SPOKES VOL. LXVI  NO. 26                                January 16, 2018
We were greeted by Jerry Portman and Bob Herrera.
President Renner called the meeting to order, and we opened with the “Pledge of Allegiance”, and Art Ayers offered the invocation. 
President Renner announced that our program for this morning would have to be postponed, since Todd Gustafson from Kinexus called to say that, due to the driving conditions, he wouldn’t be making the trip from St. Joseph. As a result, our program would take the form of a Club Assembly, and would include other guests who were in attendance:
Kathy Olsen, from St. Joseph, representing The Upjohn Institute, Mayor Scott Smith, and Rosalie Plechaty, representing the Youth Development Company.
While the guests were being announced, Paul Hix attempted to “slip in”, but to no avail…He was met with a rousing “Happy Birthday”! 
To add to the celebration revolving around the CD player actually working, Jerry Gruber shared a photograph of Wib and Dottie Lynam from years past. So nice to hear Dottie’s piano playing again after last week’s malfunction.
Bob Boerma led our chorus this morning, and provided energetic leadership to our selections: “Heart of My Heart”, Margie”, and “Sing Everyone Sing”.
* Blessings in a Backpack will be on Friday, January 19th, at 1:30pm, at Lincoln Elementary.
* This is Rotary’s week to host the Thursday Night Supper at the First Congregational Church. Volunteers will need to arrive at the church by 5:45, and we usually are out by 7pm.
* Thank you to the Rotarians who helped at the Diversity Coalition’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Day activity at the high school. Many hands from the community made quick work!
* Also, yesterday, Elian Garcia’s Eagle Scout Project came to fruition, as the AEDs were installed at the South Haven Public Library and the Bangor District Library. Thanks to all who made it possible!

* President Renner highlighted February’s issue of “The Rotarian”, with Jimmy Carter gracing the cover. When you’ve finished reading your copy, don’t hesitate to drop it off at your dentist or doctor’s waiting rooms, barber shops, hair salons, etc.

* Our Educational Fundraiser is scheduled for April 28th, and Dene Hadden and Deb Davidson are working hard on organizing the event once again. The “meal” at this year’s event will consist of hors d’oeuvres and food stations. Scott Mark is working on silent auction items, so any ideas/suggestions should be directed to Scott.

* Don Hixson provided a hospital update on a number of items:
- Dr. Nick Loafman has left South Haven Orthopedics and is now located at Lakeland Hospital in St. Joseph. His practice was independently run, which was something that he wanted to continue doing; however, this conflicted with Bronson’s vision. His two associates will continue to work here in South Haven.

- A new operating room will be in future plans, since more room will be needed for robotics.

- South Haven Family Physicians will become part of Bronson on February 1st.
- A new doctor, Dr. Mullin, has been added to the staff at SHFP.

President Renner mentioned Rotarians who were pictured at CPR/AED Training session at the police station, a few weeks ago. Also mentioned was a picture of Dene Hadden…Since Dene is in Florida, and wouldn’t be able to contribute the $1 fine, President Renner had the foresight to ask for a volunteer who would pay the dollar in Dene’s sted. Eagle-eyed Larry Wittkop SWORE that he saw Nick Tuit’s hand go up, so Nick “gladly” agreed to donate on Dene’s behalf.
Stuart Comiskey, perhaps absent-mindedly, chose “birthday boy”, Paul Hix, as the “reliable, honest” person to draw the first ticket…Who Knew? To further confound things, Art Ayers had the winning ticket, drew the 7 card; then immediately drew his own ticket AGAIN! Stuart’s “mixing” technique definitely needs a “reboot”! Not willing to take the $2 prize, Art drew again, and Jean Stein was the lucky recipient.  
* Deb Davidson announced that her granddaughter, Sophia, celebrated her 4th birthday.
* Tom Renner will be celebrating his birthday on Friday.
* Don Kitchin announced that he and Elaine celebrated their 39th anniversary during the last week of December.
* Dan Liehr announced that his 94 year-old aunt had endowed a scholarship at WMU.
* Nick Tuit put in the long-awaited $1 for Dene.
* Bob Stickland expressed “sympathy for my green friends”.
* Larry Wittkop, a “green friend”, said he believes that ALL 6’11” German students should be banned from athletic competition.
* Deb Davidson was thrilled that her “beloved” Purdue Boilermakers are ranked #3 in this week’s poll.
* Our guest, Kathy Olsen, celebrated 2 Eagle Scouts in her family.
* Jean Stein returned her winnings from 50/50 to the club.
* Jim Davis was happy to celebrate his Minnesota Vikings’ “miracle” victory.
* Stuart Comiskey paid for his picture in the paper.
As mentioned, our program was a Club Assembly, taking advantage of the time to ask pertinent questions of our members, as well as our guests.
* Since the South Haven Public Schools were closed today, Bob Herrera was asked to outline the actual closing policy: At approximately 4:15am, transportation supervisors discuss and then drive the roads that most often will lead to closure. Bob indicated that school is usually closed due to the north side roads, and typically involve ice and drifting on the back roads. He also mentioned that they do try and make the “call” by 5am.

* Scott Smith was asked about his vision for improving communication within the city. A few items of note were mentioned; however, it seemed that “engaging with Southwest Michigan First” was certainly to be a priority. SW Michigan First is “a community partnership of leaders in private business, education and government, to assist new and expanding enterprises”.
Scott also mentioned that Patricia Wilkins had filled the 7th seat on the City Council.
Questions “appeared” to regress from there, since he was asked not only about the size of HIS button, but also about the planned merger of South Haven and Saugatuck. Stay tuned…
Bob Herrera and Scott also addressed plans for future land development, the importance of grants, and the possibility of a recreational millage.
In a related conversation, Bob described the problems with the basketball floor and the need to have it replaced. It was originally thought that a parquet floor would be best to deal with the high humidity. However, it is delaminating due to swelling; creating “dead” spots. Plans are to have it replaced this summer.
Relative to the situation in Hawaii, Dan Liehr asked what safeguards are in place at Palisades, and in the city of South Haven, to deal with such an error/emergency. It was noted that they are required to have, and DO have, plans in place. There was a FEMA audit last year regarding procedures. I’m not certain if it was mentioned that such audits are undertaken every year or not. Don Hixson also mentioned that the hospital staff is actively involved in nuclear disaster training exercises annually.
Rosalie Plechaty announced that there would not be a “Night for the Museums” this year, since it has been especially hard to arrange. As a result, a fundraising trivia contest will be held on Sunday, January 21st,from 3-6pm, at the lower level of the Black River Tavern. The cost will be $20 per person, and organizations are being encouraged to enter as 8-10 member teams.
Rosalie also mentioned her desire for a “Not for Profit Summit”
Jerry Gruber shared a quick review and recommendation of the novel, ”The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society”, by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. The novel deals with the island of Guernsey in the English Channel in post-World War II Britain. I’m told it deals with “love, war, and the sustenance of good books and good friends”. Worth checking out!

To conclude this portion of the meeting, Bob Copping was asked if he had a joke to share; however, Bob did not have one “handy”. Hopefully, next time, Bob! Steve Larsen DID share a joke from his son, Lars: “What did the trout say when it swam into the concrete wall?.................Dam”! Remember, I’m just the messenger!
President Renner thanked everyone for their contributions.
Greeters for next Tuesday, January 23rd, are Art Ayers and Don Kitchin.
Next week’s program: Our guest will be Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, Jay Blair, who will speak on “Marijuana Dispensaries and Facilities”. Kathy Brickley is the Program Chair.
We concluded our meeting with the Four Way Test.
By Art Ayers, Pinch-hitting Editarian