President’s Letter – February 15, 2019

President’s Letter – February 15, 2019

It was nice to see John Rasmussen at the meeting so we asked him to lead us in the flag salute, which was followed by Matt Nehmer eloquently sharing an Abraham Lincoln speech for our invocation.  We then enjoyed a song and met a number of guests and a couple of visiting Rotarians, one of which we exchanged banners with, Baron Manfred Von Vierthaler from Sumner Washington.  Steve Petersen was elated to be fined for discovering that his family has expanded with addition of a new brother and sister through the help of ancestry.com.  


Well we had some fun with the football pools even though the Super Bowl was somewhat boring and the wrong team won.  The winners are:  
Bill Dutton winner of the Playoff Pool with 8 wins received $272.50.
Michael Self and Bob Fatch each won 1 quarter and Tom Brashears won 2 quarters in the Super Bowl pool with each quarter worth $62.50.
Of course, the real winner is our Rotary Club thanks to everyone’s participation with $522.50 graciously contributed.
As we continue to focus on the future during the 2nd half of my term as your President, I selected two of our incoming board members to participate in a contest and make a prediction about the rainfall for February.  So, Don Jack (56.0%) and Jennifer Lemert (57.2%) made a prediction of what Lake Cachuma’s % capacity will be on 2/28/19, currently it is at 48.7%.  The Rotarian, who is closest, will receive a water filtration bottle for backcountry hiking and the second closest will receive the enviable opportunity to lead us in the Flag Salute and Invocation at a future meeting.  Good luck and let it rain!

Fireside Chat
We were joined at the Fireside by none other than our Past President the honorable Jim Stretchberry.  This was our opportunity to learn more about this dedicated and generous Rotarian.  We learned that he grew up in Europe and Australia and moved to Santa Barbara when he was young man in his early 20’s.  After working in the private sector doing things such as building bridges and serving in the military he chose to change directions and dedicate his life to helping people.  So yes, Pastor Jim Stretchberry did find his calling and is proud to say he loves his job just as much today as when he started.  We have Richard Auhll to thank for introducing Jim to our club over 10 years ago.  After serving as President two years ago, Jim is an even more supportive Rotarian than ever.  One of my favorite characteristics of Jim is his ability to be frank and honest while still being compassionate.
Jim’s ministry work requires travel to Israel and other locations internationally and allows for a nice cover to his second job as a Mossad operative (I cannot be the only one who has thought this).  Even though we miss him on some Friday’s we know he is doing an important job in the world whether that be helping Syrian refugees or defusing a bomb during a terrorist attack.  Seriously, the world needs people like Jim to help those of us who run into misfortune along the way.  Thank you Jim for joining us at the Fireside and sharing stories of your life with us.  

ProgramToday’s speaker was John McKinney aka “The Trailmaster”.  John is an enthusiastic hiker and has written over 30 books about hiking including the popular pocketbook “Hike Santa Barbara”.  John has an extensive knowledge of the Santa Ynez and Santa Monica Mountains and he shared some of his favorite hikes with us.  Rattlesnake Canyon in particular is his favorite local hike and Seven Falls is flowing well right now.  So if you want to get a nice exercise and see some beautiful plants, trees and flowers while stopping for amazing views do as John says “Take A Hike”.      

Announcements
Our club recently sponsored the establishment of a second Rotaract Club at UCSB.  We would like to support them by attending one of their meetings.  We will move our Friday 2/22/19 lunch meeting to Monday evening 2/25/19, which is when the UCSB Rotaract club holds their regular meetings.  The place and time are being determined and we will let you know as soon as we confirm.

 

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