Meeting of 11/3/16: ‘No-Sew Blanket Project’

screen-shot-2016-10-16-at-7-10-54-pmMeeting at Quigley’s Restaurant
593 Columbia Turnpike
East Greenbush, NY
November 3, 2016

Members Attending (17): Debbie Rodriguez, Murray Forth, Pat Bailey, Jim Leyhane, Terry Brewer, Peter Brown, Debbie Brown, Phil Kellerman, Ray Hannan, Ron Annis, Dick Drum, David Taylor, Roberto Martinez, Julius Frankel, Stewart Wagner, Dean Calamaras, Doris Calamaras.

Guests: None.

PROGRAM: ‘Uncle Shawn’s Hugs Blanket Project’

This year’s blanket workshop resulted in a dozen new pieces. And the scenes below show you how it came together.

Attendees worked diligently on making no-sew blankets for the “Uncle Shawn’s Hugs” project created by the Blue Star Mothers military family support group.

This was the second year we have undertaken the work, and we completed about a dozen blankets. They will go on the Toys for Tots holiday train sponsored by the U.S. Marine Corps and distributed to children in need.

The “Uncle Shawn’s Hugs” initiative honors Sgt. Shawn Martin of Delmar, a Marine killed in Iraq.



WELCOME — President Debbie Rodriguez welcomed members. She then thanked the club for the Lego sets sent to her grandchildren, including Xavier who is undergoing treatment for leukemia. The first set was received in time for his birthday party on Saturday and Debbie said he was very excited. She also reported that he is doing well and the family will know in two weeks if he is in remission, and then next phase of treatment will begin. Jim Leyhane devised the ongoing Legos project. Anyone who wishes to assist can provide him with a onetime $60 cash payment.

NORDIC ALLIANCE — Phil Kellerman proposed a fundraiser for Capital Region Nordic Alliance (CRNA), the two-year-old nonprofit that creates and runs a variety of adaptive sports programs for people with all sorts of physical and developmental needs. Packages of coffee would be sold to members at $15 each, or two for $25, with $5 from each sale going to the club treasury for CRNA. Several members expressed interest, so Phil said he will order a small supply to start. CRNA founder Russ Myer recently made a presentation to the club.

BOWLING FOR VETS — Treasurer/event coordinator Murray Forth reported that we have a good number of sponsors and assistance for the event to src-bowling-logobe held this Sunday at the East Greenbush Bowling Center. It’s not too late to sponsor a lane ($100) or to get a team together for the event. Full details are on the website.

FLAGPOLE DEDICATION — Ray Hannan spoke about this week’s flagpole dedication and flag ceremony at Eastwyck Village, attended by a delegation of Rotarians. Details and photos of the event are on the club website.

CARING COMMUNITY — We are supporting the Caring Community organization with 10 food baskets, a project created at a meeting of our Third Thursday breakfast group. Contributions should be delivered by the November 10 meeting, or to the Greenbush Area YMCA by November 15.

srclogoFOUNDATION & CLUB APPAREL — Terry Brewer asked members to verify their orders and sizes for the special Rotary Foundation T-shirts being purchased by the club in support of the Foundation. Anyone wishing to help defray the cost is asked to contribute $20 per shirt. … Jim Leyhane reminded members that Dawn Vavala, a member of the Twin Bridges Rotary Club, is our source for ordering a variety of shirts, fleeces, caps, mugs and other items emblazoned with our new club logo. Details are on the website.

RECYCLING EVENT — Mike Dewey and Matt Smith are organizing this event covering paper and technology items for Saturday, January 14. The per-pound fee will be in the $1.50-$2 range, with an extra fee for such items as TV sets. More details to come.

SIMULATED GOLF EVENTS — We will hold at least two indoor simulator golf events this winter — in January and March, with specific dates to be determined in consultation with the Burden Lake Country Club, the host venue.

CLOTHING NEEDED — Doris Calamaras reported that Doors of Hope in West Sand Lake and Catholic Charities in Rensselaer both are in need of new or gently used clothing for kids and adults, especially gloves and hats for the winter.

rotary-home-cooking-logoROTARY HOME COOKING — Our annual series of member-hosted home events will resume in January. The procedure is for a member/members to host a small dinner party, preferably with a theme, for six or eight guests. The hosts supply the food and drinks, and the guests donate a check for a specified amount determined by the hosts that will go to the club treasury. Plan your event and reserve a date now. We usually do one a month.

ADOPT A FAMILY — The club once again will adopt one or two families for the holidays in conjunction with the local family services agency Circles of Mercy. April Dowd is making arrangements with Circles’ executive director who will provide a wish list before Thanksgiving to be distributed to club members.

DISTRICT MEMBERSHIP & PR SUMMIT — Roberto Martinez spoke about the event he and Jim Leyhane attended last Saturday, at which Bill Dowd made a presentation on websites, social media, and traditional print and electronic media contacts. More than 40 representatives from clubs throughout the District attended. Details are on the website.

DISTRICT FOUNDATION DINNER — Reservation deadline for the annual event, to be held on Thursday, November 17, at the Saratoga National Golf Club in Saratoga Springs, is November 10. Go here for details. So far, Jim Leyhane, Roberto Martinez, A.J. Amato and exchange student Ella Cancio will be attending.

NEXT MEETING — 6:15 p.m. Thursday, November 10. Club member Mike Dewey, a personal financial consultant, will be the speaker.

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