SPOKES VOL. LXVII NO. 39                                                                              April 27, 2021




After taking a minute to observe this month’s giant “Pink” moon, President Thompson began our virtual meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance followed by Art Ayer’s invocation with special thoughts for Bob and Dee Stickland and continued prayers for Mike Livovich and a recovering Jane Copping.


Our guests this morning included prospective members Emily Gruber, almost member Griffin Graham and speakers Patti Montgomery-Reinert and Ashley Deming.


  • The Bronson Sneak Peak tour has been postponed as they deal with the latest COVID-19 surge.

  • Thanks to Bill Roberts for compiling a “White Paper” of all of the tribal knowledge of our pancake breakfasts that was reviewed last week.

  • We are still looking for a Membership Committee co-chair and Public Affairs Director.

  • Previous Rotarian’s of the year will vote for this year’s winner after our meeting next week or on May 11th.

  • Education Donations   Since we are not holding our Educational fundraiser this year, members are encouraged to donate, through the club, to either or both the South Haven Public Schools Foundation or our own scholarship fund.

  • We received a nice thank you note from the city for our help with the Arbor Day tree planting – dedicated to Rotary founder Paul Harris.

  • Special Thanks to Paul Hix and his business, Edward Jones Investments for becoming our first corporate donor for our Bronson Telemedicine program.

  • Griffin Graham will be inducted on May 11th.

  • If you are scheduled to provide a program for May or June, please let Bill Roberts know what the program will be.

A Touch of Humor

Bob Copping had a collection of signs found in various businesses including a plumber, electrician, car repair shop and veterinarian’s office.

Member Spotlight
Bob Straits was in the spotlight this week!  He was born in Chicago and attended high school there.  He met his wife Kathy in Las Vegas.  He spent his summers working for US Steel while he was attending college.  He joined the Naval Air Service and worked in their public affairs division – no easy task at the end of the Viet Nam War.  He attended WMU and then began working for the Upjohn Institute which was founded in 1932 to do unemployment research.  Bob’s work focused on labor economics.  His hobbies include politics and golf and he has been a Rotarian since 1986.

50/50 and Fines

Tom Rummel and Ashley Deming were our prize winners this week


Fines were charged to:

  • Dan Thompson was fined for several pictures in the paper.  The amount of his fine was the subject of much discussion and would be determined after he signed off today’s meeting.

  • Dene Hadden’s granddaughter Ellery turns 11 today.

  • Dan Thompson also owes for his son’s birthday this week.

  • Bryan Kutz and his wife Susan are celebrating their 13th anniversary.

  • Korky Ingraham’s son will be 43 this week.

  • Jeffrey Dick’s youngest son turns 21 this week.

  • Tom Fleming’s 6th grade granddaughter took 3rd place for the South Haven History Club at the state competition.  Also he has a grandson turning 21 this week and he expressed his appreciation about the efforts of previous administrations and the pharmaceutical firms for the work that led to our current vaccine opportunities.

  • Larry Wittkop provided a birthday song that came from the deepest, darkest corners of the birthday music vault.


Bill Roberts introduced our speakers, Patti Montgomery-Reinert, Executive Director of the Michigan Maritime Museum and Ashley Deming, the museum’s Director of Education and Outreach.


Patti’s topic this morning was the Launching a Legacy program at the museum, an eight million dollar renovation and rebuilding program that will completely revitalize the museum and much of its property.  Included is the demolition and construction of a brand new main building, a $5,000,000 project.  Currently they have raised about $4,500,000 of that money and hope to raise the rest this summer and have plans to start construction of the new building after Labor Day.  The vision for the building is for it to be a community building right in the heart of our waterfront.


The building will have exhibit space, a learning center, an event/exhibit space (capacity of ~200) with catering kitchen, and two meeting rooms. It will be a museum first and foremost, but will have the opportunities available for events, hopefully many of which will be hosted by local community organizations and businesses. Once completed, the new building will host a new exhibit, “The Golden Age of Great Lakes Passenger Steamships”.  This exhibit will be at the museum for a couple of years and then is designed to be loaned to other museums or organizations. 

Patti and Ashley also spent time talking about the high water problems and COVID-19 problems the museum faced this past year and showed us slides of the high water solutions and the help local businesses have donated to the project.  We also saw the purchase of the former Jenson buildings.


It is the hope that they will be able to get back to their on-the-water activities next month and they have planned for many outdoor activities on the campus to bring the museum back to life this summer.


Patti, whose office is now in the Light keeper’s House, said that she has not had any unfriendly encounters with any of the spirits of former keepers and thinks that Captain Donahue is a friendly ghost.



President Elect Roberts thanked Patti and Ashley for their program and we look forward to the completion of their ambitious project.


We closed the meeting with the Four Way Test

  • NEXT WEEK:   Paul Hix will give us an update on the economy and what the future may hold.

  • Editarian:  Dene Hadden