Rotary Supports our Teachers

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs got to hear from Abbie Monroe, Pagosa Family School, Mariah Mills and Mariah Mills from Wings Early Childhood Education Center, and Amanda Schweitzer from the High School.  They told us how they utilized funding from our teacher mini grant program to enhanced their classrooms for the students.
Carol Stuart led this effort again this year which entails gathering applications from the teachers and evaluating each one to determine how to best invest Rotary funds and interviewing the teachers.
Rotary Supports our Teachers Shellie Peterson 2024-06-04 06:00:00Z 0

Pagosa Springs Rotary Club Awards $24,000 to Graduating Seniors

Posted by Meg Wempe
Pagosa Springs Rotary Club is pleased to announce the graduating seniors who will be receiving the 2024 Rotary scholarships. This year, Rotary is awarding $24,000. There were amazing applications and tough decisions made by the committee. The scholarship selection committee chose four students to award this year.
Miles Baker will be attending Biola University in Los Angeles County, where he will study cinema and media arts.

Karis Blackman plans to pursue a degree in environmental studies at Colorado State University in Fort Collins.

Jack Hittle will begin his studies of mechanical engineering this fall. He will be attending the Colorado School of Mines, located in Golden.

Michelle Ray-Lujan will be studying nursing at Amarillo College in Amarillo, Texas.

Congratulations to these four scholarship winners!
Pagosa Springs Rotary Club Awards $24,000 to Graduating Seniors Meg Wempe 2024-05-25 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Day of Service 2024


'Service' is at the core of Rotary’s mission.

Rotarians from Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs work alongside other local volunteers on Saturday, May 18, as part of a world-wide effort to give back to their communities. In Pagosa Springs, the focus was picking up trash along U.S. 160 on Put Hill and working on garden improvements at Rotary Park located next to the Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership domes.
Rotary Day of Service 2024 2024-05-21 06:00:00Z 0

Don't Miss Out

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to attend one of the most prestigious youth leadership programs in the area! Deadline to submit your application to the RYLA program is April 19, 2024 at 6:00 P.M.

RYLA is a workshop organized and sponsored by the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs for future leaders in Pagosa Springs currently in grades 10 and 11. This year RYLA will be held at the Colorado Mountain College in beautiful Leadville, Colorado from June 13-16.  Transportation will also be provided.

Participants are selected for their leadership potential to attend an all-expense-paid hands-on, experiential program designed to foster and strengthen leadership skills, self-confidence, community building skills and character.

Here is what one of our past participants has to say about the experience:

Amelia Berndt, high school senior of PSHS

Don't Miss Out Jamel Mihalik 2024-04-17 06:00:00Z 0

Support for Blind Students in Niamey, Niger


Your spare change
can make a big impact.

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is also supporting blind students attending the National School for the Blind in Niamey.  With just Rotarians' spare change, this is an easy and affordable way for each of us to support our International Service work in Niger.
Here are the kids we will support, with their teacher and school head:
Support for Blind Students in Niamey, Niger Donna Mosher 2024-04-06 06:00:00Z 0

Strengthening High School Science in Niger

Rotary Global Grant Application GG1977317
Pagosa Springs Rotary Club
The long-term solution to global poverty is self-sufficiency. Forty years of thoughtful research involving 70 countries shows a strong correlation between the rate of economic development and the science and math literacy in these countries. This correlation shows that aid to improve science and math literacy in under-developed countries is likely to increase the rate of economic development and self-sufficiency of their people. The immediate purpose of this Global Grant is to improve high school science education in Niger.
With a per-capita Gross National Income (GNI) less than $1,000, Niger is often listed as the poorest country in Africa. To understand the severity of poverty in Niger, it is helpful to note that Mexico’s GNI is $16,000. Sixty percent of Niger’s population lives on less than $2/day.
Strengthening High School Science in Niger Donna Mosher 2024-04-06 06:00:00Z 0

April is Child and Maternal Health Month

We expand access to quality care, so mothers and children everywhere can have the same opportunities for a healthy future. An estimated 5.9 million children under the age of five die each year because of malnutrition, inadequate health care, and poor sanitation — all of which can be prevented.
Rotary provides education, immunizations, birth kits, and mobile health clinics. Women are taught how to prevent mother-to-infant HIV transmission, how to breast-feed, and how to protect themselves and their children from disease.
The Rotary Foundation reaches mothers and children in need by giving communities the help and training they need to take control of their own maternal and infant health care.
April is Child and Maternal Health Month Shellie Peterson 2024-03-20 06:00:00Z 0

Super Bowl 2024 Watch Party

From the beginning to the end, it was a fun party as we cheered on our teams and watched the Chiefs take home the prize.
Thank you Pagosa for supporting Rotary's efforts to provide scholarships for graduating seniors!
Super Bowl 2024 Watch Party Shellie Peterson 2024-02-20 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Hosts Super Bowl Watch Party

Super Bowl teams have been determined and the fun and excitement with friends will be at the viewing party hosted by the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs on Sunday, February 11 at the Tennyson Event Center.  Party doors will open at 3 p.m. Tickets are $25 per person and may be purchased online at or in person with cash or check at The Choke Cherry Tree.
Betting squares will begin at 3 p.m. and will end at 4:15 p.m., per state sanctioned guidelines, prior to kickoff at 4:30 p.m. You can purchase squares for $20 cash per square, and there will be 100 squares available. Cash awards of $250 will be given out at the end of every quarter, for a total of $1,000 in prize money. Come early to get the squares you want!
Broadcasting the game, and all the great commercials and entertainment, will be from one large projection screen plus four additional large televisions around the room. Food, perfect for a spectator sport event, will be offered at the end of every quarter and includes homemade chili, hot dog bar, and snacks galore! Beer, wine, and mixed drinks will be offered at the cash/credit card bar.
Door prizes will be awarded throughout the game and all ticketed attendees have a chance to win. Prizes include passes to the geothermal springs, axe throwing, virtual shooting range, salt cave, horse-drawn carriage ride and more!  Prizes will also be awarded to the best-dressed fan – one male and one female attendee. 
Proceeds from this event will benefit the Rotary Club local scholarship program for graduating high school seniors that awards higher education support for college and certificate and vo-tech training. This scholarship program began in 1983 with Floyd McKee as the first scholarship recipient.  To date, Rotary has awarded 197 scholarships for a total of $540,125 and is budgeted to award $24,000 in scholarships this year. Bring your friends for fun and viewing of the 58th NFL Super Bowl!
Rotary Hosts Super Bowl Watch Party  Lisa Scott 2024-02-01 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Participates in Sledz on the Rez

Pagosa Springs Rotary contributed hot cocoa and community spirit to this year’s Sledz on the Rez! Rotarians served in multiple capacities. Jane Davison, Kim Moore, Natalee Sargent, Troy Schoenbaum and Rob Foster served up the cocoa and cheer. 
Rotary Participates in Sledz on the Rez Robert Foster 2024-01-22 07:00:00Z 0

Charlotte Duranton at District Conference

Rotary Exchange Students stand after the presentation of country flags at the annual District Conference in Pueblo in October. There are 13 students in the region for the 2023-2024 academic year. Charlotte Duranton, seventh from the left, is the student in Pagosa Springs and is standing with the French flag.
Photo by Ken Beesley
Charlotte Duranton at District Conference Lisa Scott 2023-11-17 07:00:00Z 0
Thank You to Our Sponsors Shellie Peterson 2023-10-28 06:00:00Z 0

Teacher Mini Grants Awarded

Granting Teachers' Wishes

Pagosa Family and Middle School teachers with certificates (top row) Linda Lutomski and Abbie Monroe; (bottom row) Malinda Burnett, Katrina Thomas, Laura Mijares with (from left top) Principal Jane Lewis and Rotarians Ronnie Doctor, Melanie Garrett and CiCi Stuart.
At Pagosa Peak Open School, teacher Rue Graham with her students and, from left, Rotarians Melanie Garrett, CiCi Stuart, Kim Moore, and President Cindi Galabota.
At Seeds of Learning, teacher Leeann Skoglund and, holding the certificate, two classmates. From left, Rotarians CiCi Stuart, Melanie Garrett, Director Michelle Cusick, Program Director Kathy Faber and Rotary President Cindi Galabota
Wings Early Childhood Center, with certificates are Mirah Neulieb, Jennifer Jennings, Leah Holliday, Director Becca Gartman. Missing is teacher Shauntel Garcia. Rotarians from left CiCi Stuart and Melanie Garrett

Valor Academy teacher Jillian Cram with Rotarians Ronnie Doctor, CiCi Stuart and Melanie Garrett

Teacher Mini Grants Awarded Melanie Garrett 2023-10-23 06:00:00Z 0

World Polio Day

Join with Pagosa Springs Rotary Club on World Polio Day October 24, 20023, to raise funds to
end polio. This is an annual event in our continuing efforts to eradicate polio globally. We will
be ringing the bells and taking donations for this important humanitarian event at City
Market Center on Tuesday October 24 from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

After decades of efforts and fund raising exceeding $5 billion since 1988, Rotary Club
International and its partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative including the World
Health Organization, U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, UNICEF, the Bill and
Melinda Gates Foundation and the Vaccine Alliance are proclaiming that the world is free of
Polio except for the countries of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

We are asking the citizens of Archuleta County for your support by donating online at or by mailing your check local to Pagosa Springs Rotary Club at P.O. Box 685,
Pagosa Springs, CO 81147 if you cannot make it by City Market on Tuesday October 24, 2023.
World Polio Day Sam Pittmon 2023-10-20 06:00:00Z 0

8th Annual Barn Dance was a SUCCESS

It seemed like the entire town turned out  to have a great time and support the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs' college scholarship program. 
Tim Sullivan and his Band had everyone up and dancing the evening away with the great sounds we know and love.  Greg Langford shepherded Rotary members who prepared and served a beautiful orange-chipotle chicken, homemade potato salad, coleslaw and beans all topped off with a cookie! 
Thanks to the businesses that donated items for the fabulous silent auction and the folks that came out to support the event, funds were raised that will support our graduating seniors toward their college or vocational education.
8th Annual Barn Dance was a SUCCESS Shellie Peterson 2023-10-20 06:00:00Z 0

Amelia Berndt Tells her RYLA Story

Livia Cloman Lynch, Amelia and Charlotte
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs recently heard a presentation from the high school senior who attended the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) conference. Amelia Berndt attended the three-day conference in June at Colorado Mountain College (CMC) in Leadville with over 50 other junior and senior high school students from Rotary District 5470.
RYLA is an "award" to the students that are selected to attend an all-expenses paid camp where they are inspired by a diverse group of exceptional speakers, make life-long friends through fellowship activities, and discuss the ethical and social issues of today. These activities are conducted in an atmosphere of trust and respect. The result is that these students return to their schools and communities motivated to take on additional leadership roles and to find additional ways to serve.
While Amelia described the conference as “super fun” she also described the activities that encouraged teamwork, being heard, and how to lead. “I made a lot of new friends and loved having a mini-college experience in the CMC dorm,” she stated in her presentation. She also said this experience helped her gain experience and confidence in talking about her opinions to other people. Amelia also talked about what they learned about Rotary and the impact it has in communities all over the world, especially the mission to eradicate Polio worldwide. Amelia’s family moved to Pagosa Springs four years ago and she has a twin sister.
RYLA is a program that originated with Rotary International and is implemented within various Rotary Districts. Pagosa Springs Noon Rotary Club has been involved in RYLA for over fifteen years. The Rotary District 5470 organizes the conference and local Rotary clubs select the students they want to send at the club’s expense. Rotarians Cindi Galabota, Codie Wilson, Deborah Fox and Katie Cloudman have been the leaders of this project for several years. Applications are available in March to high school sophomores and juniors.
Amelia Berndt Tells her RYLA Story Lisa Scott 2023-10-09 06:00:00Z 0

Charlotte Duranton from France

The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club is currently hosting Charlotte Duranton, high school junior, from Annonay, France who arrived in Pagosa Springs August 23rd. Annonay is in southeast France, about an hour from Lyon, and a town of 16,700 inhabitants. The Montgolfier brothers invented hot air balloons in this city and Annonay is dubbed “the city of hot air balloons.” Charlotte’s father trains technicians for heating and air conditioning, her mother is an operating room nurse and she has an older brother and a twin sister, both in high school studies. She and her family are very athletic and are all runners and play korfball, a sport that mixes basketball and handball.

 At Pagosa Springs High School, she is enrolled in some typical American classes including U.S. History, English and math. She is also taking science classes, which are her favorite, and several electives like wilderness skills and hospitality and tourism. Since she’s a runner, she has joined the cross-country team this fall. Charlotte’s first host family is Gwen and Tim Taylor and their daughter Lucy, senior.

Last school year, Agustin Perez-Leal, from Argentina, was hosted by the families of Jean Garcia, Karen Ross and Yul Wilson, and DeEtte and Oliver Phillips. Everyone had wonderful exchange experiences and made close family connections.
Charlotte Duranton from France Lisa Scott 2023-09-25 06:00:00Z 0

The Barn Dance is coming up!!

Lover of country music that you are, the thought of the two-step may be a bit distressing. Here's that ah-ha moment you've been looking for; get lost in the hordes of those who love line dancing. And what better way to do it than being accompanied by Pagosa's well-known country-western crooner, Tim Sullivan and bandmates.
Pagosa’s Rotary Club is hosting the eighth annual Jewels and Jeans Barn Dance on Saturday, October 7 from 7 to 10 p.m. (doors open at 6:30 pm) at the Archuleta County Extension building.
A chuckwagon dinner will be available at the event for $15 and includes barbeque chicken, potato salad, coleslaw, baked beans, chips and homemade cookies. Tickets are $30 in advance or $35 at the door and $15 for the chuckwagon dinner and may be purchased at Happy Trails, Choke Cherry Tree or from any Rotarian.
The Barn Dance is coming up!! Lisa Scott 2023-09-25 06:00:00Z 0
Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance Shellie Peterson 2023-09-25 06:00:00Z 0
Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance is coming soon! Lisa Scott 2023-09-22 06:00:00Z 0
Rotary Hosts Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance Lisa Scott 2023-09-15 06:00:00Z 0
Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance Shellie Peterson 2023-09-12 06:00:00Z 0

8th Annual Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance

It’s a barn dance! The Pagosa Rotary Club is hosting the eighth annual Jewels and Jeans Barn Dance the evening of Saturday, October 7 from 7 to 10 p.m. (doors open at 6:30 pm) at the Archuleta County Extension building. Tim Sullivan Band will be the live band playing boot-scootin’ country music for line dancing and your favorite swing moves.

Tickets are $30 per person in advance and $35 at the door and can be purchased at Choke Cherry Tree, Happy Trails or from any noon Rotarian. A chuckwagon dinner is available for those who have purchased an advance ticket for $15.
The evening is full of activities including a cash saloon with local brews and a full bar, contest for sexiest cowboy & cowgirl, and wagon rides. Local retailers and restaurants have donated items that will be available in a silent auction and in a drawing for anyone who purchases a chance to win.
The evening is full of activities including a cash saloon with local brews and a full bar, contest for sexiest cowboy & cowgirl, and wagon rides.
Local retailers and restaurants have donated items that will be available in a silent auction and in a drawing for anyone who purchases a chance to win.
8th Annual Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance Lisa Scott 2023-09-06 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Park

The area beside the Geothermal Greenhouses is known as Rotary Park.  It was sorely in need of weeding and maintenance and this brave crew tackled the job!  More needs to be done of course, but a huge improvement was accomplished in just one day!
Rotary Park Shellie Peterson 2023-07-24 06:00:00Z 0

Keeping Pagosa Beautiful

Nine brave souls tackled Putt Hill on Saturday morning this past weekend!
These Rotarians were not the faint of heart no matter how busy the highway was!!  The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is proud of our community and one of the ways we show it is by cleaning up trash along the highway.  It is always great fun and super rewarding.  Sometimes we have found some interesting items to boot!
Keeping Pagosa Beautiful Jann C Pitcher 2023-07-24 06:00:00Z 0

Jann C Pitcher 4th of July Grand Marshal

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs was pleased to announce this year's Fourth of July Parade grand marshal, Jann Pitcher.  Jann married Todd Pitcher at Spirit Lake above Sante Fe, N.M., 53 years ago.  In 1976 they moved to Pagosa to help run the Wolf Creek Ski Area; Kingsbury and Charuitt Jane Pitcher, Todd's parents subsequently purchased Wolf Creek in 1978.Over the years, more than anuthing else, Jann loved watching her three children grow up and thrive in Pagosa.  Now they and their spouses are contribution member of the Pagosa community.  Jann and Todd's eight grandchildren are the light of Jann's life, ranging in age from 3 to 25 years old.  Her family is truly the most important aspect of her life.
Jann's support of the Pagosa Springs community is endless and it is easy to see her deep love for her hometown through her varied leadership distinctions.  She has been the president of the Pagosa Springs Area Camber of Commerce, president of the Pagosa Springs Area Association of Realtors, Realtor of the Year, chair of the high school's accountability committee, and chair of the Citizens Bank of Pagosa Springs, to name a few highlights.  Jann also has been an active member of the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club for many years.  In 1987, she had the distinguished honor of being the first female in the club, shortly after the Supreme Court made the ruling to allow women to join.  In 1997, she was named Rotarian of the Year and in 2003 she was awarded the Rotary district youth service award.  In 2004 Jann was president of the club, leading with kindness, humor and grace
Jann C Pitcher 4th of July Grand Marshal 2023-07-11 06:00:00Z 0

Installation of New Officers and Board Members

Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs Begins a New Year

The end of June signifies the end of one Rotary year and the beginning of another!!  Last week the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club members gathered at the Springs Resort to thank Warren Brown for his year of service as President of the Club and to welcome Cindi Galabota to the Presidents’ position for the upcoming year.

Stacy Clark was selected as the Rotarian of the Year!  She was recognized for her boundless enthusiasm and dedication to service and to the Club.

The Officers of the Board of Directors of Pagosa Springs Rotary fill vital roles in managing how effective and important the Club is to the community!  Mike Vanover is willing to serve on the Board, along with Kenneth Beesly and Bill Salmansohn.  Sam Pittmon and Jim Garrett will continue to serve as Secretaries, Melanie Garrett will also continue to serve.  Pat Tackett will take the position on the Board and the Office of Treasurer.  Robert Foster will serve as President Elect.

Installation of New Officers and Board Members Shellie Peterson 2023-07-06 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs Scholarship Recipients

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is proud to announce the graduating seniors who will be receiving the 2023 Rotary scholarships, which total $22,000 this year. There were amazing applications and tough decisions to be made by the committee. There are five students who were awarded for this year.

Avery Ramirez will be studying respiratory therapy at San Juan College.

Hannah Rockensock is attending Tennessee Tech and plans to study musical theater in their School of Music.

Kaleb Johnson will be going to Montana State University in Bozeman, MT. He will be majoring in computer engineering.

Lynelle Bartz is attending Arizona State University and will be pursing her degree in nursing.

Justin Rivas will be headed to Denton, TX, to attend Northwest Lineman College.
Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs Scholarship Recipients Meg Wempe 2023-05-31 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Supports the Library Expansion

President Warren called Rotary members, Cindi Galabota and Meg Wempe, to the podium to accept a contribution towards the Ruby Sisson Library Expansion Campaign.  The Board of Directors had approved a contribution of $5,000 for 2023 from the Community Assistance Fund (CAF).  The Board also approved an additional pledge of $5,000 for 2024 and 2025 for a total of $15,000, provided that funds are available to do so.
Rotary Supports the Library Expansion Shellie Peterson 2023-05-19 06:00:00Z 0

Greg Sund - Incoming District Governor

Last Thursday, The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs had the honor of having Greg Sund, Incoming District Governor at our meeting.  Mr. Sund  has been involved with Rotary since 1996 in Dickinson, North Dakota, and served as the President of that Club in 2004-2005.  Mr. Sund initially studied wildlife management and biology at the University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point and later changed his focus to Art and eventually to earning a Master of Public Administration from the University of South Dakota.
Throughout Greg's career, he has served in various capacities in Rotary including being Serving as Assistant Governor and as a member on the District Membership Committee.
Greg Sund - Incoming District Governor Shellie Peterson 2023-05-17 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Participates in Brews for Rescues


A Cause for Paws!

Pagosa Fun! and Rugby’s Rescue House, a local dog rescue, ( hosted  the Second Annual “Brews for Rescues" Beer Fest, SW Colorado’s first Dog-Centric beer fest that is just as much for your dog as it is for you!

​On Saturday, April 29, 2023, the region’s favorite breweries came to Pagosa Springs, Colorado to showcase some of their best craft-beer and raise money for Rugby’s Rescue House, an amazing non-profit organization. Beer from Eddyline, Ska, Marble Brewing, Second Street Brewing, Breckenridge Brewing and many more were served!

​Rugby's Rescue is a small non-profit rescue dedicated to "Rescuing, Saving, and Repeating" the process.  Their main focus is rescuing dogs from surrounding Native American Reservations, where the growing dog population has been a big problem. 

​The event was hosted at Yamaguchi Park in Pagosa Springs, CO along the San Juan River with sweeping views of the San Juan Mountains.  The day started at noon with a community dog walk.  After the walk, the doors open and the beer tasting began.  During the tasting there was a costume contest, owner look-a-like contest, best trick contest and lots more fun!  Rugby’s Rescue House also had dogs and puppies available for adoption. This is really a day for the dogs!  Last year we had over 7 dogs adopted out to their forever homes.

Rotary Participates in Brews for Rescues Shellie Peterson 2023-05-11 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Supports Youth Services Month

The month of May is very special to the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs!  First, we interview and select our Rotary Youth Leadership Award recipient!  
Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) is an intensive leadership experience organized by Rotary clubs and districts where you develop your skills as a leader while having fun and making connections.
What are the benefits?
Connect with leaders in your community and around the world to:
  • Build communication and problem-solving skills
  • Discover strategies for becoming a dynamic leader in your school or community
  • Learn from community leaders, inspirational speakers, and peer mentors
  • Unlock your potential to turn motivation into action
  • Have fun and form lasting friendships
What’s involved?
RYLA events are organized locally by Rotary clubs and districts for participants ages 14-30. Depending on community needs, RYLA may take the form of a one-day seminar, a three-day retreat, or a weeklong camp. Typically, events last 3-10 days and include presentations, activities, and workshops covering a variety of topics.
But That's not ALL!
Rotary Supports Youth Services Month Shellie Peterson 2023-05-10 06:00:00Z 0

Leadership Opportunity Sponsored by Rotary

Nolan Kay participates in a RYLA retreat in 2019
We haven’t heard from you yet, and there is still time to develop your leadership skills or potential leadership skills.
The Rotary Club here in Pagosa Springs has a great opportunity for all high school students in 10th or 11th grade. We want to sponsor you to attend this year’s RYLA retreat weekend in Leadville, Colorado, June 2-4. RYLA is Rotary Youth Leadership Award. There’s no charge to participate and everything is provided, including transportation.
Nolan Kay, who attend RYLA in 2019, had this to say: "RYLA was a great experience for me.  I had the opportunity to participate in a variety of leadership activities.  These helped me develop into a better leader.  RYLA was also lots of fun, and I met many wonderful students from around the state.”
Outdoor recreation activities at Colorado Mountain College in the Leadville area are endless, and we are planning to offer the RYLA participants a chance to experience leadership development through outdoor experiential learning as well as traditional classroom instruction. The Colorado Mountain College offers the opportunity to experience a ropes course, a climbing wall and hiking.
Leadership Opportunity Sponsored by Rotary Cindi Galabota 2023-04-13 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Encourages Students in Niger to Learn English

When much of North America was last covered with ice, what we know today as the Sahara Desert of North Africa was covered with trees and grasslands. Many African tribes flourished during this time, each with its own culture and language.
Over a period of 5,000 to 10,000 years the “Green Sahara” turned to an extremely hot and dry desert. The tribes adapted to the conditions or moved to peripheral areas where life was more hospitable. Despite these changes, the tribes maintained their own customs and languages.
Colonization by Europeans created countries that included many tribes, each with their own customs and languages. Niger, which encompasses the central part of the Sahara Desert, recognizes 10 tribal languages. These languages remain the preferred means of communicating within families and among friends.
Although French is the official language of Niger, only about 50% of the population is proficient. Because few Nigeriens speak English, Niger remains culturally and economically isolated from much of the world. This isolation has contributed to Niger’s being one of the poorest countries in the world.
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs, with support from the Rotary Foundation, has been helping Niger to lift itself from poverty by working with our twin Rotary club in Niger on several projects. Through this relationship we have learned of the need to improve English education in Niger.
Rotary Encourages Students in Niger to Learn English David Smith 2023-03-21 06:00:00Z 0

Updates on Ukraine


Updates from
District Governor Sam Kevan  

Rotary’s area of focus for February: Peace and Conflict Prevention/Resolution

How we have supported Ukraine locally  

While an ongoing conflict rages in Ukraine, it is difficult to see how we can help to build peace and prevent conflicts from our little corner of the world. While we, as Rotarians, are powerless to deter Putin we can continue to help ease the suffering of the Ukrainian people.

Early on Rotarians contributed $15 million dollars to the Ukrainian Disaster Relief Fund. Over the last year this has funded many projects in collaboration with Ukrainians on the ground:

  • Provide ambulances, medical supplies, and medical units for the sick and injured.

  • Provide food, shelter supplies, water purification systems, and generators to ease the suffering of the civilian population.

  • District 5470 along with District 5440 (Northern CO, WY, and Western NE) District 5390 (Montana), and District 5180 (Central California), has used $200,000 of that money to provide beds, bedding supplies, and water purifiers to a Rotary Club in Kyiv.

As of January 30, Rotary International has reopened the Ukrainian Disaster Relief Fund for more donations. It’s another opportunity for District 5470 Rotary clubs and Rotarians to continue supporting the Ukrainian people. Donations to this Fund through the remainder of 2023 will be used for grants through June, 2024.

You can support THE ROTARY FOUNDATION to build peace and prevent conflicts worldwide 

  • Through Peace Scholarships, our 7 World Peace Centers educate young men and women from all over the world in the important work of diplomacy and conflict resolution.

  • Funding of other areas of focus include: Disease Treatment and Prevention, Literacy, Water and Sanitation, Maternal and Child Health, Community Development, Supporting our Environment and Empowering Girls initiatives all help to alleviate problems that can ultimately sow the seeds of war and conflict. 

I ask you to continue contributing to the ANNUAL FUND of THE ROTARY FOUNDATION. You can rest assured that you are helping to build peace and prevent future wars in our world.

Updates on Ukraine District Governor Sam Kevan 2023-03-05 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Supports Science Education in Niger, Africa

Lead teachers in a high school in Niamey, Niger learn how to use voltmeters to determine the characteristics of resistors, diodes and capacitors.
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is in the final phase of a project to improve science education in six high schools in Niger, Africa. There are nearly 4000 students in these schools, which include the last three years of secondary education. Girls make up 42% of the students.
Niger is a large country that includes much of the Sahara Desert. By most measures of prosperity, Niger as the least developed country in Africa. Yet, many students have set high goals for themselves. They want to become physicians, engineers, airline pilots and teachers. To achieve these goals, these students need access to quality education, including modern science classes.
Poorly developed countries need good science education if they are to lift themselves out of poverty. Niger has little coal, gas or oil, but it has lots of Sahara Desert sunshine. It also has substantial mineral deposits. Developing solar power and mineral assets is a high priority and will require engineers and technicians who understand science.
Although science teachers in Niger understand theory rather well, they have had little or no practical experience. They have not done lab experiments because they have had no lab equipment and no training. They have no lab manuals that describe how to do experiments.
The principal goals of our project is to help the Nigerien teachers develop lab manuals that align with their curriculum, provide supplies that are necessary to perform these experiments, and to train the teachers to perform the experiments. Good lab experiments help students to understand theory, to develop good technical skills and to see how science is connected to their lives.
High school science students use equipment provided by Rotary to study basic electronics
After travelling for 30 hours, I arrived in the capital of Niger, Niamey, with my five suitcases filled with lab supplies.  Five Rotarians from our twin partner Rotary Club in Niamey met me at the airport and cleared the way through customs. All projects supported by the Rotary Foundation must have a host club in the country where the project will take place. The host clubs know the needs of their communities and how to best meet these needs
Having completed the first week of teacher training, I attended a physics class in the equivalent of our junior year of high school. There were 50 students, about 15 of which were girls.
There were no text books, so the teacher worked from a blackboard and dictated. The students took meticulous notes. This classroom is different from most physics classrooms in Niger because the teacher had some lab supplies, which had been provided several years ago by our Rotary Club.
The current project, which started three years ago, will cost $60,000. Most of the funding comes from a grant from the Rotary Foundation, which receives its funding from donations from 1.2 million Rotarians in 200 countries.  Rotarians volunteering their time increase the value of these grants several fold.
My visit will last three weeks. The first week, which we have just completed, focused on training three lead teachers to do the lab experiments. During the next two weeks, these lead teachers will train an additional 30 science teachers from the six high schools supported by this grant. Each of these schools will have the equipment necessary to perform the lab experiments and teachers who have been trained to perform the experiments.
Rotary Supports Science Education in Niger, Africa David Smith 2023-03-05 07:00:00Z 0

March is Clean Water and Sanitation Month

Clean water is a basic need for human beings. When people, especially children, have access to clean water, they live healthier and more productive lives. However, at least 3,000 children die each day from diseases caused by unsafe water, which is what motivates our members to build wells, install rainwater harvesting systems, and teach community members how to maintain new infrastructure.

While very few people die of thirst, millions die from preventable waterborne diseases, providing the impetus for our members to also improve sanitation facilities in undeveloped countries. Members start by providing toilets and latrines that flush into a sewer or safe enclosure and then add education programs to promote hand-washing and other good hygiene habits.

From the various water projects in which Rotary has participated, we have come to know the obstacles that many people across the globe face when it comes to some of the basic necessities of life. We tend to take for granted the clean and generally safe and plentiful water sources to which we have access. 

Rotary International, through the combined actions of individual Rotarians and Rotary Clubs, seeks to assure that all people have adequate access to clean and safe water. The Rotary theme for March, Water and Sanitation, asks us to focus on the life changing improvements that we can make through these international projects to provide a more readily available and healthy supply of water to all people.

March is Clean Water and Sanitation Month Shellie Peterson 2023-03-05 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Cooks and Serves for Loaves & Fishes

We had a very tasty Creamy Chicken Green Chili Stew this week thanks to our Sponsor, Pagosa Springs Rotary Club!
We served 230 hot meals and 385 frozen meals for a total of 615 meals this week.
Rotarians Ronnie Doctor and Larry McClintock assisted in the kitchen on Thursday and Kim Moore braved the not so bad weather outside distributing the meals.  We even had people come back for seconds.  
Our mystery donator struck again and we received $195 in donations for Loaves and Fishes.
Rotary Cooks and Serves for Loaves & Fishes Stacy Clark 2023-03-05 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Fun Facts


Rotary Fun Facts


First Project of World's First Service Club

The first service project of the first Rotary Club was the installation of public toilets in Chicago in 1917. This project made Rotary the World's First Service Club.

Rotary's primary motto is "Service Above Self."

There's a secondary motto: "One profits most who serves best."

There are more than 1.2 Million Rotarians all over the world in more than 35,000 Rotary Clubs in more than 200 countries in all geographic areas.

The first women joined Rotary in 1987. Today, more than 196,000 women are members of Rotary International.

The Rotary Foundation Ambassadorial Scholarships are the world's largest, privately-funded scholarships.

The first Rotaract Club was formed in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Rotarians in the United States make up 28 percent of all Rotarians worldwide.

The country of Nauru has the least number of Rotarians of any country in the world, 11. Formerly known as Pleasant Island, Naura is in Micronesia in the South Pacific. Its nearest neighbor is Banaba Island in Kiribati, 182 miles to the east.

The Rotary emblem was printed on a commemorative stamp for the first time in 1931, at the time of the Vienna Convention.

Rotary became bilingual in 1916, when it organized a non-English-speaking Club in Cuba.

Arch Klumph established the "Rotary Endowment Fund" in 1917, when the Kansas City, MO Club donated $26.50.  In 1928, it became The Rotary Foundation.

In 1929, The Rotary Foundation made its first gift, $500, to the International Society for Crippled Children.

Rotary first adopted the name "Rotary International" in 1922, when the name was changed from the International Association of Rotary Clubs.

Rotary first established Paul Harris Fellowships in 1957, for contributors of $1,000 to The Rotary Foundation.

In 1968, the first Rotary Club banner to orbit the moon was carried by astronaut Frank Borman, a member of the Houston Space Center Rotary Club.

The first Rotary convention was in Chicago in 1910. There were 16 Rotary Clubs.

The first head of state to address a Rotary convention was President Warren G. Harding in 1923, in St. Louis.

In 1979, Rotary began a project to immunize six million children against polio in the Philippines. This led to Rotary making polio eradication its top priority.

In 1988, Rotary began the PolioPlus campaign with an initial fundraising pledge of $120 million.

Providing vitamin A supplements during polio immunization has averted an estimated 1.5 million childhood deaths since 1998 – the "plus" in PolioPlus.

Rotary's fiscal year began the day after its conventions until 1913.  Starting in 1913, it begins on July 1st.

The first Rotary Boys' Week was held in New York City in May 1920, by the Rotary Club of New York.

In 1934, Boys' Week became known as Youth Week, and in 1936, Boys' and Girls' Week.

In 2010, Youth Service became Rotary's fifth Avenue of Service.

During the 1920s and 1930s, Paul Harris traveled extensively, ceremoniously planting trees to symbolize goodwill and friendship.

January of 1911 was the first issue of The National Rotarian.  The name was changed to The Rotarianin 1912, when Clubs were organized in Canada.

The largest Rotary Club is the Oklahoma City Downtown Club with over 600 members.

The fifth Rotary Test: Is It Fun?

Rotary Fun Facts Shellie Peterson 2023-02-14 07:00:00Z 0

February is Peace & Conflict Resolution Month


February - World Understanding Month

Area if Focus: Peace and conflict prevention/resolution. The month of February is very special in the Rotary calendar because it includes the anniversary of the first meeting of Rotary held on February 23, 1905, now designated as the World Understanding and Peace Day.

  • Organize 'MUNA' (Modal United Nations Assembly) at College Level
  • Engage in reconciliation of broken families, restoring relationship
  • Help How people can live in peace with their families and their neighbors
  • Assist Young Single mothers who are victims of sexually abused through training them with self-help projects. e.g. Opening small business that may help them with their children
Rotary has designated months to help clubs Develop meeting agendas, projects, or public image campaigns based on these special occasions.

The Concept is to give all the clubs of the District a Ready Reckoner of the types of Service Projects, which could be indulged, during the Year, and help plan the activities of the year, mostly based on the Rotary Calendar i.e. Rotary Designated Months.
February is Peace & Conflict Resolution Month Shellie Peterson 2023-02-14 07:00:00Z 0

2023 Sponsorship Campaign

February 14, 2023 – We LOVE our SPONSERS!
The members of the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club would like to thank our sponsors for their generous contribution to our 2022 fundraising campaign.  These business and individual contributions helped us to raise over $45,850 this past year.
Our largest endeavor is providing scholarships for graduating High School Seniors. Since 1982, the Club has awarded $518,125, to 192 graduates.  It is with great joy that we are following 13 Pagosa Springs college students, monitoring their class loads and grades to assure that we are being good stewards of the funds you have donated and that they are successful in their college careers.
  • The Club provides support for classroom needs through teacher mini grants.  Last year, 14 specific teacher’s projects, unfunded through the schools, were able to come to fruition through Rotary.
  • 3rd grade students were provided with hard-back, beautifully illustrated dictionaries of their very own.
  • Our Exchange Student, Agustin Periz Leal, from Las Grutas, Argentina arrived in August.  He is enjoying our community and attending High School. We are thrilled to offer him this opportunity.
  • Rotary Youth Leadership Awards will be granted to 2 outstanding Sophomores or Juniors.  The RYLA Retreat weekend provides a series of professionally developed presentations and activities that take participants through a process of assessing their personal leadership characteristics and understanding the ethics of leadership and setting personal goals.
  • The Club also continues to support the Pagosa Outreach Connection with representation on that review panel and funding for those in need of a one-time or emergency ‘hand-up’.
Your sponsorship is acknowledged and celebrated on our website!  If you have a website URL, folks visiting can click on YOUR LOGO as our sponsor and be immediately re-directed to YOUR WEBSITE.  It is one way we can say Thank You all year long.  How many our ‘clicks’ or re-directs from our Rotary page directly to your website content can be monitored.  Your company or name will be featured prominently as our sponsor in our publications and events.
We hope to have earned your trust and continued support as we move into another year of service in our community in 2023.  One of our Rotarians will be calling or stopping by your business to answer questions or provide more information.  We spend every penny thoughtfully.  Check contributions can also be made payable to the Pagosa Rotary Community Assistance Fund and mailed to Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs at PO Box 685, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.
On behalf of the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs.
2023 Sponsorship Campaign Shellie Peterson 2023-02-14 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Responds to Earthquake


Rotary responds to earthquake that has devastated areas of Turkey and Syria


Turkey and Syria were struck by a devastating earthquake on 6 February that has killed tens of thousands of people, destroyed thousands of homes and other structures, and left people across the region without shelter in bitterly cold winter weather.

The Rotary world responded to this catastrophe immediately. RI President Jennifer Jones activated our disaster response efforts, communicated with the affected districts, and encouraged governors in those regions to apply for disaster response grants and share information about their relief efforts so that Rotary can amplify the calls for support.

The Rotary Foundation Trustees decided that all donations made, from now until 31 March, to the Turkey/Syria Disaster Response Fund will be used to aid earthquake relief projects. In addition, the Trustees made available more than $125,000 to Rotary districts affected by the earthquake through Disaster Response Grants.

Rotary Responds to Earthquake Shellie Peterson 2023-02-14 07:00:00Z 0

Who We Play For

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs has support this life-saving effort in the past and is even more excited to share that, Ralph Maccarone, has been named a finalist for humanitarian award!!  Pagosa Springs' Ralph Maccarone, co-founder and volunteer of Who We Play For, has been named a finalist for the NASCAR Foundation's Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award, which recognized NASCAR fans who are dedicated to providing resources and support to children, as reported in the Pagosa Springs SUN.
Individuals can learn more about the award and vote once a day every day through November 9 at
Who We Play For Shellie Peterson 2022-10-29 06:00:00Z 0

November is Foundation Month

November is Rotary Foundation Month – Here’s why! Each year, Rotary International highlights November as Rotary Foundation Month to emphasize the importance of and need for Rotarian support of The Rotary Foundation. Contributions from Rotarians around the world go to the Foundation's Annual Programs Fund, which provides grants and awards through Foundation programs; and the Permanent Fund, an endowment from which only the earnings are spent in support of Foundation programs, ensuring the long term viability of the Foundation. Every dollar contributed by Rotarians funds humanitarian and educational programs and program operations.
Clubs and districts apply for and receive Foundation grants to carry out worthy projects worldwide, like our club’s efforts with the Heartline Maternity Center in Haiti. If Rotary is to be there to teach children to read, build wells, feed the hungry, care for the sick, shelter the poor; then Every Rotarian is invited and encouraged to support the Annual Fund with a personal contribution, Every Year. How can I make a gift in support of the Rotary Foundation? Visit the Rotary International website ( to make your gift: one time, regular/sustaining (recurring gift at the timing of your choice), to the program area of your choice – all of the information is there for you to choose what would be most meaningful to you.
November is Foundation Month Shellie Peterson 2022-10-29 06:00:00Z 0

How About That Barn Dance!

The Pagosa community really stepped up and stepped OUT for this event!!  What a great time was had by all.  A huge shout out to Tim Sullivan and his Band.  They had the dance floor packed all evening!  Thanks to all that bid on the many wonderful silent auction items!  There certainly was a great selection to choose from. Details remain but approximately $11,000 was raised to support our College and Vocational School Scholars here in Pagosa Springs.  
Thanks to EVERYONE who made this event such a success and a fun time for the community!
How About That Barn Dance! Shellie Peterson 2022-10-29 06:00:00Z 0

Polio Plus and World Polio Day


By Jenny Marsh | Pagosa Springs Rotary Club

World Polio Day this year is Oct. 24. Polio is a contagious viral disease that spreads through person-to-person contact. It was most prevalent in the United States in the 1940s and 1950s. Most people who get infected with poliovirus will not have any visible symptoms. 

About 25 percent (one out of four) individuals with polio will have flu-like symptoms including sore throat, fever, tiredness, nausea, headache and stomach pain. The symptoms typically last two to five days and then go away on their own. A few people will develop more serious symptoms such infection of the covering of the spinal cord or brain (meningitis) or paralysis (weakness or inability to move parts of the body). Paralysis can lead to lung failure, which can be treated with iron lung devices. Of 100 people who develop paralysis, two to 10 may die. 

Polio vaccines protect people against naturally occurring polioviruses and vaccine-derived poliovirus. Unvaccinated and under-vaccinated people are at risk for developing the polio infection. 

There are two kinds of polio infection: wild (from active virus) and vaccine-derived or “variant” (from weakened virus shed by individuals vaccinated with oral polio vaccine). 

In the early 1950s, Dr. Jonas Salk developed the inactivated polio vaccine (IPV). This vaccine has no risk of seeding vaccine-derived (or variant) polio outbreaks because the inactivated/killed virus cannot mutate and cause disease. This is the vaccine currently given in the U.S. 

In the late 1950s, Dr. Albert Sabin developed the oral polio vaccine (OPV). Advantages of the OPV are that it is safe, effective and easy to administer, and so it is often given in the developing world. The live but weakened virus in OPV replicates in the gut and produces strong intestinal immunity. The disadvantage is that persons vaccinated with OPV can shed the weakened vaccine virus in their stool for several weeks. In areas with poor sanitation, the weakened virus can spread to unvaccinated and under-vaccinated individuals. This transmission and resulting disease is called vaccine-derived poliovirus (VDPV). 

The United States has given only IPV since 2000. Continuing to achieve high IPV vaccination coverage is the best way to keep the U.S. polio-free and prevent the virus from spreading. Access to clean water, good hand hygiene habits, modern sewage systems and wastewater management further prevent germs, including viruses like poliovirus, from spreading around the world. 

Rotary International has been working on polio eradication for more than 30 years and has helped reduce polio cases by 99.9 percent worldwide, immunizing more than 2 billion children across 122 countries. 

In 1985, Rotary launched the Polio Plus initiative.

In 1988, Rotary founded the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. At that time, wild poliovirus paralyzed hundreds of children every day. There were 350,000 cases across more than 125 countries. 

In 2000, children in Haiti and the Dominican Republic were getting sick. From July 2000-July 2001, 21 children were paralyzed on the island. Two died. All but one were either unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated. Their communities had vaccination rates as low as 7 percent. This was an outbreak of the weakened vaccine virus, which had mutated in unvaccinated and under-vaccinated individuals and become virulent. 

In August 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) African region was certified free of wild poliovirus. 

In 2021, more than 370 million children were vaccinated across 30 countries with more than 1 billion doses of OPV. 

Polio Plus and World Polio Day Shellie Peterson 2022-10-29 06:00:00Z 0
Welcome "New" Members Shellie Peterson 2022-10-29 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary is on the MOVE Again!

Our endless thanks to Evelyn Tennyson and her staff at the Tennyson Event Center!!  With the complexities of COVID, we needed a 'home' to get back to meeting in person and the EVENT CENTER certainly took good care of us!!!  Both the Event Center and Two Old Crows, the art gallery downtown, were brand new Rotary Sponsors in 2021 and they continue that support in 2022!!
Now....its on to THE DEN!
Shane Lucero is one of the owners of this new business and we are so excited to enjoy this new venue.  Byran's email laid out the details but...why don't you order lunch right now??  970-264-3005.  As always, change brings new challenges but we look forward to this new adventure and to supporting this new business along the way!  This business is a brand new sponsor for our Rotary efforts as well!
Rotary is on the MOVE Again! Shellie Peterson 2022-10-05 06:00:00Z 0

World Polio Day - October 24th

We are making great progress towards eradicating polio, however recent news reminds us that polio anywhere is a threat everywhere. Polio is being detected around the world in places where it hasn’t been found in decades. In the United States, an unvaccinated man was paralyzed by polio. In the UK, poliovirus has been detected in sewage samples. In Malawi, a child contracted polio. And Mozambique announced its first polio outbreak of wild poliovirus in 30 years.
The time for urgent action is now. A new vaccine has been deployed to stop outbreaks. Malawi, Mozambique, and nearby countries are conducting immunization campaigns to stop the spread of the virus. With our partners and advocates like you, we continue to encourage communities worldwide to provide vaccinations.
As we approach World Polio Day, 24 October, you can help us make an impact and stop the spread of polio. You can take action by:
World Polio Day will help us provide the resources needed to protect children from the U.S. to Mozambique and around the world. Join us so that no child suffers the paralyzing effects of polio ever again.

The Rotary Foundation
World Polio Day - October 24th Shellie Peterson 2022-10-03 06:00:00Z 0
7th Annual Jewels and Jeans Barn Dance Shellie Peterson 2022-10-03 06:00:00Z 0

October is Economic and Community Development Month

The work of Rotary begins in the community, and every community has its own unique needs and concerns. While we serve in countless ways, we’ve focused our efforts in six key areas to maximize our impact. These areas encompass some of the world’s most critical and widespread humanitarian needs. Rotary members planning new service projects are encouraged to consider these areas and the many opportunities for innovative projects within them. Rotary International and The Rotary Foundation have adopted six areas of focus as organizational priorities: .....
  • Peace and conflict prevention/resolution

  • Disease prevention and treatment

  • Water and sanitation

  • Maternal and child health

  • Basic education and literacy

  • Economic and community development

There are countless ways that Rotary clubs can address these issues both locally and internationally.

For ideas, consult the publication Rotary’s Areas of Focus Brochure (965en) . It s available in a pdf format on website.

October is Economic and Community Development Month Shellie 2022-10-03 06:00:00Z 0

Our Thanks to Smoken Moe's Unreal BBQ

At last week's Rotary meeting, we were honored to present Teri Peterson, Smoken Moe's Unreal BBQ, with a plaque of appreciation! Teri and her crew have been providing delicious lunch selections for our Rotary Club almost every Thursday for over a year!!  We so appreciate their efforts.
Our Thanks to Smoken Moe's Unreal BBQ Shellie Peterson 2022-10-03 06:00:00Z 0

Putt Hill Clean-Up

Rotary continues its commitment to the community.
There are community service projects that take money and then there are community service projects that simply take effort and the desire to see Pagosa Springs in the most positive light.  This project is one that 'just won't stay done'.  Rotarians know that it is inevitable that no matter how careful folks are, some of this debris is going to end up back along Putt Hill.  So, we will be there to continue to serve.
Putt Hill Clean-Up Jann C Pitcher 2022-10-03 06:00:00Z 0

We Welcome Agustin Perez Leah from Argentina

The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club is currently hosting Agustin Perez Leal, high school junior, from Las Grutas, Argentina who arrived in Pagosa Springs August 28th. Being from a small town on the Atlantic Ocean, he’s enjoying the similarity of a small community and the contrast of the elevation and the mountain scenery. His parents are both business professionals and he has a younger brother. Agus is smart, athletic and loves all sports and trying new things. He is an avid soccer player and is excited to snow ski.
At Pagosa Springs High School, he is enrolled in typical American classes including Math and English in addition to unique electives like Wilderness Skills and Metal Fabrication. He has started playing on the boys’ high school soccer team and participated in the annual team run up Wolf Creek Pass. Agus’s first host family is Jean Garcia and her son Trey, high school junior.
The international Rotary Youth Exchange program has been suspended since March 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic began. With the restart of the international exchange program, 19 students are being hosted by Rotary Clubs in the Mountains and Plains District, covering western and southern Colorado. Additionally, 19 Colorado students from this district are spending their year abroad as outbound exchange students.
The Rotary exchange program is always interested in talking with students that are interested in the outbound program and families that are interested in hosting a student. Anyone who is interested in learning more about this opportunity should contact Rotarians Lisa Scott, 970-749-4268 or; Marianne DeVooght, 970-731-2009; Ronnie Doctor, 920-946-6367; or Granton Bartz, 970-946-2827.
We Welcome Agustin Perez Leah from Argentina Lisa Scott 2022-09-09 06:00:00Z 0

A New Rotary Year Begins

The end of June signifies the end of one Rotary year and the beginning of another!!  Last week the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club members gathered to thank Allen Roth for his year of service as President of the Club and to welcome Warren Brown to that position for the upcoming year.
David Smith was selected as the Rotarian of the Year!  David’s endless work on international projects and his passion for reducing deep poverty in the world are well known.
The Officers of the Board of Directors of Pagosa Springs Rotary fill vital roles in managing how effective and important the Club is to the community!  Melanie Garrett is willing to serve another term on the Board, Sam Pittmon and Jim Garrett will continue to serve as Secretaries, Larry McClintock will continue as Treasurer.  Cindi Galabota will serve as President Elect.
Warren has already challenged us to make it a priority in our schedule to attend meetings!  The most vital part of our success in serving the community and the world is in our friendships and camaraderie.
A New Rotary Year Begins Shellie Peterson 2022-07-08 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Theme 2022-2023

Rotary International President-elect Jennifer Jones wants members to imagine the possibilities in the change they can make to transform the world.
Jones, a member of the Rotary Club of Windsor-Roseland, Ontario, Canada, revealed the 2022-23 presidential theme, Imagine Rotary, as she urged people to dream big and harness their connections and the power of Rotary to turn those dreams into reality.
“Imagine, a world that deserves our best,” Jones told incoming district governors on 20 January, “where we get up each day knowing that we can make a difference.”
Jones, who will make history on 1 July by becoming Rotary’s first female president, gave a live online address to precede Rotary’s annual training event for district governors from around the world, the International Assembly. The assembly was rescheduled because of the COVID-19 pandemic and will now be held virtually 7-14 February.
Jones told the incoming governors about a chance she took when a member asked for assistance in getting a young peace activist out of Afghanistan during the U.S. troop withdrawal last year. At first unsure how she could help, she relied on “that certain Rotary magic” and contacted a former Rotary Peace Fellow she had met a few years earlier. Less than 24 hours later, the activist was on an evacuation list, and soon she was on her way to Europe.
Engaging members through meaningful responsibility
To better engage members, Rotary needs to “adapt and retool,” Jones said, using her hometown as an example. Windsor was once the automotive hub of Canada. But after plant closings left thousands without work, the city needed to retool, in the same way an auto plant would, preparing for new parts or a new model. Now, Jones said, Windsor is a leader in agribusiness and medical and aerospace technology.
For Rotary, “finding the right ‘part’ to engage each member should be our core function,” Jones said. “It comes down to the comfort and care of our members.”
Engaging members is crucial to retaining members, she said, adding that we need to ask members what they want to get from Rotary and give them meaningful responsibilities.
“It is our offer of hands-on service, personal growth, leadership development, and lifelong friendships that creates purpose and passion,” Jones said.
Imagine, a world that deserves our best where we get up each day knowing that we can make a difference.
Rotary Theme 2022-2023 2022-06-12 06:00:00Z 0

Ukraine Donation Update


In March, the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club set a goal to raise $10,000 in two weeks to provide humanitarian aid to Ukraine, and due to your generous response, over $25,000 was raised. Now 100 days later we would like to give you examples of how these funds are being used.

Tjupa, a Ukraine resident and charter president of Rotary Club Kyiv International woke February 24, 2022 to the sound of heavy bombing. Within three days numerous lives were lost and the infrastructure providing access to food and other essential goods was destroyed. Survival was at stake.

In the midst of chaos, Tjupa turned to Rotary for help. The response was immediate.  Using funds from Rotary International, and Rotary networks already in place, local groups began making food and medical supplies available. A lifeline was established and remains in effect today.

In the months following the onset of war, thousands like Tjupa have received aid through Rotary’s resources, which all start locally, just like they did in Pagosa Springs. Safe exit routes and bomb shelters have been identified; orphanages have been subsidized; abandoned pets rehomed; and those with special needs have been safely evacuated. International funds have provided specific essentials like hemostatic tourniquets, sleeping bags, diapers, coats, first-aid kits, battery packs, as well as meals for workers to keep these supplies moving around the clock. One club found an abandoned shopping center for distribution. Another Rotary member provided a barn to store supplies.

Ukraine Donation Update Pat Love 2022-06-12 06:00:00Z 0

March is Water and Sanitation Month

Clean water is a basic need for human beings. When people, especially children, have access to clean water, they live healthier and more productive lives. However, at least 3,000 children die each day from diseases caused by unsafe water, which is what motivates our members to build wells, install rainwater harvesting systems, and teach community members how to maintain new infrastructure.

While very few people die of thirst, millions die from preventable waterborne diseases, providing the impetus for our members to also improve sanitation facilities in undeveloped countries. Members start by providing toilets and latrines that flush into a sewer or safe enclosure and then add education programs to promote hand-washing and other good hygiene habits

March is Water and Sanitation Month Shellie Peterson 2022-03-13 07:00:00Z 0

Support in Ukraine

The Rotary Foundation creates channel for direct humanitarian support in Ukraine 

In response to the deepening humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, The Rotary Foundation has created an official channel for donors around the world to contribute funds to support the relief efforts underway by Rotary districts and has designated its Disaster Response Fund as the main avenue for contributions.

To this end, The Rotary Foundation has approved:

  • Now through 30 June 2022, designated Rotary districts that border Ukraine and the Rotary district in Ukraine may apply for grants of up to $50,000 each from the Disaster Response Fund. These expedited disaster response grants can be used to provide relief to refugees or other victims of the crisis including items such as water, food, shelter, medicine and clothing.
  • During this same period, other impacted Rotary districts that wish to offer support to refugees or other victims of the crisis in their district can apply for $25,000 grants from the Disaster Response Fund.
  • Now through 30 April 2022, Rotary districts can transfer unallocated District Designated Funds (DDF) to support the Disaster Response Fund, directly supporting these Ukraine-specific humanitarian grants.
  • Contributions to the Disaster Relief Fund in support of Ukraine can be made here. All funds need to be received into the Disaster Response Fund by 30 April 2022 in order to qualify for use in support of the Ukrainian relief efforts.
  • Although the Disaster Response Fund will be the main avenue for Rotary Foundation support, Rotary and Rotaract clubs are also encouraged to create their own responses to the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.

In addition to support provided through the Disaster Response Fund, the Foundation is coordinating with partners and regional leaders, exploring effective solutions to the increased humanitarian needs.

  • We are in contact with the United Nations High Commission on Refugees – USA to prepare for and respond to the needs of those being displaced in Ukraine and to neighboring countries.
  • ShelterBox, our project partner for disaster response, is in communication with Rotary members in Eastern Europe to explore how it may offer support with temporary transitional housing and other essential supplies.
  • The Rotary Action Group for Refugees, Forced Displacement, and Migration is also mobilizing its resources to assist in this crisis.

More than 2 million people have fled Ukraine and are in dire need of emergency aid. The United Nations estimates that number could grow to as many as 5 million people displaced. Rotary clubs in Europe and around the world have stepped up their relief work, some working on the ground to help displaced families.

We will continue to monitor the situation in Ukraine and neighboring countries. Visit My Rotary and follow Rotary on social media to stay updated on how clubs can get involved and what actions Rotary members have taken and the impact it has had for people in the region.

For all other questions and to obtain more information, please contact the Rotary Support Center at

Support in Ukraine Shellie Peterson 2022-03-13 07:00:00Z 0

Opportunities in Nigeria

Most of the Global Grants managed by Rotary Clubs in our district were initiated by one, highly energized person who was personally interested in a specific project in a specific country. Although this approach is often successful, it is fraught with a major obstacle: How to find a Host Club Partner that will be a reliable partner?
Of the approximately 46,000 Rotary Clubs in the world, only a small number have the will or the ability to host a Global Grant. Finding a Rotary Club in a particular community to manage a particular project is usually a major challenge.
Partnering with Rotary Clubs that have already identified projects they would like to do is more likely to lead to success with less effort. I recently received an email from Linus Okezie Eze, who chairs District 9142 Grants Subcommittee for The Rotary Foundation. This district is located in SE Nigeria.
Linus has identified 6 Global Grant projects that clubs in his district would like to do. These projects are directed towards improving toilet facilities in schools, upgrading instruction in girls schools, and training to insure a safe blood supply. All fit within one or more of The Foundation’s Areas of Focus.
The Host Clubs are not only willing and able to partner on these projects, they are hyper excited. They just need an International Partner, which could be your club.
Opportunities in Nigeria David Smith 2022-03-13 07:00:00Z 0

Hatcher Lake Ice Melt Contest

WOW!  Only FOUR DAYS LEFT TO PUT YOUR GUESSES IN!  Is it going to stay cold?  Is it going to warm up?  How deep is the ice???  Don't you wish you knew.  You can put in your guess as to when the barrel will drop through the ice up until 11:59 PM, MARCH 17th. Your GUESS has to be received by then to count.  After that, it will be too late to have a chance to WIN.  Remember, you can still pick dates that the barrel will go down later in March or even in April!  
Support the Pagosa Springs graduating seniors in their college and vocational school ambitions!  Scan the QR code in the poster - or go to and click on the Hatcher Ice Melt Contest in the blue area at the top of the page!!  Have FUN and GOOD LUCK!  Our Seniors win!
Hatcher Lake Ice Melt Contest Shellie Peterson 2022-03-13 07:00:00Z 0

Teacher Mini Grants Awarded

Congratulations Kara Assid, Linda Lutomski, Becca Gartman, Angela Reali-Crossman, Amanda Schweitzer, Katrina Thomas, Malinda Burnett, Dale Scrivener, Carry Steadman, Lynell Wiggers!
The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club Teacher Mini Grant program is a long-standing annual program for our club and this year was no different.
Twelve applications were received from seven different schools and ten teachers were selected. We are so fortunate to have such innovative creative teachers with the desire to inspire and expand the learning opportunities for our children.
 Some of the educational and fun projects we were able to fund include robots for programming and coding; cardio drum storage; assistive technology for special needs students to enable better communication; a Cricut maker and supplies for students to design, produce and sell items for the school spirit; reusable gelli plates for printmaking projects now and in the future; materials to construct terrariums for small critters as part of learning science; and materials to construct costumes for a school production. To make our available funds go to as many teachers as possible, we chose to partially fund some requests and suggest other community resources to others.
Teacher Mini Grants Awarded CiCi Stuart 2022-03-13 07:00:00Z 0

Celebrating 2021 and Welcoming 2022

2021 was a busy year and we look forward to serving the community during 2022!!  We welcome new members joining our already powerful force; Adam Buttons, Jon Mills, Katie Cloudman, Bill Salmansohn and Stacy Clark. 
Even during a pandemic, The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs continues to help the youth of this community. One of our largest endeavors are scholarships for graduating High School Seniors.   Since 1982, the Club has awarded $498,125, to 186 graduates for college and vocational school scholarships. It is with great joy that we are following 14 Pagosa Springs college students, monitoring their class loads and grade levels to assure that we are being good stewards of the funds you have donated and that they are successful in their college careers.  This year, we will applaud as two of our 2018 scholarship recipients, Colton Castro and Keanan Anderson, graduate from their selected program of study. 
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is excited to announce that Casey Lynn Crow has been selected to receive a scholarship in the amount of $30,000 to continue her education toward a PhD in Public Health and Policy from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.  Ms. Crow was endorsed to the Rotary District 5470 by the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs.  District 5470. in partnership with the Rotary Club of Hampstead. The award has been approved for funding by The Rotary Foundation.  We look forward to encouraging Casey and watching her continue to pursue her passions.
Casey holds a bachelor’s in Political Science and Global Studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a masters in International Development and Humanitarian Emergencies from the London School of Economics.  As a second-year doctoral student, her research explores access to sexual and reproductive healthcare in humanitarian crises, particularly for refugees and people with disabilities.  Apart from her research, Casey is a dancer, choreographer, and owner of Pagosa Springs Dance Academy, and is passionate about merging art and activism.  Having worked with refugees in Kenya, Jordan, Lebanon, Mexico and Greece, she has witnessed the transformational power of the arts to improve mental health and promote hope, healing and connection for survivors of trauma.  Casey founded Beyond Words International in 2018 with the hope of collaborating with artists, therapists, and those serving in their communities to increase opportunities for healing, empowerment, and positive expression.
When Casey was notified about being awarded this scholarship, she said, “I am unspeakably honored and grateful to be chosen as a Rotary Global Grant Scholar. This award will allow me to continue my studies and conduct my fieldwork in the largest refugee camp in the world, Bidi Bidi Camp in Uganda, next year. I am thrilled to represent Rotary as I continue my research and do my best to make a difference in the world. Special thanks to the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs for their incredible encouragement and support!”
Supporting our local teachers is no less important!  The Club provides support for classroom needs through teacher mini grants.  Last year, $2,400 was supplied in cash as well as other items that we collected to support ten specific teacher’s projects in grades kindergarten through 12th grade. 
Continuing another long-held tradition, 3rd and 4th grade students were provided with hard-back, beautifully illustrated dictionaries of their very own.
Celebrating 2021 and Welcoming 2022 Shellie Peterson 2022-01-26 07:00:00Z 0

January is Vocational Service Month


Vocational Service focuses on:

  • Adherence to and promotion of the highest ethical standards in all occupations, including fair treatment of employers, employees, associates, competitors, and the public.
  • The recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations, not just those that are pursued by Rotarians.
  • The contribution of your vocational talents to solving the problems of society and meeting the needs of the community.
During January, Rotarians are encouraged to focus on this important avenue of Rotary service. Discussions on vocational service can lead to projects that not only develop the ethical consciousness and vocational skills of Rotarians but also the talents within their communities. Vocational Service Month is an opportunity to begin year-long vocational service activities, ranging from Rotary discussions to awards to community projects. Following are some suggested activities to undertake during Vocational Service Month:
January is Vocational Service Month Shellie Peterson 2022-01-26 07:00:00Z 0
Blank dont know why it comes up Shellie Peterson 2021-11-09 07:00:00Z 0
November is Foundation Month Shellie Peterson 2021-11-06 06:00:00Z 0

District Governor's Visit

District Governor, Becky Smith, was our honored speaker last week.  

The following is an excerpt from  "Becky’s rise to the governorship began in 2006 when she joined the Pine River Valley Rotary Club. She rose to the presidency in 2010 and served in that position for two years. Becky helped increase club membership through recruitment and public events. Today, the club has 27 members and is very active in Bayfield and Ignacio.

During the coming year, Becky will manage a budget in excess of a quarter million dollars and guide 2,000 members. She will visit all 57 clubs within the 52,000 mile boundries of District 5470. Becky sees her goals for the coming year as helping clubs re-energize and encouraging members to continue their “service above self.”

Becky also has a goal of raising funds to help educate girls in third world countries. She hopes to raise $25,000 through donations from each club. District 5470 and Rotary International will match those donations, for a total of $70,000. Becky will be working directly with a Rotary club in Kenya to provide infrastructure and supplies to help young female students complete their education.

Becky’s service during the next year will be taxing but no doubt rewarding for someone who has dedicated her life to public service. PRV is proud to have such a leader! Good luck Becky and thanks for your unwavering dedication!!"

As usual, listening to Becky speak was insightful, encouraging and entertaining!!  Using the example of the Rubik Cube, she encouraged us to 'shake things up' in little ways that the community will notice and appreciate.  She also encouraged us to take care of ourselves as a Club by taking care and being mindful of each of our members.

District Governor's Visit Shellie Peterson 2021-11-06 06:00:00Z 0

World Polio Day

End Polio

Rotary has been working to eradicate polio for more than 30 years

Rotary has been working to eradicate polio for more than 35 years, and we’ve made incredible progress in the fight to rid the world of it forever.

As a founding partner of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, we've helped to reduced polio cases by more than 99.9 percent.

It’s crucial to eradicate polio from the last two countries where it remains endemic and to keep other countries polio-free.

If all eradication efforts stopped today, within 10 years, polio could paralyze as many as 200,000 children each year.

Be a part of history

Donate your funds

We’re close to eradicating polio, but we’re not done yet. We still need funds to continue immunization and surveillance efforts. Your gift will get us closer to the finish line.



World Polio Day Shellie Peterson 2021-10-15 06:00:00Z 0

Niamey-Gaweye Club Global Grant

Rotary International's impact around the world is most famously recognized as the efforts to eradicate Polio, but there is so much more!!  This global grant from the Rotary Foundation will enable countless children to better their learning by greatly improving their learning environment!  Specially constructed school desk tables and attached benches will improve these childrens' lives as well as let them know the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs Colorado, District 5470 and the Rotary Foundation find their future important to invest in!
Niamey-Gaweye Club Global Grant Shellie Peterson 2021-09-10 06:00:00Z 0

6th Annual Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance

Yes, these ladies will certainly be marking their calendar for this upcoming event!!  Mark your calendar right now
October 23, 2021
CSU Extension Building
Tim Sullivan and the Band
6th Annual Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance Shellie Peterson 2021-08-15 06:00:00Z 0

Casey Lynn Crow Awarded Scholarship

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is excited to announce that Casey Lynn Crow has been selected to receive a scholarship in the amount of $30,000 to continue her education toward a PhD in Public Health and Policy from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Casey Lynn Crow Awarded Scholarship Shellie Peterson 2021-08-15 06:00:00Z 0

The New Rotary Theme for 2021-2022

Posted by Shellie Peterson on Jun 27, 2021

Incoming Rotary International President Shekhar Mehta urged members to become more involved in service projects, saying that caring for and serving others is the best way to live because it changes not only other people’s lives, but also our own.

Mehta, a member of the Rotary Club of Calcutta-Mahanagar, West Bengal, India, revealed the 2021-22 presidential theme, Serve to Change Lives, to incoming district governors on 1 February during the Rotary International Assembly. The assembly, a yearly training event for district governors-elect, was originally set to take place in Orlando, Florida, USA, but was held virtually because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mehta spoke about how participating in service projects through Rotary changed him as a person and made him empathize more with the needs of others. Soon after joining his club, he helped carry out projects that benefited rural communities in India.

Some of the poor conditions he saw in those communities strengthened his commitment to service. “I truly understood the plight of my brethren,” he said.

Mehta participated in initiatives that brought artificial limbs to children, clean water and sanitation to homes, and better health care facilities to communities.

“Rotary kindled the spark within me to look beyond myself and embrace humanity,” he said. “Service became a way of life for me and I, like many others, adopted the guiding philosophy that ‘Service is the rent I pay for the space I occupy on this earth, and I want to be a good tenant of this earth.’”

The New Rotary Theme for 2021-2022 Shellie Peterson 2021-06-27 06:00:00Z 0

Winning for Twinning

Posted by Pat Love on Jun 26, 2021
I came to Rotary “later in life” just as I was winding down a career that included many years of international service. Tired of long-distance travel, feeling enormous gratitude for the opportunities I’d had in many countries, I was eager to put my energy into making a difference in our local community. With enthusiasm, I volunteered for committees; helped raise money for local causes; took on leadership roles; and recruited new members by telling them they too could make a difference in the town we love.

But, as you are no doubt aware, Rotary isn’t a one-way street; you get back far more than you give. My meager investment afforded me great personal satisfaction; a deeper feeling of belonging; and greater knowledge of our local community—but it al-so gave me something I wasn’t expecting: a humble awareness of Rotary’s magnanimous international impact. I learned that, not only has The Rotary Foundation made polio an all but distant nightmare, but it has fought other diseases; provided clean water; saved mothers and children from poverty; supported education; and promoted peace.

The information I’ve learned about Rotary’s powerful international impact didn’t come cheap, nor did it reinforce my comfortable, myopic view of service. As I grew more uncomfortable with my international inaction, I laid the blame mostly at the feet of David Smith. Seriously, how long can you listen to his inspiring stories of bringing the very first microscope to science teachers in the poorest parts of the world without wanting to help out? How many pictures can you see of happy faces knowing they don’t have to carry water for miles every day to keep their families alive, without wanting to support more of these efforts? So, when David presented the idea of “twinning” with a club in Niamey, Niger, I eagerly volunteered to help make that happen.

High school teachers in Niamey, Niger study the optical properties of double convex lenses in a teacher training workshop organized by the Niamey-Gaweye and Pagosa Springs Rotary Clubs.
Thanks to a reluctant knowledge of Zoom, having an active “twin-club” relationship with members of the Nia-mey-Gaweye Rotary Club in Niger has never been easier. Of course, we can still (someday) travel with David as he continues his kind, quiet, altruistic journeys; or we can develop personal relationships with the Niamey members without ever leaving home, or our pajamas! And because the Niamey-Gaweye Club offers service to remote, outlying villages, even a meager investment on our part can have impact in a part of the world rarely receiving support.

Winning for Twinning Pat Love 2021-06-26 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Inducts New Officers

Posted by Shellie Peterson on Jun 26, 2021
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs inducted new Officers and extended thanks to those Officers and Board Members who were outgoing.  Among the Directors whose term is completed, Art Benzel, Jenelle Syverson, Bill Hubbard and Livia Cloman Lynch as Immediate Past President.  Directors elected to serve an additional term are Larry McClintock and James Garrett.  Newly elected to the Board are Sam Pittmon and Pat Love.  Allen Roth was installed as the 2021-2022 Rotary President.  Congratulations Allen!!
Our immense gratitude goes out to Mike and Renee Vanover.  What a difficult year to be President of Rotary!!  Through all of the Zoom meetings, Mike remained steadfast in holding the Club together and encouraging our members.
Michael C. Branch was honored for his many years of service to the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs and the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club Scholarship Foundation Inc.  For many years, Mike Branch has offered his professional services to the Rotary Club and the Scholarship Foundation.  His services were way overdue to be acknowledged by the Club!!  Thank You Mike for all you have done for us in the pursuit of serving this community and the graduating class of High School Seniors since 1983!!
Patty Tillerson was our special guest.  Patty and Bob Tillerson's love and commitment to Rotary is well known in this community!  She is seated here with Larry Parks, husband of our wonderful Pat Love.
A beautiful afternoon to celebrate everything we do in this community and in the world.
Rotary Inducts New Officers Shellie Peterson 2021-06-26 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Scholarships Awarded

Posted by Livia Cloman Lynch on Jun 26, 2021
The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club is proud to announce those individuals receiving 2021 Rotary Scholarships totaling $21,125.
Ella Blechman---Ella plans to attend the University of Colorado to study Political Science with emphasis in systems of government and political behavior.
Madeline Metzger--Madeline will attend the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio where she plans to obtain a nursing degree.
Lorah Jacobson—Lorah plans to attend Otero Junior College and will pursue an Associates of Arts degree in Education.
Nicole Bartz—Nicole will attend Colorado State University and will pursue a degree in Biology with a concentration in animal physiology, while minoring in Art.
Kylie Keuning—Kylie plans to attend Calvin University in Grand Rapids, MI and she will pursue a five-year Bachelor to Master’s program for Speech Pathology and Audiology.
Ella Hemenger—Ella will be attending the University of Northern Colorado and plans to major in Elementary Education.
The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club congratulates the outstanding class of 2021 and wishes each of them success in their future endeavors.
Since 1983, the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club has awarded a total of $498,125 in scholarships to 186 local high school graduates. The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club would like to thank the Pagosa Springs community for their continued support of Rotary fundraisers and sponsorships that have made our local scholarships possible again this year. Additionally, the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club was pleased to receive Colorado Opportunity Scholarship Initiative matching grant funds this year.
Rotary Scholarships Awarded Livia Cloman Lynch 2021-06-26 06:00:00Z 0

June is Fellowship Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson

Incoming Rotary International President Shekhar Mehta urged members to become more involved in service projects, saying that caring for and serving others is the best way to live because it changes not only other people’s lives, but also our own.

Mehta, a member of the Rotary Club of Calcutta-Mahanagar, West Bengal, India, revealed the 2021-22 presidential theme, Serve to Change Lives, to incoming district governors on 1 February during the Rotary International Assembly. The assembly, a yearly training event for district governors-elect, was originally set to take place in Orlando, Florida, USA, but was held virtually because of the COVID-19 pandemic.


June is Fellowship Month Shellie Peterson 2021-06-12 06:00:00Z 0

Installation Diner & Social

Watch for this email invitation and sign up!!  We will have a great time welcoming our new President, Allen Roth and thanking Mike & Renee Vanover for their service!!
If you did not get an invitation, call me for details. 970-507-0500
Installation Diner & Social Shellie Peterson 2021-06-11 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Is Thankful for its Sponsors

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs would like to thank the following individuals and businesses for their unwavering support of Rotary’s community efforts and scholarships for 2021.
Without our donors, Rotary would not be able to do the community outreach that we are committed to doing.  While most are not Rotarians, they truly understand the Rotary motto of “Service Above Self.”
Jack Threet
Pagosa Springs Medical Center
A Affordable Storage
Pagosa Springs Sun
TBK Bank
Ears to You Hearing Aid Center LLC.
Wolf Creek Run
Bank of Colorado
1st Southwest Bank
Jann C. Pitcher Real Estate
KWUF 1400 AM 102.5 & KWUF Radio
La Plata Electric Association
Mike & Renee Vanover
Rhonda & Bill Webb
Silver Dollar Liquors
Terry’s Colorado Home Supply / Ace
Two Old Crows
Tennyson Event Center
Sherpa Real Estate
Pagosa Office & Storage
Salvation Army
Bank San Juans
Brown Insurance Agency Inc.
Choke Cherry Tree, Inc.
Colorado Dream Homes
Devo Capital Management
Durango Dermatology & Surgery
Elite Recycling
Jim Garrett, Attorney
Kim Moore – Exit Realty
Morehart Murphy Regional Auto Center
Pat Love
Rocky Mountain Physical Therapy
Scott Strategic Investments
Timothy Miller Custom Homes
Bee Hive Homes of Pagosa Springs
Colorado Title and Closing Services
Anthony & Veronica Doctor
Backwoods Enterprises
Brian Butzen MD
Davis Engineering Services
Elk Park Animal Hospital
Goodman’s Department Store
Jim Smith Realty
King Campbell DDS
Lee Riley – I sell Pagosa LLC
Mountain Eye Care
Pagosa Chiropractic
RG Bank
Subway Pagosa
The Tile & Carpet Store
The UPS Store
Village Interiors Carpet One
Michael C. Branch CPA
High Country Title
Bryan & Jane Wetzel
Gary & Claudia Weger
Alfons & Stephany Bouchier
Rotary Is Thankful for its Sponsors Shellie Peterson 2021-06-09 06:00:00Z 0

Pick'in Up the Trash

Posted by Jann Pitcher
Nine brave souls tackled Putt Hill on Saturday morning of the Memorial Day Weekend!
Meg Wempe, Cindi and Kareena Galabota, Renee Vanover, Elaine Feeney, Paula Tennant, Elsa Lindner, Kim Moore and Jann Pitcher were not for the faint of heart no matter how busy the highway was!!  The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is proud of our community and one of the ways we show it is by cleaning up trash along the highway.  It is always great fun and super rewarding.  Sometimes we have found some pretty interesting items to boot!
Pick'in Up the Trash Jann Pitcher 2021-06-04 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Supports our Teachers

Congratulations to Jillian Cram, Kelly Vining, Heather Rose, Katrina Thomas, Malinda Burnett, Dale Scrivener, Linda Lutomski, Kelle Bruno, Rachael Christiansen, and Karla Parker Choat!
The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club Teacher Mini Grant Program is a long-standing annual program for our club and this year was no different.  The mini grant program awards a limited number of grants with a maximum award of $400 for special classroom projects to individual teachers in kindergarten through twelfth grade in Archuleta County.  The mini grant provides working capital to innovative teachers who want to develop new ideas to enrich the student classroom experience.  The mini grants also provide funds to teachers for materials or projects that would not otherwise be available through the school district or for teachers that would otherwise have to use their own money to fund them.  
Thirteen applications were received from six different schools and ten teachers were selected.  We are so fortunate to have such innovative and creative teachers with the desire to inspire and expand the learning opportunities for our children.
Some of the interesting and fun projects we were able to fund included purchasing microscopes for science classes, reading intervention materials for phonics skills, 3-D wooden puzzles for Art class incorporating science, technology, math, and language, and yes, boomwhackers! Three teachers in the Middle and Family School joined together to apply for this purchase to expand their collection of boonwhackers to teach different aspects of music theory to over 200 students.  Add to that, cameras for learning about digital photography and creating digital portfolios, and an egg incubator to give the students the opportunity to learn about the life cycle of a chicken!
Rotary Supports our Teachers Shellie Peterson 2021-02-28 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Once Again Supports Rise Above Violence

Posted on Feb 28, 2021
Local Rotary Responds to Victims
Rise Above Violence would like to recognize the generous contributions of the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club for their continued recognition and support for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.  Rotary members have been especially cognizant of the effects COVID-19 has had on survivors, where victims were further isolated from supportive friends, families and systems, many having job loss due to closures and workplace restrictions.  This has required Rise to provide higher than anticipated levels of support, including financial help for rent, emergency shelter and food, utilities, and legal representation.  The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club has invested in our vital services and support programs, ensuring survivors are fully assisted when the need arises.  Thank you Pagosa Springs Rotary, your progressive and immediate response has been especially timely and impactful.
Rotary Once Again Supports Rise Above Violence Carmen Hubbs 2021-02-28 07:00:00Z 0

Hatcher Lake 2021 Ice Melt Contest

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Click this link to purchase tickets!!
Pagosa Springs Rotary, as a local, national and international service club, has had a tough time in raising funds in the midst of a year long pandemic. However, the curtain is rising to reveal a brighter tomorrow and Rotary is on the charge again to make life better in ways only they can do. Usher in the Third Annual Ice Melt Contest as their first 2021 fundraiser.
This armchair event is based on precise timing, down to the month, day, minute and second. A drum with a clock has been placed on Lake Hatcher and when the ice melts enough for the barrel to drop into the lake, the clock will stop and three lucky winners will be announced.
The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club, in conjunction with the Pagosa Springs Property Owner's Association will be awarding $1,000 to the person whose guess is the closest to the time marked on the then useless clock, $750 for second place and $50 for third place.
To be counted, entries must be submitted to Rotary no later than midnight, March 17 or earlier if the thawing happens and the barrel plunges to the depths of Lake Hatcher. Tickets for your guesses are $5 each, $20 for five and $100 for 30.
Guessing forms are available thru links at and, the PLPOA Administration Office, PLPOA Rec Center, The Choke Cherry Tree and Ski and Bow Rack.  
Hatcher Lake 2021 Ice Melt Contest Shellie Peterson 2021-02-01 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Provides Clean Water for African Village

Posted by David Smith on Jan 05, 2021

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs, working with Rotary Clubs in Vienna, Austria and Niamey, Niger, has completed a project that provides both drinking and irrigation water for a village located in the Sub-Sahara desert of Africa. Drilling of this 350 foot deep well and management of distribution of the water was organized by the Catholic organization, Fraternité des Servantes du Christ à Maradi. This region, like most of Niger, is primarily Muslim.
This organization seeks to educate and generally improve the lives of the 7,500 residents living in the village of Saé Saboua. Because most of the water in this region comes from the July/August rainy season, water is scarce throughout much of the year. Most residents use contaminated surface water for drinking and bathing.
Rotary Provides Clean Water for African Village David Smith 2021-01-05 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Completes Third-Grade Dictionary Project

Posted by Jo Ann Laird on Dec 30, 2020
While a pandemic may shut down, close up and change our habits, it didn’t stop your local Rotary club from delivering their annual gift of colorful dictionaries to the elementary school third grade classes.
It was different to be sure. Typically, Rotarians have the joy of handing out the books to over 100 children and teaching them the benefits a dictionary can provide. The students find words and their meaning they never knew before, travel the world thru displays of international flags and learn our country’s history thru Presidential biographies. Though Rotarians were not able to enter the school this year, there is comfort in knowing the children received these books, once again.
This year has been a tough one for Rotary, as it has for most non-profits. The annual fund raisers Rotary has, such as the Casino Night and Barn Dance could not be held.
The funds derived from these events go toward local endeavors of not only the 3rd Grade Dictionary Project but also gifting $20,000 plus annually for high school scholarships, provide manpower and resources for the needed Backpack Program, pick up highway trash, place benches for those awaiting public transportation, endow teacher mini-grants to defray their expenses, donate monies and items to the Food Pantry, help fund the GGP Greenhouse Project, host foreign students for the Student Exchange Program plus send local students to study abroad, fund expenses for high school students to attend RYLA, a leadership training program and assist the town with the 4th of July Parade. Rewarding, fun and in some cases, life changers.
Rotary Completes Third-Grade Dictionary Project Jo Ann Laird 2020-12-30 07:00:00Z 0
Ringing the Bell for the Salvation Army Shellie Peterson 2020-12-10 07:00:00Z 0

Virtual Alumni Event for Kyrgyzstan

A very special event happened this past Tuesday!  Some of our Rotary Club members, presenters, and host families were able to reconnect with our delegates from 2018!
Theme: Tourism Destination Management
Original Travel to Pagosa Springs: May 31, 2018
9:00 – 9:05AM
Overview of Participation Procedures
Alexa King, Program Manager at the Open World Leadership Center
Opening Remarks
Jane Sargus, Executive Director of the Open World Leadership Center
9:05 – 9:15 AM
9:15 – 9:50 AM
9:50 – 9:55 AM
9:55 – 10:25 AM
10:25 – 10:50 AM
Welcome Back to Pagosa Springs
David Smith, Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs
Host Families:
  • Jo Bridges
  • Kim Moore
Alumni Updates from Kyrgyzstan: Presentation on what they have been up to since they participated on the Open World program and the effect of COVID-19 on the tourism industry in Kyrgyzstan.
  • Begimai Mukasheva
  • Aman Zhanserkeev
  • Nazira Makenova
  • Beksultan Abdisalamov
  • Talantbek Toksonbaev
  • Zeinep Isakova
The Effect of COVID-19 on Tourism in Pagosa Springs
Mary Jo Coulehan Director of Tourism in Pagosa Springs
Questions & Answers
Brian Sandy, Park Manager V, Arboles, Navajo State Park, Colorado
Questions & Answers
Virtual Alumni Event for Kyrgyzstan Shellie Peterson 2020-12-10 07:00:00Z 0

District 5470's Polio Day Virtual Event

Attend the District 5470's

Polio Day Virtual Event

November 1, 2020 from 12:00PM - 1:00PM LIVE with RI President Holger Knaack 

For more than 30 years, Rotary and our partners have driven the effort to eradicate polio worldwide. Our Polio Plus program was the first initiative to tackle global polio eradication by vaccinating children on a massive scale. As a core partner in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, Rotary focuses on advocacy, fundraising, volunteer recruitment, and awareness-building. Rotary members have contributed more than $2.1 billion and countless volunteer hours to protect more than 2.5 billion children in 122 countries from this paralyzing disease. Rotary’s advocacy efforts have played a role in decisions by governments to contribute more than $10 billion to the effort.
Rotary District 5470 will be hosting the End Polio Now Virtual Event on November 1, 2020. To attend this event, please make a $25 contribution to the Polio Plus Fund and a $3.00 fee to cover the costs of this event for the hosting Districts. Your $28 contribution will provide you access to the Polio Plus event on November 1st and provide $25 towards furthering our Rotary fight against polio.  The District Foundation Leadership will ensure your contribution is credited to your account and your club.  All you have to do is click on the link below and you help us fight polio in the last two countries where this wild virus still ravages children. 
Your $25 dollar contribution, which will be doubled by the Gates Foundation, goes to provide hundreds of children in Afghanistan and Pakistan the wild polio virus vaccination.  We are almost there!  There are only TWO COUNTRIES where this insidious virus still lives.  Can you please help us and make a $28 contribution so we can eradicate this terrible disease, spare the lives of hundreds or children and attend this amazing virtual event.
District 5470's Polio Day Virtual Event Kathleen McFadden 2020-11-01 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Supports Community Through Pandemic

During the COVID pandemic, the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club actively continues to serve our community and those most in need. The Rotary Club’s “Feed Our Children” program was established nine years ago by Rotarians Jo Bridges and Lassie Olin to meet the needs of children in elementary school who frequently came to school on Mondays and reported to their teachers that they were hungry over the weekend.  Often these children utilized the free and reduced food program at the Pagosa Springs Elementary school during the week but were left without food support over the weekend.

When school suddenly switched to on-line this spring due to the pandemic, we had to quickly adapt our food model. For the past nine years, Rotarians have purchased large quantities of food and stored it in a food pantry, and then each week we would pack backpacks for individual families.  On Fridays we would transport the backpacks to the elementary school and at the end of the school day Rotarians would hand out the backpacks to each child.

Fortunately, when the COVID related changes occurred in the local school, the school district decided to continue to provide daily breakfasts and lunches to those families in need.  The Rotary Club has been able to work with the school transportation department, who agreed to deliver our weekend food via the school bus routes, as they were doing for the daily school food delivery.  Rotarians have continued to serve the same families who had been in the program when the school closed.

Our communities’ economic strain continues, so when the school district received funds to be able to deliver food Monday through Friday throughout the summer, the Pagosa Springs Rotary Club jumped on board too. We reduced our volunteers to only three people working each week, two packing and one taking the bags to the bus barn.  By doing this we were able to work in entirely separate areas safely. Currently, the Rotary “Feed Our Children” backpack program is serving 58 children weekly.

Rotary Supports Community Through Pandemic Livia Cloman Lynch 2020-09-07 06:00:00Z 0

Africa region declared free of wild poliovirus


The World Health Organization (WHO) on 25 August announced that transmission of the wild poliovirus has officially been stopped in all 47 countries of its African region. This is a historic and vital step toward global eradication of polio, which is Rotary’s top priority.

After decades of hard won gains in the region, Rotary and its partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) — WHO, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, UNICEF, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Gavi, the vaccine alliance — are proclaiming the milestone an achievement in public health. They offer it as proof that strong commitment, coordination, and perseverance can rid the world of polio. 

The certification that the African region is free of wild poliovirus comes after the independent Africa Regional Certification Commission (ARCC) conducted thorough field verifications that confirmed no new cases and analyzed documentation of polio surveillance, immunization, and laboratory capacity by Cameroon, Central African Republic, Nigeria, and South Sudan. The commission had already accepted the documentation of the other 43 countries in the region. 

The last cases of polio caused by the wild virus in the African region were recorded in Nigeria’s northern state of Borno in August 2016, after two years with no cases. Conflict, along with challenges in reaching mobile populations, had hampered efforts to immunize children there.

Africa region declared free of wild poliovirus Ryan Hyland 2020-08-29 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Awards $27,000 in Scholarships

The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club is proud to announce those individuals receiving 2020 Rotary Scholarships totaling $27,000.
Megan Foster---Megan plans to attend the University of Utah to study Kinesiology with an emphasis in exercise science.
Mark Holladay—Mark will attend Colorado School of Mines majoring in Computer Programming with an emphasis in game design.
Grace Thompson—Grace will attend Colorado State University to study Art Education.
Tay Barker–-Tay will attend Mesa State University and will pursue a Welding certification.
Daniel Laos—Daniel plans to attend Tarrant County College and will pursue an Emergency Medical Technician certification.
Josselyn Pina—Josselyn will be attending San Juan College and plans to study Nursing.
Rotary Awards $27,000 in Scholarships Livia Lynch 2020-05-22 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Donates  $1,000 to Rise Above Violence

The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club donated $1,000 to the local nonprofit Rise Above Violence to help support their increased caseload resulting from COVID-19. Archuleta County Undersheriff Derek Woodman noted in a recent Sun article that there has been an “uptick” in domestic violence calls over the past month and Rise Above Violence, a local nonprofit dedicated to assisting victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, has seen its call volume increase.
Rotary Donates  $1,000 to Rise Above Violence Livia Lynch 2020-05-22 06:00:00Z 0

The Hatcher Lake Ice Melt Winners 

Spring is sprung and the Lake Hatcher ice melted enough to drop the fifty-five gallon barrel, containing a clock, to the depths of the lake. This proved bad news for the clock but great news for three lucky people who won some serious money.
The contest was based on guessing the exact date, hour, minute and second that the ice would melt enough to drop the barrel in the water, thus stopping the clock. According to the clock reading, this happened on March 26, at 3:53 and 41 seconds. Missing the exact time by an astonishing  two minutes and 15 seconds and winning $1,000 for the closest guess was Lisa Gamber, second place, winning $500, was Dawn Eggleston and third place went to Warren Brown, winning $250.
Sounds like an easy contest but there's more than meets the eye. Getting the barrel on the lake's two foot thick ice late in early February was a bit of a chore, as there's always the chance of slipping and falling. Retrieving the barrel from the cold watery depths is another story.
The Hatcher Lake Ice Melt Winners JoAnn Laird 2020-04-13 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary. At Your Service

While the Pagosa Springs Rotary Clubs are widely known for their fun and imaginative fundraising events such as the Kentucky Derby Party, Ice Melt Contest, Las Vegas Casino Night, Jeans and Jewels Barn Dance and Gary Morris Concert, you may not know how far reaching the results of the monies raised actually go. It's all about the club's motto, "Service Above Self".
Locally, one of our largest endeavors go to scholarships for PSHS graduating students. Since 1983, Rotary has awarded over $450,000 to 174 students, to be used for advanced education in colleges and trade schools. In 2019 alone, $37,000 was awarded.
Rotary supplies weekly manpower and food to the elementary school Backpack Program, filling in the need for food left by the gap between Friday's school lunch program and the Monday morning bell. Rotarians pick up highway trash, place benches for those awaiting public transportation, give beautifully crafted dictionaries to every third grader, endow teacher mini-grants to defray their expenses, donate monies and items to the Food Pantry, help fund the GGP Greenhouse Project, host foreign students for the Student Exchange Program plus send local students to study abroad, fund expenses for high school students to attend RYLA, a leadership training program and assist the town with the 4th of July Parade. Rewarding, fun and in some cases, life changers.
Internationally, we are the face of eradicating Polio from the world. We're almost there. While Polio still exists in two countries, between Rotary International and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, it only a matter of time before this deadly disease will be forever gone.
Your local Rotary also funds educational and humanitarian efforts to Niger and Senegal and has  donated medical vehicles in Pakistan. Rotary monetarily assists other regional clubs with funds for some of their projects, like the installation of clean water systems and wheelchairs in Mexico and Central America.
Wanting to be there when our community is in need, Rotary has just authorized an additional expenditure of $15,000 for food and other community needs related to COVID-19 crisis.  Rotary knows their 2020 fund raising efforts may not be as good as in years past, for obvious economic reasons.  However, they will do what they can to help. After all, isn't it all about, "Service Above Self"?  
Rotary. At Your Service JoAnn Laird 2020-04-13 06:00:00Z 0
April 2, 2020 Virtual Rotary Meeting Shellie Peterson 2020-03-31 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Meetings Go Virtual

Nothing like a pandemic will stop the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs from gathering in a safe manner to keep supporting the community!
Until guidelines are issued indicating it is safe to gather in person, The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs will be meeting virtually using an APP called ZOOM.  The meetings will still be at noon on Thursdays but safely from everyone's home.  I will post an invitation for the meeting on April 2 in the next couple of days.
You are welcome to join us!  You don't have to be a Rotarian to attend!
Our guest speaker will be Rhonda Webb, CEO of the hospital addressing COVID-19
Rotary Meetings Go Virtual Shellie Peterson 2020-03-30 06:00:00Z 0

Hatcher Lake Ice Melt Contest Update

Posted by Shellie Peterson on Mar 30, 2020
The barrel is still on the ice!!!  We are waiting for the ice to melt and safe conditions to retrieve the barrel and announce the WINNERS!
No more guesses can be purchased.
  • The grand prize winner gets $1000 and priceless bragging rights.
  • Second place gets $500 and slightly-less-priceless bragging rights.
  • Third place gets a cool $250.
  • Proceeds will go towards supporting the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs Graduating High School Senior Scholarship fund.
Hatcher Lake Ice Melt Contest Update Shellie Peterson 2020-03-30 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Continues to Feed Our Children

The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs continues to do its outstanding work of making sure our children are fed on the weekends.  During this economically and emotionally challenging time, its all the more important that these efforts continue.  We are providing nourishment to approximately 60 children!  Rotary is committed to continuing this effort for as long as we are able!
There are obstacles to overcome no doubt!!  We don't take lightly making sure our volunteers and families are SAFE and PROTECTED.  You can help us keep this pantry stocked!  Donations can be made to Pagosa Springs Community Assistance Fund - Feed our Children, PO Box 685, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.
Rotary Continues to Feed Our Children Shellie Peterson 2020-03-29 06:00:00Z 0
Who We Play For Shellie Peterson 2020-01-27 07:00:00Z 0

Annual Meeting is Coming Up Soon

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Your current Board of Directors have begun to consider options and line items of the Pagosa Rotary Community Assistance Fund (CAF).  As you know this is the budget that guides our planning for various fund raisers and how those funds will be used in the community.  If you have specific thoughts about these efforts for 2020, now would be a great time to reach out to an Officer or member of the Board of Directors and let them know so it could be considered.
Speaking of the Board of Directors, the Annual Meeting (most likely December 19) will be the opportunity for you to vote on these leadership positions for the Rotary Year of July 1 2020 - June 30 2021.  The Board members who will have served their 3 year term and be leaving the Board are:  Shellie Peterson, Cindi Galabota, Neal Johnson and Sam Pittmon. If they are willing, these Board members may serve another term if so elected by the membership OR 4 new nominations for Directors will be necessary.  Please give this some thought and consider which of our members would take an active role in managing the Club and be good candidates to lead our club in the future.  Please reach out to a current Officer or Board member with your thoughts.
Nick Tallent - President
Mike Vanover - President Elect
Shellie Peterson - Past President
Jim Garrett - Secretary
Larry McClintock - Treasurer
Pat Love - Sergeant of Arms
Melanie Garrett - Board Member 
Allen Roth - Board Member
Granton Bartz - Board Member
Sharon Crump - Board Member
Cindi Galabota - Board Member
Sam Pittmon - Board Member
Jenelle Syverson - Board Member
Bill Hubbard - Board Member
Art Benzel - Board Member
Neal Johnson - Board Member
Annual Meeting is Coming Up Soon Shellie Peterson 2019-11-17 07:00:00Z 0

Toys for Tots

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Help Us Prepare for Christmas 2019!
When you’re shopping for 7 million children, you need to start early.
Every donation matters when bringing Christmas joy to less fortunate children.
Remember, we will be collecting unwrapped toys at the Holiday Party.  Save some funds and we will let you know details of what to purchase very soon.
Toys for Tots Shellie Peterson 2019-11-16 07:00:00Z 0


Posted by Shellie Peterson
I WILL HAVE TO ADMIT  when Jenelle from the Choke Cherry Tree first introduced this concept to the Board and later to the Club, I did not grasp the possibility right away.
Now that it has had time to 'sink in' I am becoming a really big fan!  All of us are going to do a certain amount of gift giving this year.  Directing our purchases to the Choke Cherry Tree AUTOMATICALLY IS A WIN FOR ROTARY!  Now of course, we need to consider ALL OUR SPONSORS, support their businesses and THANK THEM for their support for all the work we do in the community.  That goes without saying.
This promotion though has the potential to become a very sustainable fund raising effort for Rotary....and Jenelle....will do all the work!  How great is that!
The fact that you can send this 'code' to everyone you know - or don't know for that matter - is amazing.  You can give your friends and family a discount, and grow funds for our work at the same time.  Share it wide, share it far!  This discount will work on the online ordering system so even your Aunt in Alabama can use it!  Let all that sink in!  5% contribution for Pagosa Springs Rotary - 5% savings for using the code.  Not many deals that good.  54PSROTARY
54PSROTARY Shellie Peterson 2019-11-16 07:00:00Z 0

November is Foundation Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Foundation Facts
The Rotary Foundation
The mission of The Rotary Foundation is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty. The Rotary Foundation helps fund our humanitarian activities, from local service projects to global initiatives. Your club or district can apply for grants from the Foundation to invest in projects and provide scholarships. The Foundation also leads the charge on worldwide Rotary campaigns such as eradicating polio and promoting peace. Rotarians and friends of Rotary support the Foundation’s work through voluntary contributions.
Did you know that your personal contributions increase your PHF recognition amount to the same value AND give you PHF points at the rate of one point per dollar which can be transferred to create a new PHF or PHF level?  Please consider making a contribution TODAY!
The Board of Trustees manages the business of the Foundation, led by the trustee chair. The Rotary International president-elect nominates the trustees, who are elected by the Rotary International Board of Directors. The trustee chair serves for one year and trustees serve for four years.
Did you know that you can view your own personal giving progress to THE ROTARY FOUNDATION via “My Rotary” on the Rotary International website at
Did you know that Paul Harris Recognition Points can be transferred from Club to individual and individual to individual but not from individual to Club?
Did you know that Paul Harris recognition points can ONLY be used to recognize individuals and not groups or businesses; however points can be used for “Certificates of Appreciation”?
Did you know that Foundation recognition points do not expire, unless you pass away or your surviving partner is a Major Donor?
Did you know that a group of Rotarians can combine their points to make Recognition? The minimum transfer is 100 points and in denominations of 100 points.
Did you know that the Transfer Recognition request form can be downloaded from
Did you know that THE ROTARY FOUNDATION is Rotary International’s only charity?
Did you know that a PHF+1 refers to a Paul Harris Fellow recognition pin with one Sapphire?
Did you know that you’re Club President or Secretary can access your Club member PHF recognition level via MEMBERS ACCESS in the RI website at  and viewing the CLUB RECOGNITION SUMMARY Report?
November is Foundation Month Shellie Peterson 2019-11-16 07:00:00Z 0

3rd Grade Dictionaries Delivered

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Once again, Rotary delivers!  Rotarians spent time with the 3rd grade students delivering and discovering their new color illustrated dictionaries.  The children are always excited about this book.  It is their only book from school that belongs to them, they put their name in and they can take it home to share with their family.  Students were instructed about how to look up words, read the definitions and the way the word was used in a sentence.  It is always a very fun event for Rotarians.  
Jaime Novoa, the club's exchange student from Spain, was very interested in the children's reactions!  Five classrooms of students received around 25 Dictionaries for each classroom at a cost of around $2,000.  The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs has been performing this service for 15 years, 14 of which have been under the leadership of JoAnn Laird.  
3rd Grade Dictionaries Delivered Shellie Peterson 2019-11-14 07:00:00Z 0

3rd Grade Dictionaries Delivered

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Once again, Rotary delivers!  Rotarians spent time with the 3rd grade students delivering and discovering their new color illustrated dictionaries.  The children are always excited about this book.  It is their only book from school that belongs to them, they put their name in and they can take it home to share with their family.  Students were instructed about how to look up words, read the definitions and the way the word was used in a sentence.  It is always a very fun event for Rotarians.  
Jaime Novoa, the club's exchange student from Spain, was very interested in the children's reactions!  Five classrooms of students received around 25 Dictionaries for each classroom at a cost of around $2,000.  The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs has been performing this service for 15 years, 14 of which have been under the leadership of JoAnn Laird.  
3rd Grade Dictionaries Delivered Shellie Peterson 2019-11-14 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Rings the Bell for Polio Eradication

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Rotarians were at it again last week!  'Ringing the Bell' to eradicate polio from the face of the earth!  Generous folks going in and out of City Market donated $243 to the fight!  With the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation pledge to match every dollar raised with $2 more; that means $730 to continue the effort that we are so close to winning.
But Rotarians are not done yet! So far, Rotarians have contributed $940 and there are two weeks left in the campaign!  These funds will be matched by the Gates Foundation as well.  That total is then $3,550 so far.  Find a Rotarian and get them a check made out to The Rotary Foundation for Polio Plus or go online to and make a donation.
When Rotary and its partners launched the Global Polio Eradication Initiative , three decades ago, polio paralyzed 1,000 children a day.  
Rotary Rings the Bell for Polio Eradication Shellie Peterson 2019-10-26 06:00:00Z 0

Mount Princeton Hot Springs Resort

Posted by Shellie Peterson
You can imagine that it might have been hard to concentrate and listen to speakers with this beautiful mountain looking over you!  Truly a lovely resort area and one you should try to visit soon.
The food was amazing! We stayed at the Creekside Suites and the rooms were beautiful.  We did manage a short hike to St. Elmo, a historic mining town, and a soak in the hot springs too.
Mount Princeton Hot Springs Resort Shellie Peterson 2019-10-17 06:00:00Z 0

Johrita Solari RI Director 2019-2021

Posted by Shellie Peterson
We were honored to hear Johrita Solari speak.  Among the many positions Johrita has held in Rotary, she has served as chair for the 2013 Southern California/Nevada PETS, training leader at the 2014 and 2015 International Assemblies, and chaired the 2015 Rotary Institute for Zones 25/26.  She is currently a member of Rotary's Peace Major Gifts Initiative Committee.
Johrita Solari RI Director 2019-2021 Shellie Peterson 2019-10-17 06:00:00Z 0

Patricia LaTaille - Rotary Peace Fellow

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Patricia LaTaille was selected as a Rotary Peace Fellow, in Bankok, Thailand in 2015.  Ms. LaTaille was a fascinating speaker on the methods of NonViolent Communication and issues around social justice.  In addition to acting as the Lead Facilitator and Trainer for Victim-Offender conferencing in Full Circle Restorative Justice, Patty practices as a Professional Mediator with Keeping the Peace.
Patricia LaTaille - Rotary Peace Fellow Shellie Peterson 2019-10-17 06:00:00Z 0

Jaime Novoa Participates in Flag Ceremony

Posted by Shellie Peterson
We were so proud of all of the exchange students but especially our own  student, Jaime Novoa hailing from Spain.  To see the bond that these students from around the world form in their exchange year is truly inspirational.  Friendships are formed that will last a lifetime.  Rotary offers these students the chance to be ambassadors for peace from their country to ours.
Jaime Novoa Participates in Flag Ceremony Shellie Peterson 2019-10-17 06:00:00Z 0

Awarded Presidential Citation with Silver Distinction

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Past Presidents, Kim Moore and Shellie Peterson and President Elect, Mike Vanover and his wife Renee, were thrilled to accept the Presidential Citation Award with Distinction at the District 5470 Conference at the Mount Princeton Hot Springs Resort this past weekend.
This prestigious award signifies the dedication of the members of the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs to support the strategic priorities of Rotary International by being people of action changing the lives of families and communities across the world.
Awarded Presidential Citation with Silver Distinction Shellie Peterson 2019-10-14 06:00:00Z 0

World Polio Day in Pagosa Springs

Posted by Sam Pittmon
Join us at City Market on October 23, 2019 from 10:00 to 6:00!  Help us celebrate the progress that has been made, and help us keep up the fight to eradicate Polio from planet earth!  Rotarians will be there, with the famous red kettle, collecting funds that will be matched by Bill & Melinda Gates, $2 for every $1 collected!

Where are we in the fight to end polio? What bold steps are we taking to get there? Visit the Rotary International Facebook page to RSVP to the Online Global Update.

No child should have to suffer from this vaccine-preventable disease. Help us make an impact on World Polio Day.

Smallpox is the only human disease ever eradicated. Let’s make polio the second. Join the fight on World Polio Day.

How can you triple your impact? Thanks to a 2-to-1 match from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, every donation made to Rotary to end polio will be tripled. Donate today.

World Polio Day in Pagosa Springs Sam Pittmon 2019-10-07 06:00:00Z 0

Country Thunder Performing at the Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance

Posted by JoAnn Laird
If you love country music, the Two-Step and line dancing, then you won't want to miss Pagosa Springs Rotary's fifth annual Jeans and Jewels Barn Dance.
Country Thunder, headed up by Clay Campbell, is known to turn the shyest wallflower into a crowd pleasing line dancer. To say nothing of a Two-Stepping fool. Ya got to love get-down, home-town country to relate to any of this. Most in Pagosa do.
Speaking of Clay Campbell, everyone knows him to be a gifted musician, playing around Pagosa for decades but few know the man.
Clay's fascination with Pagosa began as a boy when his grandparents bought a small cabin in the Blanco Basin. Moving here in 1978, Clay obtained an B.A. in Industrial Education and went on to do all jobs necessary to be able to live in the little mountain town he loved. Carpentry became his trick of the trade, with wilderness guiding and outfitting thrown in for good measure.
Clay has been performing for about 35 years, beginning his career in Bluegrass music. He would be, back in the day, playing the upright bass at Frankie's (aka Alley House) with Randall Davis and the Left Hand Band. All members had serious day jobs but their passion was music. Music. The fabric within us. Part of our inhale/exhale we don't even notice. A mood changer.
About five years ago, country music came a-callin and he joined the group, Country Thunder. Made up of four local musicians,  they are a familiar band playing at various local venues and sought after for private functions. Like many in their audience, they are the shy, humble types, not wanting to talk about themselves, just show up and play. And play they will at the Jeans and Jewels Barn Dance, held October 19, at the County Fairgrounds, from 7:00 to 10:00. Doors open at 5:30.
Tickets are available at the Chamber of Commerce, the Chokecherry Tree or from any of your friendly Rotarians. Prices are $20 or $25 at the door. Better hurry. There are only so many tickets available and once they are sold, there goes your chance to tell those stories about an autumn night in October, dancing the night away in the County Extension Building, to the music of Country Thunder.
Country Thunder Performing at the Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance JoAnn Laird 2019-10-07 06:00:00Z 0

Ally Ashbaugh Reports on her RYLA Experience

Posted by Shellie Peterson

Ally Ashbaugh was one of the students selected to participate in the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards and she addressed the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs recently.  She had been fortunate enough to attend several high-caliber leadership camps this summer, but one thing stood out to her about RYLA.
She said that the training and practice involving how to make ethical decisions in all manner of things that come 'at you' in life was one of the most valuable things she learned at RYLA.  A very well spoken and interesting young lady and we look forward to watching her continue to develop her skills and be a leader in her class!
There are two other young ladies we are looking forward to hearing from, Peyton Burns and Kaia Jones were also recipients and we look forward to hearing from them soon!
Ally Ashbaugh Reports on her RYLA Experience Shellie Peterson 2019-09-09 06:00:00Z 0

Casey Crow and Paula Jo Miller - Beyond Words

Posted by Sam Pittmon
This is an article from July 18, 2019, when Casey Lynn Crow and Paula Jo Miller spoke 'live' to our Rotary Club!!  The Pagosa Springs Rotary Club is proud to be a part of this on-going humanitarian and educational effort!!!
Casey Crow is the president of this non-profit Pagosa Springs based organization that is comprised of several talented individuals who share the same goal of helping those who are in post conflict situations using non-verbal arts therapy and creative expression. Casey is also the owner/director of Pagosa Dance Academy.
Casey told us that her dream of Beyond Words began seven years ago when she first witnessed the impact of movement-based therapy on young student in Kisumu, Kenya. Most of these children were physically disabled, displaced from their home countries, or survivors of sexual violence yet found a visible transformational release through dance and movement.
Casey initiated a dance therapy program in Sounio Refugee Camp in Greece in 2016. Casey  states that art-based nonverbal therapy is an incredible tool for healing in humanitarian context. She has witnessed the transformation that is possible when individuals are empowered to tell their story whether through art, movement or music in a safe supportive environment.
Beyond Words staff includes Casey, Paula Jo Miller who was present today. She is a contemporary abstract artist, Kelly Ziemer who is a licensed social worker trained in cognitive behavior therapy. Mary Jo Meerdink who is a clinical psychologist, therapist and executive leadership coach. Leslie Santee who is a video producer that has traveled around the world documenting humanitarian crisis. Lastly Addie Thompson who is a local graduate of Pagosa Springs High school. She is at Colby College in Maine majoring in global studies with emphasis on human rights and art.

Casey Crow and Paula Jo Miller - Beyond Words Sam Pittmon 2019-07-18 06:00:00Z 0

District Governor 2019-2020 David Wood


District Governor 2019 – 2020 David Wood

David Wood was raised in the state of Maine and graduated from Maine Maritime Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nautical Science, a commission as Ensign in the U. S. Naval Reserve and with a Thirds Mates License issued by the U. S. Coast Guard. Following graduation, he was employed for ten years by Texaco, Inc. marine division with service on over 20 Texaco tankers in all license positions as Third officer to Master. In 1976, he was selected to join the Sabine Pilots Association, a privately-owned company providing pilotage service to ocean going vessels into three ports in southeast Texas. As a Sabine Pilot for 27 years he was responsible for over 2,500 safe vessel transits of the Sabine-Neches Waterway.

Living in Beaumont, Texas for thirty-seven years provided David with numerous opportunities to be involved in the community. His passion has always had a focus on youth so umpiring Little League baseball, junior high youth counselor at his church or Boy Scouts were all natural avenues for him to serve his community. He also served several years as a board member for the Beaumont Housing Authority and chaired a special advisory committee to the Captain of the Port U. S. Coast Guard. During his years in Beaumont was when he started his Rotary tenure joining the Rotary Club of Beaumont in 1988. Because of his community involvement he received several distinguished awards, The Cross and Flame Award from the Methodist Church, the Silver Beaver from the Boy Scouts of America and in 1995 was selected as Maritime Person of the Year in southeast Texas.   

Following retirement David and Cathy decided that they would leave Texas and make their vacation home in Salida, Colorado their residence. This move opened new areas of volunteerism whether it was Meals on Wheels, The Stone Soup Kitchen, or Colorado Farm to Table. The Rotary moto of “Service Above Self” learned as a member of the Rotary Club in Beaumont was a driving force and again the call of the Rotary spirit was there as he joined the Rotary Club of Salida in 2011. As a member of the Salida club he has served on the club’s board of directors, has chaired the Youth Services Committee and is currently the club’s Foundation Chair and is a past president of the Rotary Club of Salida. Additionally, he served as Assistant Governor for Area 6 District 5470. David is a multi-Paul Harris Fellow, a Paul Harris Society Member and a Major Donor of The Rotary Foundation.

David and Cathy celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in July of 2018, they have two children, four grandchildren and two great grandchildren. They enjoy travel, skiing and anything that the great outdoors of Colorado has to offer. or 409-781-5655

Rotary District 5470 Annual Conference

October 11 – 13, 2019

Mt. Princeton Hot Springs Resort Nathrop, Colorado

. A family fun weekend

          . Service project

                   . Rotarians from across the district             

                            . Inspiring speakers

                                           . Evening entertainment                                   

                                             . Facilitated discussion groups

 A variety of lodging options/all resort facilities

Call Mt. Princeton Resort 719-395-2447 use group code Rotary

Conference registration $185.00 includes 2 dinners, 2 breakfasts, and evening entertainment. Children under 12 are free, teenagers 13-18 $125.00

District Governor 2019-2020 David Wood 2019-07-18 06:00:00Z 0

News and Happenings

Posted by Sam Pittmon
This was the first meeting lead by our newly elected president Nick Tallent. Congratulations to him!
Invocation: To Be of Use by Marge Piercy was presented by Cindi Galabotha.
Pledge of Allegiance was led by John Richardson.
Song: The More We Get Together lead by Meg Wempe
Visiting Rotarians: Ken Rogers of Pagosa Mountain Rotary Club. Ken asked Rotarians to sign up for the beer garden at the county fair this year scheduled for August 1 to August 4. He stated that profits from this event will be donated to our scholarship fund.
Guess of Rotarians: Bridget Moore the granddaughter of Kim Moore was introduced as a junior Rotarian.
Announcements: David Smith informed us of an International Service project that he is considering for our club in collaboration with Father Kenny of John Paul II Catholic Church. He scheduled a meeting of the International Service Committee immediately after this meeting to discuss.
New Member Frank Estes complimented that planning and the work that was done for our July 4th Parade was extraordinary.
Cindy Galabota encouraged member to sign up for doing the invocations at our meeting.
Shellie Peterson offered appreciation to Linda Verrips, Joe Bridges and Joann Laird as they were not at the installation banquet.  She thanked Linda for her service on the board of directors and Joe Bridges for serving as executive secretary on the board. She then thanked Joann Laird for her enthusiastic service to our community and to Rotary. There was loud applause and a chorus of “She’s a Jolly Good Fellow” was sang.
Shellie also circulated a get-well card for David Campbell who had shoulder surgery yesterday.
Bob Eggleston gave a brief report on our recent Casino Night event. He stated that we netted approximately $10,000.00 dollars including $3000.00 from the silent auction.  The winners of the raffle Joe Bridges ($400) and Larry McClintock ($200) donated their winnings back to our Rotary club. He complimented Art Benzel for his assistance with the event. The next Casino Night is already set for June 19, 2020.
Joann Laird gave brief wrap up of the July 4th Parade stating that our partnership with the town was a success. There were 28 Rotarians who worked the parade in a variety of ways. 
President NIck encouraged support for the up coming Rise Against Violence event this weekend that includes the 13th Annual Pagosa Duathlon and the High Rollers Band performance this Saturday at Town Park to benefit our Pagosa Springs High School wrestling Team.
President Nick Tallent announced the Rotary Board Meeting scheduled for tomorrow Morning at 8:00.
Sunshine and Showers: Betty began with her usual comic routine with party blowouts, kazoos, head dress and party hats. She mourned the lost of her bubble machine at the Installation Banquet. This was her opportunity to pass the job off to someone else as she and Jeff prepare for their move away from Pagosa. She stated that “ It’s going to take a lot of people to replace me”. She also said “It’s been a joy to do this for the past two years”.

She then announced that Pat Love, Meg Wempe and Kathleen McFadden will assuming her job.
President Nick then read two letters that he received from Patty Tillerson recently. On a sad note one of the them was a letter she wrote to her deceased husband and Rotarian Bob and the other was a letter thanking our club for choosing her as the Grand Marshal of our July 4th Parade.
Pat Love then took the microphone to do Sunshine and Flowers. She offered a sunshine for what our club does for our Backpack Program in comparison to what the Rotary Club in Austin Texas does for the homeless.
Shellie Peterson offered a sunshine for joining the “Past Prez Club of Rotary”.
Kim Moore also gave a sunshine for being a PP Club member and for having her granddaughter with her, for Joann Laird for “pulling off the parade”, for Nick as our new president and for herself as an Assistant Governor for our Rotary District.
Bill Darling offered sunshine that he and his wife are celebrating their 49th wedding anniversary and a shower for their dog that is dying of cancer.
Jan Pitcher offered sunshine that one granddaughter is attending Princeton University where she is doing brain surgery on mice and another granddaughter who recently received a letter of acceptance from Harvard University.
David Smith offered a sunshine that the Early Childhood Center has recently hired a director.
Club raffle was done, and the lucky ticket owner Mike Vanover was not so lucky in picking the 9 of spades! The pot is now at $414.
News and Happenings Sam Pittmon 2019-07-18 06:00:00Z 0

What a Busy Few Weeks!

Posted by Shellie Peterson
First - some housekeeping matters:
  • If anyone has items that need to be returned to the storage unit - please bring them on Thursday
  • If anyone has the orange and the brown extension cords for the speakers and projector - please bring them on Thursday
  • The Bridge Club ladies believe we may have one of their card tables - it would have happened when we were cleaning up after the Installation Banquet.  If you have a card table - please bring it on Thursday
How About that Parade?????
For anyone who did not see JoAnn's email including the sweet note from Patty, it is provided again here.
Good morning,
Below is a thank you I received from your 2019 Grand Marshal of the 4th of July Parade. Our Patty is one amazing woman.
For those who were not able to be a part of the parade, you missed a great time. Your fellow Rotarians outdid themselves. Please thank them for their time and service when you see them.
I thank you for allowing me to represent you thru this transition with the Town. I have found that government thinking and service organization thinking is…different. However, the combination resulted in a terrific time for our community. We rolled up our sleeves, put our hearts into it and our club can continue to be proud of our efforts.  
JoAnn Laird
Director of Pagosa Rotary Participation
Pagosa Springs 4th of July Parade
Begin forwarded message:
Dear One,
   Please share this with the Club  (I sent a note via the P.O. before the event, but this is "after").  Special thanks to Larry Parks and Bob Daniels---both treated me like a "Queen", something I am not used to.  Everything went very well from what I could see---a great crowd---and all filled my soul with great memories.   I wish I could throw a party for all, but I am a little old for that.  I am driving to Texas on the 10th for a family reunion---will be back early the following week.  Of course, I love having folks come by anytime.  Anyway, thank you for all that  love and please know it is returned 100%.  
The Installation Banquet
Outgoing officers were thanked, and incoming ones welcomed.  It was a special evening of looking back and looking forward at the same time!
What a Busy Few Weeks! Shellie Peterson 2019-07-11 06:00:00Z 0

Las Vegas Casino Night was a BLAST!

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Last Friday presented a great opportunity to get out and gamble, dance, eat, drink and support the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs!  More details of exactly HOW MUCH support will come soon!
Las Vegas Casino Night was a BLAST! Shellie Peterson 2019-07-11 06:00:00Z 0

International Committee News

Posted by David Smith
David Smith would like to call for a meeting of the international committee on July 11 after our regular meeting to listen to a proposal by Father Kenny (Pagosa's Catholic Church). This might be a good project for a new global grant that will provide equipment for a new hospital that is being build in Nigeria.
He will also give an update regarding the project in Senegal and the new project in Niger!  He asked that I invite all those interested in the workings of these global grant projects to stay and participate !
International Committee News David Smith 2019-07-11 06:00:00Z 0

June is Rotary Fellowship Month

I found this article by Tina Spencer-Mulhern, District Governor 2018-2019, District 5190, that I wanted to share with you.  While their accomplishments are different from ours, none-the-less, we have many to be proud of this past year too!
Rotary Fellowships are international groups that share a common passion. Being part of a fellowship is a fun way to make friends around the world, explore a hobby or profession, and enhance your Rotary experience. See the information sheet in this newsletter that gives you more details on Rotary Fellowship opportunities. For me personally I am a member of the Wine Fellowship Group.  I know, no surprise there.
It has been a great Season and we have much to Celebrate. Teams throughout our District have really stepped up to the plate.  As I have said many times this year “Together we can do much more”. Nine Areas teamed up on area projects and 32 clubs supported our District Project “Smiles Without Borders”.
Much thanks to our District Leadership Team, Assistant Coaches and Club Presidents for all your hard work in helping District 5190 “Knock it out of the Park” this year.
As of today, our membership growth is up for the first time in many years. I congratulate you on trying new things to help your clubs grow and retaining the players you have. After all, it’s up to us to get our members out of the stands and onto the field, playing the game with us, not just watching us.
Our first Multi District conference was a weekend of celebration with inspiration around every corner.  If you were able to attend, I hope it exceeded your expectations as it did mine. It was so nice seeing old friends from other Districts and making new ones as well.
Rotarians are People of Action and as we continue to make Rotary a Brand to be recognized, we will need to continue to share our stories of Action. Every game has its strikes and home runs, however when we play together, we all win, our Communities win and our World wins.
As we close out this Rotary year and the new year begins, I encourage you to hop on DGE Randy’s tandem bike and continue trying new things. Life is like riding a bicycle, to stay balanced you must keep moving.
It has truly been an honor leading, motivating and inspiring our Players.

Congratulations on a Great Season!

Every day is a new opportunity. You can build on yesterday’s successes or put its failures behind you and start over again. That’s the way life is with a new game every day, and that’s the way baseball is.
“Bob Feller”
June is Rotary Fellowship Month Shellie Peterson 2019-06-20 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Shellie Peterson
As usual, our Club has a lot going on!  Here is a rundown on what is happening in the next couple of weeks:
June 17 - Tomorrow - There is a decorating session for casino night beginning at 4:00 in the back room at Pagosa Brewing.  This is a lot of fun!!!
June 18 - This Tuesday - There is Black Jack Training and practice in the back room at Pagosa Brewing & Grill starting at 5:00 PM.  I am sure this will be a lot of fun too!  Come get all practiced up and ready for Casino Night.
June 19 - This Wednesday - Radio interview with Bob Eggleston about the Casino Night.  Runs about at 8:30.  Listen in!
June 19 - This Wednesday - there is a meeting to go over registration for the 4th of July Parade starting at 2:00 pm at JoAnn Lairds home.  You have already been notified if you are working in this area, but this is a reminder.  
June 20 - This Thursday - there is no noon meeting as we will be cooking and serving for Loaves & Fishes
June 21 - This Friday - Las Vegas Casino Night.  The mighty craps table move will start out the day.  Watch for further email instructions regarding what time to be there for decorating and getting ready for the big night.  We will also be taking everything down that night so plan on bringing some work clothes and comfy shoes
June 24 - A week from Tomorrow - Decorating session for the Installation Banquet.  Come help us get the decorations ready for a great installation party!
June 27 - A week from Thursday - Installation Banquet.  Drinks and social hour begins at 5:30 pm.  Have you registered for the event?  If you have trouble, just email me and I will register you and your guests.  We need a final count for the caterer by Monday, June 24.
July 4 - The following Thursday - The 4th of July Parade.  Be on the look out for more instructions regarding the last minute details for this as well.
JoAnn was there to bring us all up to date with the arrangements for the 4th of July Parade.  There is a really great article, written by JoAnn as well as an Editorial by Terri House on this subject in this week's paper.  If we all try to read these and the ones that will follow in the next two weeks,  on the day of the Parade we will know all the answers ALL THE TIME!  Which is a good thing when we are coordinating such a big event!  
Our speaker last week was Andrea Phillips, the Manager of the Town of Pagosa Springs.  It was interesting to hear about how the Town is structured and managed as well as about some of their priorities for the upcoming year.
News & Happenings Shellie Peterson 2019-06-20 06:00:00Z 0
Las Vegas Casino Night Shellie Peterson 2019-06-20 06:00:00Z 0

Las Vegas Casino Night

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Fun! Fun! Fun! Fun! Fun! Fun!
That is the thing to emphasize when selling these tickets!!  
The Chance to WIN! Win! Win! Win! CASH Prizes!
Appetizers, desserts, music and dancing all will add to the magic of this evening!  Bring your ticket money to Sharon as soon as possible so that we can get an idea of where we stand.
Las Vegas Casino Night Shellie Peterson 2019-06-13 06:00:00Z 0

Retrospective by Theo Bonlokke

Posted by Jim Garrett

Your reporter notes that Theo told us of the events of his past year in our midst.  Further, he discussed his classes at Pagosa Springs High School (favorites: wilderness skills and global sciences), he shared some observations about differences between life in the US and Denmark (his next level of schooling is referred to as secondary school, which will extend three years and, he expects, be followed by study at a university), and he described his summer travel plans, a thirty day trip around the US beginning next week. 

But it’s well-nigh impossible to do full justice to Theo’s talk.  Words can be recalled, so your reporter can relate that Theo described participating in many area attractions and activities — ranging from a visit to Keyah Grande, to hunting, to hiking, to skiing and snow sports in all forms as both a participant and spectator (at the X-Games), and on nearly without end.  But merely to list events he described is inadequate.  Perhaps what it boils down to is this: to the listener, it seems Theo may have put more into one year than many people put into a life.

But somehow, even that assessment still falls short.  To this reporter, the telling point is that as a student at Pagosa Springs High School, Theo had the curiosity and gumption to participate in two sports (baseball and wrestling, one where they throw a hard object at you and the other where they try to beat you up) that he had never even seen before.  Taking on such adventures was apparently as normal to Theo as tying one’s shoes, but the openness of mind to welcome challenges like these is something not found every day.

Theo told us his year in Pagosa Springs was the “Best year of my life.”  That was gratifying to know, but it would be only fair to say that Theo’s visit was rewarding to our community too.  Visits from young folks like Theo coming to us from around the world exemplify the value of the Rotary Exchange program.


Retrospective by Theo Bonlokke Jim Garrett 2019-06-13 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett

Bill Darling opened with an invocation inspired by the second anniversary of two events, the birth of his granddaughter and the receipt of his cancer diagnosis (happily, the granddaughter now thrives while the cancer regresses).  The concurrence of these contrasting events, Bill said, triggered contemplation since of life and death, redoubling his appreciation of the former.

In that spirit, Bill quoted an excerpt from a Walt Whitman poem, “The Song of the Open Road,” including the lines: “Henceforth I ask not good-fortune . . . Strong and content I travel the open road.”

A stanza of “America the Beautiful” followed, under the figurative baton of Sharon Crump.

Guests included Cody Wilson’s granddaughter, Chanel (a former Rotary scholarship recipient and recent college graduate, now planning a career in criminal justice — my advice?  If that’s your choice, Chanel, seek federal employment after accumulating a few years of experience), and Laura Easterling, a prospective member under the sponsorship of Pat Love.

Bill Hubbard then solicited volunteers for the meal service at Loaves and Fishes on Thursday June 20, and circulated a job sign-up sheet.

President Shellie Peterson followed by observing that because Rotary will be working at Loaves and Fishes on June 20, and the annual Installation Dinner will be held the following Thursday, June 27, there will be no regular meetings those two weeks (nor, presumably, on the Thursday after that, July 4).  Consequently, Shellie pointed out that the only meeting before the July 4 Parade will be next Thursday, June 13. 

Volunteers for the Parade are needed, Shellie reminded.  Although under recently revised plans, Rotary will no longer be “policing” the Parade route, new eligibility requirements for Parade participation have been established, she said, and Rotary will have responsibility for implementation.  Because of the revisions affecting multiple aspects of the Parade (even including the route), Parade-related assignments for which members previously volunteered may have been eliminated, and needs for volunteers to fill new positions created.  Accordingly, a new Parade sign-up sheet was circulated, accompanied by Shellie’s urgent request for members’ help.  (The good news is the jobs for distribution throughout the town of posters announcing the Parade were filled before the meeting adjourned.)

Art Benzel and Bob Eggleston then unveiled the new Rotary Event Banner, intended to stretch over Hot Springs Boulevard near Pagosa Street, downtown.  The Banner will initially be used to announce Casino Night on June 21, but they pointed out it can be readily modified for use to advertise future events, as well.

Art and Bob encouraged members to sell tickets to Casino Night, and reminded that all funds raised should be delivered to Sharon Crump.  The event will offer Texas Hold ‘Em, craps, Wheel of Fortune, and blackjack.  There will be nine tables for the latter game, they said, and training for dealers (a few openings remain) will be provided Tuesday June 18, 5 pm to 7 pm in the back room at Pagosa Brewing. 

In addition to dealers, volunteers are needed to take tickets at the door and staff the “bank” (apparently, the bank will accept money for chips, and then chips for tickets, which can eventually be used by ticket-holders to win prizes, which are guaranteed “for the right tickets,” Bob pointed out, helpfully).

Pat Love added that there will be two more meetings of the Casino Night decorating committee, at 4 pm the next two Mondays (through June 17) — also in the Brewery’s back room.  “Bring scissors,” Pat asked prospective participants, then reassured all that, potential weapons notwithstanding (remember the movie, “Dial M for Murder”), the Committee is rollicking good fun (well, “Enjoyable,” at least).

Kim Moore then presided for Sunshine/Showers.  Among contributors were Carrie Weiss, freshly returned home from weary travels, announcing “Pagosa’s the best,” Neal Johnson, lamenting the passing of a Turkish friend met during concurrent terms as District Governors, and Codie Wilson, celebrating granddaughter Chanel.

Kim then turned to the announcement of Birthdays: her own and Dave Smith’s, both on June 7.  But alas, no hats were worn, nor birthday anthems sung — Kim pressed her thumb on the scale and moved events along before the strategic omissions were noted.  Was Dave in collusion with Kim’s unseemly haste?  No protests over the absence of honors were noted from his corner of the room.  Next month, I hope we’ll have some real Birthday Enthusiasm.  (Bring back Meg Wempe, and her one-person Conga line!)

Carrie finally reclaimed her role as Lottery Czar (as Carrie resumed the mantle, Lisa Scott could be heard muttering words to the effect, “You said it would be only two months,” but that complaint was ignored by all).  Pat Love held the winning ticket, but was denied glory and fortune by drawing a card of mere peasant status.  And the pot grows . . .


News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-06-13 06:00:00Z 0

Las Vegas Night in Pagosa set for June 21

Posted by JoAnn Laird and Bob Eggleston
Are you hankerin' for a fun night in Las Vegas, but don't want to spend the time or money to drive there?  Your wish is Rotary's command.
That fun-loving group welcomes you to its own version of Las Vegas by presenting Casino Night Las Vegas on June 21 from 6:30 to 10 pm at the PLPOA Clubhouse, 230 Port Avenue.
Pagosa Springs Rotary Club
Presents Casino Night Las Vegas (probably our 15th)
Ticket Sales Support: Handling Objections
OBJECTION:  “The tickets are too expensive.”
  1. All of the expenses for the event have been paid for by our sponsors. Their generosity allows us to designate all of the ticket sales proceeds back into our community through  scholarships and other Rotary projects that support our local students.
  2. For a great night out with full entertainment, dancing, being with friends, fun games to play, appetizers and desserts, you would spend a similar amount of money.
  3. Your ticket is your entry into a drawing for $400 cash, $200 cash and $100 cash prizes.
  4. An option would be to make a small donation of $20 to $30 to Pagosa Springs Rotary Club as means of supporting our organization and your community.
OBJECTION: “I will be out of town that weekend.”
  1. Surprise your friends with two tickets to this great event! (What a great Anniversary or Birthday present!)
  2. Give your tickets to your employees as a “Thank You” to reward them for all of their hard work and efforts towards your company’s success.
  3. See above #4. Even if you are unable to attend, purchasing tickets is a donation to benefit Rotary scholarships and Rotary projects helping local students.
  4. See above #3. You could win $400, $200 or $100 CASH!
OBJECTION: “I don’t like to gamble”
  1. No problem. There will dancing with the Retro Cats, a silent auction, socializing with your friends and eating appetizers and desserts. A cash bar is also available.
  2. See above #3. Did we mention that you could win $400, $200 or $100 in cash!
  3. You will receive $50,000 casino dollars that is worth 5 entry tickets for additional prizes.
Las Vegas Night in Pagosa set for June 21 JoAnn Laird and Bob Eggleston 2019-06-06 06:00:00Z 0

Marcy Mitchell - Aspire

Marcie Mitchell is the Executive Director of Aspire, a local organization that provides medical services and education to expectant Archuleta County mothers and new parents.  According to the organization’s website,, Aspire (formerly operated under the name Thrive) is the d/b/a of Pagosa Crisis Pregnancy Center, Inc, a not-for-profit corporation located at 608 S. 8th Street in downtown Pagosa Springs.
Marcie explained that Aspire is a “pro-family” organization, but not political.  It provides counselling to pregnant women regarding options, but does not refer for abortions.  It is dedicated to supporting infant health and development physically, socially and emotionally with a variety of services provided to expectant mothers and families through early childhood.  Among its services are pregnancy testing and ultrasound examinations, prenatal care, education, and testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections.
In 2018, Aspire provided a total of 3000 services to 278 local individuals, Marcie related, and provided care and assistance in more than 70% of community pregnancies.   40% of its clients are self-pay, but many require financial help she said, in view of the high local incidence of low-pay employment. 
In addition to testing, prenatal care such as dietary support and medical examinations, education in childbirth, finances and parenthood, and support with supplies including vitamins, diapers and wipes are provided.
Aspire’s mission, Marcie reported, responds to the wide-spread problems nationally of pre-term birth and low birth-weight.  6% of births in Archuleta County fall short of desired benchmarks in both categories, she added, but these numbers are actually better than national averages.
The Aspire staff consists of volunteers, other than herself, Marcie said.  Visit its website to make donations.  As examples, she cited some values: $50 buys diapers and wipes for seven clients, $60 funds a childhood education class, and $100 pays for an ultrasound exam.
The organization hosts an annual fund-raising banquet, this year set for August 22 at Centerpoint Church.  The speaker will be a young mother who became pregnant as a 16-year old drug user, but then turned her life around.
Marcy Mitchell - Aspire Jim Garrett 2019-06-06 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
Art Benzell began the proceedings by quoting Rotary founder Paul Harris, and former President George Bush, on key elements of humanity (not an invocation, asserted Art, just important thoughts).
Harris: “You must share knowledge.  Ignorance is a menace to peace.”  Bush: “Any definition of a successful life must include service to others.”
Sharon Crump and Jesse Formwalt then debuted a new song, “When We Meet at Rotary,” to an old tune, “When the Saints Go Marching In.”  Very catchy, but only one line: someone needs to propose additional lyrics.  Certainly, though, a good start.
Guests were introduced: Mike Beckel, a member returning from Leave of Absence (Kim Moore) and Jodie Brown (husband Warren).
A new member was next announced, by President Shellie Peterson in the absence of Dave Campbell: Kathleen McFadden, sponsored by the effervescent Pat Love (a/k/a Mom).  Kathleen told us she enjoys Pagosa, and has made it her home, recently becoming a licensed Colorado driver and now working toward a real estate license.  With regard to Rotary, Kathleen “loves being part of an organization that does so many good things.”
Grant Guru Dave Smith then updated the group on Rotary’s grant activities.  Initially he displayed a calendar featuring amateur photos by a Rotarian couple, used to raise funds to support a sister club’s Nicaraguan water project by selling advertising.  The calendar, Dave indicated, exemplified the ways that small beginnings can lead to big results, as the local club had managed to raise $14,000 for the project, which it ultimately leveraged to $65,000 with a Rotary International Global Grant.
In addition, Dave pointed out the benefits to be reaped by obtaining Rotary District Grants.  As examples, Dave noted that District Grants have recently helped fund a diverse variety of beneficial projects in multiple communities, including providing equipment for schools, a dental clinic, and a local meeting hall, outfitting needy children with shoes and socks, and installing benches in a public park (for the weary, perhaps, or even just nature-lovers).
Bob Eggleston then reminded all of the task of selling tickets for the upcoming Casino Night, and Pat Love stayed on theme by issuing a similarly ecumenical invitation to all to participate on the event’s decorating committee.  The committee will be assembling to work magic on Mondays June 3 and June 10 at 4 pm in the back room at Pagosa Brewing, Pat said.  Don’t worry about the goings on, cautiously described as “fun,” by Kim Moore.  As allegedly true for Las Vegas (or so they claim), what happens in the back room, stays in the back room, so good times are virtually guaranteed – or at least, good works (and remember what President Bush said about service).
Pat hinted further at good times to come, by revealing that the local UPS store had donated boxes to be decorated as large dice for Casino Night.  Large dice!!!  The mind boggles at the mere mention . . .
President Shellie then provided a dose of cold reality to the proceedings, with mention of thus-far unproductive discussions with the Town of Pagosa Springs over the issue of liability associated with hosting the Fourth of July Parade.  Discussions with Town staff seem to have reached an impasse, Shellie indicated, threatening Rotary’s ability to fulfill its traditional role, and a decision would need to be reached soon.  Your reporter then lamented the news, declaiming with concurrence of many the centrality of the Parade to Pagosa summertime.
[As this is being written on Sunday June 2, this seems a still developing story.  Following the Thursday meeting, the Pagosa Springs Sun reported that Rotary would not host the Parade.  But subsequently, it was suggested to your reporter that additional developments may be in the offing, and it appears new arrangements for the Parade could be revealed by the time of the Pagosa Springs Town Council meeting the evening of Tuesday June 4, 2019.  Those interested may wish to await further developments.]
Kim Moore then presided in the absence of Betty “Bubbles” Switzer over Sunshine/Showers (apologies to those omitted from this account due to the slowness of your reporter’s pen):
  • Dave Smith led off with a description of his recent trip to San Jose, California – driving his 89 year-old Model A Ford.  The don’t make ‘em like they used to.  But according to Dave, he and his wife needed visits to the chiropractor at the end of the ride under nearly century-old standards of comfort, so maybe that’s not all bad.
  • Bill Hubbard reported on the return to town of former local scholarship winner, the granddaughter of downtown barber Ray Garcia.
  • Warren Brown celebrated athletes: his wife Jodie, who recently claimed 5th place in a Utah triathlon, and the upcoming Special Olympics, to be kicked off by a torch run at Mary Fisher Park set for June 22. 
  • Bill Darling rejoiced (a) in the recent visit of a granddaughter (the youngster brought her parents, Bill observed in an apparent afterthought), and (b) a recent scan finding him cancer-free at one year.
  • Sharon Crump recounted her Mothers’ Day visit to New Orleans, to (you guessed it) visit her mother.
  • And Kim herself reported on an acrobatic, soon-arriving grandson, who performed a graceful “flip” in the womb of Kim’s daughter-in-law, thus averting an impending C-section for his mother.
The lottery concluded the meeting.  Mike Beckel held the winning ticket, but drew a looser from the remaining concealed cards flourished by Lisa Scott.  The pot, up to $368 at the time of Mike’s disappointment, continues to grow, as the remaining cards in the deck dwindle down to a mere few and the Ace of Spades still lurks anonymously in hiding.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-06-06 06:00:00Z 0

Scholarship Awards

Posted by Shellie Peterson
The following is a report of the details from Livia.  Our great thanks to everyone on the Scholarship Foundation Board and the Scholarship Selection Committee for the countless hours they spend managing this most significant of our services to the youth in our community!
Scholarship Foundation:
Nathan Lewis $3,000 2 yr
Sarah Ross $6,000 4 yr
Paul Farrah $1,000 1 yr
Cade Cowan $1,000 1 yr
Cameron Lucero $3,000 2 yr
Jonathon Robel $2,000 2 yr
Madison Peart $2,000 2 yr
Edgar Arellano (Vo-Tech) $3,400 2 yr
Total $21,400 Scholarship Foundation
 And 4 COSI scholarships:
Javier Marinelarena $6,700 4 yr
Cole Cayard $3,000 2 yr
Kianna Plate $4,000 2 yr
Morgan Thompson $2,000 2 yr
Total CAF/COSI $15,700
Total Rotary Scholarships $ 37100 
Scholarship Awards Shellie Peterson 2019-05-30 06:00:00Z 0

Welcome to Rhonda Webb

Posted by Shellie Peterson
We were delighted to welcome Dr. Rhonda Webb to our membership last week.  We are delighted to have her involved with our service.

Before moving to Pagosa Springs, Dr. Webb worked as the Medical Director of Patient Safety and Quality for the Willis-Knighton Health System. In her previous leadership role, she focused on improvements to the quality of patient care and as a key liaison between administrators and physicians.

Dr. Webb served as PSMC, CMO prior to becoming the CEO. Her focus and commitment are to provide quality, compassionate care for all community members, surrounding communities, and those who visit our majestic area.

Welcome to Rhonda Webb Shellie Peterson 2019-05-30 06:00:00Z 0

Casino Night is Coming Soon

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Co-Chairs Bob Eggleston and Art Benzel gave us the run down regarding the upcoming Casino Night!  Pat Love was recruiting for decoration creations.  Tickets were disbursed and we are on point for another successful Rotary fundraising event!  Sharon Crump will be commanding the ticket control booth so get your money to her as soon as possible along with your ticket numbers.  If you need more tickets she is the lady to see as well.
Casino Night is Coming Soon Shellie Peterson 2019-05-30 06:00:00Z 0

Cata's Final Program

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Cata's final presentation was really great fun!  Her humor and charm has certainly won the hearts of all of us and I am sure a great many others.
As usual, Lisa, Ronnie and Marianne had thought of everything to celebrate right along with a lovely cake.
Cata's Final Program Shellie Peterson 2019-05-30 06:00:00Z 0

What a Hard Working Guy Theo is!

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Even with a smile on his face!  Theo has been helping out with the construction of David Cammack's son's home.  We sure will miss this young man!
What a Hard Working Guy Theo is! Shellie Peterson 2019-05-30 06:00:00Z 0

CDC Luncheon - Thinking Outside the Box

Posted by Shellie Peterson
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs was happy to collaborate with the CDC on this public information seminar!  The guest speaker for the event was Jeff Kraft, Division Director, Business Funding & Initiatives from the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade.  I estimate there were about 70 participants including the presenters.
CDC Luncheon - Thinking Outside the Box Shellie Peterson 2019-05-30 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
The meeting’s business then began with the introduction by Dave Campbell of a new member, Frank Estes.  Frank was sponsored by Pat Love, who took the floor for the fanciful recollection that she and Frank met “as children 30 years ago.”  (Whether Pat’s fancy was to be found in the remoteness of the claimed meeting date, the stage of life at which it purportedly occurred, or both, was not clear, but it was well-recognized by many present.)   Pat observed she was glad to be able to sponsor Frank, since her own membership began simply by crashing the party, armed with no sponsor but only a cheery smile.
CiCi Stuart started the meeting with a thoughtful invocation attributed to  Mark Twain, in which the writer counseled lliving with courage, the human quality he reckoned as the root of integrity.
Sue Walen followed by leading the singing of “America the Beautiful.”
The meeting’s business then began with the introduction by Dave Campbell of a new member, Frank Estes.  Frank was sponsored by Pat Love, who took the floor for the fanciful recollection that she and Frank met “as children 30 years ago.”  (Whether Pat’s fancy was to be found in the remoteness of the claimed meeting date, the stage of life at which it purportedly occurred, or both, was not clear, but it was well-recognized by many present.)   Pat observed she was glad to be able to sponsor Frank, since her own membership began simply by crashing the party, armed with no sponsor but only a cheery smile.
President Shellie Peterson then took a moment to remember Katy Threet, who passed away in Houston on May 13.  Please see the obituary in the May 16, edition of the Pagosa Springs Sun.  Codie Wilson will say a few words about how important the Threets have been in the Clubs efforts.  Shellie simply sucks at this type of conversation.
Exchanger Theo Bonlokke next reported that the Pagosa Springs High School baseball Pirates had made the Colorado State Playoffs.  Fellow-exchanger Cata Acuilera rejoiced in the impending arrival of her family for a visit from home in Chile.  She also invited Rotarians to the High School Choir recital next Thursday (while declining for the second week running an invitation from the indefatigable Dave Cammack to provide the meeting a preview sample of the choir’s repertoire).
Exchanger Theo Bonlokke next reported that the Pagosa Springs High School baseball Pirates had made the Colorado State Playoffs.  Fellow-exchanger Cata Acuilera rejoiced in the impending arrival of her family for a visit from home in Chile.  She also invited Rotarians to the High School Choir recital next Thursday (while declining for the second week running an invitation from the indefatigable Dave Cammack to provide the meeting a preview sample of the choir’s repertoire).
How sad we will bee to see these fine students leave us!
Kim Moore announced the May 25 Vets 4 Vets golf tournament.  (A scramble, your reporter thought Kim said.  To some people, that refers to eggs, but to golfers it evidently means something altogether different.  What that may be, exactly, is not clear to those of us whose horizons are more limited.  But come to think of it, my own few golfing efforts have involved scrambling, mostly through the woods in search of my ball.  Somehow, I don’t think that’s what Kim had in mind.)
Birthdays were then announced with élan by our inimitable Betty “Bubbles” Switzer.  Livia Lynch, John Shepard and Melanie Garrett were the honorees, whose natal dates were robustly celebrated by an assortment of voices, ranging from motley to soaring (one can’t be sure, but Dave C may have been closer to the motley end of the spectrum, where your reporter was to be found bellowing lustily.)
Betty then branched out to anniversaries, announcing 19 years of bliss for Shellie and Kim Peterson, 28 for Marianne and Mike DeVooght, and 39 years for Margaret and Larry McClintock.  Betty’s bubble brandishing show was then completed with announcements of one-year Rotary anniversaries for Ci Ci and Bruce Stuart, Georgann Baumgartner, Sandra Houston and Alan Roth.

Livia then came forward again for the eagerly anticipated announcement of the 2019 Rotary Scholarship awards.  Before she announced the winners sharing in this year’s $37,000 Rotary bounty, Livia acknowledged committee members Marianne D, Melanie G., Alan R., Betty S (still trailing bubbles), Pat Love, and Meg Wempe for their hard work.  (Your reporter can verify from discussion with at least one of the members, that the committee indeed deserves congratulations for its diligence and effort devoted to what is one of Rotary’s signature community contributions.)
Winners (including College plans to the extent recorded by a reporter handicapped with a slow pen and fading hearing, compounded by the absence of a few winners) are: Javier Marinelarena (Univ. of Colorado), Nathan Lewis (Iowa State), Sara Ross (Cody Wilson’s granddaughter, headed to Sothern Oregon Univ.), Cole Cayard (University of Denver), Kianna Plate (Ft. Lewis), Morgan Thompson (Colorado State Univ.), Paul Farrah, Cade Cowan, Cameron Lucero, Jonathon Robel (Colorado School of Mines), Madison Peart (Brigham Young University), and Edgar Arellano.  All were welcomed with a hearty round of applause.
The last item of Rotary business came courtesy of Bob Eggleston, who asked, can you add (e.g. 10 + 11 = ?).  If you know the answer is 21, proclaimed Bob, chair for the Rotary Casino Night to be staged June 21, who was looking to round out the roster of dealers, “I can use you.”  (Hint: offer coffee and donuts, Bob, or perhaps something more nearly associated with the event.  Check with Jann on proper technique for the offer of inducements.  And remember, there won’t be any snow, so talk that up too!)
Next week’s meeting on May 23rd will kick-off the Casino Night promotional effort, Bob added, and tickets will be distributed to members for sale.
Pat Love reminded all that decorations will be needed for the PLPOA events center, venue for Casino Night, and solicited volunteers for the decorating committee.
Speakers: Jodi Scarpa, Sherry Waner, Mary Jo Coulehan, Pagosa Springs Community Development Corporation
            The Pagosa Springs Community Development Corporation (CDC) works, according to its website, to “help change the economic future of Pagosa Springs.”  Among other things, the CDC
  • Provides strategic direction for the community’s economic future;
  • Seeks to build economic development networks among constituents including community businesses, Region 9 Economic Development District, Southwest Colorado Small Business Development Center at Fort Lewis College in Durango, and agencies of the State of Colorado;
  • Helps administer Enterprise Zone Tax credits that provide tax incentives to encourage businesses to locate here and expand;
  • Gathers, interprets and presents data about economic activity in Archuleta County; and
  • Advises businesses as they begin, grow and mature.
The not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization is funded by its membership, and by contributions from Archuleta County and the Town of Pagosa Springs.
CDC board President Jodi Scarpa, Pagosa Springs Medical Center Foundation Director, led off the presentation by boiling the website’s description down to some key elements:  the organization’s efforts focus on planning for infrastructure, supporting existing businesses and assisting start-ups, and overall, seeking to facilitate business growth and to build local employment.
Ms. Scarpa cited the CDC’s work on bringing improved broadband internet service to the community as an example.  Mary Jo Coulehan, Director of the Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce, which contracts to provide administrative support to the CDC, then gave more details on the CDC’s broadband effort.
The need for improvement in broadband infrastructure is obvious to all in the community, Ms. Coulehan observed.  Achievement of the goal of improvement is challenging due to low population density and difficult terrain, she said, which increase the capital cost of service delivery and diminish the rewards of commercial investment.  To overcome the resulting lag in private investment, she related, the CDC started its mission to improve broadband by hiring a consultant to identify specific improvement targets based on impact and feasibility, having high value sufficient to justify publicly supported effort. 
With broadband targets chosen, the CDC is moving forward, Ms. Coulehan told us, with efforts to secure grant funding from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs to establish “last mile” connectivity in unserved areas (last mile referring to facilities for the final connection to service users).  
With respect to large areas of the community currently having internet service at levels that have become obsolete, middle mile connectivity will be built out from the existing regional SCAN network, which runs through Pagosa in the Highway 160 corridor.  SCAN is a high-capacity, fiber optic cable network, which was originally developed throughout the region several years ago to provide high speed internet access to public facilities (government installations, schools, public districts, etc.).  
A substantial, and so-far unused part of the cable included in the SCAN network is owned locally by the Town and the County, which have both agreed to dedicate their unused cable to a system now being established under CDC guidance to deliver high speed broadband to customers in the community. 
The plan being followed will involve leasing access to the existing publicly-owned, SCAN fiber to commercial Internet Service Providers.  Leases will be on condition of use of the access promptly to provide delivery of last mile service to consumers.  Thus, essential infrastructure will become available for broadband service in the community, without the need for commercially profitable return on expensive capital investments.  
            Customers should begin to see changes in the availability of high-speed internet service for homes and businesses as early as the end of this year, Ms. Coulehan predicted, and progress will pick-up further in 2020.
            The CDC’s Sherry Waner, 1st Southwest Bank Chief of Development, then took over the presentation.  She described CDC’s program to make “microloans” available to local businesses on terms that would not be available from commercial lenders.  The loans are designed to help cover the cost of small start-up investments, she said, mentioning loans made to a medical practice, an auto repair shop, and a vending machine business as examples. 
Ms. Waner also discussed the CDC’s involvement in facilitating exploitation of the relatively new, federal Opportunity Zone tax incentive program.  The CDC has provided educational presentations on the program, and will help with identification of eligible projects.
Ms. Scarpa then closed with a mention of the CDC’s plans for expansion of its efforts, including hiring an executive director to oversee its increasing work.  Noting the upcoming Economic Development Luncheon on May 22, she commented that participation in the CDC is an investment in a stronger community.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-05-23 06:00:00Z 0

Thinking Outside of the Economic Box

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Economic Outlook Luncheon

Brought to you by the Pagosa Springs Community Development Corporation

May 22nd 11:30am-1:30pm
At the Pagosa Springs Arts Council, 197 Navajo Trail Dr.

Guest Speaker: Jeff Kraft
Division Director, Business Funding & Initiatives-OEDIT
Tickets can be purchased online at

Local Economic Conditions & Demographics
State Programs and Funding Assistance
Future Initiatives: Hemp, Renewable Energy
Opportunity Zones 
Thinking Outside of the Economic Box Shellie Peterson 2019-05-16 06:00:00Z 0

Who We Play For

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Attention parents of 8th graders. Pagosa Springs Middle School cares about your child's heart health, so we are partnering with Who We Play For to screen students with an electrocardiogram (ECG). This procedure can detect issues in the heart that can be missed in standard physicals. The BEST part is it is FREE!

All you have to do is fill out the form your child brings home and return it to the office. A qualified health professional will screen them next Friday, May 17th during PE or band class. Our goal is 100% participation! Thank you for your support. Your student will be bringing these forms home this week!
Every parent should take advantage of this important and potentially lifesaving screening!! The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is proud to support this important effort for our Pagosa Springs athletes.  You can learn more at
Who We Play For Shellie Peterson 2019-05-16 06:00:00Z 0

Dr. Virginia Chan, Oncologist

Posted by Jim Garrett
Speaker: Dr. Virginia Chan, Oncologist, Pagosa Springs Medical Center/Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders
            Dr. Chan, a native Indonesian, grew up on Long Island, N.Y., and came to Pagosa Springs recently by way of Connecticut and Grand Junction.  She explained that after nine years of living in the I-70 corridor, she began thinking about moving to a “mountain town,” and while pondering the possibility of life in Crested Butte, had an epiphany in the form of a well-timed recruiting ad from PSMC, and now “loves it here.”
            The new Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders provides oncology and hematology services.  In addition to Dr. Chan, it is staffed by Dr. William Jordan, and assorted other professionals with relevant specialized skills and knowledge.
            Dr. Chan explained the Center delivers the latest in advanced treatment, citing immunotherapy, treatment designed to induce the human immune system to bring its power to bear in attacking diseased cells, with the aid of targeting techniques utilizing computer analysis to tailor the regimen to the individual patient. 
Although immunotherapy is a form of treatment that not all can tolerate, because of the potential for inflammation, it can be very effective, she said.  Because it is targeted, and thereby differs from what Dr. Chan described as the more generalized “nuclear bomb” of chemotherapy, it does not create the wide array of side effects that can be so difficult for patients.
            In response to questions from the audience, Dr. Chan acknowledged the challenge of keeping pace with rapidly advancing diagnostic and treatment technologies, but said that the relevant medical communities as a whole include many specialists who are generous with their time in consulting with fellow-professionals on new means of addressing issues in their fields. 
And, she added, the Medical Center has good, cooperative relationships with other regional facilities with advanced capabilities currently beyond local reach that may be needed by some patients.     
            Patients treated at the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders include generally full-time local residents, and second-home owners.
Dr. Virginia Chan, Oncologist Jim Garrett 2019-05-16 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
Jeff Switzer got the meeting started by offering an Apache Blessing as the invocation:
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. 
Kim Moore followed by leading the singing of “You Are My Sunshine.”
Visitors included two who regularly share our bon homie: Frank Wylie of Sun Lakes, Arizona, and Kenny Rodgers of Pagosa Mountain Rotary. 
Frank travels with humor in his kit bag, as he displayed with the alleged news that Starbucks will be starting to sell alcoholic beverages, since it’s too difficult to sell a $4 cup of coffee to sober customers. 
Additionally. Frank reported the impressive news that his home club was sponsoring 23 (count ‘em!) RYLA campers this year.  (For context, Sun Lakes is a suburban Phoenix, Az. adult community with a population recorded in the 2010 census of approximately 14,000, located in Maricopa County, home to a population of over 4 million.)
Kenny discussed a local 4-H Club program for certification of 12 – 18 year-olds as baby sitters through a class being provided during the first week of June.  Kenny said 4-H is looking for donations to help youths of limited means meet tuition charges.
Pat Love then took possession of the microphone to solicit participation with the Casino Night Decorating Committee, which she said would meet Monday May 13 at 4 pm, in the event venue itself (looking for inspiration, don’t you know!), the PLPOA activities building.
The mike was next passed on to Bob Eggleston, who renewed the request for dealers to staff the various activities to be staged during the June 21 Casino Night event.  (Bob did not appear to be a candidate for participation with Pat on the Decorating Committee – the important thing is not décor, but “It’s gambling, you know,” quoth he.)
Remaining on topic, Jo Ann Laird called for a final volunteer (of four needed) to distribute Casino Night Posters throughout the town, and such was her magnetic appeal that she succeeded right on the spot!  Posters will go up May 23, Jo Ann said, and reported also that tickets will be available that day, and will then be distributed to Rotarians for flogging to friends, neighbors, assorted passers-by, and any others potential gamblers ingenuity can procure.
Breaking from the Casino Night pattern, Dave Smith then reported that remodeling for the Early Childhood Center is well underway.  (The construction of the Center is an outgrowth of the assessment of local need made by the Early Childhood Work Group, sponsored by the Town of Pagosa Springs and Archuleta County.) 
The Center will be located in a building that housed a long-closed restaurant off Piedra Road near the airport.  Dave reported that plumbing and electrical inspections were recently passed, and the remodeling is now heading toward completion.  A Center opening in September or October is hoped for, Dave said.  The facility needs a Director, he added, asking for leads to qualified persons who might be interested.
President Shellie Peterson then reminded the meeting of the May 22 Development Luncheon, being hosted by the Pagosa Springs Community Development Corp. (CDC) at the Pagosa Springs Arts Council Building on Navajo Trails Drive (near 1st Southwest Bank).  Rotary projects will benefit from the event, set for 11:30 am on May 22, to include a catered lunch and a speaker from the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, Jeff Kraft.  Rotary will provide help with setup the day before, May 21 at 1pm. 
Tickets for the Luncheon are only $30 (plus a small processing fee).  Go to the CDC website, and click on the event link to buy tickets with a few strikes of your keyboard!  Contact the CDC through the Pagosa Springs Chamber of Commerce at the Visitors Center, or Jim Garrett, (412) 508-1060, for more information.  Complimentary tickets will be provided by the CDC for eight Rotarians helping with event set-up and take-down.
Livia Lynch next reported that the Scholarship Committee had completed its work and selected 12 high school seniors to share in scholarships totaling $37,000.  The winners will be presented at the Rotary meeting next week, May 16, she said.
A reminder was also offered of Rotary’s annual Put Hill cleanup, to be orchestrated by Jann Pitcher with the aid of volunteers, on May 18, beginning at 8:00 am.
Betty Switzer then presided over a session of Sunshine and Showers, producing among other contributions:
  • Dave Campbell’s report of a trip with Chris to Moab in a party of 16, which yielded hiking, site-seeing and, by Dave’s report, rollicking dinners;
  • Larry McClintock’s weather report for St. George, Utah (80 degrees);
  • Shellie’s crossed fingers over the blossoming potential for the well-coordinated  sale of her present home with the purchase of a new one (on Antelope Avenue);
  • Kim’s surprising, fun encounter during a dreaded phone call for customer service answered at a call-center in Michigan, with a service agent in the person of a Senegalese immigrant, with whom she shared happy reminiscences of his native country;
  • CiCi Stuart’s discovery of the meaning of “Pagosa Time,” through her enforced six-weeks of delay in obtaining repair of a freezer; and
  • Pat Love’s congratulations to Betty on her successful implementation of a New Year’s resolution to “be kinder;” (Pat did not elaborate, so it is only a guess that the congratulations may have been triggered in part by a highly favorable review Betty gave of a new hair-do sported by Jo Ann Laird).
Exchange students Theo Bonlokke and Cata Acuilera then updated the meeting on their activities.  Theo reported he had an RBI triple for Pagosa Springs in a game at Monte Vista, and then even struck a mighty homer (“over the fence”) at the Pirates’ practice.  The varsity team hopes to “make states,” he reported.  Cata said she was recovering well from being sick, and would be accompanying the High School Choir to Denver for an event.  She demurred at an invitation to display her singing talents for the meeting, however, pointing out “in choir we have more people, so you’re not alone.”)
Turning to the Rotary lottery as the meeting ended, Lisa Scott announced the pot was up to $336.  Dave Campbell held the winning ticket (it took a while for Dave to discover the number was his, so many tics had he purchased).  Alas, Dave pulled a spade from the deck, but not the Ace.  Calls from the audience to give the poor man a second chance in view of his mammoth investment in tickets when unheeded by Lisa.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-05-16 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings


Posted by Jim Garrett
The meeting began with a corny invocation by Meg Wempe.  Well, alright, it wasn’t really corny – it’s only that the invocation was based on corn.
A farmer, Meg related, was celebrated for his blue-ribbon, prize-winning corn.  A visitor observed that after the growing season, the farmer distributed parts of the seed corn from his bumper crop to the neighboring farmers.  Aren’t you worried about the competition, the visitor inquired?  No, the farmer explained, he hoped his neighbors would grow the same great corn, so the wind wouldn’t blow inferior pollen into his fields.
Those who want to live well, Meg concluded, do best when they help others live well too.  A kernel of wisdom, so to speak.
The talk on a bright April day of growing corn then inspired Sharon Crump to lead the meeting in a rendition of “You Are My Sunshine.” 
As voices rose in song, Dave Cammack and Kim Moore were moved by the festive tune to dance around the room, as if blown by the wind into graceful pirouettes of welcome to spring after the long chill of cabin fever.  (But wait: Kim was lately cruising the South Pacific.  Maybe it was the left-over influence of chill from her prior trip to the slopes of Mount Everest in Tibet?)
Dave Campbell then was called to the podium by President Shellie Peterson, to continue the apparent theme of spring rebirth by introducing new members Pat Tackett and Julie Walters.  Pat, sponsored by Marianne DeVooght, told us she has been a resident of Pagosa Springs for 36 years, and works in Citizens Bank (now TDK Bank).  Julie, sponsored by Lisa Scott, said she had returned to Pagosa three years ago after an extended absence, and currently works for Bob Scott.  She is involved locally in hot air balloons.
Additional new members are pending, Dave reported.  More cabin fever effects, overcome?
Exchanger Theo Bonlokke then took the floor to report that after his exploits over the winter on the Pagosa Springs wrestling mats, he has recently turned his attention to the Pirates’ baseball diamond.  Against Durango recently, he struck a blow mighty enough to end a speedy dash safely astride 2nd base, with his first hit of the season.   Tillykke, Theo!  (According to Google, Tillykke is Danish for congratulations.  According to me, based on years of my own baseball futility, unless the Danish have secretly taken to playing the game, that hit is a fabulous accomplishment!)
International Committee Chairman David Smith then reported that his proposal to extend the high school science education project to Niger after years of success in Senegal, has been approved for funding by the Rotary Foundation.   Total funding for the budget of $65,000 will be supplied by Pagosa Rotary ($12,000), by our generous Aspen Rotary neighbors ($5000), and the balance from the Rotary Foundation.
Attention was then turned to the previous weekend’s Gary Morris concert, hosted by Rotary as a fundraiser for the Feed Our Children project.  Treasurer Larry McClintock reported that the enormously successful concert had produced proceeds of over $17,000 for the program, thanks to Morris’ donation of his extraordinary talents. 
Larry reported that ticket sales champs included Jenelle Syverson’s Choke Cherry Tree, Georgette Baumgardner, Lassie Olin, and Art Benzel, among others.  He added a special shout-out for Pat Love and husband Larry Parks, the winning bidders for the “one and only” Gary Morris CD auctioned by the singer during the concert.   
Betty Switzer also presented a large bouquet of red roses to Georgette, whose stellar organizational efforts (and sales pitch to Mr. Morris) made the event possible.
Dave Cammack, a voice from the back benches, having regained his breath after his earlier dance exertions, then offered a story related by a friend who had known Gary Morris in his high school days in Texas.  His classmates had been surprised by Morris’ later fame as a musician, Dave recalled being told: it wasn’t the fame that surprised them much, he said, but the field.  They had expected Morris’ success to come in sports, not music, as he had been the star athlete of his day, a champion who walked away, but then reemerged anew.
Jann Pitcher then reminded Rotarians of the annual Put Hill cleanup, coming this year on May 18.  Volunteers with any eye for Pagosa’s (hopefully) unmarred scenic beauty needed!
News & Happenings  Jim Garrett 2019-05-02 06:00:00Z 0

Mike Dreyspring, LPEA CEO

Posted by Jim Garrett
Dreyspring, the retiring LPEA CEO, addressed a variety of topics concerning the electric utility during his informative talk. 

His first topic was of near-term significance: the cooperative’s annual members meeting, to be held Thursday May 2, 2019 at 6:30 pm in the Fort Lewis College Concert Hall.  Current board elections end at the meeting.  Candidates running for the local seat on the board are Holly Metzler and Michael Whiting.
Mike’s remaining topics had a longer-term focus, dealing broadly with the subject of energy sources.  Context was provided in a brief history: LPEA’s origins trace to the New Deal Rural Electrification Administration.  The cooperative was formed in 1939, and it became one of several cooperatives that participated in power generation through membership in Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association (itself a cooperative). 
Tri-State members deliver electric power to their own consumer-members in Colorado, Nebraska, Wyoming and New Mexico.  According to its website, Tri-State generates about one third of its electricity from renewable sources at present: it has 13 coal-fired generating facilities and eight wind or solar renewable generating facilities.
Power generation is capital intensive, so to provide revenue commitments required by lenders, Tri-States’ utility members have all entered into long-term contracts to buy the power produced by it.   Mike reported that with the exception of a “5% local sources allowance,” LPEA currently is committed to buying from Tri-State all of the electricity needed to supply its members under a contract that extends to 2050.
However, Mike reported that LPEA has been considering the possibility of using other sources for supplying its members with power.  A study committee recently concluded that doing so may be economically feasible, depending on the terms of essentially an exit fee that would need to be negotiated with Tri-State.
Mike discussed briefly also advances in technology that may help with the feasibility of turning to power generation alternatives.  For example, he mentioned advances in compensating for weather variables like wind levels and sunshine volume by use in real time of computer algorithms to adjust production at renewable facilities, and shift between them.  (Another area of recent advances not specifically mentioned by Mike, but reported in the news media, is the rapid improvement in battery electric storage capacity, which has begun to attract major utility company investments).  These advances increase the efficiency of renewable generating capacity, and thus reduce its cost.
A technology of particular interest in Pagosa Springs, is biomass electric power generation, which would produce power from forest waste.  Mike said that LPEA has considered the possibility of biomass production, and though no commitment has been made as yet to using it, he suggested it has interesting potential.
Rotary’s Dave Richardson was in attendance at the meeting, and offered more information from the audience.  Biomass is championed by local businessman JR Ford, with whom Dave works.  The idea would involve thinning local forests (something needed for fire risk mitigation), conversion of the wood waste to a gas, and then use of the gas to fire generating turbines.  Burning the gas, Dave reported, would not produce carbon-dioxide, a major pollutant by-product of burning coal.  And, use of local wood waste would reduce pollution in transportation.
Mike said that overall, LPEA has formulated an objective of reducing by 2030 its total carbon emissions into the atmosphere by 50%, while maintaining cost competitiveness of the power supplied to members.  To achieve the objective, he said, LPEA wants to increase its use of renewable generating sources as much as possible.  In addition, it anticipates using electric vehicles in its service fleet, and incentivizing customer use of electric vehicles by rebates to cover the cost of home charger installations.
Mike Dreyspring, LPEA CEO Jim Garrett 2019-05-02 06:00:00Z 0

Gary Morris Concert

Posted by Shellie Peterson
What an amazing concert!  If you missed this event, you missed a magical evening for sure!  Mr. Morris was personable and charming on top of being such a talented singer and song writer.  The crowd certainly responded very warmly to him as did he to the crowd. 
Larry will give us a report at the meeting on Thursday, but ***Spoiler Alert*** the event was a big success.
Gary Morris Concert Shellie Peterson 2019-04-25 06:00:00Z 0

Rena Gallant - Forest Trail Maintenance

Posted by Sam Pittmon
Rena introduced her self as a member of “San Juan Back Country Horsemen” (BCHA). She stated that she started riding horses when she was 60 years old and that it was very difficult for her but now, she enjoys riding. She said that “what I really want to do is encourage and solicit active participation in the use of back country resources by stock users and the general public commensurate with our heritage”.
Rena showed the other purpose and philosophy of BCHA which is:
  1. To perpetuate the common sense use and enjoyment of horses in America’s back country and wilderness.
  2. To work to ensure that public lands remain open to recreational stock use.
  3. To assist the various government, state and private agencies in their maintenance and management of said resources.
  4. To foster and encourage the formation of new state organizations and BCHA.
She wanted to let us know what the Back-Country Horsemen do to maintain back country trails such as keep the trails cleared of fallen limbs and trees as well as other repairs to trails as needed. She mentioned that other groups such as the Forest Service, the Pagosa Area Trail Council, ATV groups also help clear the trails. She stated that they all are prohibited from using chain saws and other motorized equipment on the wilderness trails, so they must use hand tools. It took she and her husband 5 month to clear Leche Creek, Opal Creek and Fish Creek trails last year.
Rena then showed a slide show that included a fund raiser that netted $30000 last year with the help of many including several outfitters in the area. Many of these outfitters have also been helping clear the trails of yearly dead fall in the spring. There were images of huge logs across trails that were removed using axes, hand saws and the big two man crosscut saws. Many of these projects are above 10000 feet making them even more difficult. Crews are required to measure and document the trees removed from the trails. Sometimes crews spend several nights in the wilderness clearing trails and Back Country Horsemen carry food and other supplies to them. They interact with and set up trail heads for hunters in the fall. She showed pictures of Anderson trail, Little Sand trail and Archuleta trails that had been cleared.
Rena stated that they have about 85 members (25 does most of the work) that worked about 1800 hours last year to clear the trails. That involved clearing about 500 trees from 242 miles of trail with 177 miles in the wilderness. She then showed a slide of the number of trees cut by different trail clearing groups. The Pagosa Ranger District Backcountry crew cut 1768 trees from the trails, Ron Decker and Becca Smith cut 1700 trees themselves, Southwest Conservation Corp cut 545 trees and the San Juan Outdoor Club and others cut out 86 trees all for a total of 4599 trees cleared from the trails. She stated that there are approximately 9500 fallen trees on San Juan forest trails each year.
Rena’s presentation ended with a picture of a beautifully groomed horse’s rear and there was expected cheers, laughter and applause.
Rena Gallant - Forest Trail Maintenance Sam Pittmon 2019-04-25 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Sam Pittmon
Invocation: Art Benzel: “Rotary starts with friendships. In Rotary there are no strangers only friends we have not yet met. The action plan is to shake the hand of somebody you have not met yet and we can go on with the meeting”.

Song:  Sharon Crump “The Happy Wanderer”

Exchange student report: Kata stated that she has a soccer game today and tomorrow. She invited members to come and watch. She was asked what position that she plays, and she answered defense.
President Shellie introduced three very special people that participated in the Ice Melt contest. They were Al Myatt who was the second-place winner of $500 and club photographer for the event, Jere Hill the third-place winner of $250 who is a previous Pagosa Springs Rotary Club member for 25 years and past president, and Brent Bailey the grand prize winner of $1000.00. At this point the winners went up front for photos and a formal presentation of wins by Larry McClintock and Allen Roth. Brent Bailey stated that he was donating $200 of his winnings back to Rotary. President Shellie stated that this Ice Melt contest will be repeated next year. Total proceeds were about $3000.
Announcements: David Campbell made some comments about rotary membership. He encouraged everyone to always check-in upon entering the meeting so that you are not listed as absent on the weekly attendance report. If you attend a rotary meeting somewhere else be sure and give the attendance document to him. He also announced the mini-orientation meeting next week on April 24 for Julie Walters and Pat Tackett. Lastly, Dave stated that members who are on leave-of-absence still need to pay rotary dues.
Pat Day introduced her daughter Kathleen McFadden and Frank Estes for the third and last time as applicants for membership.
Joe Bridges announced the tragic accidental death of a long time Rotary supporter Monk Tarbel and the injury of his partner Carla Evans. Carla is being released from the hospital today but will be a Pine Ridge Nursing home for a while in recovery. A card was circulated for Carla.
Livia Lynch announced that the rotary Scholarship Committee met recently and reviewed 21 applicants. On May 2 winners will be announced. The Scholarship Foundation netted another $10000 donation recently making a total of about $37000 available for scholarship awards.
Shellie announced the second rotary meeting for Dr. Rhonda Webb as a corporate membership. Dr. Webb announced that there is a Business After Hours event next Wednesday at Pagosa Springs Medical Center.
Cindi Galabota announced that RYLA applications are due tomorrow and that ESL classes are starting at Ruby Sisson public library on May 1.
David Smith reported that he attended an International Service meeting last Saturday in Montrose. Discussions included global grants and the deep well project in Vienna, Austria that received a $3000 donation from our district. An email response was received from Vienna that they are willing to donate $3000 to a project supported by our district.
Georgette Baumgardner brought attention to the “big event” this Saturday which is the Gary Morris Concert. She solicited help with concessions. She expects that we will have a “big turn-out” for the concert. She encourages anyone who have not sold their tickets to turn them in so that they can be sold by others and at the door.
Kim Moore stated that she will be arriving at Pagosa High School at 5:15 pm Saturday to set up for concession sells and that she will need help. Those cooking brownies and cookies should have them there by 6:30 pm.
Lisa Scott announced that our club has been assigned an exchange student for next year. It’s a boy from Spain and his name is Jaime. He will be arriving June 16. He plays tennis, soccer and he skis. His Sister did a Rotary exchange last year in the US and his father is a Rotarian.
Lisa also announced a 4-H paper shredding day on May 8 from 4-6 pm. For $5 they will shred a whole box of paper.
Joe Bridges extended sincere gratitude to Georgette Baumgardner and her family for the Back Pack Program fund raiser. There was applause and cheers from the membership.
SUNSHINE AND FLOWERS: Betty Switzer made us aware that she was gone for three weeks and that she is back. She stated, “I bet you have some pinned up sunshine and flowers that you wanted to wait to share when I was here”.
Georgette’s sunshine was that “I think we are going to hit our goal for the Gary Morris concert.
Betty and Jeff sunshine was that “we are not in Arkansas”.
Bill Darling’s sunshine was that he is 1 year out from his stem cell transplant and doing so well that he will be getting a new series of immunizations soon to improve his immune status.
Diane Bower talked of her recent return from Hawaii with her husband and a friend couple. That friend wife has pancreatic cancer with a prognosis of about 3 months. The night before they were to fly back home, Diane’s husband got the stomach flu. He was seen at the emergency room and was admitted to the hospital overnight. They had a flight back home the next day which they made but he continued to have symptoms for several days but has improved.
Sharon Carter’s sunshine was for her niece that will be graduating from medical school this May with a GPA of 3.7.
News & Happenings Sam Pittmon 2019-04-25 06:00:00Z 0

Only a Few Days Left! Gary Morris in Concert!

Posted by Shellie Peterson
This is a great opportunity!  We have a renowned star willing to invest his time and talent for us! let's not let one ticket go unsold or one dollar that could support our Feed Our Children Program go un-raised!!  
Doors open to the public at 6:00 the High School will be open for us at 4:00.  If you can come a little early, there are always things that need done at the last minute.  If you are bringing deserts for the concession stand, please be there with them no later than 6:00 pm or make arrangements with Kim.
Only a Few Days Left! Gary Morris in Concert! Shellie Peterson 2019-04-18 06:00:00Z 0

Hatcher Lake Ice Melt Contest Winners Announced

Posted by JoAnn Laird
BY: JoAnn Laird
Spring is sprung and the Lake Hatcher ice melted enough to drop the fifty-five gallon barrel, containing a clock, to the depths of the lake.  This proved bad news for the clock but great news for three lucky people who won some serious money.
The contest was based on guessing the exact date, hour, minute and second that the ice would melt enough to drop the barrel in the water, thus stopping the clock. Winning $1,000 for the closest guess was Brent Bailey, second place, winning $500, was Al Myatt and third place went to Jere Hill, winning $250.
Sounds like an easy contest but there's more than meets the eye. Getting the barrel on the lake's two foot thick ice in early March was a bit of a chore, as there's always the chance of slipping and falling. Retrieving the barrel from the cold watery depths is another story.
The barrel initially dropped on April 10 but extreme winds delayed the recovery until April 11, around 2:00. Under the watchful eye of Chief Larson and Deputy Chief Karn Macht, a twenty foot Rescue Boat was launched with firemen Josh Montoya and Daniel Cabrera. Although tethered to the shore in case of an incident, two additional firemen, Jared Wirth and Lyle Hoffschneider were at the ready, if needed, as required in the two in, two out rescue method. This method proved the right choice for these highly trained firemen, as the barrel was swiftly and safely brought to shore.
Hatcher Lake Ice Melt Contest Winners Announced JoAnn Laird 2019-04-18 06:00:00Z 0

Doug Purcell and Nate Martinez, District Wildlife Managers

Posted by Sam Pittmon
These game wardens can be reached by calling the Archuleta County Sheriffs office or by calling 970-799-0843 for Doug and 970-799-0842 for Nate if you need to obtain information about wild life issues such as hunting, trespassing, bears, injured animals or other wild life related concerns.
Doug started with a discussion concerning bears. Usually bears appear between now and May 1st and we should be aware that trash cans should be put away now so that bears can’t get to them. There are some plastic trash cans with “bear proof” lids available but don’t rely on them because bears will “prove you wrong” as they jump up and down on them. Commercial dumpsters should be secured with metal lids secured at all four corners. Bears are quick to learn how to gain access to food so it’s best to keep the plastic trash cans inside the garage.
Black Bears as we have rarely attack people unless they are trying to gain access to food. Black bears come in various hair colors from black to brown to blonde. They are mostly black on the east coast and as you move west across the U.S. they become more shades of brown and it is unusual to see a true black color bear in our area. Black bears are more aggressive toward humans in Alaska and Canada because they don’t have much interaction with people and they treat humans as a bear or a territorial threat. Bears that roam our neighborhoods lose that natural fear of humans and may be more aggressive. One-and-a-half-year-old yearling bears who haven’t developed a natural fear of humans have a tendency to break-in to garages and homes looking for food.
Doug discussed the issues of resident wildlife.  In Pagosa Springs area we have resident deer and Turkeys that are nice to see around but it is illegal to feed the deer (except for natural plant growth) because of disease concerns, migration concerns and when large numbers of deer congregate, it lures wildlife predators such as mountain lions to the area. He said that there are mountain lions in the area but we don’t want to increase their presence. It is not illegal to feed turkeys or to water any wild animal.
There is a problem of winter deer kill typically but it is greater when larger amounts of snow make it more difficult for deer to feed and migrate. The question was asked if deer always come back to the same area and the answer is yes. Studies have shown that deer migration is habitual. Elk have no pattern of migration but may stay in an area if the food supply is adequate. Hazing of nuisance deer is ok but don’t injure them like shooting with a BB gun.
The moose population is increasing gradually in the Weminuche area but efforts are being made to keep the population in check due to concerns of their susceptibility to disease.
Doug then talked about how best to protect your self when you encounter wild animals. The #1 thing is not to run. The mountain lion will chase you like it’s pry if you run. Mountain lions generally stay away from populated areas except at night between 10 pm and 4 am. That means that you probably won’t see them. Lion hunting is permitted to about 6 tags per year.
Bears in the wild are not generally a predator as it is usually looking for food. Let them know you are there and move away slowly is recommended.
The Ram sheep population has suffered due to exposure to farmed sheep and disease in their area of habitat.  Lynx population is thought to be good as there is adequate habitat in the area but its hard to track them because they are a very skittish animal.
Lastly, Doug mention two seminars been held in Pagosa Springs: The Youth/Women Turkey Hunting Seminar being held this Friday 3-6 pm at John Paul II Catholic Church and the Cut Throat Trout Project public meeting on April 16 at 6:30 pm at Pagosa Springs Resort with the objective of reintroducing this native trout to the area.
Weekly Raffle was held and yours truly won a chance to pick the Ace of Spades but Lady luck was not with me!
Doug Purcell and Nate Martinez, District Wildlife Managers Sam Pittmon 2019-04-18 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Sam Pittmon
Invocation: Pat Love
               Chosen from an African proverb: If you want to go fast go alone. If you want to go far go together. So, here’s to going far together.
Pledge of Allegiance: All
Song: Sharon Carter
               Take Me Out to the Ball Game
Visitors: Lisa Scott introduced Julie Walters as a proposed new member who is a certified and avid balloonist and a customer service manager at Scott Strategic Investments. She also introduced Pat Tackett as a proposed new member who is the human relations manager at TDK bank.
Art Benzel introduced Dr. Rhonda Webb the CEO of Pagosa Springs Medical Center as our club’s first proposed corporate membership. Dr Webb and her husband orthopedic surgeon Dr. Bill Webb moved to Pagosa Springs in 2014 from Louisiana and joined the medical Staff at Pagosa Springs Medical Center in 2015. She was chosen as CEO in 2017. She stated that they love being in Pagosa Springs and would like to get involved with our Rotary Club but acknowledges the difficulty of making meeting every week. So, as a cooperate membership she, Bill or the Chairman of the Board can attend meetings. Club members applauded her message and some stated “you are in”.
Announcements: President Shellie welcomed back members John Richardson after having spine surgery and Sue Walan after foot surgery. She also welcomed back David and Kriss Campbell, Sam Pittmon, and finally CiCi and Bruce Stuart.
Exchange Student Reports: Theo was excited to report that he played baseball with the varsity team in three games. They won the third game. He was proud to report that he did hit the ball, stole a base and caught as fly ball. He spent spring break skiing a Hesperus Ski Area and at Los Alamos ski area. He has four baseball games this weekend and hopes to play in all of them. He went to school prom last weekend. Cata reported that she spent her spring break in Hawaii and she got to meet several rotary exchange students from California. She had a surfing lesson and that was fun. They went on a catamaran boat trip in the ocean and went shopping. Upon return to Pagosa she also went to the school prom and had fun.  On Tuesday she played in a soccer game that they won and she managed to get a yellow card which she admitted was due to her “being a tough player”.
Allan Roth gave an update on the barrel contest stating that “the barrel went down yesterday”. Now, we will have to wait until the fire department retrieves it to determine the exact time it went down. Larry McClintock reported that approximately $3000 was collected from the raffle which means that approximately $750 will go to our scholarship program.
Larry McClintock gave a preliminary estimate of $22000 being raised from Rotary sponsorships donors. This amount exceeds our goal of $20000.
Gary Morris Concert update: Sharon Crump estimates that ticket sales have garnered $6300 thus far. Shellie encourage all members to either sale tickets that they have or turn them in so that others can sale them. Kim Moore reported that there will be concession sales of brownies, chocolate chip cookies and Choke Cherry Caramels at the concert.
Shellie announced that there is a day long videography course on April 26 for anyone interested in learning for the benefit of our Rotary Club. She also reminded members of the 9 Health Fair to be held April 27, 2019 at Pagosa High School and that there is a need for additional volunteers to help with form control and form checks. Friday pre-draw will be at the Methodist Church at 7:30 am and she encourages that more people sign up because the lack of adequate participation may result in cancellation of the pre-draw for the 9 Health program. You can register online at
There will be the 1st District Training conference this weekend at Montrose. You are encouraged to attend to learn more about Rotary.
Janelle Syverson solicited participation in the Geothermal Greenhouse water-themed Environmental Film Festival this Friday and Saturday.
David Smith gave an update on Wings the early child care facility that’s being constructed. He stated that it is progressing very well with hopes to open for business in September. He announced that our Rotary member CiCi Stuart has volunteered to help with that program.
News & Happenings Sam Pittmon 2019-04-18 06:00:00Z 0

9Health Fair

Posted by Shellie Peterson
The 40th Annual 9Health Fair is coming up!  This is a community service project for this Club and the Mountain Rotary Club.  Its the last Saturday in April, the 27th.  Doors open at 7:00 am and the Fair runs until 11:00.  There are many service available in addition to blood screenings.  Hearing, spinal screening, blood pressure, and so many more!  All of the screenings and health material are free of charge.  The blood screenings are at a very reasonable cost as indicated below.  A volunteer discount is also available.  If you have not volunteered with us in the past and need more information, please contact me!
• Provides information on your blood glucose, cholesterol, electrolytes, liver, kidneys, thyroid, and more
• This screening can help you and your healthcare provider monitor and identify health issues such as diabetes and heart disease
• Pair with Hemoglobin A1c for a complete diabetes screening

• Measures your average blood sugar control for the past 2 to 3 months
• Screens for diabetes/prediabetes, or used to follow existing diabetes treatment
• Pair with Blood Chemistry for a complete diabetes screening

• Measures a protein produced by the prostate gland
• After discussion with your healthcare provider, this screening may be recommended for individuals age 69 or younger, or those with
a family history of prostate cancer

• Measures white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets
• Screens for your body's ability to fight infection, anemia, some clotting disorders and cancers

• Provides baseline Vitamin D levels
• Vitamin D is important for bone health and may affect other vital body functions
• Pair with Blood Chemistry for information on your calcium levels, which play an important role in bone health

• This take-home/mail-in kit checks for human blood in the stool
• Screens for colon cancer and colon polyps, and may indicate hemorrhoids or colon inflammation

• Testosterone levels fluctuate throughout the day. Levels are best represented when the screening is performed in the morning
• Low testosterone levels in males can affect energy levels, mood and cognitive function, sexual desire, bone and muscle mass, and fat
• Low testosterone levels can be caused by many conditions. If out-of-range, seek further evaluation to screen for other underlying issues such
as sleep apnea, depression, opiate and other drug use, liver disease, diabetes, thyroid disorders and others.

VITAMIN B12 | $25
• Provides baseline Vitamin B12 levels
• Plays a key role in the normal functioning of the brain and nervous system, and the formation of red blood cells
• Vitamin B12 deficiency may be a cause of anemia, numbness and other sensory issues, memory and mood impairment

• Can help measure your risk of developing cardiovascular disease along with risk factors such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol,
diabetes, family history and obesity. Pair with Blood Chemistry and Hemoglobin A1c.
• hsCRP measures the amount of inflamation in your body which is an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease.
• This screening is NOT recommended if you have recently had surgery, injury, illness or infection.

• Blood test to show what type of blood you have. There are four different blood types
• Blood typing is not a medical need, but it will be checked if you get a blood transfusion or donate blood.
9Health Fair Shellie Peterson 2019-04-11 06:00:00Z 0

Jennie Green - Town & County Tourism

Posted by Jim Garrett
Jennie Green, self-described data geek, director of the Town/County Tourism Board, and globe-trotting Pagosa promoter, began by commenting on our lingering winter, and by displaying a snapshot of the welcome sign east of Town, altered recently to boast of the “World’s Deepest Pot Holes,” instead of hot springs.  So, we know for sure Jennie is well-suited for her job: she has the gift of all true promoters of ability to make the best of things.
Local tourism is growing, Jennie said, resorting to data on lodging tax collections to back-up her report, which have grown here 110% in ten years.  For partial comparison, she provided recent revenue figures for other regional communities: in the last 5 years, lodging tax collections in Durango, Ouray and Cortez have grown between 25% and 27%.   Consistent with the growth in the lodging tax, Jennie reported that foot traffic in the Pagosa Springs Visitor Center, downtown, has doubled in that period, reaching a total of 84,000 persons through the entrance last year.
Jennie discussed some of the current promotional efforts to build local tourism.  Pagosa, plus Chaffee County, Steamboat Springs, Glenwood Springs, and Ouray, together promote the Hot Springs Loop, a route linking several hot springs enjoyed by visitors to their Colorado mountain communities, as well as others.  And the Colorado Tourism office includes our area in the southwest region of the state it promotes in a brochure entitled “Mountains and Mesas.”
The state published brochure is of note especially in that it is printed in German as well as English.  Germans typically have six-week annual vacations, Jennie noted, and travel extensively.  There are no fewer than 35 tour operators that book tours to the Rocky Mountains operating in Germany, she said.
Hot springs are only one of the local attractions, of course, but the Tourism Board is always looking for promotional ideas.  One described by Jennie is the Bike Planter Scavenger Hunt, utilizing the bicycle sculptures located at businesses around town, which are intended as both planters for flowers, and sites of clues in the scavenger hunt.  Armed with a map indicating the general location of the businesses exhibiting the sculptures, contestants fill out game-cards with letters found on a tag affixed to each bike-planter, and are eligible to win a prize at the Visitors’ Center upon completion.
Recommendations recently made by a consultant of means further to enhance Pagosa as a tourist destination are currently under consideration by the Town and County.  Recommendations include new lodging and meeting space.  Jennie also plans to improve wayfinding signage in the community, and to build greater focus into data collection to help more specifically identify promotional opportunities.
There will be a local Tourism Conference in Town at the Community Center, South Conference Room from 9 am to 5 pm on April 17.  All are welcome to participate, Jennie said.
Jennie was accompanied to the presentation by Pam Hotchkiss, a Visitor Center staffer.  Pam solicited Rotarians to become volunteers to help greet visitors.  She related that currently 20 or so volunteers help staff the Center during the summer, for four hours (or more) each per month.  More volunteers are needed.  Pam indicated rewards for volunteers include the satisfaction of helping visitors enjoy their local stay, plus enjoyable staff parties.
Jennie Green - Town & County Tourism Jim Garrett 2019-04-11 06:00:00Z 0

April is Maternal & Child Health Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson

Our impact on the lives of mothers and children

The Rotary Foundation reaches mothers and children in need by giving communities the help and training they need to take control of their own maternal and infant health care.

Rotary makes amazing things happen, like:

Mobile prenatal clinics

Haiti has the highest maternal and infant mortality rate of any country in the western hemisphere. Rotary provided a fully equipped medical Jeep to volunteers and midwives to reach mothers and children in remote areas.

Cancer screening

Rotarians provided a mobile cancer screening unit and awareness trainings around Chennai, India, where there is a high mortality rate of women with breast and cervical cancer due to late diagnosis.

Preventing injuries and deaths

Rotary members launched a $3 million, five-year pilot to save lives of mothers and children during home deliveries in Nigeria. Since 2005, they’ve also repaired 1,500 obstetric fistulas — 500 more than their initial goal — restoring dignity and hope to vulnerable mothers.

April is Maternal & Child Health Month Shellie Peterson 2019-04-11 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
The meeting began with an invocation by Cindy Galabota, that your late (i.e., tardy) scribe missed.  Sorry Cindy – I’m sure your efforts were thoughtful and interesting, but time is inelastic.  (Actually, I believe Einstein’s theory of relativity may suggest time is not as finite as my excuse assumes, but that involves numbers to the power of whatever, and is way out of my league.)
When your scribe entered the meeting, club members were rejoicing in a new and different version of “You Are My Sunshine,” that might have done honor to e.e. cummings.  Or maybe everyone just collectively lost track of the lyric, a common experience that may explain the popularity of Karaoke night at Coyote Moon.
Next up: visitors.  Among several guests was returning visitor Frank Wylie, of the Sun Lakes, Arizona Rotary Club, who travels with a rollicking sense of humor.  Frank told the story of a father trying to share a little conviviality in honor of St. Patrick’s Day with his son.  At the Dad’s suggestion, they tried a round of Guinness, but when it proved not to be to the son’s taste, the father quaffed both glasses.  Then he tried Harp’s, with the same result, followed by Jameson’s Irish Whiskey and subsequently Redhead, which Frank described as the finest of Irish Whiskeys, but all to no avail, and the father was compelled to drink it all.   By that point, Frank observed, the Dad had gotten rather tipsy, and abandoned the celebration.  The poor man, he said, could barely push his son’s stroller home. 
Other visitors were identified by Pat Love and Lisa Scott as potential members.  Pat’s guests were Frank Estes and daughter Kathleen McFadden.  Lisa's guests were Pat Tackett from TBK Bank and Julie from Scott Strategic Investments.  
An update from Georgette Baumgardner on ticket sales for the April 20 Gary Morris concert at the High School followed.  Georgette reported she had sold 22 tickets, and counseled the laggards among us to redouble our efforts to peddle tics by emphasizing the good cause the concert will support, Rotary’s backpack program.
Lassie Olin doubled-down on Georgette’s suggestion, by recommending astonishment in the face of reluctance to buy, such as (e.g., to a Humane Society donor), “What?  You support animals, but not kids???”  Lassie said she had sold 32 tickets, so apparently her passionate approach works well at overcoming sales resistance.
Georgette reminded all that Sharon Crump will make additional concert tickets available to those whose success selling tickets outstrips their supply.
President Shellie Peterson then reminded us of the Ice Melt Contest deadline, midnight April 8.  When the barrel takes the plunge, Shellie said, it will be retrieved from the icy depths to determine the critical time with an exciting flourish, in the form of a “cold-water rescue” by the Pagosa Fire Protection District and the County’s Search and Rescue Team.
Shellie then turned to the Fourth of July Parade, which despite our lingering snow drifts (and ice) is just three months, a mere 91 days, off. 
Shellie noted that last year our troops in the figurative line of fire along the Parade route were spread too thin to maintain good order, a potential health and safety issue, as well as generally a hindrance to public enjoyment of the event.   So she is asking for commitments by Rotarians to help as Parade marshals along the route early this year, hoping to ensure potential recruits will not be on vacation or otherwise engaged when needed, and that Rotary will not find itself ultimately embarrassed by a forced confession to the Town of inability to continue a quarter-century old tradition of Parade sponsorship.  A sign-up sheet was circulated: many volunteered, but more are needed, so strike-up the band, and join the Parade!
(Your scribe begs the reader’s indulgence to add a personal note.  The Parade is amazing:  It is America, it is Pagosa, it is us, it is a joy.  Participation is “Casey at the Bat,” but hitting the homer.)
Cindi Galabota then reminded all of the Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA).  Nominations for participation in the summer camp as part of the RYLA program are due April 19, she said.
We had no Betty Switzer, but Lisa Scott presided over a brief Sunshine/Showers.  Codie Wilson reported that her granddaughter Devin Wilson had been named girls basketball Player of the Year in the Intermountain League, and second-team all state.  And Neal Johnson reported that he would be teaching for a development program in Brazil this spring, but was glad to be able to report he would be spending this summer in Pagosa.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-04-11 06:00:00Z 0

Gary Morris In Concert

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Gary Morris  will be in concert on April 20th at 7:00 pm at the Pagosa Springs High School Auditorium.  Doors will open at 6:00 pm.  Mr. Morris has a heart for many charitable activities and one of them is our Feed Our Children Backpack Program.  Pagosa Springs is not a community that readily accepts the notion that any of our children should go hungry.  This program is in its eighth year of providing food for third and fourth graders to assist families who are struggling.  In addition to supporting a good cause, this concert will be an opportunity to see a multi-talented, world renown singer who has captivated audiences from Nashville to Broadway to a command performance for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.  His recording career garnered five No. 1 and 16 top 10 singles, including “Why Lady Why,’ “The Love She Found in Me” and “Baby Bye Bye.”  Please consider joining us on April 20th for this special event!  Call or email me if you would like to reserve tickets at the pre-event price of $45 and we will have them for you at the door.
Gary Morris In Concert Shellie Peterson 2019-04-10 06:00:00Z 0

Please Thank our Sponsors!

Platinum Sponsors
Gary Morris
Pagosa Sun
Gold Sponsors
A Affordable Storage
Ears to You Hearing Aid Center
Jack & Katy Threet
Pagosa Springs SUN
TBK Bank
Silver Sponsors
Jann C. Pitcher Real Estate
Bank of Colorado
Pagosa Office and Storage
KWUF Radio
The Choke Cherry Tree
Galles Properties
Kim Moore - Exit Realty
La Plata Electric Association
Mike Vanover
Salvation Army
Terry's Colorado Home Supply / Ace
Bronze Sponsors
1st Southwest Bank
Brown Insurance Agency Inc.
Colorado Dream Homes
Colorado Title Service
Durango Dermatology & Surgery
Morehart Murphy Regional Auto Center
Rio Grande Savings & Loan
Scott Strategic Investments
Sunetha Property Management
General Sponsors
Jim Garrett, Attorney
Bank San Juans
Davis Engineering Services
Mountain Eye Care
Pagosa Smiles
San Juan Veterinary Hospital
Village Interiors Carpet One
King Campbell DDS
Please Thank our Sponsors! Shellie Peterson 2019-04-04 06:00:00Z 0
Gary Morris in Concert April 20th Shellie Peterson 2019-04-04 06:00:00Z 0

Carol Blechschmidt Trap Neuter & Return

Posted by Jim Garrett
Feral cats are everywhere.  Carol Blechschmidt, of downtown Pagosa Springs near Yamagucci Park, loves them all.  But Carol agrees with John Locke: life is nasty, brutish and short (certainly, at least, for a feral cat).  To show her love, therefore, she avidly traps them, neuters them (courtesy of a veterinarian), and (when recovered) releases them.
Trap, Neuter and Release is the name for a plan to reduce the population of feral and stray, homeless cats without resorting to euthanasia, conceived in Great Britain in the 1970s, Carol says.   The program has proven to be not only more humane than the alternative, but also less expensive, she adds.  Locally, the Pagosa Springs Humane Society is a supporter.  It supplied a trap to Carol to get her started on the progarm, and provides vouchers for the needed veterinarians’ services.
Carol described some of her experiences, including trapping (to date) 12 cats as well as six skunks (which seemingly regard the cat food bait as a delicacy).  Skunks are not really a part of the program, so Carol releases them (with great care and trepidation, but so far, without mishap).  But the cats get appointments with the veterinarian, for the neutering as well as a standard round of shots.
Carol described feelings of strong affection for at least some of the cats she has trapped.  But despite the loving care she provides, they remain very cautious of humans.  Based on her stories, it appears that even cats who may be willing over an extended period to take the food she puts out and to use the shelter she provides, will never let her get close to them.  (Of their wariness, Locke might say, I told you so!)
Her goal in describing her experiences with the program, Carol explained, is to encourage others to participate too.
Carol Blechschmidt Trap Neuter & Return Jim Garrett 2019-04-04 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
We began with an invocation offered by Warren Brown entitled “Song of March,” a poetic variation on the theme, in like a lion, out like a lamb – referencing among other characteristics of this month of contrasts, daffodils, clearing skies, and “the whistling song” (presumably, winter gusting back into the mountains with phalanxes of clouds stubbornly to obscure traces of spring).
Sue Walen then led singing of “America the Beautiful.”
Meeting guests were introduced, including Kenny Rogers of morning Rotary, who reported the local club’s Puerto Rican project for installation of solar panels on a school was under construction.
Rotarians from clubs in Evergreen and Salida, Colorado were also present.  From Evergreen, we  learned that there has been an annual ice-melt contest there for 15 years, and received encouragement on our infant contest.  From Salida, we received advance invitations to the 2019 District Conference, scheduled for October 11-13 at Mt. Princeton, near Salida.
Alan Roth followed up by reporting that the ice at the Hatcher Lake site of the local ice-melt contest was still a foot thick.  More “bets” on the time of the ice “break through” are being taken, so Alan encouraged all who set their sights too early, or are finally coming to life following winter hibernation, to “take the plunge” and get into the action while also helping the Scholarship Fund.
Larry McClintock then looked up from his calculator to announce that the 2019 Rotary event sponsorship tally stands at $19,350.  There is some time remaining, Larry said, so he is hopeful of passing the $20,000 mark.
President Shellie Peterson then reminded all of the Gary Morris Concert to be held at Pagosa Springs High School, Saturday evening April 20, and asked for more efforts by members to sell tickets to friends, neighbors, and music fans everywhere.  “Everybody needs to work on sales,” Shellie cajoled. 
In addition, Shellie reported that the Casino Night event will be delayed from May to June 21, 2019, explaining that even Rotarians need to catch their breath, so the earlier date formerly set for the gala occasion seemed to come much too close to the concert.
Helen Richardson reported that John was recovering well from his spinal fusion surgery, and was half-way through the expected 6 week convalescence. 
Jo Bridges circulated a sign-up sheet for the next three weeks of the Feed Our Children Project.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-04-04 06:00:00Z 0

Hatcher Lake Barrel is Going DOWN

Posted by Shellie Peterson
We will be closing the Hatcher Ice Melt Contest!! Your guesses have to be in by then! This barrel is going down! When it gets rescued, by the PFPD and EMT's it will be coming to shore in a much larger boat! Last chance to win $1,000 for the closest guess of when the clocks will hit the water! $500 for the second closest and $250 for the third.
Hatcher Lake Barrel is Going DOWN Shellie Peterson 2019-04-03 06:00:00Z 0

April is Maternal and Child Health Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson
At least 7 million children under the age of five die each year due to malnutrition, poor health care, and inadequate sanitation. To help reduce this rate, Rotary International provide immunizations and antibiotics to babies, improve access to essential medical services, and support trained health care providers for mothers and their children. Their projects ensure sustainability by empowering the local community to take ownership of health care training programs.
As it just so happens,  April is the month that Gary Morris has generously donated his time and talent to support the clubs' efforts to help feed Pagosa Springs' hungry children over the weekend.  A child that has not had enough to eat over the weekend can not show up for school on Monday rested and ready to learn!  
Let's make the most of this opportunity to assure the continued financial strength of this program!  Go SELL YOUR TICKETS!  Bring your envelopes to the meeting!
April is Maternal and Child Health Month Shellie Peterson 2019-03-31 06:00:00Z 0

Hatcher Ice Melt Contest Extended!

Posted by Shellie Peterson
That barrel is going DOWN!!!  Soon, how soon, I wish I knew!  We are looking forward to that magic day when it plunges through the ice though!  You have until one second before that happens to continue to make guesses. Proceeds from this fun contest will support our graduating seniors with their college or vo-tech education.
Guesses can be made at the Chamber of Commerce and the Choke Cherry Tree.  Also online at or  You can also click this link  
Hatcher Ice Melt Contest Extended! Shellie Peterson 2019-03-30 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Cata got us started with a beautiful invocation in Spanish.  I have always loved the sound of the Spanish language although personally, I could not speak or understand a single word.  She briefly  interpreted that the words were about learning to love ourselves and to take care of each other.  A little later in the meeting Cindi Galabota passed around a clip board for folks to sign up to inspire us with their own invocations!  If you missed the clip board, give Cindi a call and she can put you on that list.
Cindi also shared that the RYLA committee has met, made updates to the application forms, and is ready to get them distributed to the High School .  The event will be held in Glenwood Springs, Colorado Mountain College June 21 - 24.  Application forms are due to be returned to Cindi by April 19 and the interviews will take place the week of the 22nd.  Encourage that special student that you know to apply for this great opportunity!  Also, transportation is needed for one leg of this journey.  If three students are selected it will require a larger vehicle.  Please get in touch with Cindi if this is something you would like to experience.
The Hatcher Ice Melt contest has been extended!  Please get the word out that folks have UNTIL THE BARREL FALLS to continue to make guesses about that exact month, day, hour and second.  Just think, as the time goes nearer, your chances to win get better and better!  But, don't wait too long!
Tickets and posters were made available for the Gary Morris Concert on April 20, 2019.  Gary will do an interview with KWUF at 8:00 am on April 8th, so check in to listen to that.  Also, we will have the cover of the Preview on April 18th.  In the meantime, lets get selling those tickets! It would be just wonderful if we can fill that auditorium.
The Casino Night planning continues to move forward.  Don't forget to put that date down as well for May 17th!  We will most likely need to recruit more dealers so keep that in mind as you attend various functions and be making a list.
David Richardson gave us an update on brother John.  Other than the annoyance of having to wear a large uncomfortable neck brace, John and Helen are doing well with the recovery from his surgery.
Then Betty took over to celebrate our birthdays for the month of March.  Georgette,  Allen, Sue and Jeff were all called to the front of the room to don their birthday hats.  Jeff had a terrible time making his work.
News & Happenings Shellie Peterson 2019-03-28 06:00:00Z 0

Rise Above Violence

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Carmen Hubb introduced herself and her presenters from Youth Rise, Sarah Ross and Elisa Hubb.    Cheryl Bowdridge directs Youth Rise and she was there to cheer the girls on.  The purpose of the program is to improve the lives of youth in our community by teaching healthy beliefs and behaviors and setting them up for positive social norms regarding relationship violence while striving for a violence free Pagosa. This is the second year of this class being offered as an elective in the High School and was conceived to stop violent behaviors from being developed at an early age.  Programs such as internet safety, bullying, healthy relationships and sexual harassment are offered throughout the year.  There are also special events such as the Denim Day Marchon April 24th at noon at the downtown Bell Tower, The Push Up Challenge on April 26th at Crossfit and the Pagosa Duathlon on July 13th.  
Rise Above Violence was re-branded from the previously know Archuleta County Victims Assistance program in 2006.  Whenever any person is involved in a violent crime there can be a number of other systems that get involved including the Civil Court system, protective custody, short and long-term housing, serious financial implications can be involved as well as dealing with the trauma.  A grant-funded Advocate assists victims with managing all these issues as well as hearing appearances.  Rise Above Violence has a 24 hour hotline in Pagosa but no alternative housing solutions here locally other than short-term motel stays.  There is a shelter in Durango.
Another function of RISE is to assist with training for law enforcement officers and emergency responders so that they can recognize signs of abuse and know how to respond to it.  
Rise Above Violence Shellie Peterson 2019-03-28 06:00:00Z 0

9Health Fair

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Thank you for volunteering at last year’s 9Health Fair in Pagosa Springs.  Priscilla Roberts or I will be contacting you at some point in the next couple of weeks to see if you can help again this year!  Priscilla is handling the majority of scheduling volunteers this year and I am so happy to have her on our team!  We will be in close contact so if it’s easier for you to reply to this email to let us know your availability, that will be fine too. 
The Pagosa Springs Fair will be on April 27, 2019!  Save the date!  That’s the last Saturday of April.
In the meantime – Please know that we appreciate your volunteering and read on for some exciting information!  The Pagosa Springs Fair will utilize on-line registration again this year and it is open now!  If you have any questions, Please email me or call Shellie Peterson 507-0500.
To recognize and thank you for your volunteerism, you, AND YOUR IMMEDIATE FAMILY may receive 20% off any & all blood work and colorectal kits that 9Health Fair offers.  This 20% is more important than ever and is our way of saying thank you for your volunteerism so that you can own your health!
To receive your 20% off, please read this information carefully and follow these steps. Your coupon code is: ThankYouVol19 (this code is NOT case sensitive)
  20% off any & all blood work and colorectal kits as offered by 9Health Fair – For you & your
   immediate family
You should register online as a participant at to get this 20% discount.
ü  Participant registration closes at 12 noon the day before the fair date.  Most of you already are familiar to registering online, but here are the details again:
                   Click on “Find a Fair”
            Enter 81147 and  hit the Search button
            Pagosa Springs High School appears – select Register Online
            Here is where you would enter your existing Log In information or create your username and
                   password and follow the prompts to register and complete the process
            When you get to the Payment Summary page enter your Discount Code
ü For Volunteers
  1. How to Get your Coupon Code:
                          Your coupon code is:  ThankYouVol19
  1. It is more important than EVER to participate in the Volunteer Pre-Draw.  Unless we can achieve a minimum participation in the Pre-Draw we may lose this important advantage!  Having your blood drawn on Friday enables you to focus on providing your volunteer efforts toward the participants on the day of the Fair
  2. This will be held on Friday, April 26th at the Methodist Church from 7:30 to 9:00 am.  Register for the 9HealthFair of your choice by going to by 12:00 Noon on April 25th
  3. Enter the Coupon Code and hit ‘apply’ and you will see your discount!
  4. Call us if you need help: 303.698.4455
WHO gets 20% off? Anyone who has given 1 hour or more of time as a volunteer in any capacity to 9Health Fair in 2017, 2018 or 2019. This includes any type of volunteering that benefits 9Health Fair including preparations for a fair, serving at a fair, errands or tasks behind the scenes, setup/clean up, after the fair tasks, calls, emails, etc. If you have volunteered in any capacity for a 9Health Fair, you get 20% off! This discount has now been extended to your ENTIRE IMMEDIATE FAMILY!
By participating in a 9Health Fair, you’re helping in 3 ways:
  1. Owning your health!
  2. Helping us help more people own their health! The more people who participate in our fairs, the more people we can help with vouchers and supportive services!
  3. Recognizing the importance of our wonderful volunteers- YOU!
Please let me know if you have questions or feel free to reply to this email to let me know if you are available to volunteer for this year’s fair!
9Health Fair Shellie Peterson 2019-03-22 06:00:00Z 0

Family Scouting

Posted by Shellie Peterson
John Moore was our speaker last week and we learned a great deal about Scouting in Pagosa Springs!  Starting in 2018, families can choose Cub Scouts for their sons AND daughters.  Most likely the main driver of this change was that families want programs like the Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts for their daughters.  For the children age five to 10, the Scout pack could be made up of all boys, all girls or both boys and girls.  For ages eleven to seventeen it would be a all boy or all girl troop.
The Scouts BSA Pack and Scouts Troop are chartered by the United Methodist Church.  In addition, the Venturing Crew 612 has been chartered by St. Patrick's Episcopal Church.  The Venturing Crews decide their own area of focus but most are high adventure units.  
Family Scouting Shellie Peterson 2019-03-21 06:00:00Z 0

March is Water and Sanitation Month


The changing landscape of water stewardship

By Moses Nyakana, recipient of a Rotary Scholarship in Water and Sanitation at IHE Delft Institute for Water Education

I graduated as an Urban Water and Sanitation Engineer, specializing in Sanitary Engineering in 2017. My studies provided me exposure to our global culture, and a head start towards understanding the global water and sanitation challenge. Understanding the land, food, energy, climate, health, jobs and water nexus as an essential link for communities to thrive gave me the inspiration to pursue my career. As Leonardo da Vinci stated, “when you put your hand in a flowing stream, you touch the last that has gone and the first of what is to come”; it is a fulfilling career to be at the heart of engineering water and sanitation solutions that leave lasting impacts on communities.

Now a member of the Rotary Club of Bugolobi in Uganda, I am glad to contribute to all of Rotary’s areas of focus in my little ways as a water professional. I often describe myself as a water steward, where I always put The Four-Way Test to practice in my work. As a water steward, I often fight against unequal access to water and help ensure security of this vital resource. Through my service in Kampala, I work with communities to ensure that all primary stakeholders have their needs met in securing water.

The city of Kampala has undergone a period of rapid urbanization, population growth and industrialization in the last 20 years. However, 40% of its residents live in informal settlements lacking basic water, drainage, sewage or solid waste collection services, whilst the benefits of the manufacturing industry are offset by the pollution it creates. Undoubtedly, the scale and complexity of emerging challenges related to water and sanitation means that individual actions, despite those actions being important, are limited in their effectiveness. This is why it’s important to involve companies that work in the water sector on projects to ensure a broader impact.

For example, I’ve been working with stakeholders in the water sector to help them better understand their role in water resource management and that their partnerships with humanitarian efforts offer a practical approach to understanding shared water risks and providing joint solutions. Industries have begun to realize that dealing with water security beyond the confines of their fences enables them to achieve better productivity and sustain markets. The public sector has stepped up to enable equitable distribution of water and sanitation services across the city regardless of social-economic clustering.

My work also focuses on various critical challenges in securing water in Kampala as a baseline towards achieving water related Sustainable Development Goals. Differentiating physical/infrastructure related factors from non-physical factors helps me prepare comprehensive plans for water and sanitation services to communities. Working in tandem, the cultural, governance, policy/legal framework and capacities of all stakeholders should be considered to enable an effectively managed and secure water and sanitation sector in a city.

I am grateful for the education I received and the ability to use my skills to help communities in need.

March is Water and Sanitation Month Shellie Peterson 2019-03-17 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Shellie Peterson
John Shepard started us out with a lovely Irish story with a blessing  in honor of the upcoming St. Patrick's Day.
There were lots of announcements and reminders last week with such a busy couple of months before us!  The meeting got started with pictures on the screen of the brave Rotarians and the PLPOA staff who ventured out onto the ice with the Hatcher Ice Melt Contest Barrel!  The Pagosa Fire Protection District came after the fact but none the less I am sure they could have rescued us had the need arose.
We really need to focus on selling these Ice Melt guesses!!  Betty Switzer made a really profound comment about this being a very reasonable investment in our efforts for our high school scholarship program and that we really should have 100% participation by every Rotarian!  Here is that link again
Our next opportunity to sell these tickets will be at the Business After Hours at the Choke Cherry Tree on Wednesday evening!  Georgette and I will be in the lobby with tables but other could be walking around the crowd talking and selling tickets!  Larry will be there with the square so we should be able to do credit cards as well.  Please come out and support this effort as well as Jenelle's business!
Shellie reported that John Richardson's surgery went well and that he and Helen were doing OK and recovering.  
Everyone please make that one last big effort to go see sponsors that have supported us in the past and not yet responded with a check and form for this year.  The sponsors from last year are right here on the bulletin and they have been on the web site all year too.  The sponsors who have committed their support so far are:
Ears 2 You - $3,000
Morehart Murphy - $500
Durango Dermatology - $500
Exit Realty - 1,000
Mike Vanover - $1,000
Farmers Insurance - $500
LaPlata Electric - 1,000
Village Interiors - $300
Scott Strategic Investment - $500
1st Southwest Bank - $500
San Juan Veterinary - $300
John Zissman - $300
Colorado Title Services - $500
Colorado Dream Homes - $500
Jack & Katy Threet - $3,000
Sunetha Management - $500 (check in the mail)
Georgette Baumgardner had just picked up the posters for the Gary Morris Concert coming up on April 20th.  Four volunteers have come forward to get these eye-catching posters out and visible in town so we can get a good start on those tickets!  This has the potential to be a big fundraiser for Feed Our Children.
We were happy to have CiCi and Bruce Stuart back among us!  Welcome home!
News & Happenings Shellie Peterson 2019-03-17 06:00:00Z 0

Rolling Out the Barrel for the Hatcher Ice Melt Contest

Posted by Shellie Peterson
We certainly all had a good time 'rolling out the barrel', or pulling it actually.  The clocks are all ticking away!  Get your guesses in soon and often as the weather is certainly unpredictable this time of year!  You don't want to hear that the barrel fell through the ice and you had not gotten your guesses in yet!
Rotarians were joined by members of the PLPOA staff and our photographer, Al Myatt early that morning for the event.  The Pagosa Fire Protection District men with equipment were there as well and they will be an important role when the barrel has to be 'rescued' and retrieved from the icy water. 
Click Here to purchase guesses 
Rolling Out the Barrel for the Hatcher Ice Melt Contest Shellie Peterson 2019-03-14 06:00:00Z 0

March is Water and Sanitation Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson

Clean water, sanitation, and hygiene education are basic necessities for a healthy environment and a productive life.

When people have access to clean water and sanitation, waterborne diseases decrease, children stay healthier and attend school more regularly, and mothers can spend less time carrying water and more time helping their families.

In rural Ghana, Rotary members supply clean water and sanitation facilities to prevent the spread of infectious diseases.

Clean water is a basic need for human beings. When people, especially children, have access to clean water, they live healthier and more productive lives. However, at least 3,000 children die each day from diseases caused by unsafe water, which is what motivates our members to build wells, install rainwater harvesting systems, and teach community members how to maintain new infrastructure.

While very few people die of thirst, millions die from preventable waterborne diseases, providing the impetus for our members to also improve sanitation facilities in undeveloped countries. Members start by providing toilets and latrines that flush into a sewer or safe enclosure and then add education programs to promote hand-washing and other good hygiene habits.

March is Water and Sanitation Month Shellie Peterson 2019-03-14 06:00:00Z 0

Welcome Back from PETS and AG Training

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Nick Tallent, Kim Moore and Sam Conti look like they were having way to much fun in Denver earlier this month!  Nick and Sam attended President Elect Training or PETS and Kim Moore attended Assistant Governor Training.
Welcome Back from PETS and AG Training Shellie Peterson 2019-03-14 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Serves the Community at Loaves & Fishes

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Both the Mountain and Noon Rotary Clubs were represented last Thursday cooking and serving for Loaves & Fishes.  The Clubs participate with other non-profit service organizations to provide the man-power to bring this free community meal together each Thursday.  Even our Rotary Youth Exchange students were in on the action last week as Theo and Cata learn and practice service above self.
Rotary Serves the Community at Loaves & Fishes Shellie Peterson 2019-03-11 06:00:00Z 0


March 30 - Sponsor Forms and Money Due
April 12 - Board of Directors Meeting
April 20 - Gary Morris Concert
April 27 - 9Health Fair
May 10 - Board of Directors Meeting
May 17 - Las Vegas Casino Night
May 22 - CDC Economic Development Luncheon
June 14 - Board of Directors Meeting
June 27 - Installation Banquet
July 4 - Independence Day Parade
DATES TO REMEMBER Shellie Peterson 2019-02-28 07:00:00Z 0

March is Water and Sanitation Month

Clean water and sanitation is a human right, but not everyone is afforded that right. Rotary members are providing communities with sustainable access to safe water, improved sanitation, hygiene management training. When people, especially children, have access to clean water, improved sanitation facilitates, and better hygiene habits, they lead 

healthier and more successful lives.

During March, Rotary Water and Sanitation Month, we encourage members to work towards Rotary’s goal of providing everyone with safe water, sanitation, and hygiene by 2030. Here are just a few examples of club service projects that are working towards that goal:

  • In Nepal, the Rotary Club of Durbarmarg collaborated with their twin club and the Rotaract Clubs of Phulbari and Eco-Himal Nepal, to provide access to safe drinking water for students at a government school. Students were drinking visibly contaminated, untreated water directly from the water source. Rotary members installed 14 low-cost colloidal silver-enhanced ceramic water filters with strong filtration systems. These filters were manufactured locally, and are a traditional practice in availing safe drinking water to those lacking access.
March is Water and Sanitation Month Shellie Peterson 2019-02-28 07:00:00Z 0

Ronnie Maez - Providing a Jail Facility

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Ronnie Maez, Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners, was our speaker last week.  Mr. Maez indicated that the Commissioners had reached the decision to utilize a financing instrument known as Certificates of Participation to provide the means to construct a jail facility on property donated by the Harman family in Harman Park.
Mr. Maez went on to report that currently the County is spending between $800,000 to $850,000 to house inmates and those awaiting trial in the La Plata County jail facility.  A Sales Tax Increase was voted down by the people in November so there will be no new funds to pay for the project, Mr. Maez indicated that it would have to be paid for by cutting other services.  He suggested that after a period of time, it may be possible to go back to the voters, perhaps in harmony with the Town, to ask for an increase in Sales Taxes to provide funding.    He also added that currently the County is spending about $30,00 to rent space for the Health and Human Services Department from the Town of Pagosa Springs and the town has already indicated that they will need that space in the not to distant future.  Which presents an additional challenge as well as additional space needed by the Treasurer, Clerk and Assessor.
Ronnie Maez - Providing a Jail Facility Shellie Peterson 2019-02-28 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
We began with an invocation offered by Betty Switzer dealing with gratitude, defined as feeling thankful, appreciating good, and returning kindnesses.  Take a few minutes every day to reflect on those things inspiring your thankfulness, Betty suggested, to help stay on the “right path” and enjoy the blessings around us.
After Betty brought us together with inspiring thoughts, Sue Walen immediately undertook to divide us – but only temporarily for the singing of “Row, Row, Row Your Boat,” in a three-part round.  Dave Cammack proclaimed that his side of the room had kicked butt, boasting (following the current style of ignoring the evidence) of the stellar quality of its singing.  Your reporter can verify, however, that Dave could be heard to provide considerable effort so far as volume.
Cutting Dave off in mid-spout, President Shellie Peterson then announced, “Here come the clipboards,” beginning circulation of “effort sheets,” for recording time devoted by members to supporting Rotary with muscle, sweat, brain-power, patience, inspiration or whatever (perhaps even volume) where needed to help provide substance to its mission.
While the clipboards started their journey around the room, Shellie looked to welcome guests.  Two, introduced as Murph and Fluffy, had accompanied Betty to the meeting: stuffed puppies gifted to Betty at Christmas, so she could practice “having a real dog.”  Betty pointed out she had proven her mettle as a future dog owner, demonstrating Murph’s well-coordinated, battery-powered ability to walk and wag his tail simultaneously.
Cindy Galabota next reminded all of the Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA) program, which supports deserving high school students with a week of camp in June.  Cindy said she and Helen Richardson have succeeded to Roberta Tolan in overseeing RYLA in Pagosa.   Applications need to be submitted in March, Cindy said, and asked Rotarians to encourage promising students to apply.
Jenelle Syverson then invited all to attend Business After Hours to be hosted by Choke Cherry Tree on March 20.  Chile (both red and green), will be served at the Chamber of Commerce organized event, she advised.
Applications for part-time employment by persons experienced in teaching English as a second language were then solicited by Meg Wempe, who explained that the Library was taking over local management of the useful program.
Kim Moore then renewed her encouragement for Rotarians to recruit 2019 event sponsors, with the new concept in place this year of annual sponsorships supporting all four major Rotary fund-raisers, which will include the currently ongoing Ice Melt contest (with the trend in the weather, I’m plunging bigtime for June), Casino Night in May, a concert (on a date currently unknown), and the Barn Dance, to be held (it can now be publicly reported here for the very the first time in a triumphant scoop) on October 19.  What potential sponsor could resist?  Fame and glory for a year!  Just a step removed from immortality!
Following Kim’s reminder to seek sponsorships, details on Casino Night were supplied by Art Benzel.  The gala event will be held May 17 at the PLPOA clubhouse from 7-10 pm, he said, emphasizing that is a changed date.  Games of skill will be contested (blackjack, craps, and Texas Hold-‘Em), and there will be graceful (or otherwise) dancing to the sweet tunes of a combo.
John Richardson announced that the Rotary Scholarship Fund had been gifted $5000 by an anonymous donor, whom he described as a frequent local visitor, but non-resident.  Cody Wilson added that the fund is organized as a 501(c)(3), so donations are tax deductible.
Garrulous Exchange Student Theo Bonlokke reported that the prior Saturday had been the final wrestling tournament of the year, and that on Sunday he had been snowboarding (most likely, one guesses, not for the last time of the year in view of our ongoing blizzard-like conditions).   Increasingly garrulous Exchange Student Cata Acuilera then took the stage to report having attended Winterfest and done some cross-country skiing. 
Betty Switzer then presided in the celebration of February birthdays for Shellie, Helen and Carrie Weiss (absent, for the Weiss’ annual RV expedition).  Alan Roth and wife Eileen were honored for their 34th anniversary.  And Granton Bartz’s 14th anniversary as a Rotarian was noted as well.
Sunshines were offered by Kim in honor of husband Walt’s birthday and her son’s impending parenthood, by Jann Pitcher for the success of Lady Pirates basketball, and Bill Darling for a recent clear scan – one more clear scan in three more months, said Bill, will indicate he should be free of cancer hereafter.
News & Happenings  Jim Garrett 2019-02-21 07:00:00Z 0

Upcoming District Asseblies

District Assemblies 
Dates and Locations 
Saturday April 13, 2019 in Montrose
Saturday May 11, 2019 in Salida
A District Assembly is conducted to enhance the learning experience delivered at PETS. All club Presidents Elect and Presidents Elect Nominee are strongly encouraged to attend one of the District Assemblies most convenient for them.  The material presented at the assembly will not be a repeat of what you were given at PETS and is not position specific but will cover topics that will help with better club management. Any club member and especially future club leaders will benefit by attending an assembly.
For the Club President Elect we are offering a club incentive "Fill Your Car", for the club PE the cost of the assembly will be $40 which includes lunch and for each additional person only the cost of lunch $15. Each assembly will start at 9:00 am and end at 4:00 pm.
The Montrose District Assembly will be held at the Holiday Inn Express 1391 S. Townsend Ave.
The Salida District Assembly will be held at the Rotary Scout Hut in Riverside Park.
Upcoming District Asseblies Shellie Peterson 2019-02-20 07:00:00Z 0

Ralph Maccarone - Who We Play For

Posted by Jim Garrett
Ralph opened his presentations with an explanation of what had brought him to take on the mission of the organization, Who We Play For, dedicated to providing cardiac screening to students by administering electro-cardio grams (EKG).
Briefly, Ralph’s son, a gifted athlete, stricken by an undisclosed cardiac defect, collapsed on a Florida high school playing field in 2007 when only a sophomore, and died days later.  Three years afterward, Ralph explained, while several of his son’s buddies were students at Florida State University, they formed a foundation in his memory, Play for Rafe.
The group was dedicated to ensuring that school playing fields in the state would be equipped with Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs).  In addition, it lobbied successfully to win passage in 2017 of a Florida law requiring high schools to offer CPR classes.  Today, Ralph said, his son’s former high school has a trainer with an AED present at all times playing fields are in use.
Ralph Maccarone - Who We Play For Jim Garrett 2019-02-20 07:00:00Z 0

Upcoming District Assemblies

Posted by Shellie Peterson
District Assemblies
Posted by David Wood on Jan 27, 2019
District Assemblies 
Dates and Locations 
Saturday April 13, 2019 in Montrose
Saturday May 11, 2019 in Salida
A District Assembly is conducted to enhance the learning experience delivered at PETS. All club Presidents Elect and Presidents Elect Nominee are strongly encouraged to attend one of the District Assemblies most convenient for them.  The material presented at the assembly will not be a repeat of what you were given at PETS and is not position specific but will cover topics that will help with better club management. Any club member and especially future club leaders will benefit by attending an assembly.
For you as Club President Elect we are offering a club incentive "Fill Your Car", for the club PE the cost of the assembly will be $40 which includes lunch and for each additional person only the cost of lunch $15. Each assembly will start at 9:00 am and end at 4:00 pm.
The Montrose District Assembly will be held at the Holiday Inn Express 1391 S. Townsend Ave.
The Salida District Assembly will be held at the Rotary Scout Hut in Riverside Park.
Upcoming District Assemblies Shellie Peterson 2019-02-14 07:00:00Z 0

Val Valentine - Water Supply Issues

Posted by Jim Garrett
“All day I’ve faced,” the song goes, “the barren waste, without the taste of water, cool water.  Old Dan and I with throats burned dry, and souls that cry for water, cool, clear water.”  This more or less describes the future of not only Dan and Bob Nolan (the song writer; Dan was a mule), but of much of the southwest, as well, indicated former Water Commissioner Val Valentine.
We are currently, and since 2002, said Val, in a protracted drought, citing the low levels throughout recent years of the water stored in Lake Powell and Lake Mead, the major impoundments for water flowing from the western slope of Colorado though the Upper Basin of the Colorado River.  Powell, he reported is currently 65% full, and at a water level of 3577 feet, if the lake drops another 100 feet, it will no longer be able to generate electric power that supplies users in a vast area.  
But upstream reservoirs are even lower, he said, with Navajo Lake for example at 50% of full, and thus lack ability to replenish Powell.  Plus, Lake Mead, downsteam of Powell and the major source of water for urban centers like Los Angeles, Phoenix and Las Vegas, is even lower, at only 40% of capacity. 
Simply put, demand on the Basin is acute.  For example, Val reported that if Mead lowers only 11 feet more to a water level of 1074 feet, that will shut off water supply to the Central Arizona Project, which supplies water to substantial urban areas in Arizona, including Tucson (through a 300-mile pipeline).
Snow pack is currently relatively good, Val noted.  Last year the snow pack reached only 34% of normal, but this year in the Upper San Juan Basin it stands currently at 99% of normal for this time of the season.  But, he added, it is no time to breathe a sigh of relief: the current volume of water in the snowpack equals 19.1 inches, whereas the historical norm on the First of April should be 34.7 inches, so there is a long way to go.
Val compared the present to what he called a “mega-drought” in the 12th Century, which he reported has been shown by research to have been a likely cause of the relocation in that era of Native Americans from scattered settlements to pueblos.
The history, Val stated is that we don’t have enough water.  So the question is, how do we use what we do have.  The state’s answer is the Colorado Water Plan, which includes an assumption that Colorado’s population will double by 2050.
He reported even despite drought conditions, Colorado has continued to meet obligations under its 1922 compact with California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming for downstream water delivery. 
But that is not enough, Val explained.  The state’s plan for the future sketched in the Water Plan includes demanding components: creating new supplies by building infrastructure to improve efficiency such as new reservoirs, municipal conservation (Pagosa Area Water and Sanitary Distirct has made considerable headway he reported, having reduced average local consumption by nearly 20%), and acquisition of new water rights for population centers from state agricultural users.
Val didn’t mention the possibility of resorting to rain dances.  But I guess that didn’t work in the 12th Century, so it probably won’t work now, either.
Val Valentine - Water Supply Issues Jim Garrett 2019-02-14 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
The invocation was delivered by Jeff Switzer, from Native American tradition, recounting requests under the inducement of lies by the Evil One made to the Great Spirit, for riches, power, strength and generally for the stuff of comfort.  In each instance, in the story the requests were met by the Great Spirit patiently, with grants instead of the immediate gratification sought, of substance to build on, viz: “I asked for a happy life, and the Great Spirit gave me life, that I might live happily.” 
Jeff did not add, but your reporter thinks it fitting, If the Great Spirit is dealing with modern times, in response to being asked to Make America Great, perhaps he will instead make America thoughtful, that we might become great.
After the Pledge of Allegiance, Sue Whalen took-up the baton to lead in singing an appropriate follow-up, “This Is My Country.”
President Shellie Peterson then provided a run-down on major calendar events in the future, encouraging broad participation: the Health Fair, April 27 at the High School, Casino Night May 10 at the PLPOA Clubhouse, and ultimately carrying all the way out to the Fourth of July Parade (you guessed it: July 4). 
For the last of the big events, Shellie asked for all to be in town if at all possible, since keeping the event and the mob of attendees within some semblance of reasonable order demands lots of “wranglers” in orange vests.  If you ever had a hankering to direct traffic, there is a spot for you!
After reminding all of the summertime fun that awaits us, Shellie rebounded back to winter, with a reminder that the Hatcher Lake Ice Melt contest would soon be in full swing.  Entrants were already registering guesses, she added, and noted that entries can be made on line through the Pagosa Springs Rotary website, or by purchasing tickets at the Visitor’s Center (Chamber of Commerce) downtown, Choke Cherry Tree, and at both the PLPOA Recreation Center and Administrative Office.  Entries must be in by March 20.
Allen Roth reported that the 55-gallon drum that will determine a lucky (sagacious?) contestant’s bragging rights and unlock the key to riches (up to a cool one grand for first, half that for second, and one-quarter for third) for guessing (computing?) the official moment of final thaw would be in place soon.  First, Allen explained, it needed to be properly stenciled with the legend, “Rotary,” to distinguish it from the other 55-gallon drums that may be bobbing around in Hatcher Lake.  (Well, he didn’t say that part, but there must be some reason for the stencil.)
Shellie then followed-up by encouraging all to beat the drums (sorry) for event sponsors, an initiative of increased magnitude this year since, as reported in last week’s Bulletin, Rotary has shifted to one-time, annual, all-event sponsorships.  Commitments from sponsors for the year are due in another five weeks or so, on March 15, so time is running out to reel ‘em in.  
Thanks were next expressed by Shellie to Melanie Garrett and Sharon Carter for compiling the data and sending status reports to members on their standing in the march to accumulate Paul Harris points.
Exchange students Theo Bonlokke and Cata Acuilera followed with reports on their recent doings.  Theo went snowboarding in the company of Larry McClintock, and was both enthusiastic about the fun he had boarding, and complimentary of Larry’s skiing.  (That’s good Theo: always be complimentary to your host.)  Cata then recalled her participation in the year’s last swim meet for the Lady Pirates at Grand Junction last weekend, and added she soon would be playing soccer with the Pirates’ squad this Spring.  (With our weather, Cata, you might want to borrow Theo’s snowboard.)
At a gesture of her magic bubble-wand, Betty Switzer next convened a session of Sunshine and Showers.
Larry commented on the good time at Wolf Creek with Theo, Betty herself reported a win in a Super Bowl pool, Cindy Galabota noted that with her son’s birthday she now had a teenager in the house (eliciting broad commiserations from the assembled throng, heavily featuring grandparents), Linda Virrips reported the purchase of a house, Sue Whalen recounted the annoyance of Traveler (must be a horse, but Sue didn’t explain) over Rotary’s decision against having a Kentucky Derby party this year, and Dave Cammack complimented students Cata and Theo for their patience in putting up with him for a trip to see the X-Games in Aspen (the Games were big-time fun, he added).
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-02-14 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
Georgette Baumgardner stepped up to the plate for an invocation calling for the better parts of human nature to prevail.  Regrettably, your reporter’s pen moved too slowly to record more than the line, “Let my eyes be opened.”  Still, that was enough to demonstrate that thoughts valuable to all were expressed, both figuratively for a good life, and literally for many activities commonly pursued. 
(Keeping the eyes open is especially worthwhile for hitting a baseball, which comes to mind as the calendar turns to February and the Colorado Rockies head off soon to spring training; your reporter can attest from personal experience that an eyes-closed approach to hitting has severe weaknesses.)
Gasp: we enjoyed no song???  Jessie Formwalt was absent, and apparently her recent renderings have been so impressive no one felt equal to the task of succeeding her.  Take heart, all!  It’s a George Bushian audience (kind and gentle).
Visitors included Sam Conti, of Pagosa Mountain Rotary (where she presides as president).  Also present was Rotarian Frank Wylie of Sunlight, Arizona.  Frank identified himself as a student of geography, and illustrated with an observation on an oddity of the map: the Canary Islands, he said, have no canaries.  And, he added, the Virgin Islands are similar!  (That is, he clarified, they also have no canaries.)    
Then President Shellie Peterson announced the time had come to bestow a Paul Harris Fellowship Award on our newest member-honoree.  But first, she called on Art Benzel, who reported that Rotary founder Paul Harris had passed 72 years ago.  He added that Harris’ motto was, “A man with a 1000 friends has not one he can afford to lose.”  Art advised that on Harris’ death in 1947, in response to his request for donations to the Rotary Foundation in lieu of flowers, $2 million was raised, an impressive sum especially in those days.
Shellie then called Jonnae Benzel forward to receive her pin and citation for support of the Foundation, and welcomed her into the fold, encompassing currently a large part of the Club’s membership.
Next on the agenda, a new Rotary fundraising project was announced, the Hatcher Lake Ice-Melt contest, being conducted locally in cooperation with the Pagosa Lakes Property Owners Association (PLPOA), and modeled on a similar event held by Summit County Rotary.
Allen Roth (who moonlights as PLPOA Manager) explained: PLPOA will haul a 55-gallon drum onto the currently icy surface of Hatcher Lake, fitted with a clock and a triggering mechanism.  As the weather warms, the ice will eventually melt, the drum will fall into the water, and the triggering mechanism will cause the clock to register the exact moment of hitting the water, down to the second.  The clock is calibrated to within .00001 second accuracy based on Greenwich Mean Time by the Swiss Chronological and Measuring Society (SCAMS).  Well, something like that, anyhow.
Allen explained the contest involves trying to predict (in an entry that must be received by March 20) the exact moment of the drum’s watery plunge.  The rewards for entries displaying accurate foresight are tangible (as in other contexts): first place prize $1000, second $500 and third $250.    (A voice in the audience, apparently belonging to someone who fears the thumb on the scale or the blowtorch on the ice, called out, “Who’s watching?”  We’ll drive by, quoth Allen, betraying impressive trust in the integrity of his community’s residents.)
Proceeds will support the Rotary Scholarship fund.  Entries are approximately 9 cents per gallon of drum, otherwise stated as $5 per guess (or if you pretend to rely on scientific insight, per forecast).  But discount rates are available: $20 for five guesses, or $100 for thirty (of course, that means $100 will cover half a minute of Pagosa Springtime, which is 30 seconds out of weeks in which the payoff could potentially occur – but forget that, the idea is to have fun and support a good cause!).  Entries may be submitted on the Rotary and/or PLPOA websites. 
A similar contest has been staged by Summit County Rotary for over 30 years, and its a big fund-raiser in that community, so there is much optimism for equal success here.
Kim Moore followed up Allen’s presentation on the Ice-Melt Contest with the announcement of a new approach to Rotary event sponsorships for this year: a single solicitation of sponsors for all four or five of the events Kim said would be hosted by Rotary as fund-raisers throughout the year.  Those who sign up by the end of the sponsorship campaign on March 15, will receive   public recognition in connection with all of the events, as well as continuing notice throughout the year on Rotary’s website. 
Kim added that one of the fund-raising events this year will be Casino Night, a revival of a popular attraction hosted by Rotary in years past, to be held, she said, on Friday night May 10, 2019 at the PLPOA clubhouse. 
Kim also distributed forms for use by members to recruit sponsors.  Included in the required information, she emphasized, is the sponsor’s mailing address as well as business location.  Those in need of forms for recruiting sponsors should contact her.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-02-07 07:00:00Z 0

Salvation Army Bell Ringing Report

Posted by Jim Garrett
Andrew Loren volunteered this past Holiday season to manage the “bell-ringing” campaign mounted outside of City Market and Walmart for the Salvation Army.  As volunteer bell-ringers who started or finished days will remember, Andrew dropped off and picked up their gear (bells, collection pot with stand, and garb).  Additionally, interjected Neal Umali of Justice Ministries, which coordinates the project locally for the Salvation Army, Andrew counted and deposited the daily collections.  90% of the amount donated in response to the ringing bells supports programs in our community, Neal added.  (It is a significant supporter of Feed Our Children, Jo chimed in from the audience.)
Andrew reported the main features of the 2018 campaign:
  • The campaign ran 31 days, from November 24 to December 24.
  • Volunteers manned pots at City Market all 31 days, but only 15 days at Walmart.  Unfortunately, Andrew explained, the Walmart site is totally shaded in the winter, and cold.  Although he tried to compensate by providing a heater, the discomfort discourages volunteers at Walmart.
  • Multiple churches and other community organizations (plus some independent individuals) staffed the collection pots at both City Market and Walmart, each organization taking responsibility for one or two days.  Rotary, however, took responsibility for 10 days.  Additionally, Andrew stated that Rotary was the only organization that took administrative responsibility to send pinch-hitters if its scheduled volunteers were no-shows.
  • A total of just short of $30,000 was collected during the campaign, 63% at City Market, 16% at Walmart, and 21% by mailed checks.
  • Contributions declined on Sundays, when NFL games were broadcast.  (Visiting Mountain Rotarian Sam Conti offered the observation that Sunday contributions could be boosted by advancing the starting time on those days earlier to 11 am, to coincide with the conclusion of church services.  In her experience, Sam observed, people right out of church are in a giving frame-of-mind.  Your reporter’s query to Sam: a manifestation, perhaps, of the power of positive thinking?)
  • Odd items were stashed in collection pots, Andrew reported, mostly of minimal value: washers, a shell-casing, tokens, including a Durango parking token, a flattened penny from the Birch Aquarium, and (of course) coins from multiple foreign countries.  However, one oddity had value: a 1 oz. silver bar.  Andrew said he “bought” the bar from the Salvation Army for its then market value, and since has made a little profit on paper as the value of silver has appreciated. 
Andrew commented on potential ideas for improving and expanding the campaign.  Obviously, better staffing at Walmart would be helpful, but in addition, Andrew suggested consideration of an additional collection point, such as outside the downtown Post Office, which he noted has substantial traffic.  Also, he added that better schedule coordination would be useful to eliminate gaps in staffing, and ensure the availability of pinch-hitters.  Finally, Andrew suggested that participation by more community organizations would be valuable.
Salvation Army Bell Ringing Report Jim Garrett 2019-02-07 07:00:00Z 0
February is Peace and Conflict Resolution Month Shellie Peterson 2019-02-04 07:00:00Z 0

Kim Moore's Trip to Tibet with Durango Rotarians

Posted by Jim Garrett
Speaker: Kim (Globetrotter) Moore, on her trip to Tibet.
Nowhere, apparently, is there a corner of the globe where Kim Moore’s curiosity is outpaced by “cost, germs or fuss,” or perhaps anything else, other than possibly war (I don’t think she’s been to Afghanistan, but there are negotiations underway to end that conflict, so maybe that’s next year).  The “hugging diplomat” gets more use out of a passport than anyone other than possibly airline pilots! 
(Plus, Kim is not flustered by technological glitches.  When the balky slide projector showed images on end last Thursday, “tilt your head,” she suggested unflappably to the audience.)
Kim explained that her trip to Tibet was an offshoot of a Tibetan water project organized under the auspices of Rotary International by Durango Rotary.  A group from the Durango club went to visit the project site, and Kim seized the opportunity to join up with them for the trip.
Tibet sits on the northern slope of the Himalayas.  Mt. Everest rests astride its border with Nepal.  It’s capital, Lhasa, is at 8000 feet, and much of the country’s altitude is even higher – according to Wikipedia, its average elevation is 16,000 feet.  A Tibetan Empire existed in the 6th Century, but today Tibet is politically an autonomous region of China.  It was absorbed by the Chinese after an invasion mounted in the 1950’s, Kim said. 
The travelers’ jumping off point for entry to the small, mountainous country was Chengdu, China, where the group boarded a train for the 23-hour trip.  They had time beforehand, however, to visit the Center for Preservation of Pandas in Chengdu; the city evidently sits in the midst of the exotic animals’ range.
According to Kim, Tibet’s population numbers between four to five million, mostly farmers or nomads.  She reported its citizens are subject to substantial repression by their Chinese overlords, and substantial restrictions are imposed on Tibetans’ civil freedom, including mandatory displays of fealty to Chinese leaders.
Tibet was formerly the home of the Dalai Lama, a political and religious leader banished by the Chinese, well-known today throughout the world as a humanistic and ethical holy person.  But today his home, a building of more than 1000 rooms in Lhasa known as the Portola, is a tourist attraction.
But religion is nonetheless freely practiced.  Tibetans, Kim reported, are primarily devout Buddhists.  The country is home to 4700 monasteries, and statues of Buddha in all sizes, shapes, expressions and appearances are ubiquitous.  The large population of monks shave their heads, Kim told us, to avoid dwelling on appearance and keep their lives simple.  (Dave Richardson spontaneously endorsed the wisdom of their choice.)    
In addition to monasteries, substantial public displays of “prayer flags,” are common throughout Tibet, with elaborate formations of flags in shapes like large pin-wheels or bulls-eyes set-up by monks on mountainsides.  And pilgrims are a frequent sight at monasteries, Kim reported, rotating “prayer-wheels” in pursuit of inner peace as they circle the structures on foot.
Yaks, appearing similar to large, shaggy-coated goats, are everywhere in Tibet, and are frequently seen grazing even at high altitude in the mountains.  Tibetan culture revolves around the animal, Kim said.  Yak meat is a common food, and yak dung is a common fuel.
Another common food is a bread-like loaf called Sampa, made out of barley flour.  For a beverage, Kim extolled the lemon-ginger-honey tea she was served.
Kim and others in her group visited a Mt. Everest base camp, at 18,000 feet altitude.  The route to the camp was a tortuous ascent up a road of endless switchbacks over three mountain passes.  Great motorcycling, it appeared, except Kim reported the conditions were cold and windy.  She rented a Chinese Army parka for use in the daytime, and used five quilts to keep warm at night.
What about bathrooms, Kim was asked.  Squatters only, she recalled for the most part, except in handicap facilities.  Ever adaptable, Kim made the obvious choice for comfort, when possible.
Kim also reported that street vendors plying the trade of ear-cleaning, are common in Tibet.  She recommended the practice to all, as It clarifies your brain (or so she claimed).
And yes, Kim reported, there was at least one long and heartfelt hug shared along the way.  Never fear, the hugging diplomat is always ready!
Kim Moore's Trip to Tibet with Durango Rotarians Jim Garrett 2019-01-31 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
Danish was served!  But not pastry: the invocation was delivered by exchange student Theo Bonlokke in his native language.  Theo followed-up with an English interpretation for the benefit of those who don’t know their Danish beyond picking apricot or raspberry, including your reporter and probably just about everybody else in the room.  It went something like the following: “To make earth a better place, be better humans, ja!”  (In any language, that seems to hit the nail on the head.)
Jessie Formwalt then stepped up once again to provide harmonious vocal delights, leading the group in “She’ll Be Comin’ Round the Mountain.”
Visitors included the omni-present Kenny Rogers (although sans a hat), who reported that Pagosa Mountain Rotary’s project to provide solar panels for an elementary school in Puerto Rico, had reached full funding, and installation of the panels is expected soon.
Guests included Lisa Scott’s son, Spence, home from Hofstra University on Long Island, where he is a senior.
Carrie Weiss then solicited volunteers to take over the lottery temporarily, while she and John take their annual RV adventure.
President Shellie Peterson then asked for volunteers to stuff envelopes after the meeting, to send out forms to donors documenting their donations during the year for use on 2018 tax returns.  Shellie’s appeal having been lodged, Jo Bridges interjected a comment on Shellie’s computer prowess, which she reported had enormously facilitated the process of addressing the envelopes to mail the notices. (Jo said something about a merge, which I always thought was done on the highway coming out of Walmart, but apparently Jo had some more exotic skill in mind – she didn’t explain, but considering her audience, it would have been wasted breath.)
The next order of business was a celebration of Theo’s 17th birthday, with singing of the traditional song and a birthday cake and candles.  Theo reported that cakes are included in birthday celebrations in Denmark, but he didn’t mention candles.  (He was not able to blow-out all 17 candles on his cake when bidden, so perhaps that is not part of the Danish birthday ritual, and he was taken by surprise.)
Sunshine and Showers ensued, but few ventured to share their thoughts.  The Mistress of Ceremonies, Betty Switzer, herself offered gratitude that her “testable hypothesis” question to Dave Smith of last week was little noted in the Bulletin, and your reporter responded by likewise expressing thanks for the abundant copy Betty routinely provides.  Carrie offered a scholarship donation to encourage a lottery pinch-hitter in her absence, and Kim Moore expressed appreciation for the wonderful ceremony last weekend in honor of Larry Olin.
Shellie then introduced our speaker by inviting all to join a trip to Tibet, without “cost, germs or fuss,” a/k/a, vicariously, courtesy of the recollections of one not so faint of heart.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-01-31 07:00:00Z 0

January is Vocational Service Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson

As leaders in their businesses and professions, Rotarians can advance high ethical standards by setting a positive example among colleagues and in their community. Here are a few specific ways Rotarians integrate ethics into their daily work life:

• Discuss and emphasize honesty, accountability, fairness, integrity, and respect when hiring, training, and supervising employees
• Praise and encourage the exemplary behavior of colleagues
• Demonstrate personal commitment to high ethical standards in relations with customers, vendors, and business associates, treating each business interaction with care and
• Promote socially and environmentally responsible practices in your businesses and organizations

The Rotary Service newsletter, a free bi-monthly e-publication, keeps Rotarians informed about how they can offer
their professional skills to Rotary projects, support the professional development of individuals and communities in
need, and represent and promote Rotary values in the workplace. Subscribe at


The Rotary Service blog features posts on service and engagement, including quarterly ethical dilemma
discussions, resources, best practices, success stories, and lessons learned. Subscribe at


• Join or start a conversation in a Rotary discussion group on My Rotary. The Vocational Service group discusses project ideas, shares successes, and connects members to better serve their communities.

• Find support for a club vocational service project on Rotary Ideas.

• Share your vocational service project successes on Rotary Showcase to inspire others and promote collective efforts to improve communities around the world.

January is Vocational Service Month Shellie Peterson 2019-01-29 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
WHAT HAPPENED LAST WEEK – January 17, 2019 Meeting Summary
(Back in the writer’s nook: Last week’s third meeting this January was the first of the year for your reporter, and it may take a while to replenish the ink of irreverence customarily flowing in my figurative pen.  Current subjects, enjoy the reprieve!) 
The meeting began with an invocation by Sam Pittmon, from the words of St. Theresa of Calcutta (formerly known more prosaically as simply Mother Theresa, she was canonized September 4, 2016).   Sam chose a passage exhorting positive conduct in the face of negatives (e.g. “If you are honest, people may cheat you.  Be honest anyway.”)  The passage ended with a statement of values providing the new Saint’s justification for graceful acceptance of such challenges: “For you see, in the end, it is between you and God.  It was never between you and them anyway.”
After the Pledge of Allegiance led by Madame President Shellie Peterson, Jessie Formwalt conducted the singing of “You Are My Sunshine,” even sneaking in a bar or two of delicate harmony as the rest of us stumbled through the melody, more or less in tune.  Pretty nice stuff, Jessie!  Next time, why not lead the group in some three-part choral harmony?
Next were guests.  The magnetic Pat Love had a gaggle in tow, but your reporter didn’t catch their names except daughter Kathleen McFadden.
Exchange student Theo Bonlokke than provided the latest update on his diverse adventures, seemingly aimed at sampling every experience available to a young person in Colorado, reporting he attended a stock show in Denver featuring a demonstration of horsemanship, and was then with the Pagosa Pirates Wrestling Team for a successful weekend of meets and tournaments.  In response to questions, Theo allowed that although he had not participated in wrestling previously at home in Denmark, he intends to join a club when he returns.
The more taciturn Cata Acuilera, our exchange student from Chile, reported she had participated in the Pagosa Lady Acqua Pirates’ swim meet at Durango, where she said the local showing improved and everybody had fun.  In addition, Cata said she enjoyed seeing a performance of “Little Women,” at Thingamajig.
Final arrangements for the Larry Olin memorial celebration set for Saturday January 19 (two days after the meeting) were then announced.  This reporter was unable to attend, but understands a mob of Larry’s good friends and acquaintances from Rotary and other groups jammed the PLPOA clubhouse, and honored Larry’s memory by enjoying good food and sharing many fond reminiscences of his memorable life and times. 
Betty Switzer then took the floor with a balky bubble machine (like your reporter, evidently it stiffens up with disuse).
Betty began with this month’s birthdays, announcing first newbie Sandra Houston, then oldies, in Betty’s generous phrase, “old, but not really old, just been here before:” Brian Wetzel, Lassie Olin, Diane Bower, and yours truly.  After donning celebratory head gear, the honorees enjoyed a raucous rendition of “Happy Birthday,” even though Meg Wempe was not present to invest the song with her special élan.
Wedding anniversaries were then announced for Warren and Jodie Brown, and Dave and Jean Smith (52 years and counting).
Membership anniversaries were announced next, for David Cammack (at 26 years, the reigning champ in this group) and Meg Wempe, Cindy Galabota, Bill Hubbard and Sharon Carter, Dave and Kriss Campbell, and finally, Betty herself and husband Jeff.
Betty then turned to Sunshine and Showers, but pickings were slim (post-holiday torpor?  Snow induced ennui?  Lack of sleep?  Bio-rhythms?  An evil spell cast by the government shutdown?  By Donald Trump?  Who knows?)
Dave Richardson did offer two Sunshines: the pleasure of seeing a picture in the Sun of Codie Wilson’s granddaughter pouring in two for the Lady Pirates Roundballers against rival Centauri, and an expression of gratitude to Pat Love for her talk the week before, described by Dave as “outstanding.”
Codie then followed with a Sunshine of her own, reporting that the victory against Centauri was “huge” for her granddaughter and teammates, as their rival had been ranked ahead of the Lady Pirates before being walloped by the locals in their recent matchup.
President Shellie then turned to the introduction of our speaker.  It’s surprisingly hard, Shellie began, to devise a meeting program every week with capacity to entertain and inform for an hour.  And even after plans have been well laid, there is a risk that a speaker might cancel, exactly as had just happened, she lamented.  When that is the way the cookie crumbles, you need a pinch-hitter, but right now, most of the good ones are getting ready to attend Spring Training and resume the pursuit of millions.  Fortunately, Shellie knew exactly what to do in the hour of need: get out Rotary’s Swiss Army knife, David Smith.
Speaker: David Smith, on the Topics of the Day
David filled in by discussing two topics of community interest: the Middle School Science Fair, and the publicly supported project to provide a new facility for early childhood education.  He began by explaining he’d been asked to talk just two hours earlier, so he was probably just well enough prepared to make a fool of himself.  But if that was his horizon, it seemed in truth he sailed well beyond it, like Dorothy’s bluebird over the rainbow.
This year’s edition of the Science Fair, David told us, had been competed the day before.  The annual event is a voluntary part of the Middle School’s science curriculum in which 15 students chose to participate this school year.  The Fair program runs 10 weeks, and challenges sixth through eighth graders to explore a “testable” (what was that word? Betty called out, but maybe you had to be there to fully appreciate the nuances of the moment) hypothesis.  A simple example, David illustrated could be, “The sun will rise in the east.”  Prizes are awarded by a panel of volunteer judges for the best demonstrations, and winners advance to a Regional competition. 
David has helped students develop and demonstrate their testable hypotheses during the programs conducted for a period of several years.  It’s been very satisfying and enjoyable, he reported, to watch the students’ progress from year to year.
Several other Rotarians have also contributed to the Science Fairs, including Dave Richardson, Lisa Scott and Larry McClintock.  Lisa recalled that not all hypotheses tested are arcane, dry technical matters.  For example, she described one student’s “Cupcake test,” designed to prove boys are more impulsive than girls by evaluating how long subjects can defer eating a treat.  But Dave R. added that he has been rewarded by participation, from watching the kids learn science, which is “important to mankind because that is how progress is made.”
David’s other topic was the Early Childhood Education project supported by funding from Archuleta County and the Town of Pagosa Springs, currently devoted to developing a facility intended to begin operation next school year and to provide early childhood positions for 40-45 children under the umbrella of the non-profit Archuleta County Education Center.
According to a recent finding by the State of Colorado, David said, Archuleta County was one of six “desert” areas of Colorado found to be extremely short of services for pre-school children.  A workgroup formed by the local governments in early 2016 assessed the issue by tallying available resources and evaluating the level of need, concluding that the community had a shortage of 300 additional early childhood education slots, especially for the 0-3 yr. age group. 
The new facility, to be based in an abandoned commercial building currently undergoing extensive remodeling, formerly the site off Piedra Road of the Greenhouse Restaurant, will begin to address the need.  While it is not a complete answer, David reported that efforts to establish new services by other means were unsuccessful, and a decision was made to start by doing what was possible.
Remodeling costs approximate $500,000.  In addition to the Town and County, funding has been provided from foundation grants and donations.
David reported that research based on tracking the performance over later life of individuals served by early childhood education, compared to those not served, has demonstrated that on average, the community saves $200,000 in lifetime costs of maladjustment including incarcerations and un-employment for each individual served. 
The new facility will have three classrooms, he said, two for toddlers 1-3, and one for pre-kindergarten.  The costs of attendance will be covered by tuition.  There is hope for some form of tuition assistance from the local governments, but currently, no commitments have been made.    
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2019-01-24 07:00:00Z 0

January is Vocational Service Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson

By including men and women from diverse professions and backgrounds, Rotary recognizes the importance of all skills and occupations. A vibrant Rotary club reflects the businesses, organizations, and professions in its community, embracing diversity in experiences and perspectives. Your professional life and vocational service go together. Rotarians have a dual responsibility: to represent their occupations within their club and to exemplify the ideals of Rotary in their places of work.

The Rotary Club of Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., USA, launched partnerships with a half-dozen local nonprofits. Members acted as strategic consultants, offering their expertise
to their partners free of charge. The partnerships brought four benefits:
1. Improved service opportunities for club members, which resulted in greater local impact
2. Increased visibility for the club and its partners
3. Attracted new members
4. Strengthened Rotarian/ non-Rotarian service teams


The name “Rotary” came from the practice of rotating meeting sites among members’ places of business. That tradition remains an excellent way for Rotarians to share their
occupations with their club. Invite each member of your club to briefly share about his or her profession, an area of specialty, or a particular skill set during club meetings throughout the year.


Join a Rotarian Action Group, and support service projects around the world. These independent groups include Rotarians, family members, and Rotary program participants and alumni who have expertise in a particular field. Members advise clubs and districts and collaborate with them on service projects. Learn more at
Join or form a Rotary Fellowship that’s related to your vocation. Rotary Fellowships are international groups of Rotarians, family members, and program participants and alumni who share a vocational or recreational interest. Many fellowships are related to professions, such as Editors and Publishers, Health Professionals, Lawyers, Photographers, and Police and Law Enforcement. See more at

Volunteer to work on a service project, and use your vocational skills to serve others. Think about the skills that make you successful in your profession: Maybe you have training in some branch of science or medicine, are handy with tools or machinery, know how to start a business, have expertise managing finances, or can influence others through public speaking or writing. Use your unique set of talents to make a difference in your community. Share your expertise through your district resource network. If you have technical expertise in one of Rotary’s six areas of focus — or with project planning and implementation; community assessment, measurement, and evaluation; or other important aspects of large-scale project grants — let your district international service chair know. Lend your skills to local clubs, and help develop projects with greater impact.
January is Vocational Service Month Shellie Peterson 2019-01-22 07:00:00Z 0

January is Vocational Service Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Find inspiring examples of ways to take action through vocational service. Consider doing some of the described activities
or introducing similar ones in your club. Alternately, you may want to expand on current efforts.

Rotary emphasizes integrity and high ethical standards. Two standards developed by Rotarians — The Four-Way Test and the Rotarian Code of
Conduct — provide a road map for ethical behavior in the workplace and other areas of life.


The Four-Way Test was conceived in 1932 by businessman Herbert J. Taylor, a member of the Rotary Club of Chicago, Illinois, USA, who served as Rotary International president in 1954-55. Having taken on the task of saving a company from bankruptcy, Taylor developed the test as an ethical guide to follow in all business matters. The company’s survival was credited to this simple philosophy. Adopted by Rotary International in 1934, The Four-Way Test remains an essential standard against which Rotarians measure ethical behavior.

It has been translated into dozens of languages and promoted by Rotarians worldwide.
Of the things we think, say or do:
1. Is it the TRUTH?
2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
3. Will it build GOODWILL and
4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all

The Rotarian Code of Conduct provides a framework for ethical behavior that all Rotarians can use, together with The Four-Way Test,
in their business and professional activities. As part of Rotary’s guiding principles and the Avenues of Service, Vocational Service calls on Rotarians to empower others by using
their unique skills and expertise to address community needs and help others discover new professional opportunities and interests. This handbook can help you gain a better understanding of vocational service and provide you with ideas to practice it through your service activities, in your personal life, and in your career.

As a Rotarian, I will

1. Act with integrity and high ethical standards in my personal and professional life
2. Deal fairly with others and treat them and their occupations with respect
3. Use my professional skills through Rotary to mentor young people, help those with special needs, and improve people’s quality of life in my community and in the world
4. Avoid behavior that reflects adversely on Rotary or other Rotarians
January is Vocational Service Month Shellie Peterson 2019-01-17 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Sam Pittmon
Invocation: Cindy Galabota
               Speech by Former Coke Cola CEO Bryan Dyson: Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling some five balls in the air. They are Work, Family, Health, Friends, and Spirit and you’re keeping all of these in the air. You will soon understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four balls-Family, Health, Friends and Spirit- are made of glass. If you drop one of these they will be irrevocably scuffed, mark, nicked, damaged or even shatter. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for balance in your life. There is more to this speech that you may find online.
Pledge of Allegiance: Jeff Switzer
Song by Kim Moore: Jolly Good Fellow
Guess of Rotarians: Ken Peterson guest and spouse of our President Shellie Peterson
                                     Kathleen McFadden guest of Pat Love
                                     Laura Eastland guest of Pat Love
President Shellie announced the Rotary Board meeting scheduled for tomorrow.
Kim Moore announced that there will be a celebration of life for Lassie Olin’s husband   Larry Olin on January 19 at 1: 00 pm at PLPOA.
Cindi Galabota circulated a sign-up sheet for others to do invocations. With 52 weeks per year each member would only have to do one per year.
Livia Lynch announced the scholarship committee meeting immediately following today’s Rotary meeting
Theo our exchange student wished us all a Happy New Year and that he enjoyed celebrating Christmas with food and presents. He went skiing 5 times and fell two times with no injuries reported. His wrestling is going well and he’s excited about tournaments this weekend. Theo calls his family 1-2 times per month.
Cata likewise wished us all Happy New Year.
She enjoyed Christmas but noted that celebrations were different from home. She went ice skating and had difficulty standing. She then went to Durango and spent time with Rotary friends. She has her last swim meet this Friday and hope the team does well. She was home sick during the Christmas holidays and does call her family back home daily.
Lisa Scott gave us an update about previous inbound exchange student Leo who sent a letter stating that he really missed Pagosa and the mountains, the snow, the school, the soccer team and talking in front of the Rotary Club.  She also heard from Ana of Brazil who was a Pagosa exchange student in 2007-8.  She informed that she will be visiting Pagosa Springs this year in September.
Introduction of new Rotary members: Bryan Wentzel and Cindy Heitz were welcomed and introduced as new Rotary Club Members by Sam Pittmon. They were each given a certificate of membership, a Rotary Pin and a Rotary badge by David Campbell.  They each talked briefly about themselves and were given a warm welcome applause by all club members.
Sunshine and showers by Betty Switzer.  David Smith had a sunshine for recently deceased Rotary member Dick Bond. He told the story of Dick that occurred about 12 years ago. They were working on a project in Pakistan and Dick initiated a fund-raising campaign to raise money for a supply vehicle to be used in Pakistan. He requested donations of 42 (the # of years he had been in Rotary) such as 42 cents, 42 dollars or 4200 dollars. He apparently raised 12-14,000 dollars which was enough to make the purchase. David finished the story with “Let the sun shine where ever Dick is”.
Kim Moore shared a sunshine for Dick Bond saying that his wife Mary reported that they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in the fall with a 5-week tour of Amsterdam in the Netherlands. She also stated that Dick died from ALS.  Kim finished her comments with “Dick was a kind man”. Kim shared another sunshine stating the she attended the Rose Bowl Parade in Pasadena.  Jessie Formwalt shared a shower that her mother passed on December 22 with a donation equal to her age at death.  Meg Whitman gleefully shared a sunshine that her favorite college football team the Clemson Tigers won the National Championship game.Cindy Galabota shared a sunshine in honoring Dave Richardson for volunteering to teach her students chemistry.
News & Happenings Sam Pittmon 2019-01-17 07:00:00Z 0

Pat Love - The Biggest Thing We Don't Talk About

Posted by Sam Pittmon
Guest Speaker: Dr. Pat Love spoke on the topic “The Biggest Problem That No One Talks About”.
Pat started with saying that this malady #1 is more highly correlated with early morbidity than obesity, smoking and drug abuse. #2 It is also correlated with violence, careless acts and substance abuse. #3 It is not as simple as you might think. This condition is “loneliness”. The greatest predictor of longevity is close social contacts.
She talked about these five questions as an antidote to loneliness.
#1. Who Are You? Specifically, what are your core values, what do you stand for, what are the principals, traits that without which you would not be you. An example is Kindness something that you do daily and can affirm at the end of each day.
#2. Are you connected? Are there at least three people in your life that show up when needed, are tuned in, they understand you and their behavior shows it.
#3. Are you in community? Do you feel good about the community where you live? Do you have a sense of belonging, connected and secure in your community?
#4. Are your talents being utilized in meaningful work? Is your work a job, a career or avocation? An avocation is a calling like who you are. Are your talents utilized in meaningful work? If your work is not meaningful, there is a missing element that contributes to a feeling of loneliness.
#5. Are you living out the purpose of your life as referred to by author Rick Warren in his book “The Purpose Driven Life”?  One of his notable quotes is “Being successful and fulfilling your life purpose are not at all the same thing: you can reach all your personal goals, become a raving success by the worlds standards and still miss your purpose in this life.”
In closing, Pat stated that it is “smarter to strive for contentment than happiness”
Pat Love - The Biggest Thing We Don't Talk About Sam Pittmon 2019-01-17 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Shellie Peterson
President Shellie welcomed all those present to the New Year with greetings from Jack & Katy Threet.  They are both doing well and send their best wishes from their home in Texas.  On a much sadder note, Jo Bridges announced that we had just received word that our long time friend Dick Bond had passed away on New Year's Day.  A card was circulated to send to Mary and his family.
We had a very special visitor, Athe Ocando was a guest of Bill Darling.  She was a Rotary Exchange Student in 1999-2000, coming from Venezuela.  Bill and Margaret Darling were one of her hosts during her school year at Valley High School in Albuquerque, NM.  She and the Darlings became very close, and they have remained a “family” since her exchange year.  Athe has come to Colorado several times to support Bill and Margaret as Bill has faced his medical issues.  During her current visit she brought along her husband David Lobo and their three beautiful children, two boys and one girl.  Athe has lived in the Miami area for approximately 13 years, and she has become an American citizen.  Athe came to Albuquerque through the efforts of Larry McClintock, who headed the exchange student committee for the Albuquerque Rotary Club.  Larry and Bill were neighbors in Albuquerque, and Larry was able to have the Darlings host Athe.  Larry’s son Benjamin walked Athe to high school almost every morning, a memory both reminisced about when Ben was able to visit with Athe at the Darling’s home before New Year’s.  It was a pleasure to have Athe at our club, and to see the impact that the Rotary Student Exchange program can have.
Betty was in fine form for Sunshine and Showers having rested up over the Holidays!  She enthusiastically encouraged us to share our New Year's resolutions!  There were several noteworthy thoughts such as to be more patient, but I believe Kriss Campbell probably had the best of all.  She shared something she had read recently;   The New Year lies before us like a trackless field of snow.  Be careful how you tread on it for every mark will show.  
Shellie offered a $20 sunshine to the Scholarship Fund celebrating her 20+ years of service at Pagosa Area Water and Sanitation District.  Remember to not call or email her at work anymore - because you won't find her there! 
Carrie Weiss offered up thanks for the Holiday Party planners!  It really was a great deal of fun!  Thanks were offered to Bill Hubbard who once again did such a marvelous job at providing the food.  Betty even allowed that she had been a kermudgen over the snarky $20 comment and vowed to do better in 2019.
Shellie also made another very important announcement - Mike Vanover had been selected by the Nominating Committee to become our President Elect Nominee!  Mike has graciously accepted the position and we are very excited for him to lead us in 2020-2021 following Nick Tallent in 2019-2020!
Mike Vanover has a great deal of experience that he brings to our Club!  When he was with the Morgan City Rotary Club, Mike was the Co-Chair of the Youth Exchange Committee for District 6200.  He also served as President of that Club for one year and Vice-President for two years.  While on the Board of Directors, he served for a year in each of the areas of Club Service, Membership, International Services/Foundation, Club Programs, Publicity and Scholarships.  He also served as the Club Orientation Officer for 15 years.  While I am sure that Morgan City misses Mike, we are honored to have he and Renee as full-time Pagosans now.  I am looking forward to all that he brings to our Club.
While Bill Hubbard gave it a "Good Try", the elusive Ace of Spades still is in the envelope.  At least, that's what Carrie tells us anyway!
If you have not had the opportunity to listen to Pat Love speak - you are in for a treat next week!  Don't miss hearing about the biggest thing that NO ONE TALKS ABOUT!
News & Happenings Shellie Peterson 2019-01-10 07:00:00Z 0

The Object of Rotary


The Object of Rotary is to encourage and foster the ideal of service as a basis of worthy enterprise and, in particular, to encourage and foster:

First The development of acquaintance as an opportunity for service;

Second High ethical standards in business and professions; the recognition
of the worthiness of all useful occupations; and the dignifying of
each Rotarian’s occupation as an opportunity to serve society;

Third The application of the ideal of service in each Rotarian’s personal,
business, and community life;

Fourth The advancement of international understanding, goodwill, and
peace through a world fellowship of business and professional
persons united in the ideal of service.

The Object of Rotary is a philosophical statement of Rotary’s purpose and the responsibilities of Rotarians. The concept of vocational service is rooted in the second object, which calls on Rotarians to encourage and foster:

• High ethical standards in business and professions
• The recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations
• The dignifying of each Rotarian’s occupation as an
   opportunity to serve society

As a Rotarian, how can you put these ideals into action? Consider
these suggestions:

• Talk about your profession in your club, and take time to
   learn about fellow members’ occupations.
• Use your skills and expertise to serve a community.
• Practice your profession with integrity, and inspire others to
  behave ethically through your words and actions.
• Help young people achieve their career goals.
• Guide and encourage others in their professional

By undertaking these activities, you bring vocational service to life. Vocational service is the essence of Rotary
and serves as the foundation from which we serve our communities around the world.
The Object of Rotary Shellie Peterson 2019-01-10 07:00:00Z 0

Read to Your Bunnies

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Sandra Houston, Regional Coordinator for the Three Rivers Foundation for Literacy, was our featured speaker last week.  Through Sandra's work and the resources she has available, over 3,000 books were provided to local families during the week of Halloween!  
Sandra challenged us in several ways during her presentation.  One challenge she presented was to look up Rosemary Wells.  From her biography, I found this: "I was a scrawny girl who grew up in the 1940's and 50's on the New Jersey shore. I was lucky. I had really good parents. My mother was a ballet dancer for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. My father, a playwright. They were intelligent and sensitive. They praised what I did well and didn't care much about what I didn't do well. I drew uncannily for a youngster. Every week my mother would choose the best drawing of the week and thumbtack it to the mantle piece. In this way I learned that some of my pictures were better than others and I strove to please."
Rosemary Wells also said, "Reading to your little one is just like putting gold coins in the bank. It will pay you back tenfold. Your daughter will learn, and imagine, and be strong in herself. Your son will thrive, and give your love back forever."
Sandra also suggested that we should read what inspires us and read to our little ones or those that we have an opportunity to influence with our time and talents.
So Read to your Bunny!  Children who read succeed!
Read to Your Bunnies Shellie Peterson 2019-01-10 07:00:00Z 0
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from Ken and I  Shellie Peterson 2018-12-16 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
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The meeting began with a prayer by Kim Moore, asking blessings for Lassie Olin following the sad and sudden loss of husband Larry, and reminding us all to be thankful for the lives we enjoy.
Visitors were welcomed.  Aside from the omnipresent Kenny Rogers (we need to start changing the man dues – just kidding Kenny, you and your hat always bring good cheer to  Thursday meetings), included were Arizonan Frank Wylie, from Sun Lakes.
Announcements ensued.  Jo Bridges circulated a card for Lassie, and announced a Celebration of Larry’s life to be held January 19.  Jo reported Lassie will be spending the Holidays in California with family, and suggested donations in Larry’s memory to the Veterans Memorial.
Kim reminded all of the annual Festival of Trees, and encouraged Rotarians to vote on Thursday for featured trees to be included in the live auction the next evening (Friday, December 7).  Fired-up by the glory of Holiday celebrations, Kim added the suggestion that Rotary should enter a tree in the Festival next year.  After a moment to absorb the idea, Jeff Switzer observed how much he liked the fact that Kim would make such a wonderful Chairperson.
Carrie Weiss, then asked for a few more volunteer bell-ringers to man the Salvation Army pot outside City Market.  Just a few openings remained in the Rotary commitment, she said, and who doesn’t enjoy an hour of non-stop smiling and exchanging Christmas wishes with friend and stranger alike!
President Shellie Peterson then reminded of key upcoming events for Rotary, both occurring before our next meeting on January 3: the Loaves and Fishes lunch service on Thursday, December 13, and the Rotary Holiday Party on Friday evening, December 14.
For the Holiday Party, Shellie circulated a registration sheet to get a good head count for attendees, and a sign-up sheet for party crew volunteers.  She reported that the party will cost $20/person, which will be collected at the door.  More information will be circulated by email in advance of the party, she added.
Diane Bower reminded all to bring a gift, either gag or serious, for the drawing during the party.
Exchange student Theo Bonlokke reported he had spent the prior weekend in Grand Junction, where current exchange students from overseas gathered to give presentations on their home countries to prospective future outbound exchangers.  Theo no doubt pitched his homeland to great effect – demand for Denmark next year will surely be at fever pitch.  (Cata, alas, was feeling poorly at meeting time, and did not speak.)
Betty Switzer then took the floor, but didn’t only take it – she commanded it, dominated it and subjugated it, with the unanticipated aid of one notable accomplice.
To astonishment of one and all, Betty began with a mock strip-tease that had to be seen to be believed.  Life is a feast of opportunities with Betty, all seized.  ‘Nuff said.
Next, a single birthday was celebrated, Meg Wempe’s.  Little did we know, Meg is Betty’s kindred spirit.  The Happy Birthday song triggered what may have been some ancient tribal rite, or perhaps only an explosion of repressed memories of youthful exuberance, but in either case, again, your reporter’s mere words cannot capture Meg’s heartfelt embrace of the moment.  I already want to jump ahead to next year for a reprise.
Then, a semblance of orderly conduct was restored with the announcement of anniversaries, celebrated by your reporter and wife Melanie (47 years), and Lisa Scott and Bob (25 years).
Finally Jo Bridges’ ninth anniversary as a Rotarian was celebrated (excluding the years of Jo’s earlier stint as a Rotary member who strayed from the fold, those years being apparently banished to oblivion, as if Orwellian non-years.  Hmm . . . come to think of it, I have some years that could happily be treated as non-years.)  Also reported by Betty were first year anniversaries for Marianne DeVooght and Ronnie Doctor.
Moving on, Betty donned her Rudolph sunglasses, and with red nose dangling precariously like a Christmas ornament in a stiff breeze, especially when she gave it a vigorous puff of breath, called for Sunshine/Showers.  Contributors were Kim Moore (wonderful Community Choir performance), Bill Darling (harrowing life-flite evacuation to Denver for pneumonia recovery), Neal Johnson (good memories of the late President George H.W. Bush), Meg Wempe (whose remarks were missed by your reporter), Shellie Peterson (news of a new grandchild), Diane Bower (fire in and, alarmingly, out of the fireplace), and Dave Cammack (reports of two vehicle accidents, and a dead horse; don’t worry Dave, bad luck comes in threes).
Next, the Pagosa Springs Rotary Annual Meeting was called to order by Madame President Shellie.  Business was swiftly dispatched and the meeting adjourned after the election of three board members for next year, Melanie Garrett, Sharon Crump and Alan Roth.  More’s the pity, parades around the convention hall and brass bands were dispensed with.  But gratitude was expressed for the efforts of departing board members, Linda Verrips, Dave Campbell and Kim Moore.
The meeting was not graced with a formal speaker.  Instead, Shellie took a few minutes to demonstrate our Clubrunner site,  What I got out of the demonstration was: the site is easy to use, and there’s lots of value that can be accessed both on the public side and members only side (requiring your password for entry). 
Any effort by this reporter, however, to recount the details of the presentation beyond these key principles would be useless, and probably even counterproductive.  So the best I can advise is just get on the site and explore.  It’s non-toxic. 
Happy Holidays!
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2018-12-13 07:00:00Z 0

December is Disease Prevention & Treatment Month


December is Disease Prevention Month

Rotary's top priority is the eradication of polio. Part of the Polio campaign is the vacination of children for a wide range of diseases. This alone has saved thousands of lives.
Clean Water & Sanitation is the single most important  way Rotary fights Disease. Our Largest Health activity after Polio.
In Tahiti, Rotary tests thousands for Diabetes each year in Tahiti, Moorea and Taravao- providing advice and education.
Each year Rotary runs a Cataract Project across Fiji.   Dental projects are run in Taveuni and Otahuhu.
Rotarians set up health camps and training facilities in undeveloped countries and in communities struggling with HIV/AIDS and malaria. Work in India is in the photo to the left with an integrated health services provider.


Work in Africa on eye disease prevention is in the photo above.
December is Disease Prevention & Treatment Month Shellie 2018-12-06 07:00:00Z 0

Foundation for Archuleta County Education

Posted by Jim Garrett
Speakers: Cindy Galabota and Mozhdeh Bruss, FACE (Foundation for Archuleta County Education)
Cindy and Mozhdeh spoke as members FACE’s board.  (One of the founders of the organization in 2012 was Rotarian Jesse Formwalt.)  The organization’s website,, describes it as “a non-profit organization that supports programs to enhance academic opportunities for students K–12 in Archuleta County, Colorado.”    
Our speakers explained that FACE makes grants supplying “gap funding,” to help support and enhance curricular and extra-curricular activities provided in local schools and related entities.  According to the website, “Groups or individuals who have innovative or established educational programs are encouraged to submit proposals to the FACE board of directors for consideration.”
According to data cited by Cindy, 60 awards in the total amount of approximately $36,000 have been made since FACE was established in 2012.  Among the purposes have been to provide equipment for student and classroom use, including computer hardware, microscopes, magnetic hardboards, and items needed in the High School’s building trades class, and to give support to innovative teaching opportunities including to date a seventh grade math teaching program built around fantasy baseball, and a science project to develop student’s understanding of collecting and analyzing data, by studying Owl Pellets (droppings) to uncover characteristics of the birds’ diet and lives.
Cindy added that FACE expects to place increased emphasis on “instructional and learning innovations” moving forward.
Mozhdeh then addressed FACE’s new initiative, Enhancing Summer Education, which will operate in cooperation with the Summer Camp based in the Community Center, and run by the Town of Pagosa Springs.
The Summer Camp is a project of the Town to provide constructive and fun activities while schools are closed during the summer to local children from ages 6 – 12.   Last year, Mozhdeh said, there were 80 campers.
This year for the first time, she said, during one week of the Camp, FACE will organize a so-called STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) focused program for campers, which is expected to cover 2.5 hours daily for five consecutive days.
Various “content providers” may be involved, Mozhdeh added, mentioning the Weminuche Audubon Society, Archuleta County Extension/4 H, and the Mountain Studies Institute, among others.
The speakers advised that FACE projects needs next year of $5000 for its school-based funding and another $5000 to support the summer enhancement effort.  They advised that support for the organization in the past has come from fund-raising events, grants and donations.  Donations can easily be made on the organization’s website. 
In addition, they solicited volunteers for the board and its subcommittees.  The organization has no paid staff, and all funds it receives go to its efforts to support education.
Foundation for Archuleta County Education Jim Garrett 2018-12-06 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
Proceedings were kicked off by Cindy Galabota with an invocation that illustrated donkeys can’t swim.  True, Cindy did maintain the invocation showed the folly of being an empty-headed yes man (a point also being made by the investigation headed by Robert Mueller), but I think she was just looking for an excuse to use the word “ass” in public.  Here’s how it went – you be the judge:
An old man was leading a donkey, with a boy riding, down a road.  A passer-by criticized the boy for disrespecting his elders by riding while the man walked.  Concerned, they switched.  Soon, another passer-by criticized the man for cruelty to the child, by riding while the boy walked.  Concerned, both the man and the boy began to walk.  But the  next passer-by criticized them both for abusing the donkey, by making it walk with no purpose.  Concerned, the man and the boy picked up the donkey to carry it, but it slipped from their grasp while on a bridge passing over a stream, whereupon it fell into the water and drowned.
Now, clearly, that showed donkeys can’t swim.  But Cindy disclosed her secret objective, by claiming “the moral of the story is if you try to please everyone, you might as well kiss your ass good bye.”  Now, I ask you, why didn’t she just say, “See, donkeys can’t swim?”
When the guffaws and applause from Cindy’s invocation died down, the absence of any Songmeister at the meeting was discovered.  President Shellie Peterson called for volunteers to lead a song, and someone shouted out, “Let’s do White Christmas.”  And so it was, as a tentative rendering of the modern X-mas classic was credibly provided by Rotarians struggling to recall the lyrics.
Guests were then welcomed, most prominently our-own Ramona Tscharr, back for a visit to Pagosa from her new home Austin, Texas.
Following greetings to Ramona and other guests, attention was turned to the Rotary Christmas Party, to be this year at the Colorado Timber Ridge Clubhouse on the evening of December 14.  The cost will be modest, at $20/person including all the festivities, food by The Buck Stops Here, and setups for BYOB beverages.  Party crew volunteers were solicited.
During the party, there will be a gag gift exchange (each couple brings one gift of whatever nature as deemed appropriate, and gifts are distributed by draw subject to the right of piratical claim by subsequent drawees).  Requests went out for the loan for use at the party of battery-powered lanterns, table cloths, serving utensils, crock pots and roaster pans.  Finally, a registration sheet for attendees was circulated, including a column to volunteer a desert.
Also in connection with the Christmas Party, Kim Moore reported that the Evans family, recently devastated by the loss of their home in the Vista neighborhood and all their belongings, had already received a wide variety of donated items to help meet their immediate needs.  The one exception, she said, is that Mr. Evans continues to need replacements for his tools.  So Kim suggested that to help, tools donated by Rotarians for his benefit be collected at the Party.   
Exchange students Theodor Bonlokke and Catalina Acuilera reported on their Thanksgiving experiences.  Theo traveled with his host family to Tucson, he said, and appreciated the warm weather and good food.  Catalina reported having enjoyed her first ski lesson, which she noted included an unanticipated opportunity to hug a tree, and also swam in her first meet with the Pasosa Springs Lady Aqua Pirates, which she reported went “really well.”
Larry McClintock then made a pitch of interest only to “anyone here over 70,” touting the opportunity to direct distributions from IRA accounts directly to a charitable foundation (ahem, one suspects Larry had in mind the Rotary Foundation, although being a modest man, he was coy about it) without incurring any tax liability for the distribution.
Dave Campbell then announced blue badges for new members Helen Richardson, Jeannie Bissell, and Alan Roth.  An interesting event, indeed, since your reporter had long since forgotten these three – who have already become as comfortable as old shoes – were new members.  Life is full of pleasant surprises when you get to be a certain age and things sort of blend into the obscurity of partial memory!
The meeting then turned to the Feed our Children campaign.  While circulating a volunteer sign-up sheet for the next several weeks, Jo Bridges reported that 29 families with a total of 89 children were participating this year, a record for the program.  Jo asked for the donation by Rotarians of their surplus “great, big suitcases,” which are needed to transport multiple backpacks stuffed with food from the loading depot uptown, to the Elementary School Distribution room, where the packs are picked up by third graders.
The suitcases presently in use, are “falling apart,” Jo explained.  She added that in addition to replacement luggage, volunteers with “big” vehicles are needed to move the filled suitcases downtown.
Next, Carrie Weiss asked for a few more volunteers to fill slots for the Salvation Army Bell Ringing/Christmas Collection campaign assigned to Rotary at City Market.  In addition, while Rotary is well on the road to meeting its campaign commitment, Carrie reported that the number of volunteers to help the campaign at Wallmart so far has lagged behind the need, and asked for additional Rotarians to fill in there.
Madame President then reminded that next week, December 6, is Rotary’s Annual Meeting, at which new Board Members will be elected.  She noted that some nominations have been made, but added that additional nominations are welcome, and encouraged members to evaluate potential candidates for possible nomination.
Betty Switzer then donned her seasonal Rudolph sunglasses, with antlers and a red nose, for Sunshine/Showers.  Betty herself offered the first Sunshine, in honor of Ramona’s visit; “You are missed,” quoth our ersatz Rudolph.
Dave Richardson then denied offering a sunshine, saying that Betty had only misunderstood the glare off his dome.  This denial was followed by Sunshine spreading so rapidly like a summer sunrise that your humble reporter, already blinded by the actual sunshine streaming in the windows (and reflecting off Dave’s head), was unable to keep up.
Consequently, it can only be noted here that Sunshines were offered by several including Granton Bartz, Larrry McClintock, and Kim Moore.  On the other hand, Sue Walen temporarily clouded the picture with a Shower, reporting on a lost wallet and the attendant chore of replacing essential documents and credit cards, but Kim restored the brightness by offering Sue (whose worldly possessions were until that moment clutched in a plastic freezer bag) a new wallet she had brought back from Tibet.  And Kriss Campbell followed up congratulations offered to herself and husband Dave at some point during the sunrise unrecalled here, by explaining they had both won age/gender group 5K races in Marathon, Texas that they entered when visiting with friends.  Not saying it was unfair to take advantage of them unsuspecting lowlanders, but no wonder endurance athletes come to Colorado to train!  Go Pagosa!
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2018-12-06 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Recognized by Justice Ministries

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Jo Bridges accepted recognition from Justice Ministries for Rotary's efforts to reduce hunger in Pagosa Springs.  The Feed Our Children Program has long been recognized as addressing a very real need for our elementary school students and their siblings for providing 'kid friendly' food for the weekend.  Jo and Lassie have spearheaded this effort from its inception.  New members on this committee supporting the efforts are Melanie Garrett and Ronnie Doctor.  Also always faithful for much 'heavy lifting' are David Cammack and Nick Tallent.  Our Mountain Rotary Club is also an important contributor to these efforts as well as Pagosa Office and Storage, who donate the packing facilities and Sherpa Realty and the Salvation Army who contribute cash funding.
Rotary Recognized by Justice Ministries Shellie Peterson 2018-11-29 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

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.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2018-11-29 07:00:00Z 0

Polio Plus Efforts

Posted by Jim Garrett
Dave Smith on Polio Plus
Dave undertook to provide some information about the Rotary International Project to eradicate polio in cooperation with the Gates Foundation, and about our individual club’s participation.
He began by recounting that among the 56 Clubs in our Rotary District, Pagosa Rotary last year ranked number six in total value of contributions, at over $3000.  But in the two prior years, he said, our contributions had been negligible.  The difference he attributed to a determined effort spearheaded by Neal Johnson and Sam Pittmon, begun last year.
Dave explained that the significance of the global effort to eradicate polio lies in a unique characteristic of the virus that transmits the disease: unlike the organisms which transmit other deadly diseases, it lives only in a human host and is not carried by insects or animals.  So eradication is a real possibility through universal immunization, but as long as immunization is incomplete anywhere, with modern trade and travel, it could re-emerge everywhere.
The logic behind the eradication effort has sometimes been misunderstood in the few nations where polio still exists, Dave reported.  He played a video from Pakistan, reporting that young women working to vaccinate children have been shot dead by tribal extremists in remote areas.  So the effort to eradicate polio demands more than health care workers to vaccinate children, he noted, but also education to overcome opposition from community leaders.
Thanks to the substantial funding by Rotary and the Gates Foundation, Dave added, the effort is paying off.  Many of the clerics in remote areas who have been roadblocks impeding the immunization effort have been and are being persuaded to change their views.  So the goal of universal eradication remains in view despite pockets of resistance.
Polio Plus Efforts Jim Garrett 2018-11-29 07:00:00Z 0

Third Grade Dictionaries

Posted by Shellie Peterson
It's that time of year again!  Rotarians get to deliver the dictionaries to the 3rd grade students at the Elementary School!  As usual their excitement is palatable and the noise level in those classrooms is deafening.  There are conversations wondering how relevant these books are in these days of google and cell phones.  I wanted to share something one of our members shared with me.
"My son received his kids dictionary this week and totally love it.  He's been repeatedly reading through it and telling me things he's reading about, and coming up with ideas and looking them up in it.  Showing me about all the Presidents and more.  Just a really cool and great idea to gift the kids an actual book in this day and age of many tablets and screens...thanks..."
Third Grade Dictionaries  Shellie Peterson 2018-11-15 07:00:00Z 0

The Rotary Foundation 

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Art Benzel did a great deal of research to familiarize himself with the depth of the Rotary Foundation.  One of the things he said that really hit home with me is that we get so focused on our local community and our efforts here that it is easy to forget that Rotary is an international organization doing great things in the world.
Art gave us some history of the beginnings of the foundation when Rotary President, Arch Klumph, proposed an endowment for doing good in 1928 with a $26.50 donation.  Today we have many opportunities to participate in this work through the Annual Shares Fund and the Polio Plus efforts and our own Donor Advised Fund.  All three avenues are recognized with Paul Harris Fellowship award points.
David Smith then took the microphone to show us around the My Rotary website and how to make a donation directly to the Annual Share or Polio Plus programs.   The Annual Share Fund is important because after being invested for three years, one-half of those funds come back into our District and becomes available for District Grants.   Contributions to global efforts are best accomplished through the Pagosa Rotary Donor Advised Fund for efforts like this most recent one David is spearheading in Niger for science education in high schools there.  As David has told us before, the World Health Organization defines extreme poverty as the 1.2 billion people that live on less than one dollar per day.  Niger is a very poor country and by enhancing science education we can provide a means for young people to have a much better future.
Lastly, for those who have a particular thing they are passionate about, you can contribute to an Area of Focus through the Rotary Foundation.  There is no return to our District 5470 for dollars directed that way though.
The Rotary Foundation Shellie Peterson 2018-11-15 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Birthdays abounded with Betty celebrating both Nick and Art in fine style!
What seemed like endless amounts of meetings and events were reviewed, most of them past by now with these couple of exceptions.  Wednesday, November 14th at 5:00 is a Business After Hours gathering at the Lantern Dancer.  The Lantern Dancer is a generous sponsor of Rotary and donated a lovely necklace and earrings set for the silent auction at the Barn Dance.  Please come out and have a beverage and appetizers for just $8.
Another event that is still coming is presentations of the Teacher Mini Grants.  Tuesday at 6:00 pm at the Middle School Library we will award to two teachers and again on Thursday at 10:00 am at the Pagosa Peak Open School we will award two more!  More about that next week, but if you are free and would like to attend either one of those presentations please do so.
Wednesday at 11:00 am is a gathering at Justus Ministries in recognition of National Hunger and Homelessness week.  We are also invited to attend that event.
News & Happenings Shellie Peterson 2018-11-15 07:00:00Z 0

Theo Bolokke and Cata Acuilera

Posted by Jim Garrett
Theodor led off with a discussion of Denmark, a land one-sixth the size of Colorado, having a maximum land altitude of 563 ft., 443 islands, 6000 power-generating windmills, Viking heritage, free health-care and education, and even salaries for students to attend college.  (Imagine: young people don’t need to start life staring at a mountain of debt!)
His father is a farmer, with a big house (the whole Rotary club could stay there, Betty exclaimed), and 1000 acres producing wheat, barley, rye and supporting 2000 pigs – pork is a Danish staple, Theo explained.  Of course, he acknowledged a national fondness for pastry too (“Danish, you know.”)  
Denmark is known for Lego, Maresk shipping containers, Carlsberg Beer, and Hans Christian Andersen, Theo reported, while displaying photos of all, Andersen being represented by the Littlest Mermaid statute in Copenhagen Harbor.  The city of Copenhagen is ancient, with many buildings of great antiquity.  Denmark has a King, the current leader of a Royal Family that has held the Danish throne since 1665.
Danes have a distinctive sense of humor, Theo said, providing an exapmple: “Are you finished?  No, I’m Danish!”  They make fun of one another, he added.
He has two brothers and one sister, and a large extended family overall.  He gets “lots of presents at Christmas,” Theo said, perhaps demonstrating the Danish penchant for poking fun, even at one’s self.
Theo said he enjoys skiing, skeet shooting, hunting for birds, deer and elk, and helping with the work on the farm.
Catalina then took the microphone to talk about Chile.
Theo Bolokke and Cata Acuilera Jim Garrett 2018-11-08 07:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
The invocation was a reading from the extraordinary book of essays by 20th Century naturalist, Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac.  The chosen excerpt reminded of the awesome splendor of our surroundings in the mountains of the Southwest.
Sharon Crump then lead the group in singing “God Bless America,” in honor of the impending Election Day.
Meeting visitors of note included District Governor-elect, David Wood, of Salida, a cheerful man who suggested Rotarians should join him in regularly displaying their Rotary pins on their garments.
Carrie Weiss then kicked off the Holidays with an announcement of the annual Salvation Army “Bell Ringing” campaign.  Rotary will wield the bells and man the pot at City Market for a total of 10 days this year, Carrie announced, and began circulation of the sign-up sheet for volunteers to choose their slots.  Unexpectedly, Carrie sprinkled her announcement with a series of “Y’alls.”  Do Christmas bells remind Y’uns guys of Dixie?  (All right, it’s a Pittsburgh equivalent.  As soon as I heard the Y’alls, I’m thinking, Y’uns.)
The vast majority of the benefits of the bell-ringing campaign are enjoyed locally, Carrie stressed.  Adding tangible emphasis to the point, Larry McClintock reported that Rotary had just received a $1000 check from the Salvation Army, to support the Feed our Children project.
Providing an update on another Rotary project that benefits local children, Jo Ann Laird reported that the Free Dictionary Distribution to Elementary School 3rd Graders would occur this year next Thursday, which will be November 8, in the afternoon following the Rotary meeting.
Reporting on the Polio Plus campaign, President Shellie Peterson advised that $510.28 had been collected in cash by volunteers from members of the public outside City Market on October 24.  She advised that donations by check to the Rotary Foundation can be delivered between now and year’s end to Larry.  Shellie said the goal is total local contributions of $3500, and with checks already received, added that we are about half-way there.
Shellie also announced that the Rotary Holiday Party will be on December 13 this year.  As it happens, Rotary is also serving a Loaves and Fishes lunch that day, she added.
Betty Switzer then took the floor, gesturing with bubble-wand and hefting her newly-renamed “Thanksgiving Pumpkin,” (formerly her Halloween Pumpkin, but recycling of plastics is a good thing). 
First Betty disclosed the welcome news that only a single $1 fine had been assessed for “pin default” this week.  I assume that was good news to Governor-elect Wood, but he was too busy tucking into lunch to comment. 
Then Betty turned to Sunshine/Showers.
First up was Dave Richardson, whose Sunshine was “I’m eating!” (Or was that a protest of Betty’s interruption?  The entrees did look quite appetizing, and Dave was following the example of the Governor-elect.)  Then Dave Cammack took the floor.  He was far more garrulous than Dave R; Dave C reported that his son got a job as a game warden and built a house; he added that the Cammack family bagged two bull elks this year.  (Dave’s cup, evidently, “runneth over.”)  Kim Moore extolled the “best Barn Dance ever,” and celebrated her most recent exotic trip, to Tibet, where she discovered the delights of Yak Yogurt.  (Ah ha, there’s an idea for next year’s Barn Dance.  Then Kim can enjoy exotica without missing the Dance.)  Codie Wilson reported that the girls and boys cross-country teams both qualified for the state championship meet.  And your intrepid scribe set down his pen for a moment to rejoice in the planting of 15 aspen trees with the aid of a team of generous neighbors.  Betty concluded by announcing that Y’all was the word of the day.  (Some time, I want Y’uns to be the word of the day.  Then we can all by “Y’nzers.”)
Shellie then turned off the bubble machine, and added two more announcements: that the second installment of the Rotary Leadership Institute would soon be held in Bayfield (the installments are independent, she explained, so interested Rotarians will benefit from attending even if they were not able to make the first installment), and that there will be no meeting on November 22, which is Thanksgiving Day this year.
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2018-11-08 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Foundation Month

Posted by Shellie Peterson
November is foundation month – The ROTARY FOUNDATION

The Rotary Foundation transforms your gifts into projects that change lives both close to home and around the world. As the charitable arm of Rotary International, we tap into a global network of Rotarians who invest their time, money, and expertise into our priorities, such as eradicating polio and promoting peace. Foundation grants empower Rotarians to approach challenges such as poverty, illiteracy, and malnutrition with sustainable solutions that leave a lasting impact.

Strong financial oversight, a stellar charity rating, and a unique funding model mean that we make the very most of your contribution. Give and become a part of Rotary’s life-changing work!

The collective leadership and expertise of our 1.2 million members helps us tackle some of the world’s biggest challenges, locally and globally. We are united by common values and vision for the future as we sharpen our focus with targeted specific causes that will reach communities most in need.


For more than 100 years, our guiding principles have been the foundation upon which our values and tradition stand. The Four-Way Test, Object of Rotary, and the Avenues of Service express our commitment to service, fellowship, diversity, integrity, and leadership.


We direct our efforts in six areas to enhance our local and global impact. Our most successful and sustainable projects and activities tend to fall within the following areas:

  • Promoting peace
  • Fighting disease
  • Providing clean water
  • Saving mothers and children
  • Supporting education
  • Growing local economies


At the 1917 convention, outgoing RI President Arch C. Klumph proposed to set up an endowment “for the purpose of doing good in the world.” In 1928, it was renamed The Rotary Foundation, and it became a distinct entity within Rotary International.

Rotary Foundation Month Shellie Peterson 2018-11-04 06:00:00Z 0

World Polio Day

Posted by Sam Pittmon
story thumbnail
Rotary Appreciated your Support on World Polio Day
By Sam Pittmon
Two weeks ago, the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs asked for your help to raise funds on World Polio Day October 24. We are pleased to report that we raised over $500.00 to support our efforts to eradicate Polio from the face of the earth. All money raised will be forwarded to our International Rotary Foundation Polio Plus Committee where The Bill and Malinda Gates Foundation will match $2 dollars for every $1 donated. So, what that means is that your donations will grow to $1500.00. All those funds are then forwarded to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative whose goal is to stop the spread of the polio virus and rid the world of polio disease.
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs appreciates the generosity of the Pagosa community in supporting this fund raiser and all other Rotary sponsored activities. We extend a special thank you to City Market Shopping Center manager and staff for allowing us to solicit donations at their front door.  
To learn more about the global efforts to eradicate polio and to donate to the cause go to
World Polio Day Sam Pittmon 2018-11-01 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

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.
News & Happenings Sam Pittmon 2018-11-01 06:00:00Z 0

David Smith Invites Us to Join the Niger Project

Posted by Shellie Peterson
October 25, 2018
Investing in science education in Niger is really an economic development effort.  As in Senegal, there will be a partner club in country and David will be traveling there to instruct the instructors for four high schools.  With funds from other clubs, the District and Rotary International any dollars we can contribute are leveraged into many more.  This is an exciting opportunity to make a huge difference in a large number of young people's lives as they will be better prepared to get good paying jobs and take care of their families.  So - the second 'ask' of the day, checks should be made payable to Pagosa Springs Rotary Donor Advised Fund, again, be sure your name is easily identifiable as contributions to the DAF also are awarded Paul Harris Recognition Points.
The Rotary Foundation and International Service - July 18, 2018
Dave Smith took the floor with a two-fold mission: to beat the drums to find a new chairperson for our chapter of the Rotary Foundation, and to introduce Pagosa Rotary’s latest international project, which will undertake to strengthen high school science instruction in the central African, Saharan nation Niger, which lies south of Algeria and Libya.  The new project seems to be essentially a clone of the Senegal project that has been underway for a few years, with very similar objectives and means.
The local Rotary Foundation chairperson position has been open for a couple of years, David reported.  He projected a job description on the screen, which filled every available inch with an avalanche of small-font characters, completely illegible to the audience. 
With his characteristic, mischievous grin, David explained the slide was printed in such small font on a crowed page because he didn’t want us to see it, and quickly jumped to the next slide before potential candidates could be intimidated.  The new slide, he said, summarized the essence of the position in three short words: “communication, organization, encouragement.”
Communication, he continued, with Rotary International to provide a two-way flow of information between it and our club; organization, to stimulate local involvement in Rotary Foundation activities via a local committee; and encouragement, to move us collectively forward to new and better contributions to the mission of the Rotary Foundation to fund humanitarian activities.
Dave digressed briefly with a description of Rotary as a combination of elements like a three-legged stool: local clubs numbering 35,000 with 1.2 million members all over the world, Rotary International, which herds the cats clubs into a semblance of organizational structure, and Rotary Foundation, which provides funding to help support humanitarian projects on the District level and globally, such as the Senegal Project.
With a simple pitch like that, Dave, you’ll find someone to be Foundation chairperson in no time at all.
Supporting Education in Niger - June 17, 2018
Niger is a land-locked West African country that is twice the size of Texas. About 80% of Niger lies in the Sahara Desert. In 2015, the United Nations ranked Niger 187 of 188 countries in human development.
Approximately 70% of its population cannot read. Yet, within the capital city, Niamey, there are high schools where students study biology, chemistry, physics and English. These students will likely play a major role in future economic development in Niger. The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs is working with the Gaweye Rotary Club of Niamey to improve education in two high schools in Niamey.
The Gaweye Rotary Club of Niamey is a well-established, highly active club. Great folks to work with!
Funds from a District Grant were used to buy 3 computers and 2 digital projectors that will be used by the science teachers. These funds were also used to buy voltmeters and other supplies used for teaching physics. I spent a week in Niamey where I met with school officials, taught 2 short teacher training workshops, and developed plans for a global grant that will substantially expand our efforts to improve education in these two high schools.
High school physics teachers use a computer provided by our District Grant to study simulations of common physics experiments. The combination of computers, projectors and simulated experiments is highly effective for teaching large, over-crowded classrooms. This equipment is also useful for showing Youtube videos.
Having completed an in-depth Needs Assessment, we are now preparing a Global Grant application which will be submitted to TRF in late May. The main objective of this program will be to support science and English education in two high schools. This program will build on experience we have gained through four Global Grants carried out in Senegal.
Supporting English language instruction is a new goal for our program. French is the national language in Niger. Little English is spoken. Yet, a country can be part of the modern world only if a substantial part of its workforce speaks English.
We are looking for clubs to help us in two ways. Of course, we will appreciate financial support. You can also help by hosting a small group of English teachers for a week in the summer of 2019. These teachers speak English, but have never visited an English-speaking country, such as England or the US. We plan to provide a month of practical training in English, but need Rotary Clubs to host the group for a week.
For more information, please contact David Smith (email:; tel: 970 264 6647)
David Smith Invites Us to Join the Niger Project Shellie Peterson 2018-10-25 06:00:00Z 0

How About That Barn Dance!!

Posted by Shellie Peterson
In addition to the 4th Annual Jewels and Jeans Barn Dance sponsors listed below, the Rotary Club of Pagosa would like to thank the band, County Thunder.  Clay Campbell, Dennis Kleckner, Greg Guitar and Josh Devoti had everyone on their feet and having a great time!  We thank all of those that came out and danced and bid on auction items in support of scholarships for graduating high school seniors and all the work that Rotary does in our community.  Our gratitude goes out to Jake Montroy, Michael Branch and Mark Crane who all gave their time and talent for our first ever ‘live’ auction.  Finally, we would like to thank the Pagosa SUN and KWUF Radio for their endless support with media coverage of Rotary events throughout the year. 
Title Sponsor
TBK Bank
Platinum Sponsor
Pagosa SUN
Gold Sponsors
Gary Morris  - Mountain Spirit Ranch
Jann C. Pitcher Real Estate - Lantern Dancer
Kim Moore - Exit Realty
Silver Sponsors
First Southwest Bank - Rose-Walker LLP
Terry's Ace Hardware & Home Supply
Precision Autobody - Jeannie Bissell
Choke Cherry Tree - Queen Bee
The Buck Stops Here
Bronze Sponsors
Garry and Cathy Stevenson - Davis Engineering
La Plata Electric Association - Happy Trails
Scott Strategic Investments
Morehart Murphy Regional Auto Center
General Sponsors
Durango Dermatology & Surgery
Foot Prints - Wolf Creek Ski Area
Sandra Houston - Lassie Olin
Ski & Bow Rack - Elite Recycling
Pat Love & Associates - Funky Trunk
Hair by Kandi - Refurbish Pagosa
Pagosa Chiropractic - Alley House
Bonnie Blue BBQ - Tractor Supply
Chavolo's Restaurant - Smoken Moe's
Two Chicks and a Hippy - Carrie Weiss
Pagosa Brewing and Grill - La Taqueria
Home Again - Katherine Foster
Café Colorado - Kip's Grill
Dietz Market
How About That Barn Dance!! Shellie Peterson 2018-10-25 06:00:00Z 0

News and Happenings

Posted by Shellie Peterson
Without a reporter last week, I can only recall a few of the announcements and other activities of the meeting, but we did wish Happy Birthday to several ladies from our group.  Cindi Galabota, Donna Wynn and Jeannie Bissell all got to wear funny hats and get sung to.  As always, Betty did a great job with this assignment, even though it appears our data is not always exactly correct.  If you notice an error, let me know and I will get it fixed! Or you can log on to Clubrunner, go to the Membership Tab, Membership List and click the letter of your last name.  You can change anything or make any additions to your profile.
News and Happenings Shellie Peterson 2018-10-25 06:00:00Z 0

Neal Johnson Shares Upcoming World Polio Day Events

Posted by Shellie Peterson
World Polio Day is this Wednesday, October 24th, and the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs will be ringing those bells to solicit donations.  For every dollar Rotary raises toward the total eradication of polio, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will match it with two dollars!  So, Neal's challenge to each of us was to make it $34 so that with the match the contribution instantly turns into $100.
Stop by the City Market Shopping Complex this Wednesday and put your check in the red bucket.  Be sure your name can be identified on the check so that Larry McClintock will be able to get Paul Harris Fellowship points awarded.
Neal Johnson Shares Upcoming World Polio Day Events Shellie Peterson 2018-10-25 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
Carol (Ci Ci) Stuart kicked the proceedings off with the invocation: “As we Rotary members and guests gather here today, we pray we are ever mindful of opportunities to give service to our fellow citizens and community.  Always keeping in mind the enduring values of life, we exert our efforts in those areas upon which our future generations can build with confidence.  Let us continue to strive to make this a better and more harmonious world.”
Sharon Crump then daringly defied the elements by leading us in a merry rendition of the old classic “Let it Snow.”  (I enthusiastically joined in, belting out the chorus; we do all revel in our beautiful winters.  But there are limits: I didn’t see very much defiance of the elements as traffic was crawling over Wolf Creek Pass at 20 mph in the swirling, mid-morning snow Wednesday; there was instead an abundance of white-knuckled respect on display, and no doubt many sighs of relief were heaved as snow-free South Fork came into view.  The snow was heavy all the way from Treasure Falls to well past the summit.  On the drive to Salida that day, only Wolf Creek had real snow.  So there you have it – the “most snow” boasts substantiated!)
Announcements ensued.  To begin, Lisa Scott provided some information to supplement the presentation she and school board member Brooks Lindner had made at a Rotary meeting a few weeks back regarding the proposal for a mill levy override to benefit Archuleta School District to be decided by voters this fall: First, Lisa clarified that the measure will generate a consistent $1.7 million new revenue for the schools each year of its seven-year life, rather than vary with property appreciation.  Second, she clarified that the revenue would be used in part for teacher and staff salaries, but would not result in salary increases for District senior management including Superintendent Linda Reed.
Madame President Shellie Peterson then reminded all to bring in donations of Halloween candy being collected by Rotary to help the families of the Pagosa Springs Mesa Heights neighborhood cope with the annual influx of an eager hoarde of “trick or treaters” it experiences.
Shellie then turned to World Polio Day, coming on Wednesday October 24, when Rotary will again be manning a pot at City Market to collect donations from members of the public.  She reminded us that the goal of Polio Day is eradication of the scourge of the disease world-wide, and donations collected by Rotary Clubs will be matched by the Gates Foundation, 2 to 1, with a total goal of raising $450 million over three years.
In addition, Shellie reported on the recent District Conference, and with the help of Livia Lynch indulged in Club bragging rights earned by prizes awarded to us at the Conference.
First, Shellie reported that we had been recognized with a Presidential Citation, bestowed annually on only ten clubs in the District, based on criteria such as level of community activities and membership growth.  She noted that our 6000 plus hours of community service (valued at a modest $25/hr.) and cash donations to community causes were worth over $200,000 during the last year.
Shellie then asked Livia to describe the really big award received by the Club, the DD Monroe prize, for which we received a handsome banner to display for one year.  The Monroe award is given to one club a year, based on the quality of its community activities.  Livia provided a rundown of many strong services our club provides to the community, like the backpack program, Loaves and Fishes, and the exchange program, which with others earned the award.  Generally, Livia proclaimed, the Monroe award simply is recognition “this is an amazing club.”
Exchange students Theodor Bonlokke and Kata Acuilera also reported on activities they attended at the District Conference with their peers from communities throughout the District.  Theodor took the lead in describing the group’s activities during the weekend, including a scavenger hunt in the Cripple Creek community, and a visit to a near-by gold mine.  When Kata had her turn, she reported that Theodor had covered everything, except their enjoyment of the pizza.
Information concerning the October 20 Jewels and Jeans Barn Dance then became the focus of attention.  Betty Switzer repeated an earlier appeal for set-up and clean-up volunteers.  John Richardson reported that tickets were moving, but were still readily available for additional celebrants to don their finest and fanciest and join the festivities.  Treasurer Larry McClintock called for Rotarians to beat the bushes for sponsors, who in addition to the satisfaction of supporting their community will receive recognition at the Dance and year-long publicity.  And Jo Bridges reported there will a selection of choice items for the silent auction.  (A source who has requested anonymity because he, she or it was not authorized to speak publicly, has informed your reporter that one will be an Alley House gift certificate.)
Betty then took plastic pumpkin in hand, and reported on the just-instituted, pin-lacking members $1 fine program, which she said had yielded proceeds of $9.25 (Betty – you let someone off for a quarter????), and a harvest of lame excuses (the dog ate it, and it’s in my other car, an adult variant of the old homework alibi, “I forgot it at home”).
At this point, Lassie Olin and Kriss Campbell began crying “Help, Help,” over spilled water (no doubt it would have been milk had there been any).  It’s not clear to this reporter whether the glass knocked over at their table was a clever diversionary maneuver to avoid further details from Betty on the lame excuses (Betty had just outed Meg Wempe on the bit about the car), an expression of sympathy for the poor victims of Hurricane Michael, or simply an accident.  But it is clear that Betty’s report was abruptly terminated by the commotion.  Perhaps a team of crack investigators should be assembled.  But don’t ask Saudi Arabia for guidance: that likely would produce a team of crack obfuscators. (“Oh absolutely not, he left, for sure.  And we’re going to investigate, you bet.”)
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2018-10-18 06:00:00Z 0

Richard Vihel, Citizens for a New Jail

Posted by Jim Garrett
Mr. Vihel represented a volunteer group supporting the ballot initiative proposed by Archuleta County to increase local sales tax by 0.1% for a term of 15 years, in order to raise $19.7 million for construction of a jail and a new Sheriff’s Office. (County officials are prohibited under Colorado law from advocating for the ballot initiative.)  
Our speaker explained the history: Colorado law requires that each county maintain its own jail.  Archuleta county had operated a 34-bed jail downtown in compliance with the law, until a severe storm in 2015 flooded the facility, immediately causing uninhabitable conditions for inmates, but also damaging the foundation.  Due to the issues with the foundation, Mr. Vihel stated, costs to repair the building would be prohibitive, and the available space is not large enough to meet present and future needs in any event. 
(Note: Mr. Vihel did not mention, but your reporter is aware from familiarity with the jail issue dating from his tenure at the Pagosa Springs Sun, that replacement of the jail because of its clear inadequacies had been under active discussion for many years prior to the 2015 flood.  Also, readers may remember that the Sheriff’s Office had been housed in recent years adjacent to the jail; it remained in its space in the building even after the flood until approximately a year ago, when conditions in the building degenerated to the point of being unhealthful, causing employees to fall ill.  The Sheriff’s office thereupon relocated to the Emergency Operations Center on Piedra Road near the County Airport.  Likewise relocating from the old building at about the same time were the Archuleta County Courts, which now operate in the La Plata County Courthouse.  Future accommodations for the Court system will not be resolved by the pending ballot question.)
Richard Vihel, Citizens for a New Jail Jim Garrett 2018-10-18 06:00:00Z 0

Livia Cloman Lynch Announces the D.D. Monroe Award

Posted by Jim Garrett
The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs was proud to be the recipient of two very prestigious awards for the 2017-2018 Rotary Year.  At the Rotary District 5470 conference in Cripple Creek they were awarded the Presidential Citation Award.  This award is to recognize Clubs that are strong and making a positive difference in their communities by achieving goals related to Rotary’s three strategic priorities: to support and strengthen clubs, focus and increase humanitarian service, and enhance Rotary’s public image and awareness.  The Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs met and exceeded all of the goals it set and was recognized with this award.
The second award that was received was the D. D. Monroe Award.  This award is made annually by the District Governor to recognize the BEST Club in the District. While recognizing a Club as the best Club of the year, it also pays tribute to D. D. Monroe for his many contributions to Rotary.  This is the highest award given by Rotary District 5470 to recognize truly vibrant Clubs.  Much of the criteria for this award builds upon the foundation of the Presidential Citation and adds additional criteria for measurable improvement over the previous year.  It is highly competitive with only 1 out of 56 Rotary clubs in District 5470 being recognized.
President Kim Moore, the Club Board of Directors and all of the members of the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs are to be congratulated for all of their efforts to serve in the community of Pagosa Springs and the world!
Livia Cloman Lynch Announces the D.D. Monroe Award Jim Garrett 2018-10-18 06:00:00Z 0

4th Annual Jewels and Jeans Barn Dance

Posted by Shellie Peterson
This Saturday, October 20, from 7 to 11, you will want to be at the Archuleta County Extension Building for the 4th Annual Jewels and Jeans Barn Dance!  Get out your best country outfit because there will be some competition this year!  There will be prizes for the Best Dressed Cowboy and the Best Dressed Cowgirl.  WAIT! There are even more surprises!  There will be a live auction early in the evening with several very fun and exciting items including spending a day fly fishing with Gary Morris, country music artist, at his Mountain Spirit Ranch on the Navajo River.  This exciting opportunity can be arranged directly with Mr. Morris for sometime after July when the river conditions are perfect for fly fishing.  Other live auction items include a beautiful necklace and earring set donated by Lantern Dancer and a new black cowboy hat autographed by Clint Black which has been donated by Garry and Cathy Stevenson. In the silent auction there are more items as well including lift tickets from Wolf Creek Ski Area and ski rental certificates from the Ski and Bow Rack, just in time for that fresh snow. 
4th Annual Jewels and Jeans Barn Dance Shellie Peterson 2018-10-14 06:00:00Z 0

Youth Exchange Flag Ceremony at District Conference

Posted by Shellie Peterson
We had many fine experiences at the District 5470 District Conference, but the Rotary Youth Exchange Flag Ceremony always touches my heart!  So many exceptional young people getting to know about our country and making friendships that will last a lifetime!  Theo and Chata were fine ambassadors and carried their flags of Denmark and Chili well and with great pride.
Youth Exchange Flag Ceremony at District Conference Shellie Peterson 2018-10-11 06:00:00Z 0

Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance


Posted by Shellie Peterson
Better be getting ready!!!  It's going to be the best party in town, next Saturday night!!  
Ticket sales are due into John and Helen Richardson by MONDAY, October 15th, or you will be charged for the tickets you have in your possession.  No one wants a ticket to go unsold!  Get them turned in if you have not sold them so that some of our "Super Sales" folks can do their stuff!  Besides, it's not a party unless there is a full house and we have important WORK TO DO HERE!  We are raising funds for our scholarship students! and all the other work we do in this community every day.  More folks attending, more folks learn about Rotary, more folks buy cocktails, more folks bid on silent and live auction items.  It is all important.  
Speaking of important, how are your sponsorship commitments coming?  We need these in by Monday as well.  There is time required to get to the printer for the large poster acknowledgement of our very important sponsors for this event.
Jewels & Jeans Barn Dance  Shellie Peterson 2018-10-11 06:00:00Z 0

Don Volger, Mayor of Pagosa Springs

Posted by Jim Garrett
The Mayor began by providing some personal history.  He has lived in Pagosa Springs since 1973, he said, and since 1977 has been serving the town as a volunteer or employee.  (Don did not say, but many of those years were spent as a member of the Pagosa Springs Police Department, including a lengthy tenure as Chief.). He identified his personal priorities in life as God, family and serving Pagosa Springs. 
The Mayor expressed the hope that all members of the community also love Pagosa Springs, observing it is a family, and we do best when we work together.  No one has all the answers, or even all the questions, he said, so we need to break down divisions, follow the Golden Rule to treat others as we would like for ourselves, and recall that the only thing we will “carry into eternity is our relationships.” 
We must “care about each other,” he observed.  And, he suggested, “commit yourself” to something bigger.  With mutual caring, shared work and commitment, “Pagosa Springs will be off the charts,” the Mayor predicted.
Speaking of other key figures in the Town government, Don extolled the collegiality of the Town Council.  The Mayor is one of seven members of counsel, who presides over meetings but does not possess any superior powers, being entitled like the other members to one vote in deciding issues presented. 
The current Town Manager is Andrea Phillips, who took over the job upon the retirement last year of Greg Schulte.  The former Manager left “big shoes to fill,” said the Mayor, but Ms. Phillips has been great, and everything the Town could have hoped for.  She may even one day surpass Schulte’s legacy, he observed.
With regard to the Archuleta County Board of Commissioners, the Mayor said the Town and County have a very good relationship.  Council and the Commissioners meet once monthly in a joint work session, and in recent years have cooperated closely on identifying and seeking to foster progress on three community priorities: Early Childhood Development, Affordable Housing, and Broadband Internet Service.  The mayor commented that the Town and County could do even better than they have in working together, but overall the relationship is very positive.
With regard to the three community priorities, in response to an inquiry what could be done to improve slowness in the rate of achieving progress, the Mayor commented that we don’t have a king and democracy takes time.  But, he suggested consistent with his initial theme, we can achieve more progress by coming together with a shared commitment to finding solutions.
Don Volger, Mayor of Pagosa Springs Jim Garrett 2018-10-11 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Jim Garrett
The meeting began with Kim Moore presiding in the absence of President Shellie Petersen while attending the District Conference at Cripple Creek.
The invocation was delivered by Meg Wempe, consisting of a compilation of observations suggesting the richness of human experience and aspirations.  A few of the many thoughts included were: “Share the extraordinary experience of being alive,” “Let us celebrate our shared humanness,” “Let us work together for a better year.”
Sharon Crump then took the microphone to lead the group in singing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” in honor of the Colorado Rockies.
Meeting visitors of note included John Duvall, visiting with Larry McClintock.
Jann Pitcher thanked the many who turned out for the Great Put Hill Pickup.  Among the trash collected were several items that bespoke of more than mere litter, perhaps indeed of life gone wrong in one way or another: Larry found a Harley Davidson watch, Jo Ann Laird found a piece of a Chevrolet grill, and Dave Campbell found shoes, socks and a T-shirt. 
So my suggestion is that we should have a contest for the best sentence explaining the loss of these items, such as: “On a hot day, the Chevrolet being driven by a man in a t-shirt collided with a pick-up carrying a water tank which ruptured in the collision, causing the hot and frustrated Chevrolet driver to leap out of his car and strip down to cool off in the cascading shower, but the pick-up driver, hot and bothered on his own, alighted from the truck to exact justice, leading to a hasty retreat by the Chevrolet driver leaving sections of the vehicle and all his belongings but pants  by the roadside.”  Lame, I admit, but that’s the idea.
Jann followed her description of the mayhem on Put Hill (no wait, that’s my idea, not hers) to report glad tidings regarding Barry Wheeless, whom she said had received a “get out of jail card:” i.e. been released from the hospital following four surgeries, the insertion of a rod in his forearm to repair the original broken bone, and a bout of double-peneumonia that landed him in intensive care for several days.
Lisa Scott reported that exchange students Cata and Theodor (plus a few others based in nearby communities) were attending a Rotary camp at Cripple Creek, with the help of Kenny Rogers of Pagosa Mountain Rotary.  Lisa added that Pagosa outgoing exchangers Savannah and Lauren were doing well overseas, despite a little difficulty for the former with her host family requiring a little attention.
Betty Switzer then made an appeal for Barn Dance volunteers, noting especially that strong backs were needed for set-up and clean-up.  In addition, she noted that two more volunteers to occupy seats of power as entrance door ticket-takers were needed.
Larry reported that sponsorships for the Dance were coming in, but solicited continued efforts to recruit more. 
Kim Moore asked Rotarians to contribute candy for Halloween, needed in a town neighborhood that traditionally is swamped by trick-or-treaters.
Betty then returned to the floor for Sunshine/Showers, with bubble machine in hand.  She began with an announcement advising that starting October 11, $1 fines would be imposed for attending meetings without proper attire, i.e. anything as long as a Rotary pin is attached (Betty did not specify where the point of attachment should be).   Betty then suffered a brief memory lapse, saying the other thing she wanted to say was “something,” before quickly recovering by adding that the fine money and S/S donations will benefit the Scholarship fund. 
Ci Ci Stewart then offered a “sunshine” by observing, “It rained.”  (Two for the price of one, suggested a voice from the crowd.)
Lassie Olin thanked Rotarians participating in the backpack program, observing that the program was off to a good start with 15 students signed up already.
Jeff Switzer then offered a sunshine with the observation that a grandson had pledged to a fraternity at the University of Arkansas.
A final sunshine was offered by Kim, recounting her enjoyment with husband Walt of taking care of their granddaughters for several days while daughter and son-in-law were off on R ‘n R.   One of the features was a youth soccer game, at which an apparently pointed reminder was imparted by one of the granddaughters that one-time coach, current grandpa Walt’s role was “to cheer.”  (Probably a reminder others may have merited on occasion.)
News & Happenings Jim Garrett 2018-10-11 06:00:00Z 0

World Polio Day

Posted by Shellie Peterson
World Polio Day
24 October
One Day, One Focus, Ending Polio.
Join with the Rotary Club of Pagosa Springs on World Polio Day to donate to  We will be ringing the red kettle bells and taking donations for this important humanitarian work at the City Market Shopping Center from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM!  The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will match $2 for every $1 donated.
The 6th annual World Polio Day event will take place at the College of Physicians in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The livestream begins at 18:30 Philadelphia time (UTC -4). Find out how you can take part in World Polio Day, and watch last year's livestream program featuring global health experts and celebrities sharing our progress on the road to polio eradication.  Find out how on
By the time the world is certified polio-free, Rotary’s contributions to the global polio eradication effort will exceed US$2.2 billion, including US$985 million in matching funds from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Rotary’s contribution to the Global Polio Eradication Initiative since 1988 accounts for nearly 14% of all contributions through June 2017 and represents approximately 42% of private sector contributions.  Rotary is the leading non-governmental voluntary organization contributor to the GPEI.
World Polio Day Shellie Peterson 2018-10-08 06:00:00Z 0

News & Happenings

Posted by Sam Pittmon
Art presented to us a very thoughtful invocation that was inspired by the Beatitudes of Matthews Gospel. It goes as follows:
What is wisdom?
Having experience, knowledge, good judgement marked by deep understanding and keen discernment.
Who is wise?
People who show concern for others based on wisdom.
What makes a Great Leader?
It starts by truthfully valuing other people. By demonstrating your appreciation to all concerned. By celebrating success. By holding hands with failures.
What did I learn by thinking through this little exercise? That all of us are of value to Rotary and to each other.
And then to paraphrase this in the style of the Four Way Test: I believe this.
  1. To be true
  2. To be non-judgmental
  3. That we are building goodwill and better friendships
  4. That by using wisdom we are being beneficial to all concerned
Pledge of allegiance: Livia Lynch
Visiting Rotarians: Kenny Rogers form Pagosa Mountain Rotary. He was selling beer mugs with a coupon for free beer at Pagosa Brewery. This was a fund raiser on behalf of his Rotary Club.
Exchange student reports:
Theodor Bonlokke continues to enjoy school and that his soccer team has lost all the games that have been played. He is living with the Farrah family.
Cata Acuilera continues to enjoy school and that she will be participating in cross country track meet this weekend. Her host family is the Raymond family and she gets a kick out of their son Paul as he tries to speak Spanish to her.
Announcements: President Shellie announced that District Rotary Conference will be held next week. She will be attending and encouraged other members to attend as well. She extended a welcome back to Donna and Greg Wynn, Bill Darling and Terri House. Shellie reminded all to continue recording volunteer service hours stating that compared to last year we are 124 hours short for the year. She also reminded all to request a leave of absence from the membership chairperson if you will be gone out of town for more than a couple weeks. Sadly, she told us that John Duvall has resigned from our club.
Jan Pitcher announced that there will be trash pick-up on Putt Hill this Saturday. Participants are told to meet at Pagosa elementary school at 8:00 AM and be prepared with gloves, hats sunglasses and sun screen. Be on the look out for interesting finds to report at the next meeting. There may be a prize for the most interesting or unusual find.
Helen Richardson reminded members that she was taking money for Barn Dance tickets and requested that any tickets not sold should be turned in as soon as possible.
Jeannie Bissell appealed to all members to sign up for duty to help at the Barn Dance though she feels that all is going well.
Sam  Pittmon made an announcement about the up coming Rotary Polio Plus Day schedule for October 24. Our rotary club will for the second year sponsor a fund raiser on that day at the City Market Grocery store. We will be ringing the bell for donations similarly to Salvation Army at Christmas. Last year we raised over $3000.00 dollars and would like to best that total this year. A sign-up sheet will be passed so that everyone has an opportunity to volunteer as a bell ringer. You may also donate funds directly to our club by check. Neal Johnson and I will be having a presentation on Polio Plus on October 18th.
Jo Bridges solicited volunteers to sign-up to help with Feed Our Children Backpack program. There are three opportunities to help and they are stuffing backpacks, transporting them to the school and lastly giving the backpacks to the kids at the school. The first delivery will be October 5th. Jo also made known that there is a need for additional certified “raffle masters”. Certification can be easily obtained online.
Sunshine and Showers
Betty Switzer our Sargent of Arms cheerfully reminder us that today is Thursday. She then reminded members that cell phones are going off and that there is a fine for the guilty person unless the call is for Rotary Business. She suggested that fines of quarters and dollars is better than nickel and dimes. Let this be a warning. While discussing fines she stated that Rotary members not wearing a Rotary pin can be fined, too!
Jan Pitcher shared a sunshine that her two granddaughter’s volleyball team recently beat Bayfield for the first time in 11 years.
David Campbell shared that he and Kriss travel to Lake City last week not knowing that the group that he was with had plans to climb the fourteener Handies Mountain. Guided by Donna Wynn they were successful.  Donna Wynn congratulated Dave and Kriss for their feat.
Betty Switzer voiced a “Thank you” to Terri House for her support through publishing Rotary News in the Pagosa Sun.
Georgette Baumgardner announced new Barn Dance sponsors Davis Engineering and Exit Reality.
News & Happenings  Sam Pittmon 2018-10-04 06:00:00Z 0

Art Benzel - Approaching Sponsors

Posted by Sam Pittmon
Art Benzel presented a discussion aimed at an easy way to sell tickets and get sponsors for our Barn Dance. First you must know the location, date, who is providing the food and the name of the band that will be playing. You will need to know that any checks made out should go to Pagosa Rotary CAF.
Art then suggested the best approach to gain sponsors. If you know the person you are more likely to get their support. You should exhibit honesty by looking eye to eye to the person. You should read the sponsor letter to them and make a point to tell that all moneys raised stays locally. Georgette added that money raised is used to make a significant difference in many children's lives through the scholarship, dictionary programs and other projects. You should make sure to let the sponsors know that their business logo will be included on our bulletin page and website and that when someone clicks on their logo it takes them directly to their business website.
Art Benzel - Approaching Sponsors Sam Pittmon 2018-10-04 06:00:00Z 0