May 3, 2022 Meeting Report

Today's meeting was our Club Assembly, an opportunity to provide programmatic updates and assess our progress.

May is Youth Service Month


Junior Rotarian Eleanor is active in a variety of clubs with an emphasis on music and the arts. She is interested in a career in psychology. Her time at our meetings should only serve to kindle that interest!
The Van der Brohe Arboretum Annual Tree Sale is happening now. Receive a 25% discount on nursery stock with proceeds benefiting the arboretum. Hurry and order by May 15! Check out their website for ordering details.
Manitowoc Rotarian Barry Nelson is at the Polish/Ukrainian border helping refugees.  He is being supported by a GoFundMe effort “War Uber.”  This war is real and this is a place to connect with what is happening there.
The Manitowoc Sunrise Club hosted a Zoom meeting on Friday, April 22nd with Ukrainian Rotarians. A recording will be provided to our club once it is available.

Today's Program

Good things are happening in the TRivers Public Schools!

Representatives from the Two Rivers Rivers Public Schools shared results of the recent community survey along with a primer on how our schools are funded.

Representatives included:
  • Mary Kay Slattery – Finance Director
  • Adam Rohrer – Facilities Director
  • Zach Peterson – School Board Member
  • Diane Johnson – District Superintendent (and Rotarian)
Part of a planned community outreach series, the presenters began with an overview of how our schools are supported. Under a total revenue cap, state aid followed by property taxes provide the vast majority of funding for our public schools. Sound financial stewardship of these funds has resulted in a stable mill rate over the past several years, a source of pride noted in the presentation.
However, facilities age and educational needs evolve resulting in a reassessment of plans for capital improvements to address these prominent needs. Centered around LB Clarke, the presenters outlined a proposed addition and renovation project. They also reviewed additional district-wide needs aimed at updating security, building systems and technology access.

A compelling case has been made to the community with positive input received from the community survey and this outreach series.  The final verdict will be rendered in the upcoming referendum needed to approve $38.7 million in funding for the plan.

Club Operations

📰  Check the program schedule for your next chance to contribute to meeting programming. You can find the program schedule on the home page of the website in the downloads section toward the bottom of the page. (Direct link to the program schedule)

📀 Rotary Club digital repository. Options for centralizing the storage of/access to Club documents are being explored, archiving the collective wisdom and experience of our members. A report out from last Friday’s Zoom meeting included four options brought to the discussion table. These ranged from a simple data dump and storage to full online collaboration.  The “simple” option of using Google Drive bubbled to the top pending board action for presentation to the membership.  Thanks to Todd N., Brenda G. and all of those who contributed their thoughts to finding the most appropriate fit for our Club’s needs.

🗣 Annual Dinner Auction 2022.  The planning group will present a final report at next week's meeting. Thank you's have been mailed out.

Keep your eyes on the prize…
Winter ice skating pond and loop, south half of park (pond overlays splash pad area)—planned for artificial ice
Club Secretary opportunity. After many years of service as Club Secretary, Colleen Inman has announced plans to step down from this role. Detailed instructions and mentorship is available. Update: Deb B. has declared her intent to partner with another member in this role.
Please consider the opportunity to express the Rotary ideal of service in the above role.

Club Events / Service Opportunities

🍽 🚗  Meals on Wheels. Next up is May 16-20! Invitations for service have been extended. Please consider the opportunity to help.
💰 District Grant (2022-23) Support is building for a Sensory Trauma Room for Kids to be located in the Aurora Emergency area. The need for such an area was raised by Lakeshore Foster Families to help already traumatized youth in our area. Partnerships have already been formed with LFF to advance the project. 
  • The need for such an area was validated by the two area health systems. When kiddos are removed from their homes, they are received in an area Emergency Department holding area. The current areas are quite institutional/sterile and add to the trauma burden.
  • The proposed Sensory Trauma Room(s) will be designed to soften this transition trauma. The startup costs have been estimated at $7K with an annual cost of $20K to sustain them. 
  • Since district grants capped at $3K per Club as well as the area wide impact of this project, we are seeking outside sponsorships to help make this a reality. The clock is ticking, however, with applications due by June 1st. 
  • The next planning meeting is scheduled for May 10th at 5:30pm at the Lakeshore Foster Families office, 1011 Washington Street, Suite 6, in Manitowoc.
(Diane J.) Get the Community Back in our Schools. (Diane J.) This is an opportunity for our Club to build student connections. Diane J. (in between sniffles) shared a full agenda of school activities with our Club.
  • The first “Grandfriends Day will be held on Friday, May 13th at LB Clarke starting at 9am.  An invitation has been extended to Club members.  Further details will be shared next week.
🎸 🏖 Bands on the Beach 2022 will be using a new concession format. Now under control of the Two Rivers Parks and Recreation staff, the revenue will be shared with area organizations at a much reduced level (10% of the take). The Club will therefore participate at just one event and will instead explore other revenue opportunities. This limited participation will serve to show support of the event as well as exposure for our Club. The new process and schedule remain to be defined.
🍎 Applefest 2022 and beyond. The TRivers Lions Club wishes to transfer “ownership” and control of this annual event to another community organization. Recognizing the learning curve needed to conduct this event, our Club would like to partner with the Lions Club leadership this year to be followed by full Rotary ownership going forward. The annual event is an important fixture of our community and offers opportunities to build on its history while providing needed Club revenue to support its program. 
  • The TRivers Lions Club is receptive to working with us in transitioning the event to Rotary control.  
  • Construction on the Central Park West project will have an impact on Applefest logistics. The City has indicated that construction will commence this fall. However, access to Central Park East (the City Hall side) is planned, along with use of the Community House.
  • Gerald Schmidt, from the Lions Club, has agreed to serve as our Club’s tutor as well as providing access to the needed equipment. 
  • Erin G. has stepped up to provide leadership for our Club … Thank you!
  • This year’s event is scheduled for October 8th with big plans for future growth going forward.

Looking Ahead...

🌎 World Affairs Seminar Reimagining Global Health and Wellness: Contagious Ideas will be held on Saturday, June 18 – Friday, June 24, 2022  Promote World Affairs Seminar information at the high school. There is one student with interest at this time. A members suggested that we reach out to the returning Europe trip kids as a natural fit for this Seminar.
🎓 Promote the Rotary Club of Two Rivers Scholarship at the high school.  Our intent is to offer multiple scholarships for technical college education to phase out this program’s funding. Update: With two applications in hand, the “judges” will meet on Thursday to review and award. Hope springs eternal for a positive awarding of these funds.
And, looking way ahead. Interest was expressed in resurrecting the idea of a Rotary Float as a highlight of the 2022 Christmas Parade. This would be a fine idea to kick off our Club’s Centennial Year! We can check and see if the Rotary Rose Parade float is available for our local use 🎅🏻 🎄

District Activities

⚙️  TriCon 2022 was held in Elkhart Lake April 29-30. Once again “the Little Club that does Big Things” was recognized with a banner representing our position as the #3 out of 54 Clubs in the District for per capita giving to the Rotary Foundation. “TriCon Tales” will be the topic of next week’s program!
💵. Happy Bucks gives us the opportunity for each member to share their personal “quips and quotes” of experiences over the past week. This week's highlights included:
  • Several members celebrated Jim L. return to health with a Happy Bucks contribution.
Birthday and Anniversary Report
Betty Bittner (5/16)  🎂
  Next week’s program features Terry Gahl (with help from Bob, no doubt), who will present TriCon Tales 2022. You won’t want to miss this one!