The Rotary Club of

June 2, 2022 Newsletter

Our June 6 club program, will feature Lori Sorenson, Chief Technology Officer at the Department of Innovation and Technology (image above). Join us to learn more about Information Technology and Networks in Illinois (see story below).

President Barry's Message
June 20 Presentation of Community Grants
On Monday June 20, please join us as we award hunger, literacy, and other grants to 14 local organizations. These awards are made through our club's Springfield Rotary Foundation with support from our fundraising projects. This is a special time of the year in that we help fund many projects that these organizations have planned to help those in need. This year we will award $31,500 in grant money to these organizations, and we will also hear a little message from the recipient about their organization.  
What a year it has been for Rotary and our club in Springfield!
Throughout this year we faced many challenges as the pandemic continued. You lived up to every challenge as we continued meeting in a hybrid environment for our meetings, adding new members, and we did many service projects within our club and across all five clubs in Springfield. This year saw life-changing global projects helping Ukraine, and we continued our efforts to finally eradicate polio. Globally our combined efforts opened opportunities to empower girls, improve the environment, and advance literacy and health. I want to thank each of you for your proactive service. I also want to thank the wonderful leadership staff for ensuring that we are able to work with care for our fellow human beings, with peace in our hearts.
Personally, this has been an extremely enriching year for me. We were also able to showcase Rotary’s work at the highest level, meet with community and local leaders and organizations, and offer to work with them to show that Rotary cares and brings peace in this world.
June 6, 2022 Meal Reservation
Please remember that we are not meeting on May 30 because of the Memorial Day holiday. Our June 6 club meeting will be hybrid with the opportunity to dine in person at Maldaners Upstairs or dine at home by ordering a meal to pick up behind Maldaners. In either case, make a reservation!
All meals include the main course, sides, salad, and dessert. Take out meals are well packaged, and are hand deliverd by Maldaner's staff, sometimes by Chef Michael Higgins!
Please make reservations for dining in or take out so we can estimate our food needs and so Maldaners knows you are coming. The deadline for reserving dinner for the June 6 meeting is Monday, June 6 at noon. Meals are $15 each. Please use the following link to make your reservations for the meal for dining in or pickup by clicking: 
For curbside takeout, please place your meal tickets or cash in an envelope with your name and “for Sheila Mack” on the outside of the envelope and give it to the Maldaners staff member that gives you your food. They will get the envelopes to Sheila Mack. Curbside pickup is between 4:45 and 5:15 p.m. To pick up food, turn into the alley behind the building and pick up the food at the back door. It's easy to pick up your food an the food is delicious!
June 6, 2022 Meeting Link
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Upcoming Programs and Events
June 6 -- Lori Sorenson (image to right), Chief Technology Officer at the State of Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology: Information Technology and Networks in Illinois
Lori is an IT executive with leadership experience building and managing open access fiber networks. She has direct experience in strategic planning, financial management, contract and procurement management, product and service development and customer service operations. She successfully completed a three year, $96M broadband infrastructure project to build and light a 2,000 mile open access fiber network connecting 350+ community anchor institutions. She has an MBA from the University of Illinois Springfield.
June 13 Club Meeting -- Join us to learn more about our work.
June 20 -- Presentation of Our Club's Community Grants (See Presidents Comments above.) 
June 27 --  Rotary Year-end Celebration and Induction of New Leadership Team
Please mark your calendars for a year-end celebration and cookout on June 27 at Tony and Jan Williams home. We will celebrate our accomplishments in 2021-2022 and welcome our new President Randy Erford as he and his leadership lead us for the 2022-2023 Rotary year. We encourage you to invite your spouse or significant other to this event, but we will need to get an accurate head count. Please reach out to me or Randy Erford so that we can get a headcount for this special event. We look forward to seeing all of you there. The image below shows last summer's year-end celebration at Tony and Jan's home. Please join us!
Youth Exchange Program News
Bill Kempiners, our current Youth Exchange Officer, gave us great news about Youth Exchange Programs at our May 9 club meeting. Tawan-OK Sirichote, who goes by Maii or Mark, from Sathorn (Bangkok area), Thailand will be our inbound student for the 2022-2023 school year. Our Club is sponsoring Maii, along with the Sathorn Rotary Club. A host family in Springfield has been identified for him in Springfield, and he will go to Springfield High School. We are eager to meet and learn more about this young man when he arrives in mid-August.
We are currently sponsoring an outbound student for this school year (2022-2023), Mark McDonald, and presented him with check for $2,000 to help him prepare for his trip abroad on Foundation Night (image below). At the May 9 meeting, Bill Kempiners noted that one of the recent Rotary Youth Leadership Award students is also interested in being an outbound student this school year. She is actively pursuing the appropriate approvals now and we have agreed to sponsor her this year if arrangements can be made. Our Club Foundation manages the Bellatti Kincaid Fund, which helps provide support for Central States Youth Exchange Students.   
Bill also reported on the great representation of Springfield-area students (21 of the 45 students!) at the recent Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) gathering. Our club sponsored 5 students for RYLA. He announced the exciting news that all of the Springfield-area participants are interested in creating a Community Interact Club.
June 26 is Rotary Family Day at the Ball Park
Mark  your calendar and order your tickets now! We have scheduled our annual Rotary Family Day at the Ball Park for June 26 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. Our game time is 1:10 p.m. and will feature another exciting match up of the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals. I have 1500 tickets for Rotarians in District 6460 to sell.  On May 1, ticket prices increased, but are still a bargain at $55 each. So buy your tickets right away to be sure that you will have a spot at the stadium. 
Please remember to sell tickets to friends, neighbors, relatives, colleagues, or anyone who would enjoy a great baseball game and the opportunity to support literacy projects. Proceeds from ticket sales support District 6460's Literacy Grant Program that funds projects proposed by clubs in our district. So sell as many tickets as you can and be certain that our club submits a proposal for a literacy project to benefit the community. To purchase tickets now click on Ticket Order Form or download this form from the download files section on our website homepage (
I hope you sell numerous tickets and that I will see you at the Ball Park! I am arranging for a bus, and we will need about 52 riders to make it affordable. Spread the word about the availability of a bus and check out the article below to reserve your seat.
Baseball Tickets are Still a Bargain
Our "Early Bird" sale for our annual "Rotary Family Day at the Ball Park" is over, but tickets are still a bargain at $55 each. The game is June 26 in St. Louis between your favorite Cardinals or your favorite Cubs!  Go to the front page of Rotary District 6460 website  or click on Ticket Order Form here to get the order form. 
Game time is 1:10 p.m. at Busch Stadium, St. Louis.
The seats are in the Left field loge - Section 267 next to McDonald's Land.  
Rotarians and friends of Rotarians and all game fans we need your help in selling out 1500 tickets for this game. Our annual game has raised over one-half million dollars over the past 19 years for helping children and adults gain literacy skills within our Rotary Communities.
Take the Bus to Family Day at the Ballpark
The Rotary Club of Springfield Downtown is sponsoring a bus to the annual "Rotary Family Day at the Ball Park" on June 26 for the game in St. Louis between the Cardinals and the Cubs.
Send a $30 check made out to Rotary Club of Springfield to reserve your seat!
Send check to:  Baseball, 2001 Barberry Drive, Springfield, IL 62704  
Round-trip cost per fan:  $30
Bus will leave from the park lot behind Macy's upper level at White Oaks Mall
Bus arrival at White Oaks parking lot:  10:00 a.m. (Sunday, June 26)
Bus departs from Springfield for trip to St. Louis:  10:30 a.m.
Bus departure after the ball game:  The bus will leave one hour after game with a tentative departure time from St. Louis of 6:00 p.m.*
*The bus departure time after the game is tentative. However, the decision was made to depart one hour after game to give fans time to return to the bus without rushing. 
I hope to see you on the bus and at the game! Thanks for supporting our literacy grant program.
Thank You for the Literacy Backpacks!
We thought you would enjoy seeing the thank you card that we received from  Parents as Teachers at Wanless School in Springfield. They received some of the Literacy Backpacks that we filled with books and a puppet with our partners in the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. The backpacks were packed and delivered to agencies to give to pre-school children who are experiencing homelessness as a part of our District Literacy Grant. Barry and Loretta delivered the backpacks to Parents as Teachers. 
2022 Volunteer Opportunities and Thanks
HSHS St. John's Children's Hospital Seeks Volunteers for June Events
On May 31, Barry Tobias emailed club members the following call for volunteers that Vicki Megginson received from St. John's Children's Hospital. Please let Vicki, Barry, or Randy Erford know if you are interested in volunteering for any of these activities. 
We have a couple volunteer opportunities available, please let me know if you are interested in one or all 🙂
  1. We are looking for volunteers for the Springfield Lucky Horseshoes Baseball Game on June 6th at 6:30! We will be needing 8-10 volunteers for this evening. Please email back if you are interested.
  2. Little Miracles 5K, was postponed due to weather the NEW date is June 11th, we are needing volunteers for the 10th and the 11th, please email back for more details.
IF you would rather purchase tickets to the baseball game the info if below.
Come on out to Robin Roberts Stadium on June 6th at 6:30pm for the Springfield Lucky Horseshoe Baseball game, while supporting HSHS St. John’s Children’s Hospital! This is our first profit night with the Springfield Lucky Horseshoes and a portion of each ticket sale will benefit the kids we treat! We would love for you to join us for the game whether that is purchasing a ticket or volunteering for the event!  
You can purchase tickets online at and use the code “CMN” at checkout. You can also purchase tickets at the ticket box prior to the game and mention CMN. We hope to see you at Robin Robert’s Stadium on June 6th
Thank you! 
Katie Sundby
Program Director
HSHS St. John's Children's Hospital
Flag Service Project
We installed more than 500 flags for our Flag Service Project. Thank you to the volunteers who installed flags and lights. All flags were in place before the Memorial Day (May 30) weekend and will remain in place through Flag Day (June 14) and the Fourth of July holiday. Then our crews will collect and store flags until our next deployment in September for Labor Day (September 5) and Patriots Day (September 11). Then we will collect and store flags until the process begins again in May 2023!

Many hands make light work! We are recruiting for more folks to help with conduit installations (for new customers) and to take or team up with a spouse/friend/child/fellow Rotarian for a distribution route. This is an excellent service opportunity for just a few hours work. Please consider helping out with this.

We thank the volunteers who answered Marty's recent call for volunteers to test the solar lights that are used to illuminate the flags at night. Volunteers picked up lights from the storage shed and put them out in their backyard in the sun to charge and then tested them to be sure the lights would come on. All the lights deployed for Memorial Day were tested!

Contact John Loftus ( or Marty Michelson ( if you have any questions and about what you could do to volunteer and sign up for this worthwhile projects. Proceeds from flag program help support our community grants program. 


Collaborative District Club Grant to Help the Homeless

Preparations for meals for the homeless by Cafe Moxo were finalized, and Rotarians from four Rotary clubs in Springfield participating in our collaborative District Club Grant to help homeless individuals delivered 150 bagged meals to the Mini O'Beirne Crisis Nursery, the Warming Center, and Helping Hands on May 12. The images on the left and right show the bagged meals in Cafe Moxo prior to delivery.
The meals were distributed to the shelters for individuals experiencing homelessness. Special thanks are due to club member Chris Atchison (image below) who helped deliver the meals to the participating shelters.
Mini O’Beirne Crisis Nursery Fence
Our club volunteered to help the Nursery spruce up a pinwheel garden for spring by sanding and painting a small picket fence by their front walk (image to left). Vicki Megginson provided volunteers who signed up with a Tom Sawyer straw hat, along with the fun. Thanks to Megan Norman, Jasmine Gibson, Joe O'Beirne, and Stacy Kelly for participating in this project. 
Ridgely School Micropantry
Volunteers are needed to monitor and stock the pantry for two shifts each month (Shift A during the first half of the month and shift B during the second half of the month). The image on the left shows the micropantry at Ridgely School.
Thanks to the Rotarians who helped stock the pantry during May!

We are looking for additional volunteers to carry us through the summer shifts. Please consider signing up for a two week shift, provide food to the individuals stocking the pantry, or drop off items anytime you are in the vicinity of Ridgely School. Use of this pantry has been very heavy during the cold weather. The following article provides good guidelines for the types of items that are needed.  Contact Vicki at if you wish to help stock the Ridgely School Micropantry. 
Little Libraries
There will also be opportunities to assist with our Little Libraries by sorting and stocking books. The image below shows the Little Library at Ridgely Elementary School. Details will follow soon.. Barry Tobias needs help locating movable carts for two little libraries that are otherwise ready to be installed.
Contact Vicki at if you would like to volunteer or suggest new projects in June. In July, Megan Norman will become our Community Services Director.
Suggestions for Pantries from People Who Use Pantries
We are repeating a list of suggestions of foods and other items to stock in the Ridgely Food Pantry. These suggestions came from people who use food pantries to help feed their families. 
1. Everyone donates Kraft Mac and Cheese in the box. They can rarely use it because it needs milk and butter, which is difficult to get from regular food banks.
2. Boxed milk is a treasure, as kids need it for cereal, which they also get a lot of.
3. Everyone donates pasta sauce and spaghetti noodles.
4. They cannot eat all the awesome canned veggies and soup unless you put a can opener in too or buy pop tops.*
5. Oil is a luxury and needed for Rice a-Roni, which they also get a lot of.
6. Spices or salt and pepper would be a real Holiday gift.
7. Tea bags and coffee make them feel like you care.
8. Sugar and flour are treats.
9. They fawn over fresh produce donated by farmers and grocery stores.
10. Seeds are cool in Spring and Summer because growing can be easy for some.
11. They rarely get fresh meat.
12. Tuna and crackers make a good lunch.
13. Hamburger Helper goes nowhere without ground beef.
14. They get lots of peanut butter and jelly but usually not sandwich bread.
15. Butter or margarine is nice too.
16. Eggs are a real commodity.
17. Cake mix and frosting makes it possible to make a child’s birthday cake.
18. Dishwashing detergent is very expensive and is always appreciated.
19. Feminine hygiene products are a luxury and women will cry over that.
20. Everyone loves Stove Top Stuffing.
* At our November 29 club meeting, Ross Hodel reported that he followed this advice and stocked numerous can openers in the Ridgely Pantry. He noted that they were quickly snapped up.
Encourage Membership in Rotary
Do you know or are you someone who has a passion to give back to your community? The Rotarians in this image are helping pack essential items for the Illinois Police Department to give to homeless individuals in our community. As a Rotarian, you adhere to the principles of the 4-way Test., which are:
  • Is it the Truth? 
  • Is it Fair to all concerned? 
  • Will it build Good Will and Better Friendships?  
  • Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?  
If you find value in these ideals and want to be part of a great organization, right click on the attached link to open our Membership Application in a new window. You can also download a copy of the Membership Application from our Club's website Home Page ( in the Download Files section. You can send the completed application to the Membership Committee at We look forward to hearing from you! 

Downtown Rotary Membership Committee
Thank you. 

Record Your Service Hours and Contributions
Please remember to report your service hours and related contributions. Just follow this link:
Please email images of service activities to Bonnie Styles at It's easy to take pictures if you have a smartphone, but even an old style camera works just fine. Send me an email ( to let me know when you will be volunteering for a service project, and I will come out and take some images.
Be sure to turn in your Flag Service Project hours and any other volunteer hours that you have not reported. 
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