Posted by Dene Hadden on Oct 16, 2018
SPOKES VOL. LXV NO. 16                                                                               October 16, 2018
Art Ayers and Jerry Gruber were our greeters this very fall-like morning.
President Mark Odland opened today’s meeting with the Pledge of Allegiance and Art Ayers provided an invocation including our prayers for Julie Weber, Missy Thompson, and Don Hixson.
Our guests this morning included District Assistant Governor Dyann Chenault, Spotlight speaker David Vanderkloot and our speaker Joel Lautenbach.
David Vanderkloot from the Girls Scouts of Southwestern Michigan spoke to us about the Girl Scout program in South Haven.  There are 95 girls involved in eight troops and they take part in a number of community service and educational projects.  They offer scholarships for those girls who cannot afford to join, more than $1,000 worth last year.  Tom Renner presented David with a check for $240 to cover the cost of some of those scholarships this year.
  • Signups are needed for workers at the Haven Harvest – a list has been sent around.  We will be selling product from Three Blondes, Codgill and McIntosh plus serving food prepared by Taste.
  • Blessings in a Backpack is scheduled for next Fridays at Lincoln School, 1:15 PM.
  • The Ram Boosters are looking for some concession stand help on Friday, October 19th
  • President Mark reported that Don Hixson is still doing better and is being moved to Bronson Plainwell for rehab today.
  • If you have membership feedback, please get it to Dan Thompson by the end of the month.
Jim Davis was our song leader this morning and he had the pleasure of leading us in the very appropriate for this week “Shine on Harvest Moon”.This 1908 classic was one of a number of “moon” songs from “tin pan alley” during that era.Hopefully we will have a nice Harvest Moon for this weekend’s festivities.For our next selection, we were joined by the neighborhood hounds to provide the proper atmosphere for “Sweet Adeline”, published in 1903. Its lyrics were inspired by a girl who worked at the music counter of a New York department store.We finished with one of our favorites, “Smile, Sing a Song”.
Ted Weber is back on track, at least for having the lucky ticket, but hasn’t quite gotten his touch back as he drew the Ace.  Jean Stein won the $2 prize.
  • Larry Wittkop celebrated the 14th birthday of his twin grandsons this week.
  • Tom Fleming is celebrating the birthday of his daughter Cymbre this week.
  • We celebrated these birthdays Ludington Style, much to the amazement of our guests.
  • Dan Leihr noted that 100% of the female astronauts were girls scouts.
  • Jerry Portman is pleased that his wife has returned from a trip to Connecticut.
  • Don’t forget that Big 10 Tuesday has commenced and you can save $.10 a gallon on gas from now through basketball season.
  • Bob Copping had the next chapter in the story of Quasimodo and his nameless replacements.
  • Larry Wittkop and several ‘Go Blue” supporters argued about the outcome of this coming Saturday’s football game.
  • Glenn Pietenpol was exceptionally happy this morning with victories from Notre Dame, the Packers and the Brewers.
  • No one mentioned that the Lions have now gone two weeks in a row without losing a game.
Larry Lewis introduced our speaker, Joel Lautenbach from Samaritas
Joel talked about the mission of Samaritas and their desire to “create ripples” as they help people throughout the lower peninsula of our state.  They have between 1500 to 1600 staff in Lower Michigan working in many different programs designed to improve people’s lives.  They do not want to be a help and get out agency but focus on being a part of their future.
Included in their programing is work with Foster Care and adoption, including 125 foster care homes in Kalamazoo.  They work hard to keep kids out of foster care by working closely with families to get to the root causes of problems they may be facing and maintaining continuing contact after any initial work.  Joel showed a video about this program that illustrated how it works.
They also work with the State Department on refugee resettlement, helping some of the vetted 22,000 refugees that are allowed into our country each year get settled and established in Michigan so they are self-sufficient in 90 days.
They also provide behavior health and therapy programing for those in need.
For disabled youth they have independent living situations that allow physically or cognitively disabled youth to hold jobs and live on their own.
They also have programing for disabled and seniors in need of housing in addition to a variety of senior living situations.
One of their newer programs provides educational opportunities at a second chance charter school for individuals who were not able to complete high school.
Joel said there are a number of ways people can help Veritas with their mission:  You can volunteer, take a leadership role, work on collection drives or, if you have employment connections, keep Veritas in mind.
President Odland thanked Joel for his presentation and presented him with our speaker’s pen.
President Odland closed the meeting with the Four Way Test
Next week’s program: Larry Wittkop will introduce South Haven Public Schools Interim Superintendent Dave Peden
Next week’s Greeters:  Dene Hadden/Larry Lewis
Editarian:  Dene Hadden