Marlin Harper was installed as the 2017-2018 Barnesville Rotary Club President at a banquet held on Thursday, June 29. Immediate Past President Ted Buehl welcomed members and their guests. Past District Governor and club member Mark Froehlich served as master of ceremonies.
Doug Huff, 35- year member and newly installed member of the board of directors for 2017, presented the Paul Harris Fellowship for 2017 to the late Dorothy Schumacher, wife of 26-year member Martin Schumacher who is also a Paul Harris Fellow and PHF Sustaining member. After thanking the club's current cook, Darla for the banquet meal, Huff talked about the meals that Dorothy and her sister, Eleanor would prepare for the club.
"They cooked with love for our club," Huff said. "That is why we are naming Dorothy the 2017 Paul Harris Fellow". Huff said the club was known for its meals when Dorothy cooked for them. "This club has a long tradition of service and we have had some tremendous meals," he said noting that visitors would come from miles away for the meals. Huff said the PHF presentation was in honor of Dorothy's meals and all the current club members who had eaten, enjoyed and remembered them.
Froehlich said, "Dorothy epitomized what it meant to be a Rotarian and a Paul Harris Fellow." He said while it was the first time in his club experience that someone was posthumously named a PHF, it was a common occurrence in clubs around the world. Froehlich thanked the Schumacher family for being there.
Froehlich, filling in for outgoing club president Dave Phillips, went over the accomplishments of the past club year. There were four new members: Brandy Stephens, Amy Smith, Cameron Shreve and Angie Hannahs, with the later two replacing members whom had resigned for a total of 42 members,with 40 being active.
The club purchased a new fish wagon that will be in use for the Barnesville Pumpkin Festival in September. Froehlich thanked all who helped with that project, especially Larry Dietrich and Daryl Carpenter.
Another ongoing project is the renovation of the Haven after school program building on Main Street that will have a new interior and kitchen thanks to the club.
The club's bylaws were updated and passed by members as required by District 660 and Rotary International.
Froehlich noted that many club members volunteered for the job fair held at Barnesville High School. New club t-shirts were ordered. Barnesville Rotarians hosted the Kiwanis Club for Thanksgiving.
Two major service projects included care packages distributed to the elderly and shut-ins in the area for Christmas and Easter. Froehlich called the Christmas care package project "tremendous" and said a presentation about it was made by three of the club's members at the District Conference in Columbus in April.
Fundraisers for the club year included a successful meat raffle that helped to pay for the fish wagon, the annual spaghetti dinner, Harlem Wizards basketball game in cooperation with the other four county clubs, and of course, the fish sandwich sales. Froehlich thanked those involved with those fundraisers.
Perfect attendance awards were given to the following: David Phillips (one year), Brandy Stephens (one year), Dough Huff (one year), Ted Buehl (two years), Nancy Napalitano (two years), Larry Dietrich (four years), Daryl Carpenter (four years), Bill Steedle (four years), Rich Sidwell (five years), Tim McKelvey (five years), Clay Bethel (five years), Martin Schumacher (five years), and Froehlich (32 years).
Huff and Napalitano were inducted as 2017 Board of Directors members, replacing McKelvey and Sidwell. Stephens and Andrew Woods will serve on the board for 2018. Buehl passed the gavel to Harper.
Harper started by saying Froehlich was "a super Rotarian." He pointed to the new 2017-2018 Rotary International banner with the theme of "Rotary Making a Difference."
"I think we've always made a difference in this club and I hope I can lead you in continuing to do so for at least the next year," Harper said.
His goals for the club year include adding four to five new members and retaining the current membership. "I hope you will all help me in encouraging people to become Rotary members this year," he said. To that end, Harper said he would like to have at least three "non-traditional" meetings in the evening at a location outside the regular meeting place at the First Christian Church New Life Center. "We need to expand our boundaries to attract new members and modernize," he said.
Harper would like to see the club do more service projects and take advantage of the $2,000, 50/50 matching grant from the district for service projects. He welcomed any ideas from club members for projects and said he would like the club to host a fishing tournament at Rotary Park Lake for individuals with developmental disabilities. Harper, who recently retired from serving on the Belmont County Board of DD, said he would like to invite those in Harrison and Noble counties as well, because they are all served by the BHN Alliance. Harper would also like to involve the Bethesda-Belmont-Morristown Rotary Club by asking its new president, Dirk Davis to assist with the tournament, as he has run youth fishing tournaments in Bethesda for many years and is experienced in getting donations for those events.
"I think we can make a big impact locally, if not state wide, if it is a well-run project," Harper said.
The Barnesville Rotary Club meets each Tuesday at noon in the New Life Center of the Barnesville First Christian Church.