www.mybaycity.com August 30, 2009
Rotary Article 4158

Rotary Hold Orientation Then Inducts New Members

August 30, 2009
By: Stephen Kent

Cherri Burzynski and Rob Clark
Last Weeks Meeting - August 25, 2009

August is Membership Month for Rotary. Three years ago the Bay City club developed a new membership development program that resulted in 17 new members that year. The following year the club inducted nine new members.

For several years the Rotary Club has held orientation sessions for prospective new members. These lunch meetings explain the meaning and mission of Rotary and outline the Club's expectations for members.

The program last Tuesday focused on the meaning of Rotary membership. Membership co-chairs Cherri Burzynski and Rob Clark went through the highlights of the orientation for the entire club. At the end of the meeting two new members were inducted.

Rob began the program by asking some basic questions about Rotary and the Bay City Club. Rotary was founded in Chicago by Paul Harris and several business friends in 1905. The club meeting rotated among member's places of business, thus the name Rotary.

The Bay City Club was organized in 1914 and chartered in 1915 making it one of the first 150 clubs in the world where today there are some 33,000 clubs and more than 1.2 million members worldwide.

Rotarians follow the motto Service Above Self. We are guided by the four way test in all the things we do and say: Is it the TRUTH? Is it FAIR to all concerned? Will it build GOOD WILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS? Will it be BENEFICIAL to all?

Founded as a business club, Rotary very soon became a service club. The first service project was famously the construction of public toilets in downtown Chicago. (The Bay City Club honors that tradition by providing Mutt Mitts in distribution boxes on the River Walk.)

The Bay City club has a long history of service to our local community as well as international service. Each year the club hosts as many as 180 high school students who job shadow with members then come to a special luncheon. The club sponsors two gardens in the River Walk Arboretum, gives dictionaries to every third grader in Bay County and gives a thesaurus to every fourth grader.

The annual Community Grants program funds up to $12,000 worth of community programs in amounts of $500 to $2000. The club raises or grants other funds to international Rotary projects.

Rotary International spearheaded the international battle against the crippling disease polio some years ago. Today the disease is found in only a few countries and is anticipated to be defeated soon. This past year the Bay City Club was challenged to raise $12,000 and more than doubled that goal.

Every five years the club adopts a major project with a fund raising goal of $50,000 per year. The first major project funded the Bay County Library's Youth Outreach Librarian for five years. The second project build historic pocket parks in the community and supported the Pere Marquette Depot Restoration Project. The project for the next five years will support the city's Way-finding signage project, the new YMCA building project, and the Bay City Players.

The club's largest single fund raiser is International Night, which is scheduled for Thursday, October 15, 2009. The one night will raise on the order of $30,000 toward the major project. The second largest fund raiser is the annual golf outing which can raise over $10,000.

Following the orientation overview, the club was pleased to welcome Stephanie Ker and Bob Chadwick as new members. Stephanie is new to Rotary where Bob has a long history of service and was the District Governor last year.


  • Over the next few months lunch will be on the table at noon allowing members to start the meal earlier. The meeting start time will be moved up a few minutes and announcements will be shortened. The objective is to see if the meeting can be finished before 1:30.

  • International Night is rapidly approaching. The committee is soliciting auction items, volunteers, and input on the October 15 event. Forms and other information is on the RotaryBayCity.org web site.

  • Bring your old Rotarian Magazines to the meeting. They will affixed with a Rotary label and distributed to clinics, hospitals and doctor's offices.

  • Cory Place is in need of simple personal staples like toiletry items to be distributed to the homeless in Bay City. The Board discussed this and encourages interested members to take items or donations to Cory Place, 581 N Scheurmann Rd. Call them at (989) 895-5563.

  • Breezes Reporters Wanted: If you'd like to help write the weekly Breezes please see Steve Kent. It's an easy job. No experience necessary. High Pay (well at least a lot of thanks).
  • Anyone who would like a new name badge to reflect a classification change should contact Steve Kent.


  • International Night 2009 has been scheduled for October 15. The theme will be a Mediterranean Cruise.

    Upcoming Programs

    (See the official schedule at RotaryBayCity.org )

  • September 1: Interact Club - Northern Bay and Arenac Rotary Club What is an Interact Club? Interact is Rotary International's service club for young people ages 14 to 18. Interact clubs are sponsored by individual Rotary clubs, which provide support and guidance, but they are self-governing and self-supporting.

  • September 8: 10 Minute Rotarians: Rod Sundstrom and Barb Engelhardt.

  • September 15: Girl Scouts Five Girl Scout councils in Michigan merged to form one high capacity council called Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan. Dorothy Hammond, Membership Specialist, will explain how girls now have even more opportunities to discover, connect, and take action throughout the state.

  • September 22: River of Time Members of the River of Time Committee will update us on what's new this year at the River of Time Living History Event. Included will be a presentation by local reenactors.

    Visit RotaryBayCity.org

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