer on the Caribbean island of St. Croix; “Times Are Tough In Bunker Hill,” antiquing and haggling in the West Virginia panhandle portion of the Shenendoah Valley, and, “A Lemon Frock and a Cold Wadadli,” a journey to a steel drum concert on the former British island colony on Antigua with an ephemeral  visitor.

It’s going to be a happy Easter for a lot of kids

Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 8.18.07 PMThe final tally has been made of how many Easter baskets SRC and its project partners at the Greenbush YMCA, Cub Scout Pack 253, and Danes Rotaract are providing.

The effort, to help make a lot of needy kids happy with traditional holiday baskets distributed by Circles of Mercy, is something SRC has been doing for a number of years, and each year we try to expand the effort to encompass more organizations performing various parts of the project, from shopping to donating to packaging to delivery.

Our pledge this year was 75 baskets, an ambitious number. How close did we come?

Drumroll please ……..


Thanks to all who pitched in with money, time, and hands-on efforts. You’re making a lot of kids happy again this Easter.