Posted by Sam Pittmon
Invocation: Jeff Switzer
Apache Blessing
May the sun bring you new energy by day
May the moon softly restore you by night
May the rain wash away your worries
May the breeze blow new strength into your being
May you walk gently through the world and know its beauty all the days of your life
Pledge of allegiance: Jeff Switzer
Song: “The More We Get Together”
Silent Auction: Greg and Donna Wynn set up a silent auction of beverage item left over from the Barn Dance. Members were asked to bid on those items.
Meg Wempe gave us all a quick lesson on how to protect ourselves from “coodies”.  The fist bump rather than the hand shake.
Visiting Rotarians: Elaine and Jim Mckinney from Los Cruces, NM. They each always sit at different table when visiting other Rotary clubs. They were welcomed and appeared to enjoy their visit as they stayed long after the meeting was over.
Guess of Rotarians: Cindy Galabota introduced her mother Diane who is visiting from Green Bay, Wisconsin who is celebrating she 75th birthday, her friend Jill of Pagosa Springs and friend Jena from Tucson, AZ.
Jan Pitcher introduced her guest Oralee who was our Rotary club’s third exchange student from Normandy, France 25 years ago. She brought along her twin daughters.  She spoke and lauded her exchange student opportunity as changing her life. Because of that experience, she has traveled to many other countries including China, Malaysia and all over Europe, Russia and Asia working as a chemical engineer. She noted the changes in Pagosa from what she remembers. She will be visiting with members of her host family while in the US.
Announcements: John Richardson informed us that Lassie Olin’s sister from Arizona passed recently and that a sympathy card is being circulated. Joann Laird added that Lassie’s mother died earlier this year and another sister died last year.
Larry McClintock gave an assessment of the financial report from the Barn Dance. He stated that we did better than last year. Ticket sales were $3465.00 this year compared to last year $2565.00. Auction items were $4090.00 compared to $3180.00 last year. The beverage bar collected $1667.00.  He estimated a net income of 15,600.00 for that event. There was raucous applause and cheers from our members.
Jeannie Bissell the chairperson for the Barn Dance expresses gratitude for everyone’s support and stated that she learned a lot from the experience and hope that we can continue to up the ante each succeeding year.
Neil Johnson talked about the World Polio Day Fund raiser that our club sponsored yesterday a City Market grocery store entrance. He applauded the “group of heroes” that signed up and rang the bell for donation. He thanked Carrie Weiss for providing the Salvation Army Kettles, and Art Benzel for displaying his Polio Plus t-shirt, Greg and Donna Wynn for the cow bells from the Barn Dance. He then tried to auction off a jacket left at the event that turned out to be Art Benzel’s. He then told of the receipts that included 165 wadded-up one-dollar bills that took him “hours” to sort. There was about $500.00 in cash and two checks collected (the final count will be reported later). He told of one elderly lady that donated $50 as she told the story of her experience with polio as a child.
Bill Hubbard announced the Loaves and Fishes Banquet being held on December 2 at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church for all who have participated. You should contact Bill to sign-up if you would like to attend.
President Shellie reminded members that it is not too late to donated by check to TRF Polio Fund if you have not already donated. Our goal this year is to raise $3500.00 total including the money collected at City Market.
Sunshine and Showers: Betty Switzer granted a sunshine to Granton Bartz (not present) for not knowing that the cowbell should only be rang after a donation was put in the red kettle at Polio Plus event. He rang that bell for the entire hour he was there. He was having such a good time that she didn’t have the heart to tell him to quit.
Georgette Baumgartner gave a sunshine for those Rotarians that showed up in support of the grand opening of her new business. Sandra Houston also celebrated that she and her husband are getting a new puppy.
Meg Wempe recognized this morning that the fire restriction signs are still up at the library and is pleased that there were no real fires in the Pagosa area. She also is happy for the recent snow up at Wolfe Creek Ski Area.
Jeff Switzer shared a shower for friends that many of us know. Garry and Cathy Stevenson is grieving the passing of his mother recently.
Sue Whalen is happy to be in Archuleta county where the roads are not nearly as bad as they are in south eastern Colorado when it rains. She was unable to travel to work today because the roads were not driveable.
Dianne Bower commented on the great talent of Dennis Elkins at Thingamajig Theatre who is the playwright and producer of the recent play “Box”. She called it the best play ever. She appreciates that we are so fortunate to have such wonderful theater shows in Pagosa.
Betty Switzer praised John Richardson’s tenth year anniversary as a Pagosa Springs Rotarian. He apparently donated $10 to Rotary for each of those years.
Betty then showed appreciation to Jeannie Bissell for becoming a pro at organizing and executing the Barn Dance. Jeannie apparently is also a pro at mopping the bathroom floor after the barn Dance and has a thumb blister as proof.
Bill Hubbard was excited to announce that recently his Notary Commission was renewed by the Secretary of State of Colorado and that we Rotarians can now get free notary from him.
Exchange Students Updates: Theo had an uneventful week at school last week but over the weekend he traveled to Telluride for two soccer games that his team loss. He then noted that his host family went along, and he got to tour the area and enjoy the scenery. Kata stated that she went to Durango during the weekend and enjoyed the movie “The Hate U Give” that was “really” good. Her host family dad celebrated his birthday yesterday and that was fun.
Cindi Galabota was our special speaker last week.
Cindy Galabota talked to us about her life story. She started off by saying that she was a bit nervous, but this recorder did not notice. She stated, “I don’t think that I have had a very exciting life”. She was born outside of Chicago, IL. She has a brother that is an archeologist who discovered a picture in a family box of her great-great grandfather. He also found the exact same picture at a museum in Chicago that showed that this grandfather was one of the men that help settle the city of Chicago.
Cindi grew up in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Her dad was a priest. Her mother was a school teacher. She has two older brothers. The oldest is Mike who is the archeologist. Mike is the director of archeology at the University of Michigan and the curator of the archeology Museum at the University. He travels the world during the summers including places like Albania.  Her younger brother is Chris and he is a teacher and lives in China. He teaches high school mathematics and is a running coach. He also runs marathons all over including the Great Wall of China. He has two kids. He has traveled all over the world.
Cindi’s family has a cabin in northern Wisconsin that was purchased in 1926 by her grand parents and says that there are several cabins on the compound that are owned by different family members. Cindi spent a lot of summers at the cabins and now visits frequently to enjoy the beauty. It is near Lac de Flambeau which is also near Minocqua, WI. She learned how and became a good water skier while there.
She went to Ohio Wesleyan College and graduated in 1987 with a degree in environmental studies and zoology. She worked at The Columbus Zoo in Ohio and got to work with the famous zoologist Jack Hanna. She got a chance to train animals and work with birds of prey, macaws, parrots and snakes. She then moved to Chicago where she got a job at the Lincoln Park Zoo which is one of the last free zoos. She worked with the education department and enjoyed going in to work early in the mornings to see the animals at play.
She talked about one of the defining “moments” of her life was when her father died of colon cancer. She was 22 y/o and he was 54. He was her best friend and they were very close. She misses not being able to call and talk to him. It’s sad that he never got to meet her kids.
Cindi met her husband Scott in Chicago shortly after her father died. He is from Madison, WI. They “hit it off” quickly and were soon married. Scott is a 6th grade teacher and cares a lot about his students “making sure that they get what they need”. He is a “really good father” for their 2 kids Donavan who is 12 y/o and Karina is 7 y/o. She is proud to say that her kids are best friends. He is kind and thoughtful with his little sister and she admires her big brother. Karina is an aspiring actress who acted in the local production of “Annie”.
Cindi talked about another sad event in her family which was the death of her brother Mike’s son named Liam that took his own life at 14 y/o. No one new that he was troubled and couldn’t understand why even though Mike and he were very close. Cindi drilled the point that parent should talk to their kids about suicide because most kids won’t talk about it but learn about it from social media.
Cindi and her husband have been in Pagosa for 14 years. She initially worked for Habitat for Humanity and joked that she thought that organization had something to do with the Humane
Society. After Habitat she went to work with the Chamber of Commerce but found out that Chamber job took all her time and left little time for family.
She then went to work at Southwest Bank as a lender for three years. She then realized that she missed working for a non-profit organization and left to take a non-profit job with Pagosa Public Library earlier this year. She says that she “loves to work there”.
Lastly, she talked about her love for sports. As a child she took gymnastics and got to travel the US competing and when 11y/o she took first place in the hoop routine and tied for first place in all around. She played softball in high school and rugby in college. Now she does CrossFit workouts.
She ended her talk with “I am happy to be in Pagosa”
Club Raffle: Greg Wynn had the lucky ticket, but he was not present to pull the lucky card. His fill-in pulled a “dud” 10 of hearts.