Today’s meeting was called to order by Interact Club President Kira Poehlmann.
Song for the Day: America the Beautiful
Visiting Rotarians: Craig Woods, President of the Fort Bragg Rotary Club; and Lily and Greg Freitas from the Petaluma Sunrise Club. Rotary Friendship Exchange Guests included a team of 5 couples from India: Bipin and Vaishali Chhajed, Dipak and Gita Kothari, Deepen and Bharti Gosrani, Harshad and Amisha Kinkhabwala, and Rajesh and Alpa Vachhani.
Guests: From our local Interact Club, our guests included Liz Newkirk, Guidance Counselor; Serena Acker, Interact Supervisor; and students Isabell, Chaya, Kira, Kayana, Hanna, and Naomi. Also visiting was Drew, from India (the son of one of the couples with the Friendship Exchange Team).
– Pete is happy that he and his wife just got back from Dallas where it rained a LOT! Pete also gave dollars to celebrate the life of Chatter Bishoff, the Grand Dame of Mendocino.
– Gary is happy to donate all his winnings from poker. (Was that a full dollar, Gary?)
– Kira is happy to be going on vacation next week for 2 weeks.
– Lindsay is happy for our international visitors, for the Mendocino Film Festival events this week, and to be giving our Friendship Exchange friends a tour of the Mendocino Art Center this afternoon.
– Frank is happy that Emily Rzplinski is getting married this weekend here locally. She is the daughter of our club member Kathleen, and her late father was one of Frank’s best friends.
– Donna is happy to have the Interact Club here, though many members are missing as it’s senior ditch day today.
– Guenter is happy that he and his wife went to their granddaughter’s graduation, and she is going to Vassar next year!
– Dean is happy he found a seniors on bikes ride up Ten Mile River, where they found a waterfall!
– Harold is happy that Interact and our friends from India are here, and to host them at Pt Cabrillo Lightstation today.
– John C. is happy for Rotarians who are going the extra mile for our guests, and that India is polio-free!
– Jody is happy to acknowledge and celebrate Memorial Day and the service of our military veterans.
– Craig Woods is happy no one charged him at the door when he arrived late, so he put in $20 happy dollars!
Interact Club members reported that they recently met with other Interact Clubs, and as a result they are switching their focus to environmental projects. They also have a community project going (working with MCCF to put together 20 full backpacks to kids in need), and an international project (raising money/books for a book drive to send books to Ghana).
The Interact Club asked Maria to come out from the kitchen to thank her for setting up extra tables and food for today’s meeting. Thanks, Maria, for all you do for us!
Jody talked about next week’s meeting, without sharing the details… it will be great though!
Dean announced that Friday, June 26 is John C’s debunking, at 6pm, at St. Anthony’s. It will be catered by Asagiare, Save the Date!!
John C. announced that a vegetarian dinner will be at his house tonight at 6pm with our Friendship Exchange Team, so please let him know if you’d like to join them. The Pt Cabrillo Lighthouse tour is immediately following today’s meeting, and at 3pm you are invited to join the Mendocino Art Center tour.
Bipin Chhajed, the leader of the Friendship Exchange group from Rotary District 3060 in India, shared an extensive slide show of interesting and important facts about India. He explained that District 3060 consists of Gujarat, Maharashtra and Union Territiories of Daman, Diu and Silvassa. They consider all of us part of the same family. RI Past President Kalyan Banerjee comes from their District 3060. A few highlights from his presentation:
There are 3052 Rotary Clubs in India, with 111,000 members. Dist 3060 has 82 Rotary Clubs…
New Delhi is the capital; India ranks 2nd worldwide in farm output, with the main crops of rice, pulses, ground nut, and more. They have a major textile hub, and it’s the 4th largest producer of denim cloth in the world. There is also a huge diamond industry there. They are a big producer of chemical fertilizers too. Gandhi is from Gujarat. Himalaya is in the northern part of India. They are famous for the teas produced in India. The home of the Asiatic Lions is in Gujarat.
“Unity in Diversity” could describe India’s culture. There are many festivals, celebrated year round, to honor all this diversity. The spring Holi Festival is a festival of colors. The Festival of Nine Nights is famous as well, and serves as a fundraising event for their Rotary club.
On behalf of his team members Bipin thanked the host families and organizers of this unforgettable Rotary Friendship Exchange. They exchanged club flags to celebrate our new friendships between their group’s 5 Rotary Clubs and ours.
Their Interact Clubs have won the Best Interact Club award from RI. They are very active clubs with lots of projects.
Today’s Raffle Winners: two of our visitors from India won our raffle prizes. Congratulations!
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