The Rotary Club of 
Barre, Vermont
Chartered 1924
District 7850
PO Box 167
Barre, VT 05641
Granite Chips
Making a Difference
Happy Dollars and Fines Compete for Room in the Basket
With rituals completed, thirteen Barre Rotarians and five guests helped themselves to a buffet of spaghetti with meat sauce, zucchini, rolls, salad and brownies. Ted started the basket filling activity by offering two Happy Dollars: one for the purchase of new grills for the sausage station and one in celebration of his and Barbara’s 48th wedding anniversary. Tony, EGG-HEAD, was next up to propose a fine on Ted for leaving him out of the email loop in the purchase process of the grills and “sandbagging” him. Ted defended the decision not to purchase a new grill for the egg station since Tony’s grill was bigger and younger than the others. Tony threatened to buy a new grill at Nelson Brothers. (We’ll see.) Fine passed. Doug gave a Happy Dollar in recognition of his birthday. Caroline proposed a fine of one-and-nine on Ted and Tony for not practicing good oratory skills: being inarticulate and not being entertaining. With weak defenses and the need for money, the fine passed. John Steinman gave a Happy Dollar for achieving a landslide victory in his primary run for a place on the ballot as State House Representative. He went to propose a fine of one-and-nine on Caroline for calling our country a democracy when it is a republic. She defended by saying it is referred to using both terms. The crowd didn’t buy it and the fine passed. Tony was back on his feet with a question: “How many of you bring money to our meetings?” Karl responded: “It’s none of your business!” He continued and proposed a fine of one-and-nine on President Liane for not being financially prepared for today’s meeting because she claimed that she didn’t bring any money. She then proceeded to take off her jacket and strut around the square to present Exhibit A: “No pockets, no money.” Fine did not pass and President Liane “felt the love.”
About the Dance and the Mural
President Liane reminded us that the Annual Rotary Ball will be held on Saturday, October 27th. The venue has been reserved and the disk jockey has been retained. This year’s format will be altered to include young dancers from either the Norwich or UVM ballroom dance clubs. The demonstrations by the Pedricks and the dance lesson will remain as part of the show as will general dancing by attendees. Caroline reported that Barre City has agreed to paint the wall on Summer Street before the mural painting begins, but that hasn’t happened yet. She will be more persistent in her pursuit of achieving that task in the next few weeks.
Secretary’s Report
Guests Doug Bullett of the Bon Air, Virginia Rotary Club and Joan Vars, wife of District Governor Larry Vars, were introduced. Sue also announced that Bruce Fisher and John Steinman, who were in attendance, had submitted applications for membership in the Barre Rotary Club. This serves as the first announcement to members of their intent to join.
District Governor Larry Vars: Making a Difference
President Liane introduced District Governor Larry Vars. Larry continued his introduction with: “I am Larry Vars. I was selected to be the District Governor three years ago. Our District has forty-one clubs and spans from the upper half of Vermont and New Hampshire up through Quebec. I have been a member of the Lancaster Rotary Club for over 27 years. My first project in Rotary was shoveling out horse stalls after a horse show. I joined anyways.”
He grew up in Connecticut, near Fishers Island Sound and his first service organization was with the Coast Guard Auxiliary whose focus was supporting the US Coast Guard. They did vessel examination, safe boating courses, and patrols. He went on to account: “One weekend, while on patrol in Fishers Island Sound, a call came in to the CG Station about debris in a channel off Block Island Sound. We were sent to remove the large item from the channel. We found it, it was floating about 4” exposed above the water and about 20” wide metal can. We tied onto it and started pulling it. As we gained speed, the can began to ride on the surface of the water. It was over 15’ long. From what we were told, it was a practice torpedo. Many 25 + foot pleasure crafts use this channel and could have hit this torpedo, which was about 4” of it was visible. It was turned over to a 41foot CG vessel for disposal. If someone had hit that torpedo, they would have sunk. Who knows if anyone would have been injured? What we did made a difference.”  With that anecdote, Larry developed a theme of what he and we have done in Rotary makes a difference. He pointed out the following;
  • Rotary Youth Leadership Award: Enrolling an incoming high school junior in a leadership program when they are headed into a life-determining portion of their life. This program helps them look at goals and understand what is needed to achieve these goals. They process situations to determine the best way to solve problems. They have fun doing it.
  • Youth Exchange: Combat the national news with a prolonged stay in a foreign country. Other youth get to see that Americans have the same issues as in their home country and American youth get to see what they take for granted.
  • Speech Contest: Gets youth to think about and repeat to themselves the four-way test and how it relates to their passion. In addition, they get to participate in a contest that has a financial gain to encourage them to do their best.
  • Interact, Rotaract, Earlyact: They get the opportunity to serve others.  They plan fund raisers, a local project and an international project. Service above Self.
“How about your Club: What projects have you physically done. Roadside cleanup? Community projects? They make a difference in your community, making it a cleaner more inviting place to live and work. Maybe you have physically helped a neighbor. Many clubs have partnered with other organizations to help them make a difference in their focus. This is all about Service above Self.”
Larry reported that Rotary International surveyed members and the top two reasons for joining are the opportunity to perform service projects and networking. Doing projects will meet both of these reasons for joining.
He informed us that he had added a list of in-meeting projects on the District website, under “Membership” to share ideas of what other clubs are doing. He encouraged us to apply for a District Grant to help fund a community project which we did and received for the mural project.
He referred us to a pull display which showed the focus of the grants funded by The Rotary Foundation:
  • The lower level is base needs. Included are: disease prevention, clean water and sanitation and maternal and child health. Clubs in our District have supported many projects at this level. Without these basic human needs being fulfilled, literacy and community are not attainable. When you are sick and do not feel well, you do not reach out to improve yourself or others.
  • The second level is focused on literacy and community development. Many local projects are based on this second level of need. Building the mind with aspirations of what is possible, supporting communities where small businesses can thrive, making a place where you can be proud to call home are all based on a literate culture and a sense of security.
  • The top level is peace and conflict resolution. We support post graduate studies for individuals to be experts in this field. There is a need for mastering this focus. Meeting base needs will help reduce conflicts.
He illustrated these foci with anecdotes and statistics and asked us: “Are you a club of people who see a problem, evaluate it, and then take action? Is your club a People of Action? As Rotarians, we should contribute one of the “Three “T”s”: your Time, your Talent and your Treasury. This is how networking is done.”
He encouraged us to: “Engage your club in the passions of your club members. Have back-up a plan in case your speaker has to cancel at the last minute. What does that involve? You tube has many interesting subjects, like Ted Talks. I encourage your leadership and members to think how to make your meetings a value to all. I have added a list of in-meeting projects that can be done in 20 to 30 minutes. I would love to hear other types of projects that can be done in your meeting. Make it Fun.”
In conclusion, Larry mused: “As I pondered my theme for this year, I focused on passions. We all have passions, whether for helping the youth to become good citizens, making our communities a better, more vibrant place to live, or giving a helping hand to those who were not born with the same privileges as we are (clean water, health care, immunizations). I hope to encourage you to ‘Ignite your Passions,’ make a difference locally and internationally. As RI President said, ‘together, we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change across the globe, in our communities and in ourselves.’ Be the Inspiration.”

“Thank you for all you are doing as Rotarians.”
After his presentation, District Governor Vars asked member to share their passions. Those sharing included George, Tony, Eddie, Doug, Caroline and Liane who all received a special pin from Larry. President Liane, on behalf of the club, received the District Governor’s banner and a scarf. He also presented Caroline with a banner for accepting a  district position as an assistant governor.
Until next time, that's all folks.....
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Club Information
We meet:
Wednesdays, 12:00 PM
The American Legion
320 North Main Street
Barre, VT  05641 USA
Aug 22, 2018
Hotshot Fire Fighting
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Building Flourishing Communities
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