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The first speaker of the new year was Adrienne Palm, Director of Leadership, Pulse and Cultivate for Fox Cities Chamber of Commerce. She did an amazing job outlining the various events and networking opportunities the Chamber is creating for young professionals in the area. It was exciting to learn that the events are going to branch out into Neenah, Menasha, and other surrounding communities as well as in Appleton. Check out Adrienne's YouTube video from December.
We were once again treated to an excellent performance by the St. Mary's choir students. As always, they mixed in a bit of traditional Christmas music with some non-traditional and very fun selections. We look forward to this every year and want to thank Mike Bailey and the students for providing an excellent show for our Christmas luncheon.
As the colder weather sets in it is nice to know that a warm and friendly place awaits on Wednesdays at noon. The good food, good friends, and fellowship at our Rotary meetings make for a great mid-week event. Today, I had the privilege of pinning two of our newer members, Doug Newhouse, President and Owner of Sure-Dry Basement Sytems, and Jonathon Dorn, CEO of the Human Assistance Resource Center in Menasha. Welcome gentlemen! Past-President Jim Rudd stepped into the Treasurer role for our club and received his new pin as well.
David Morton was recognized by the Rotary Foundation with a Paul Harris pin for his contributions supporting the missions of the foundation. The Rotary Foundation is fundamental in supporting the fight against polio through the Polio Plus campaign, supplying numerous grants to Rotary club and district projects, and supporting educational programs like ambassadorial scholarships and Rotary World Peace Scholarships. Thank you David!
Deborah Wetter, General Manager - Valley Transit, and Nikki Voelzke, Community Relations Specialist at City of Appleton - Valley Transit, spoke to our club about the substantial economic impact the Valley Transit bus system has in our community. A large portion of the riders are utilizing buses to get to and from work and/or to and from school. Well over a million rides are provided annually. The partenership they have formed with area communities and private sector business is unique and is a prime example of the cooperative spirit of community we enjoy here in the Fox Valley. Take a look at their website to see all of the services they provide. Hop on a bus and check it out!
Suzanne Brault-Pagel with United Way Fox Cities spoke to our club about her involvement with the Born Learning Trail projects in the community. A Born Learning Trail provides young children with an opportunity to get active, have fun and boost language and literacy skills. The "trail" features age-appropriate, simple-to-construct activities that can be set up outdoors or inside a building. There are currently trails in Pierce Park and Plamann Park in Appleton.
Local poet Karla Huston visited our noon luncheon last week and shared a bit about poetry and how the arts are or are not being supported in Wisconsin. She shared several of her poems with us as well and I can surely speak for the group that we enjoyed them thoroughly. Her poems provided some fantastic mental pictures as she read them and most were tied to simple everyday experiences or to something we in the Fox Cities are familiar with. We were thrilled to have her and welcome her back anytime. You can take a look at her website here: Karla Huston - Poet
Our President-Elect, Aaron Zemlock, attended the 2014 Midwest PETS (President Elect Training Seminar) in Itasca, IL this past weekend. A great time was had by all who attended. Rotary fellowship was alive and well. A special honor was being able to meet and speak with former Rotary International President, Ray Klinginsmith.
The Menasha Rotary Club got a first hand look at the progess being made on the design and upcoming building of the new Menasha High School.
P.O. Box 101
Menasha, WI 54952