SPOKES VOL.LXVI NO.25            January 7, 2020   
Rosalie Plechaty and Nick Tuit were our greeters this morning.
President Odland opened our meeting wishing all a Happy New Year, and indicating how pleased he was to report attendance, minus many “snowbirds”, at 35.
“America the Beautiful” was to be next; however, the audio equipment failed to cooperate. As a result, an a cappella rendition of “God Bless America” followed.
Art Ayers then offered our invocation.
Dan Gibbons (Don Kitchin)
Brian Kurtz(Rosalie Plechaty)
Dave Campbell(Bob McAlear)
Jane Copping(Bob Copping)
Presentation of New Member Brian Kurtz 
Brian was officially introduced by Rosalie, his sponsor, who indicated that she and Brian had gotten to know each other when both resided in Frankfort, Illinois. Brian comes to us as a “transfer”, since he had been a Rotarian in Illinois. His vocation was related to the software industry. He enjoys pottery and lives in town. Tomorrow is Brian’s birthday, so the club provided a “stirring” traditional rendition of “Happy Birthday”.
President Odland presented Brian with a Rotary shirt and hat and introduced Brian as our 59th member! 
Blessings in a Backpack will be at Lincoln Elementary on Friday, January 10th.
Rotary’s Thursday Night Supper will be held at the First Congregational Church on January 16th.
District 6360 Newsletter update: The most recent newsletter featured pictures of Jim Davis and his grandson and new member, Stephen, as well as those who attended the groundbreaking for the Splash Pad.
Also featured was an announcement that the South Haven Rotary Club leads the entire district in club growth!
Rosalie provided an update on a new Martin Luther King, Jr. Day format, which has been developed with co-chair Jeffrey Dick. On January 20th, from 11:30am to 1pm, at LC Mohr High School, there will be a sit-down luncheon, along with a program honoring “Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: His Work, His Message, His Legacy”. There will be a Laundry Soap Challenge among servicegroups and others, whereby the group that brings in the most ounces of laundry soap will receive this year’s “MLK Trophy of Generosity”. For those in need, laundry soap is one of the most expensive items to buy. The soap will be distributed to the Covert and South Haven personal care pantries.
To find out more, and/or to reserve your spot, or your organization’s spot, please contact Rosalie Plechaty by January 15th: 269-271-6307 or plechatyrm@gmail.com
Jim Davis was our song leader this morning, and he flawlessly led us through “Daisy Bell”, “I’ve Been Working on the Railroad”, and “Sing Everyone Sing”.
Sergeant-at-Arms, Tom Ruesink, chose “honest and reliable” Jane Copping to draw the first winning ticket, which was in the possession of Bob Stickland. Bob proceeded to draw the “Ace”, and the subsequent winning ticket, netting $2, was Don Hodgman’s. Don returned the money to the basket. 
Don and Elaine Kitchin celebrated their 41st anniversary on December 30th.
Art and Kris Ayers celebrated their 46th anniversary on January 4th.
Kris Ayers has a birthday on January 8th.
Larry Wittkop’s granddaughter, Caroline, celebrated her 19th birthday on Sunday, January 5th.
Bob Stickland announced that his “baby boy” recently turned 57.
Tom Renner shared some wonderful news, as he announced that daughter Susie was determined to be CANCER-FREE!
Jim Bradford celebrated the birthday of twin daughters(39 years) on January 6th.
     A Ludington-style “Happy Birthday” followed…
Many thanks were offered to Bob Stickland and Jerry Gruber for the leadership which was provided for the Salvation Army Bell Ringing and the Christmas Open Door Dinner!
Tom Ruesink announced that Karen was feeling better, and they would be heading to Florida this week. He also provided a reminder regarding Friday breakfasts in Punta Gorda.
Rosalie welcomed Brian Kurtz to our club.
Bob Copping favored us with a Quasimodo update: It seems the Bishop at Notre Dame is still looking for his replacement. I BELIEVE Bob asked us to “stay tuned” for the eventual replacement; however, I may have missed something in translation.
Mark Odland complimented Becky Kark for her recent article highlighting the efforts of Rotary and Kiwanis.
Jerry Portman is celebrating being “free at last”, having sold his company.
Steve Miles is involved with an Auto/RV Show at Devos Hall this weekend,inviting those who might be interested to attend.
Program: Our own Stuart Comiskey presented a slideshow and provided insights into his recent trip to Europe, which culminated in a visit to Normandy to commemorate D-Day’s 75th anniversary.
The group flew into London and spent some days seeing the sights, such as Westminster Abbey, Churchill’s War Room, Windsor Castle, among others.
They then traveled through the “chunnel” to Paris via an Aerostar train, very similar to the Japanese “bullet” trains.
Stu highlighted the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower in his display of Paris and, after traveling to Normandy, he took some beautiful pictures of the beaches, cemeteries, memorials to the Allied forces, and other landmarks.
One of the highlighted memorials was erected in honor and memory to those who climbed the cliffs (Rangers)
The D-Day invasion began on June 6, 1944 and lasted until August. It resulted in the liberation of Western Europe from the control of Nazi Germany. Code-named “Operation Overlord”, approximately 156,000 American, British, and Canadian forces landed on 5 beaches, along a 50 mile stretch of land.
President Odland thanked Stuart for a wonderful presentation and, in appreciation, provided Stu with our Rotary pen.
Next Week’s Program: “The Story of Biggby Coffee”, Larry Wittkop, chair.
Next Week’s Greeters: Paul Hix and Kaily Eddy
We concluded the meeting with the Four-Way Test.
Seasonal Editarian: Art Ayers