Posted by Jim Garrett
The invocation was delivered by Sam Pittmon, “In keeping with this Thanksgiving Season.”  It was a pithy evaluation of the true spirit embodied by the Holiday written by Shawn Bird, represented in the following excerpt: “Thankfulness may consist merely of words.  Gratitude is shown in acts.  May our acts as Rotarians demonstrate our gratitude for our blessings . . . “
Then Jessie Formwalt distributed lyrics and led the singing of a song providing a nice counterpoint to the invocation by rejoicing in the pleasures of Thanksgiving, instead of the philosophy.  “It’s a lovely day, to say the least,” the lyrics celebrated, a delight to all, with the exception according to the refrain, of the flightless turkey, which finds itself involuntarily in attendance at the feast, belly-up.  “La lala la la.”   
(True, turkeys fly little.  But the turkeys on the dinner table are mostly raised in cages.  There was a time in your reporter’s experience, not so many years ago, when a glimpse of a wild turkey was exceptional.   Flightless or not, enough of the wild birds escaped the dinner table for a population explosion since then.  No wonder Ben Franklin thought the resourceful turkey, which like the rebel learns to go to ground when needed for survival, a noble bird more admirable than the eagle.)
Among guests were Jeff and Cindy, introduced by their friend Larry McClintock as prospective members.
Exchange students Leo Bonlokke and Catalina Acuilera reported on their recent activities. 
Leo recalled he had been hunting, and heard elk bugling in the distance, but didn’t see any.  Not accustomed to trekking through mountains on hunts at home in low-lying Denmark, Leo said he was a little sore – but attributed that primarily to participation in practices as a member of the Pagosa Pirates wrestling team.
Catalina said she also had been in the mountains.  She went skiing for the first time, she reported enthusiastically.
Carrie Weiss reminded all of the impending Salvation Army bell-ringing, Christmas campaign, and circulated the sign-up sheet.
President Shellie Peterson announced the issuance of grants to local teachers to cover the expense of classroom projects, and distribution of dictionaries to Elementary Students, including Pagosa Peaks students.  Additionally, she announced a Paul Harris Plus Two Award to Larry McClintock. 
Turning from completed business to Rotary’s upcoming schedule, Shellie announced there will be no meetings December 20 and December 27, the two Thursdays bracketing Christmas Day.  It was previously announced that Rotary is doing the Loaves and Fishes lunch on December 13, so there will be no regular meeting that day either.
Although there will accordingly be no regular meetings after December 6 until January 3, 2019, Shellie reported that the Rotary Holiday Party will be the evening of the day following Loaves and Fishes, December 14, at the Colorado Timber Ridge Clubhouse. 
Bill Hubbard advised that the food for the party will be catered by the Buck Stops Here.  Beverages will be BYOB, he said, with mixers, cups and ice provided.  And Dave Campbell made an appeal for the loan of battery powered lanterns to light the building exterior and driveway, which are dark.
Among the festivities at the Party, Shellie said, will be a gag gift/piracy exchange: each couple will bring a wrapped gift, during the party recipients determined by draw will, in turn, open a gift from the pile, or piratically claim a previously opened gift from an earlier recipient (in which case the plunder victim will open a new gift), and so on until all gifts are distributed.
Additionally, there was discussion of an effort to provide help to the local Evans family, parents with three young sons, who very recently lost their home in the Vista neighborhood and all their belongings to a house fire.
Jo Bridges passed the hat during the meeting to collect emergency cash to donate to the Evans family immediately.  And after discussion, it was agreed also that wrapped gifts for the family donated by Rotarians as they may deem appropriate would be collected at the Holiday Party, and presented to them as a collective Rotary effort.  A sign-up sheet will be circulated at the November 29 meeting.
Membership Chair Dave Campbell then announced that Sandra Houston had completed all prerequisites, and presented her a blue name badge emblematic of full club membership.  At Dave’s request, Sandra reeled off an impressive list of qualifying club activities in which she had participated during the past few months since receiving her red badge.