1st Place     Sunnyside Up
     2nd Place   B & B Dockside
     3rd Place   The Sea Goose
     1st Place     Westerly H. S. Highland Grille
     2nd Place    Newport AC&TC's Colonial Dining Room
     3rd Place     Woonsocket AC&TC
Thank you all participants and sponsors for making this event
one of our most successful.  The chowders were all the best in
Westerly.  We are fortunate that you were willing to take the
time out of a busy weekend to work with us on this event.
All proceeds will help us to continue providing assistance where
it is most needed.  We urge everyone to visit these wonderful
restaurants often and support the schools whenever you can.
Participating Restaurants:                      
          B&B Dockside                                   
          Sunnyside Up                                   The Brazen Hen
          The Cooked Goose                          The Sea Goose                           
          Venice Restaurant                           Wilcox Tavern
 Participating Culinary Schools:        
          Newport Area Career & Technical Center
          Westerly High School's Highland Grille
          Woonsocket Area Career & Technical Center's Colonial Dining Room
           Andrea Beach Bar                             Avie's Ski/Sport
           Colucci Group                                   L&M Westerly Hospital
           Savings Institute Bank & Trust       Valenti Subaru
Donated Services:
            Nigrelli's Jewelry                              Venice Restaurant
14th Annual Chowder CookOff 2018-02-10 05:00:00Z 0
 Slate of Officers approved at Board Meeting on December 4th for fiscal year July 2018/June 2019:
       President:  Kathryn Taylor
       President Elect:  Sunil Chandy
       Vice President:  Theodore Avedesian
       Secretary/Treasurer:  Rosemarie Russo
       Past President:  Christopher DiPaola
       Member at Large:  Stephen Cofone
Membership vote will take place at Annual Meeting on December 11th
2018/2019 Slate of Officers 2017-12-04 05:00:00Z 0
Pawcatuck Westerly Veterans Day Parade 2017-11-11 05:00:00Z 0
On 2 October 2017, at One Golf Club Drive, Charlestown RI.  Fee per player is $250 and includes practice range, golfing, box lunch, buffet after play.  Registration forms are available at Avie's Ski/Sport at 100 Main Street, Westerly and on our website - see "downloads" section on the right.  Also available at "downloads" section is a Tee Sign form.
We take this opportunity to thank everyone who contributed to the success of this event and look forward to seeing you all again at our next golfing event on 1 October 2018.
Conti Insurance/Bouvier Insurance  - Cart Sponsor
Professional Planning Group - Event Sponsor
Valenti Subaru  - Hole-in-One Sponsor
Westerly Community Credit Union  - Event Sponsor
Danny & Florence Alvino
Ashaway Line & Twine Mfg. Co.
Avie's Ski/Sport
Bank RI
Steve & Evie Cofone
Capalbo Dental Group
Central Baptist Church
Chariho Furniture
D'Amato Investments
D'Angelo Grilled Sandwiches
Dime Bank
DMR Family & Cosmetic Dentistry Inc
Dunns Corners Chiropractic Center
Dunns Corners Market
Dynamic Solution Associates
Hoyt, Filippetti & Malaghan, LLC
McQuade's Ace Hardware
Melissa Ashley Brides Ltd
Mia's Prime Time Cafe and Wilcox Tavern
Michael A Cozzolino Painting
Neri Agency Inc/Allstate
Joe & Carol Potter
Randall Realtors
Doug & Jean Rayner
Reforest the Tropics Inc
Rol-Flo Engineering, Inc.
Royal Westerly
Seaside Pharmacy
South County Auto LLC
Stonington Veterinary Hospital
The Cooked Goose
The Sea Goose
Toscano's Mens Shop
United Builders Supply Co., Inc.
Valenti Subaru
Vintage Cigar Lounge & Club
William T Sisco, CPA
Rebecca J Woodward, DMD & Adam S Kaufman, DMD
99 Restaurant
Coastal Eye Care
Deutsch Family Wines
Horizon Beverage
Johnson Bros of RI
Kingston Liquor
McQuade's Ace Hardware
 Morris Later/World Pay
Mia's Prime Time Cafe
M S Walker
Narragansett Brewing Co
Nigrelli's Jewelry
Northeast Wines
Providence Beverage
RI Distributing
Anthony T. Russo Jr
Stop & Shop
The Wine Store
Vesta's Bakery

A Night of MemoriesIt was a night to remember. We took over the Cooked Goose Restaurant and enjoyed a wine tasting, a raffle and an auction that featured many fine gifts.  Ted Avedesian and Steve Cofone co-hosted the event and Rose Russo worked behind the scenes to take care of the details so everything would run smoothly. Thank you to Bob Elmer, who served as the Auctioneer, and all who attended. It was a great event.

There are more photos from the event in our Scholarship Auction Photo album to the left. 

Great Fun For All At The 2017 Scholarship Charitable Auction 2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0
     We welcomed Debra and Lindsey Tanner to our meeting this past week and they shared some interesting news and information about Southern Rhode Island Volunteers. Debra is the Executive Director and she shared that she couldn’t believe that she’s been blessed to be doing this job for the last sixteen years.
     The organization had its roots thirty-six years ago in a thesis developed by a URI graduate student. He saw a group of older Americans leaving the work force with plenty of energy and enthusiasm and wondered if there might be a place for them in a network of volunteers.
     Since then the Southern Rhode Island Volunteers have placed hundreds upon hundreds of volunteers as docents at museums, greeters in a variety of settings, delivering meals on wheels, 
and stocking shelves at food pantries. It has been estimated that they provide as much as 1.2 million dollars in human services a year now. Last year they provided over 400 medical transport rides, 9,500 meals delivered, racked up 1,000 hours of visitation, 2,500 hours in grocery shopping trips and served over 300 different clients.                                                        
     The work of their agency is more important now than ever before because of the dwindling amount of resources coming from the state and federal government. They used to get some funding to provide their basic network of services but even that has been cut off. Today they rely on donations and grants as well as the volunteer efforts of a number of faithful friends.  
     Lindsay Tanner is the RSVP & Program Director. She joined the team in 2009 and has enjoyed her job as she reaches out to the community and builds relationship with both the people needing services and those who will be volunteering.
     Today the volunteers include people of all ags serving in many different ways in the community. The agency sends volunteers to a full third of the state of Rhode Island. A few of the opportunities that are being offered include volunteering at;
Washington County Fair – Each August youth volunteers meet school and civic service hour requirements at this fun county event while assisting local granges in educating the public about agriculture, animal farming and more.
Animal Rescue League of Southern RI – Families and individual volunteers enjoy walking dogs, visiting with the cats and kittens who are available for adoption, and other animal care activities under the direction of the rescue staff.
South County Museum – Volunteers here are passionate about helping people discover history serving as greeters, docents, receptionists and many other hands-on activities.
Jonnycake Center of Peacedale – Volunteers are delivering food commodities once a week to home-bound - clients of the food pantry every month as well as receiving, sorting and displaying donations of food, furniture, kitchen items, clothing and more.
     President Steve presented the ladies with a book to sign. The book will be donated to the Westerly Children’s Library in their honor as guest speakers at our club meeting.
    To find out more about Southern Rhode Island Volunteers you can check out their website at the following we address:
Southern Rhode Island Volunteers Seeks to Match Seniors and Volunteer Opportunities in the Region 2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0
On Monday May 1st we traveled to Wakefield to join our sister club for a very special meeting. It was a nice evening filled with laughter, good fellowship and some information on how Rotary is seeking to promote peace,  build goodwill and better friend-ships around the world.
Promoting world peace is one of the ongoing important goals of Rotary International. The Group Study Exchange team from Australia brought together five individuals who are professionals in the field of Peace and conflict resolution with the idea of meeting and interacting with their counterparts here in the USA. On Monday night we got to meet the team and hear a bit from each of them and their group leader, Tracey Wyatt a Rotarian from District 9600.

The team included; Donyque Curtis, an Australian Federal Police officer from Brisbane; Roberta Ramoifuila, a counselor working with victims of domestic violence as part of a NGO in Honiara in the Solomon Islands; Richard Denning, a lawyer who does mediation and leads workshops focusing on restorative justice in New South Wales; Emily Seaman, a refugee advocate working within the Department of Immigration in New Guinea; and Group leader Tracey Wyatt, who works in risk management and occupational health for Stadiums Queensland for its large international sized sporting and entertainment facilities in the region.

It was a wonderful presentation that featured a bit of history and information about the team and was punctuated by the presentation of gifts and banners. 

Exploring Peace and Conflict Resolution Through the Eyes and Ears of our Australian GSE Team 2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0


Every year District 7950 hosts a Conference to celebrate the work of Rotary locally and internationally. This year we combined with three other rotary Districts to have a huge celebration. Bob Elmer, Rose Russo and Kathryn Taylor attended the opening sessions on Friday. Cal Lord, Lana Weidner, Chris DiPaola, Evie and Steve Cofone (Pictured above) all enjoyed the Opening Banquet on Friday night. The guest speaker for the evening was John Germ, the President of Rotary International.

It was great to hear about the work that is being done around the world in the name of Rotary. The new theme for 2017-18 is Rotary: Making a Difference. It is exciting to know that we are a part of it.

Fun and Fellowship For Rotarians In Providence  2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0

Daniel Lucius “Doc” Adams was born in New Hampshire in 1814. While serving as a practicing physician in New York City, he signed on with the Knickerbocker Baseball club and created and developed what we know now as the shortstop position. He served as the President of the club for six terms.

Doc also made all the baseballs for the club and supervised the making of all the bats. Between 1853 and 1858 he was chair of the rules committee for the conventions of the New York City and Brooklyn Baseball Clubs. He advocated for the base paths to be 90 feet, the pitcher’s mound to be 45 feet from home plate and for a game to be 9 innings long with nine players on each team. He was way ahead of his time.

On Monday April 24th Marjorie Adams, the great-granddaughter of Doc Adam, shared his story with our club. It was fascinating to hear her tell of this man and the interesting life he lived. His contributions to the game many of us know and love today are numerous. Yet he is all but forgotten. Marjorie suggested going to his website and signing the online petition at You can also learn more by going to the Facebook page. You can find it at

Doc Adams for Hall of Fame 2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0
     At our meeting on Monday, April 17th Kristina Dimova was installed as the fourth new member of the club this year. It was a great night as we welcomed her aboard. Cal Lord did the honors of installing her and her sponsor, Rose Russo, pinned her and was the first to shake her hand.
Kristina is an optometrist is the new owner of Westerly Eye Care. She will fit right into our club because she has already demonstrated that she believes in our motto, “Service Above Self.”
Kristina was the fourth new member we installed in this Rotary year. We we welcomed Harland Metzler and Dawn Robinson from the Colonial Theater as our first Corporate Members. In March we we welcomed Kelly Tremaine, the Associate Publisher of the Westerly Sun. It has been nice getting to know them and helping them find ways they can serve the club and the community. 
Welcome to Rotary! 2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0
   The Community 2000 Education Foundation is an all volunteer organization focused on building multiple educational endowments. The Foundation was formed in the spring of 2000, and it has evolved into partnerships supporting several endowments including the Westerly Scholarship Club, the Chariho Community Innovative Projects, The Chariho Needs Based Scholarships, The Strategic Initiatives Project and more. 
     Financial support for the Community 2000 partnership endowments comes from a combination of events, grants and contributions from individuals. The range of individual contributions has been large – from $5 to more than $10,000. The overall vision is that someday Community 2000 will have 2000 annual supporters.
     Mr. Philips shared the fact that the Fund is currently seeking to build its endowment over the next seven to ten years so the great work can continue indefinitely. You are welcome to get involved and become supporters in one or more of the following ways:
1. Contribute your time, ideas, and skills to Community 2000 as a fund raiser, Board or Committee member. Community 2000 is operated and managed by an all-volunteer Board of Directors. If you are interested in serving as a fund-raiser, Board or Committee member or would like to volunteer to 
help the organization with a specific task, please contact us.
2. Be a Networker. We generate a great deal of our fund raising success by one-on-one or small group contacts and feel that we have a very compelling story to tell.  Help us make contacts with new folks interested in education.  Please let us know of someone we can speak to who would like to hear our story.
Contact Us
3. Be a volunteer at our events. Our biggest fund raising event is our annual Golf Tournament.  As you can imagine, it takes a lot of dedicated volunteers to put on a successful golf tourney.  We can use all of the help we can get for the Tourney. 
4. Make tax deductible contributions to help Community 2000 assist local high school students as they further their education and/or support our two educational project endowments. Your monetary contribution will directly support Charlestown, Hopkinton and Richmond students who are selected to receive a Community 2000/Dollars for Scholars award. Tax deductible donations of any amount are accepted and are greatly appreciated.
Chris Phillips Shares the History of The Community 2000 Fund With the Club at Last Week’s Meeting 2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0
Joseph Nigrelli and Dave Mann enjoyed a day in Washington DC and were honored as WWII veterans. The trip was sponsored by the Rhode Island Fire Chiefs. We are so proud of our Rotarians.
     Westerly Rotarian and long time businessman, Joe Nigrelli, is still enjoying life. Last week he was honored by the Rhode Island Fire Chiefs and was sent on a trip to our nation’s capitol to visit the World War II memorial. He was joined by a long time friend of our club, Dave Mann. The World War II veterans and heir entourage arrived and were greeted by Rhode Island Senator, Jack Reed, as well as another World War II veteran, former Senator Bob Dole. 
    Upon their return to Rhode Island they were greeted and saluted by firefighters from Westerly and across the state.
    We are hoping Joe will take some time at an upcoming meeting to tell us all about it. This is a wonderful way to say thank you to some of our nation’s biggest heroes.
A Day to Remember for WW II Veterans 2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0
     Dr. Robert Gianfrocco shared that his goal is to get people to the place where they need to be. He is the medical director of the Urgent Care Unit of the South County Medical & Wellness Center in Westerly. It is an interesting job in that you see people with a whole range of medical problems.    Someone might come in with chest pains and you have to decide if they are having a heart attack or if it is something else that only presents as such.
     Most people that come into urgent care want to be in and out quickly. The hard part of Dr. Gianfrocco’s job comes when he has to deliver some bad news. When more tests are needed or a patient needs to be admitted to a local hospital, the patient will often need to be convinced. In the end it all has to do with patient care and getting them to a place where they can be treated and released.
     Dr. Gianfrocco noted that 80% of the patients that walk into the emergency room are better served in urgent care centers. About 15% of those people who show up at urgent care should actually be seen in an emergency room. Having served as an emergency room physician prior to accepting this post, he is well suited to the job.
Urgent Care at South County Medical & Wellness Center An Interesting Workplace 2017-05-15 04:00:00Z 0
     Simon Holt spoke about the history of the United Theater and its function as a hub of activity. Films, theater and dance events were held there dating back to the 1920’s. He sees it returning to its former glory in the coming months and years.
     The group is renovating both the theater and the adjoining building. They will be creating a grand staircase and a new foyer on the first floor. There is going to be a legacy theater that will feature classic movies. It is going to be beautiful. By the time they are finished the whole building will be able to be used. At this time they are making arrangements for the Rhode Island  Philharmonic to hold classes there for students. 
     The town said that they could host events in the theater if certain conditions were met back in 2014. They met the requirements and they held four events in 2014 and had 7 events in 2015. In 2016 they had 26 events. Some of those were held in the park as well. The most successful event featured Tony Horton, the P 90X trainer. 400 people came together for the workout.
    The project will be completed in two phases. Phase 1 will cost 12 million, which includes the 3 million already spent to get the building up and running. They have quietly raised another 5.5 million and will soon be going public with the Capital Campaign soon. They hope that by the Fall  of 2018 they will be open and phase one completed. They will then move ahead with Phase 2 as they feel it is financially feasible.
     President Steve thanked Simon and presented him with a book to sign for the Children’s Library.
Simon Holt Shares His Vision for the United Theatre With Our Rotary Club Cal Lord 2017-04-17 04:00:00Z 0
Posted by Cal Lord on Feb 13, 2017
     We decided to take advantage of the opportunity to hear from RI Director Dean Rohrs speak at the Wakefield Rotary Club last week. We cancelled our meeting and came together for the meeting with Rotarians from Chariho, East Greenwich, and North Kingstown. It was great to be together with so many from our cluster of clubs. We were not disappointed by our distinguished guest.
     Dean was born into Rotary. Her dad was a past DG and her mom was the queen of Rotary. As a teen she was drawn into everything they did and she hated it. Then she married a Rotarian! One might say that she was destined to be a Rotarian. On July 1, 1989, the day women were officially allowed to join Rotary she jumped in with both feet. That day she not only became a member of the club but was also elected President.
     Her club in Africa was very welcoming. When she and her husband moved to Canada they met up with a very different group of people. They had not accepted the idea of women in Rotary. The women were marginalized and not give real opportunities to serve. They let her in the club but finally had to ask her to leave because she spoke up and wanted to actually serve in leadership roles.
     The DG in that area heard about it and asked to meet her for lunch. Soon afterwards they chartered a new club… in the same city. Years later, when she was District Governor, that same club that had ejected her asked her to come and speak to them about revitalization and she said she gave it to them and didn’t hold anything back.
     Dean shared a few stories about her experiences in Rotary around the world. From delivering polio vaccines to children in Nigeria to changing the lives of young girls in South Africa, she has led an extraordinary life. She is looking forward to her next chapter in Rotary as she finishes up her term as a Director and steps into the role of Vice President.
      It was great fun to be together with Rotarians from the so many clubs. It was like a District Conference. To that point, PDG Bill Vangel invited us all to the Multi-District Conference in Providence at the end April. We can't wait. Rotary International President John Germ will be there to speak to us. It might even top what we witnessed at this meeting. 
Rotary International Director Dean Rohrs Wows Joint Meeting of South County Clubs Cal Lord 2017-02-13 05:00:00Z 0
  The 13th Chowder CookOff took place on 11 February from 12:00 to 3:00 and we were so fortunate to have the following restaurants participate: The Bridge, Casa della Luce, CC O'Brien's Sports Cafe, Famous Pizza, Sunnyside Up, The Brazen Hen, The Cooked Goose, The Sea Goose and Venice Restaurant.  In the school division -  Westerly High School's Highland Grille and Woonsocket Area Career and Technical Center. 
The wonderful sponsors of this event included Andrea Beach Bar, Avie's Ski/Sport, L&M Hospital - New London, Nigrelli's Jewelry, Valenti Subaru and WBLQ as our Sponsors.
We wish to thank our participants and sponsors for their continued support to this event and to our Club and special thanks to all the attendees who joined in the celebration of the best chowders in the area.
This year the winners in the restaurant division were:  5 Star Award  to Sunnyside Up, 4 Star Award to The Sea Goose and the 3 Star Award to Casa Della Luce
The winners in the school division were:  5 Star Award to Woonsocket Area Career & Tech Center and 4 Star Award to Westerly High School's Highland Grille
13th Annual Chowder CookOff - 11 February 2017 2017-01-22 05:00:00Z 0
Annual Pasta Dinner to Benefit the Jonnycake Center of Westerly 2016-11-17 00:00:00Z 0
Columbus Day Parade in Westerly 2016-10-10 00:00:00Z 0
Posted on Oct 02, 2016
   Monday, 3 October 2016,  Noon Shot Gun Format
                 Fee Per Player              $250.00
   Practice Range, Golf, Box Lunch, Buffet after Play
          One Golf Club Drive     Charlestown, RI
     Registration is based on first-come, first served
 See "Home Page Download Files" for Registration Form at
                    lower left side of web page
 Confirmation will be sent out when payment is made.
 Contact Stephen Cofone at
          or Rosemarie Russo at
Second Annual Golf Tournament at Shelter Harbor Golf Club 2016-10-03 00:00:00Z 0
Joe Nigrelli awarded Paul Harris Sapphire 2016-09-13 00:00:00Z 0
Led by District Governor Russell Bertrand and his wife, Karen, a small group of motorcycle riders, accompanied by a group of Car Followers, raised $1,110 for the Polio Plus Campaign yesterday on a ride that took them from Foxboro to Plymouth and finally ending in Canton.  Joining the riders, representing our Club, was Anthony Russo, Jr.
The event was sponsored by MOMS South, North End Motors and the Rotary Clubs of Weymouth, Plymouth, Plymouth Sunrise, and The Bridgewaters.
                                           "We are this close"                                        
First District 7950 Motorcycle Run for Polio 2016-09-11 00:00:00Z 0
At The Cooked Goose on 92 Watch Hill Road, Westerly  -  Cocktails 6:00, Dinner 7:00  -  $25.00 per person
During Cocktails and hors d'oeuvres, browse through many silent and live auction items or participate in wine-tasting hosted by The Wine Store.  The proceeds of this event support the Club's scholarship and charitable programs.  We have provided one or two scholarships annually to graduating seniors residing in Westerly.
We have provided financial assistance to local organizations including WARM Shelter, Supper Table, Pee Wee Football, Girl Scout Camp, Chorus of Westerly, Future Business Leaders of Westerly High School, YMCA Capital Campaign.  We are most especially proud of our support to bring the Reforest the Tropics, a non profit organization, to Westerly Middle School during the past four years.  This Educational program focuses on the environment and the importance of trees.
Internationally, we have supported the Haitian Health Foundation, Safe Passage Vocational School in Guatemala, Jaltemba Bay villages of Mexico school projects, Rotary's Polio Plus and other Foundation programs.
rsvp by 13 May 2016 to Rosemarie Russo to reserve your seat  -  401.315.5868 or
Scholarship/Charitable Fundraiser Dinner 2016-05-21 00:00:00Z 0
  Rotary International President Representative and Past District Governor Pamela Stewart, first Interact Club Officers, District 7950 Governor Kristine David and Interact Advisor Rotarian Sunil Chandy
The First Westerly High School Interact Club members with Rotarians Stewart, David, Chandy and Elmer
At our weekly Rotary meeting on Monday (11 April 2016) night we made history by officially welcoming twenty-one students as the Charter members of the Westerly High School Interact Club.  With District Governor Kristine David in attendance, as well as District Governor Nominee Russ Bertram, Past District Governor Valerie Perry and Assistant District Governor Steve White, we had an all star affair.  To top it off we had Rotary International President Representative and Past District Governor (Louisiana) Pamela Stewart with us to wish the kids well and give them their pins.  It was a night to be remembered by our Club as we lifted up these future leaders and wonderful kids.
The Charter members of the Westerly High School Interact Club are:  Richard Boylan, Joseph Brodeur (Secretary), Megan Celico, Alexander Chandy, Phillip Chandy (Director), Olivia Ferraro, Mark Fidrych, Bereket Janat (Director), Isaac Kaufman, Connor McGill, David Mitchell (Vice President), Trent Orr, Christopher Paterno, Angel Quattromani, Julie Raven, Cheyanne Robinson (President), Aviral Shrivastava, Gabriella Toriello, Kallan Trombino, Jonathan Turano, Zachary Zarkowski (Treasurer)
Westerly High School Interact Club Cal Lord 2016-04-11 00:00:00Z 0
Snow will be over by noon.  Come and join us for dinner at Venice Restaurant, 5:30.  Westerly High School Student of the Month Emily Roy will be honored and we will hear a "state of the schools" update from Dr. Roy Seitsinger.  Dinner is $20.00 per person.  Contact Rose at 401.315.5868.
Tonight - Dr. Roy Seitsinger, Guest Speaker 2016-03-21 00:00:00Z 0
Rotary's 111th Birthday - 23 February 2016 2016-02-15 00:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 05, 2016
The Sun came out after a wintery storm and at the Venice Restaurant we enjoyed the best chowders in Westerly provided by Casa Della Luce, Famous Pizza, Haversham Restaurant, Sunnyside Up, The Cooked Goose, The Sea Goose, Venice Restaurant, Westerly High School Highland Grille students and Woonsocket Career & Tech students.  Sadly, terror threats and the weather prevented Newport Career & Tech from their chowder preparations; so they were unable to participate this year.
People's choice winners this year are:  1st Place:   Casa della Luce      2nd Place:  Sunnyside Up          3rd Place:  Famous Pizza
                                                              1st Place:   Westerly High School Students          2nd Place:   Woonsocket Career & Tech Students
Chef's choice winners are:    Haversham Restaurant and Westerly High School Students
Our grateful thanks to all the restaurants and both schools for spending the day with us and helping us to complete another successful fundraiser.  We could not have done so without your cooperation.  Special thanks to our Sponsors Avie's Ski/Sport, L&M Westerly Hospital, Nigrelli's Jewelry, Trestle Park Self-Storage,Valenti Subaru and WBLQ.  And, our deepest appreciation to Chef Neath Pal.
Haversham Restaurant with Chef Pal                                 Chef Jamie (Westerly), Chef Paul (Woonsocket)
PLEASE GO TO PHOTO ALBUM to see more pictures of this fun event.
The Rotary Club of Westerly announces its Twelfth Annual Chowder CookOff on 6 February 2016 at the Venice Restaurant's Ballroom from 12:00 to 3:00.  The past eleven years this event has been very successful and popular with over 300 attendees.  Initially the CookOff included only restaurant participants but the past three years a Culinary Student Division was added.  Because a significant concern of Rotary is education, this addition has been well received.  The students from Newport, Westerly and Woonsocket performed as though they were professionals.  And, the Restauranteurs - well, we are so fortunate in Westerly to have such fantastic chefs sharing their time and talents for the benefit of this event.  All the funds raised at this event eventually are returned to the Community.
This year we are proud to announce that our Guest Chef will be Neath Pal, an instructor at Johnson & Wales University and owner/chef at New American Bistro.
The restaurants competing this year include: Casa della Luce, Famous Pizza, Haversham, Sunnyside Up, The Cooked Goose, The Sea Goose, and Venice Restaurant.
Culinary students competing again this year will be from Newport Career & Technical Center, Westerly High School and Woonsocket Career & Technical Center
12th Annual Chowder CookOff 2016-02-06 00:00:00Z 0
Pasta Night with Elks and Lions for Jonnycake Center of Westerly 2015-11-19 00:00:00Z 0
Veterans' Day Parade 2015-11-08 00:00:00Z 0
On an absolutely beautiful fall day in Westerly, the town family was treated to a great parade led by Division Marshall and Honorary Westerly Rotarian Joseph Potter.
And, in Division Three here comes Doug Rayner and Brian Gerbutavich in the Westerly Rotary truck ...
Columbus Day Parade October 2015 2015-10-11 00:00:00Z 0
Posted on Aug 02, 2015
Visiting Rotarian Annie DeVona and President Bob Elmer exchange banners.  Annie is from the Bentonville Arkansas Rotary Club.
Visiting Rotary 2015-08-03 00:00:00Z 0
A printable version of this form is available in the "download files" area of website.  Just click on the title "...... Golf Tournament Sign Up form".
Tee Sponsor Ads are available at $100 and Corporate Sponsor Ads are available at $2,500.  Tickets may be purchased for Buffet dinner only at $49.
Rotary Club of Westerly Golf Tournament at Shelter Harbor 2015-07-22 00:00:00Z 0
The weather was perfect Monday afternoon for a picnic in our favorite Rotary Park.  Joe and Carol Potter, along with daughter Cindy Capizzano, grilled hot dogs and hamburgers.  Rotarians brought salad, pizza and lots of goodies to share.  Thanks to Bruce Morrow for the loan of his "traveling" grill. 
Million Dollar Meal with DG Kristine David 2015-07-13 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Jul 07, 2015
Steve Cofone and Doug Rayner apply a little "elbow" grease to
polish up our Rotary Park sign along Airport Road on Wednesday.
Clean up at Rotary Park Rosemarie Russo 2015-07-08 00:00:00Z 0
Rotarians at work during Summer Pops 2015 - Rich Willner of Stonington Rotary, Bob Boughner, Honorary Westerly Rotarian and President Doug Rayner
Summer Pops 2015 2015-06-21 00:00:00Z 0
A Night With Author Dave Mann Cal Lord 2015-04-21 00:00:00Z 0

On a beautiful Monday evening Rotarians from across District 7950 came together to celebrate our International Youth Exchange Programs. The program was started by our club 22 years ago when Rona Mann was a member of the Westerly Club. The very first evening was at a restaurant on Misquamicut Beach. Since then we have invited other clubs to join us as co-sponsors of the event and moved it a few times. It has been at Whites of Westport for several years now. 

Rev. Bob Anthony (a former member of our club and now a member of the Osterville Club on the Cape) served as Master of Ceremonies. He introduced the Presidents of the sponsoring clubs including or own President Doug Rayner. Each of the Presidents then shared some congratulatory remarks toward the students who were present and expressed their gratitude at being part of the program. The other sponsoring clubs include; Cumberland/Lincoln, Martha’s Vineyard, Woonsocket, Naugset/Orleans and North Kingston. 

Rose Russo and I had the honor of joining President Doug at the District Governor’s table with DG Valerie Perry, Father Bob and his lovely wife. Co-ordinators Dorcas McGurrin, Jill and Phil Albright then took turns introducing the students and inviting them to share with the group.

Yvonne Tsai of Taiwan and Ayse Mutlusen of Turkey are our two inbound Exchange students. Our outbound and short term exchange students are Amelia Larson (Spain), Monica Carrol (France), Juliana Goldman (Either Italy or Belgium), Isabelle Ruesch (Chile), Anna Yeun (South Korea) and Willa Vigneault (France). Five of the six were present for the evening. Rona Mann than closed the program with her “Itchy Feet” segment where she shared some letters from former or present exchange students with words of advice for the current group. It was very moving and a fitting end for a great night.

International Night 2015-04-20 00:00:00Z 0

Tony Vellucci and Kim Wright were our guests at the meeting last Monday night. Tony is no stranger to the club and its members. He has been at the Olean Center for 37 years and well acquainted with the work we do and the contributions we have made to the town. Rotary Park sits next door to the Olean Center on Airport Road. 

 Tony began his career at the Ladd School and then spent a short time with the Hospital Association before coming to Westerly. He loves his job. It is a great place. He is excited because the Center will celebrate 50 years in 2016. 

The budget is 3.5 million dollars and they service 97 adults 69 children from across the state. Most of the children have some degree of autism and they serve them in their homes. The have a total of 185 staff members but nearly 100 of them are part time. The biggest challenge in their business today is funding. Hospitals, nursing homes and places like Oleans Center are dependent on government funding in many areas. One of the largest areas of state involvement comes in employing their participants. The state has promised to employ people with disabilities over the next ten years. That matches one of Olean’s goals. They are committed to employment. 

When Tony was asked what we could do, he didn’t hesitate to give us an answer. Offer acceptance, hope and gratitude. He asked us to be good neighbors. He told us to say hello and greet the participants if you see them at the YMCA, the store or in the park. He invited us take on a part time employee. The Olean Center works toward integration. Their model is to serve their participants to the extent that they need help and to encourage them to do what they can do on their own. The State of Rhode Island is moving away from group homes. They would rather have shared home situations. So every once in a while a need for a home comes up where a participant can be situated in a “foster” type situation. Tony told us that with tightened State budgets their funding has been cut . Kim’s job is to come up with new revenue streams as their development officer. 

Tony said he knew Frank Olean well and considered him a friend. He always prioritized his life by God first, family second and then the cause. As a result, Frank said if you put the participant first, everything else will fall in place. If you keep your eye on why you are here, you will get through the other stuff. Her believed that way to measure your success was by asking yourself if you are doing what the participant is asking you to do. 

Kim Wright has worked at the Olean Center for ten years. She was in another agency for eleven years. She really believes in the mission to help people reach their highest goals in develop-ment. The last few years she has been writing grants, doing fundraising, connecting to community neighbors, and sharing the mission and vision of the organization. She looks for community partners to aid them in their mission. As a result, Kim also coordinates the volunteers.

The Olean Center has a big year planned. It is leading up to the big anniversary. The Center is rich in history. It started as a parent based organization. Today it is so much more.  Last week they had fundraiser at the knickerbocker. They also used the event as an opportunity to create awareness, Upcoming events include a Telethon on June 13th with Chris Dipaola on WBLQ radio.  In August there is a volley ball tournament. Kim is now working to create and distribute newsletter and brochures to help build awareness. A lot of people don't know who they are. Some think it is a state agency. They need to do better publicity. 

Welcoming our friends from the Olean Center 2015-04-20 00:00:00Z 0

     The meetings where we recognize our students are always a highlight of our Rotary year. This week we were blessed to have Madison Rockwood (February) and Elisa Perez (March) with us so that we could honor them as our Students of the Month. Both ladies are exceptionally talented, great students and a joy to work with according to their teachers.

     Madison was introduced by Dean Meagan Herlihy. She is enrolled in early childhood development classes. She is involved in Marching Band, the Pep club and a number of other school activities. She is also a cheerleading coach for the little ones and has booked many hours of community service. She is hoping to attend the University of Rhode Island next Fall.

     Elisa Perez was introduced by Dean Carmela Sammataro. She is a member of the Westerly High Golf team, the Pep Club and several other student organizations. She has also logged in many hours of community service at the Westerly Public Library. She hopes to major in International Business and is looking at several four year universities but has yet to choose one. 

Our February and March Students of the Month 2015-03-30 00:00:00Z 0

    Dave Tranchida, Vice President and Editor of the Westerly Sun, was our guest speaker on Monday night. He shared that he loves his job but being in the newspaper business is a challenge these days. Everything is going digital. As a result you have to work on two platforms all the time. 

     The print deadlines are still important. It is a longstanding  mindset in the industry and it doesn’t go away. But now you have to report things as they happen. You use the web page, social media, Facebook, twitter and report the news in real time. Some things may never make it to the print form as a result because the stories will be old news by the time the next edition goes to the presses. The upcoming generation gets almost all of its news digitally and the phone or the tablet is their source for news. It is part of the new reality. 

     Another factor in the changing nature of the newspaper industry is the fact that many newspapers, like the Sun, have given up their presses and now export their copy to outside presses. That changes deadlines because of the expanded distribution networks The Sun is a three state newspaper. The office is in Connecticut. The circulation area is in Rhode Island. It is printed in Attleboro, Massachusetts. 

     Dave shared a bit of the newspaper’s history. It is, and has been, a family owned newspaper. The Whites own the Record-Journal newspaper in Meriden, Connecticut and have shown that they believe in local newspapers. When the opportunity came up for them to expand by purchasing the Sun, they took it. The White family bought the Sun from the Utter family in 1999.        

    Dave took some questions from the crowd after his prepared remarks. He was asked about staffing and the Sun’s coverage area. He noted that the Sun is a seven day a week operation and it is hard to staff. There is always news coming in. They try to report in Westerly, Charlestown, Ashaway, Richmond and cover the whole region. In the newspaper business today it is about the local news. Dave's philosophy is to give a mix of local and national. The front page is all local. 

     He was asked about social media and Dave said that it is a boon to local news. It helps reporters find news and sources. It is so widespread today. 

     When asked about online subscriptions, Dave said that they are through the roof now. The Sun averages a million page views a month. People can read the newspaper from across the country. The challenge now is how to capitalize on the digital editions to make enough money to keep the newspaper moving forward. The White family has made a significant investment in the newspaper in order to help them stay competitive in the future.     

      Dave was asked if he thought the newspaper would  ever go completely digital. He mentioned the  “refrigerator effect” as the reason that he believes there will always be a print edition. There is something about a seeing your name in print. You want to cut it out and put it on the fridge. People still submit announcements and want to see them. There is also a difference between the news and Facebook. It has been vetted and is legitimate. People look for the local Honor rolls, photos, special features. 

      When asked about staffing Dave said the newspaper has a dedicated staff. It is small. They work unpredictable hours and are always on call twenty four hours a day. They work late nights and split shifts but they do it     because they love the business.

     The final question was about the archives of the     newspaper. Dave said they have bound copies in the office going back to the founding. There are records on microfilm in the Westerly Library going back to the 1960s that are available to the public.

Guest Speaker David Tranchida Cal Lord 2015-03-30 00:00:00Z 0
Karen Dalton, President of the Dare to Dream Ranch, was our guest speaker on Monday.  She is on an exciting new journey to establish her multifacted equine therapy ranch in Foster, RI, for the purpose of providing a variety of assisted therapy programs for homeless and at risk veterans.  Her team of volunteers will provide a variety of programs from equine therapy to nutrition education.  Karen is a Certified Health Coach and her team of volunteers will provide treatments and training in yoga, horticulture therapy, equine therapy, nutrition education and healthy cooking, as a few examples.  The group's mission is "to transform the lives of US veterans by providing a multifaceted equine assisted therapy program to help them learn how to manage current situations and future challenges."  Their 1st Annual 5K Walk/Run event will take place on Sunday, April 12, at Bryant University in Smithfield from 10am to 1pm.  For further information about the Dare to Dream Ranch, please go to
Dare to Dream Ranch 2015-03-16 00:00:00Z 0
February 23 marks the 110th Anniversary of Rotary International when founder Paul Harris formed the Rotary Club of Chicago.  Since then Rotary's commitment to service has provided clean water, maternal health, awarded scholarships, fought disease and improved lives around the world. The fight to end polio began 30 years ago with 2 billion children immunized, 10 million children saved from lifelong paralysis, and 125 countries declared polio-free.
Happy Anniversary Rotary International 2015-02-23 00:00:00Z 0
Posted on Feb 22, 2015
 H. Philip West, Jr. is the author of Secrets & Scandals: Reforming Rhode Island, 1986-2006 and former head of Common Cause RI.  His book tells the inside story of events that "shook Rhode Island's culture of corruption, gave birth to the nation's strongest ethics commission, and finally brought separation of powers in 2004.  No single leader, no political party, no organization could have converted betrayals of public trust into historic reforms.  But when citizen coalitions worked with dedicated public officials to address systemic failures, government changed."  Dinner is $20, 5:30pm, rsvp 401.315.5868 by Feb 21.
Come to Hear Phil West 2015-02-23 00:00:00Z 0
Thanks to the Venice Restaurant for providing us the space and all the amenities; thanks to the restaurants who brought some of the best chowders that we have ever tasted and to the Chef teachers and the students who showed themselves to be professional and talented as well; to Joe Nigrelli of Nigrelli's Jewelry, who supplies us with all the award plaques we need throughout the year; and thanks to Chris DiPaola and WBLQ for bringing his radio community to the Venice.  The success of this event is due to their generous contribution of time and talents.  We are also grateful that Chef Frank Terranova, of Johnson & Wales University and WJAR's That's Cooking with Class, joined us to select a Chef's Choice in the two categories.  He was hoping to bring two or three additional chefs along to help him but handled it admirably - tasting each chowder and visiting at each table.  He finally chose Shelter Harbor Inn and Westerly High School Highland Grille.
For our People's Choice awards  ---
        Restaurants     1st Place:  Shelter Harbor Inn    
                                 2nd Place:  Famous Pizza   
                                 3rd Place:  Casa Della Luce
        Culinary students        1st Place:  Westerly HS Highland Grille    
                                            2nd Place:  Woonsocket Area Career & Tech
                                            3rd Place:  Newport Area Career & Tech
We are also very grateful for the support of our sponsors:  Andrea Beach Bar, Avie's Ski/Sport, L&M/Westerly Hospital and Valenti Subaru.
A special thank you also goes out to Rotarian family members Ada Elmer, Kim Rayner-Russell and Caitlin Rayner-Russell for giving up their day to help keep things moving along and former Westerly Rotarian and current ADG Rona Mann also not only came to taste the chowders but lent a hand cleaning tables and serving water. 
Some special visitors included District Governor Nominee Russell Bertrand and Karen Bertrand, Representative and Mrs.Sam Azzinaro and former Westerly Rotarian Mike Smith and his family.
See the Photo Album section for more pictures.
11th Annual Chowder Cook Off Rosemarie Russo 2015-02-08 00:00:00Z 0
     We welcomed Rev. Fred LaFountain to our membership on Monday night. Fred is the Pastor of the Church at Westerly and came to us with a strong recommendation from Clark Rumfelt.
     Fred grew up locally and went on to UCONN and then on to Lancaster Bible College. He is married to Maggie and they have two children.  They live in Westerly and Fred is very excited to be joining us as part of his commitment to serve the community.
     President Doug reminded us of his challenge to think of the people in our networks who are difference makers, people like Fred, and to invite them to consider joining us in Rotary. We only have one more meeting this year (Dec 15) but there is no better way to start the new year in Rotary than to bring a guest to a meeting.  Maybe we need to adopt a new Westerly Rotary Club greeting—”Who are you bringing to the meeting next week?”
Welcoming Fred LaFountain 2015-01-22 00:00:00Z 0
At the Annual Meeting of the Club on December 2, we elected the following slate of officers who will be installed next July 1st.
The Following Slate of Officers was elected at our Annual Meeting
Robert Elmer—President 2015-2016
    Bob’s term will begin on July 1, 2015 as he takes over for President Doug. Bob is a three time Rotary President, having served our club for two years from 2010-2012 and a one year term as a member of the Rotary Club of Mystic. Bob is a multiple Paul Harris Fellow who joined our club in 2006. He is the former administrator of the Elms, an assisted living retirement community in Westerly, and is now a popular lecturer and columnist writing about care for those with Alzheimer's disease.
Stephen Cofone - President-elect (to be President 2016-17)
     Steve joined the club back in 1982 and served as President from 1986-87. He has been active in many ways over the years including oversight of the popular Football Night every November and co-chairing the Scholarship Auction which raises the funds needed that allow us to grant two $2,000 college scholarships each year. He was recently named Institutional Preceptor of the Year for his work with students enrolled in pharmacy studies at the University of St. Joseph in West Hartford. He lives in Westerly and has been a staff pharmacist at the Lawrence & Memorial Hospital. For the last seventeen years.
Chris Dipaola  -Vice President (to be President 2017-18)
     Chris is another past President of our club. He’s coming back for a second term. He joined the club in 2001 and served as President from 2005-2006. Chris can always be seen at Rotary events with a smile and a helping hand. Often pressed into duty as an Master of Ceremony, Chris is never at a loss for words. Chris got into the radio business at an early age and now owns and operates the WBLQ 1230 AM radio station. He is active in the Chamber of Commerce and is a past president of the Downtown Business Association.
Rosemarie Russo - Secretary/Treasurer
    Rose joined the club in 2008 and immediately got involved as the editor of the Tattler, our weekly newsletter. She was elected to the Board of Directors in 2009. In 2011,just two years later, she was elected as the secretary of the club. When  Treasurer in 2012.  Rose owns her own consulting business and when she isn’t earning a living or doing Rotary business, she spends her free time singing with the Chorus of Westerly.
Doug Rayner - Immediate Past President
    Doug joined the club in 1971. In his 43 years as a Rotarian he has served in many capacities.  This past year marked the second time that Doug had served as President. He also held that office back in 1979-80.  Doug also served as the club’s secretary for many years. In his professional life, Doug is a retired obstetrician who some people think delivered every baby born in town over the last fifty years. He has a driving force behind Summer Pops and a major supported of the Chorus of Westerly.  A long time UCONN Husky fan and doting father and grandfather, Doug is looking forward to passing the baton next July.
Cal Lord - Board of Directors (At large)
     Cal came to the club in 2011 from the Rotary Club of Norwich, Connecticut after having served there for twenty years. He jumped on board and in December 2011 he was elected as the President-elect. Due to a personal crisis, the person elected to be President had to step aside and Cal was elected to serve. He ended up doing a two year term from 2012 –14.  Cal serves as the Pastor of Central Baptist Church of Westerly and is also the President of the Westerly Pawcatuck Clergy Association.
Brian Gerbutavich - Board of Directors (At large)
     Brian was first introduced to the club at Summer Pops as he and his wife, Janet,  came to help out at the concession stand in 2012. Brian officially joined the club in January of 2014. He has the heart of a volunteer, having volunteered on short term mission trips with Central Baptist Church, cooked meals at the WARM Shelter and volunteered for various functions at the Westerly Yacht Club. Brian lives in Westerly and works at Electric Boat as a procurement manager.
Our Annual Meeting 2015-01-22 00:00:00Z 0
     We co-hosted a wonderful meeting this week with the Rotary Club of the Stoningtons.  Nearly sixty people came together to celebrate the oldest interstate high school football rivalry in the country. It was also the one hundred and third Thanksgiving Day meeting of the two teams.
     The guests included the student captains, coaches, and the school administrators from both schools, members of the press, Rotarians, and the former coaches and players. They brought stories and shared experience of events that happened as far back as seventy years ago. Both Coaches talked about their kids and how proud they were of this group of student athletes. Former coaches and players talked about some of the most memorable moments. The Principals of each school talked about the good sportsmanship that has evolved over time and our own Roy Seitsinger, the Superintendent of Schools in Westerly, spoke about the importance of remembering significant moments and holding onto them.
     It was a great evening. Special thanks to our own Steve Cofone and Feng Xue Sure of the Stonington Club for making it happen.
Football Night 2014 Cal Lord 2014-11-24 00:00:00Z 0
    We co-hosted a wonderful meeting this week with the Rotary Club of the Stoningtons.  Nearly sixty people came together to celebrate the oldest interstate high school football rivalry in the country. It was also the one hundred and third Thanksgiving Day meeting of the two teams.
     The guests included the student captains, coaches, and the school administrators from both schools, members of the press, Rotarians, and the former coaches and players. They brought stories and shared experience of events that happened as far back as seventy years ago. Both Coaches talked about their kids and how proud they were of this group of student athletes. Former coaches and players talked about some of the most memorable moments. The Principals of each school talked about the good sportsmanship that has evolved over time and our own Roy Seitsinger, the Superintendent of Schools in Westerly, spoke about the importance of remembering significant moments and holding onto them.
     It was a great evening. Special thanks to our own Steve Cofone and Feng Xue Sure of the Stonington Club for making it happen.
Football Night 2014 Cal Lord 2014-11-24 00:00:00Z 0
A small group of Rotarians gave up part of their Saturday to sell raffle tickets for our Pasta Dinner this coming Thursday. We also sold two meal tickets while standing outside the Wine Store. Thank you to Frank Celico for providing the space and the raffle prize.

Selling tickets for the big night 2014-11-17 00:00:00Z 0
An evening with a Blue Star Mom Cal Lord 2014-11-11 00:00:00Z 0
The Board of Directors has met and approved the membership of Rev. Frederick LaFountain, III.  Fred has recently become pastor of the Church at Westerly.  A "fireside chat" will be held very soon.  If anyone has an objection to Fred's membership, please advise President Doug Rayner as soon as possible.
Prospective Member Announcement 2014-11-05 00:00:00Z 0
      We honored our October Student of the Month at the meeting on Monday night. Kelli Gilluly, a senior at Westerly High School, attended the meeting with her mother. She was presented to the club by the Westerly High School Principal and friend of the club, Steve Ruscito.
       Kelli is a member of the National Honor Society, and has been on the Honor Roll all 4 years. She has been on the Tennis, Swim and Character Ed teams for all four years as well. For her community service, Kelli has volunteered for at Westerly Hospital providing all kinds of support from courier to greeter.  She plans on following her sister into Nursing and is considering University of New England, University of Connecticut and University of Rhode Island.
      Kelli received her award and thanked the club for the recognition and the beautifully engraved plaque provided by Nigrelli’s Jewelry Store.
October Student of the Month Recognized 2014-11-01 00:00:00Z 0
Suzanne and Stephen Capizzano were our guests for the evening. They recently opened Capizzano's Oils and Vinegars in Westerly. Both of them were involved in the health care field and realized how much the right oils can add to our health and well being. Steve said that when he was growing pu his dad served vinegar pepper with every meal. When he asked "Why?" his dad said that it helped cut out the fat in their diet. At the time Steve thought it was just an old wives tale. Later he learned that it was true. 
Good olive oil has less than three fatty acids. It also has lots of polyphenal. This promotes good health. The best olive oil is the freshest and it isn't only from Italy. There are also some pretty good olive oils from South America as well. 
The Capizzanos shared a few samples with us as they wrapped up their talk.
An evening with the Capizzanos Cal Lord 2014-10-21 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Clayton Lord on Aug 31, 2014

The Rotary Club of Westerly President Doug Rayner and Jean Rayner had the pleasure yesterday of hosting Dr. Deb Walters for a dinner at their home.  Joining them were Rosemarie Russo and Ed Russell. Dr. Walters is kayaking from Maine to Guatemala to raise much needed funds to add additional grades to the Safe Passage school in the garbage dump at Guatemala City.  This morning she headed down the Pawcatuck River to continue her journey southward, with Kim Rayner Russell accompanying her down to Noank.

A visit with Dr. Walters Clayton Lord 2014-09-01 00:00:00Z 0
An Evening with Ryan Saunders Clayton Lord 2014-08-26 00:00:00Z 0
Rotary Night at the Paw Sox Clayton Lord 2014-08-20 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Clayton Lord on Jul 27, 2014

Our guest speakers on July 28th were Dr. Herster Barres, Desiree Derix and Greg Powell, The newly appointed Executive Director of RTT. They gave us an updated on the Reforest the Tropics P:rogram and how Westerly is incorporating the program in the schools. 

We recently received confirmation that we received a matching District Grant in the amount of 1500.00 to support the program for 2014-15. Our thanks to Rotarians Rose Russo & Dan Alvino for preparing a great proposal.Image

An update on the Reforest the Tropics program Clayton Lord 2014-07-28 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Clayton Lord on Jul 22, 2014

Town Manager Michelle Buck addressed the club in a packed house on Monday night. She shared her story of growing about how she was living her dream by serving the town she loves and one she had grown up in. She talked about the challenges and the blessings we have here in Westerly. Then she opened the floor for questions. 





We had several guests with us for the weekly meeting. Former Westerly Rotarians, Al Almeida, Richard Harris and Sam Cherenzia were in the house. So was Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lisa Konicki and Michelle Buck’s parents, George and Bonnie Buck.  Larry Hirsch, Tom Lagori, Bill Garrity, Michelle and Scott Hallamore  were here as guests of Rotarians. A former Rotarian from Connecticut and brother of Bruce Morrow, Dan Stanavage was with us with his wife, Mae, daughter Vrennee and her friend Josh. Doug Rayner had his fan club with him including his wife Jean, daughter and son-in-law Kim & Ed Russell, grand-daughter Caitlin Gulino and friend, Brian Williams. Bruce Morrow and Donna Celico were also present for this great program.


Michelle Buck Speaks at our Meeting Clayton Lord 2014-07-23 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Clayton Lord on Jul 16, 2014

On July 14th we hosted the annual visit from the District Governor. Governor Valerie Perry came down to meet with the club's Board of Directors with our old friend and current Assistant District Governor Rona Mann and Valerie's sister, Sharon Johnson. 


After the meeting we joined the rest of the club at Rotary Park for our Million Dollar Meal. Joe and Carol Potter served as our chefs for the afternoon. They were assisted by their daughter, Cindy Capizzano.Using the Bruce Morrow's portable grill, we cooked up a bunch of burgers and dogs. Everyone brought picnic foods and the normal $20 meal cost was donated to the Rotary Foundation and Polio Plus. We raised $485 for the cause. 




We took our annual picture and then made our way back to the gazebo to hear a message from DG Valerie. She encouraged us to continue what we were doing and to be the light that shines in our community. 






We were honored to be the District Governor's first club visit of her year at the helm. She was delightful and engaging and we know that she is going to have a great year.




After her address President Doug presented her with a book to sign which will be donated to the Westerly Children's Library to commemorate her visit with the club. Then visiting Rotarian Dan Stanavage auctioned off a Rotary polo shirt that was donated by Steve Cofone. 



The District Governor's Visit Clayton Lord 2014-07-17 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Clayton Lord on Jul 08, 2014


President Doug hosted his first Board of Director's Meeting on July 7th. At the outset he reiterated his committee chair assignments for the coming year. They include; Frank Celico—Membership, Bob Elmer—Foundation, Program—Rose Russo, Public Relations—Chris DiPaola, Tattler, Facebook & web site—Cal Lord

Rose reported that we ended the year in the black. We were much more judicious in our benevolent giving than in recent years. Among ther organizations we supported this year were;

The Jonnycake Center with the proceeds from our Pasta dinner, THE YMCA Capital Campaign with the third installment of our $5000 total pledge, The Westerly Columbus Day Parade, The Reforest the Tropics program at Westerly Middle School (also approved for a Rotary District Grant) , The Rotary Rose Bowl Parade, The Westerly Armory,The WARM Shelter,(2) $2000 High School scholarships, The Girl,The Boy Scouts, The Westerly Children’s Library and The Chorus of Westerly

We approved the medical leave of absence for John Huhtula as he has tests.

Doug then reiterated his three goals for the year—(1) Increase membership, (2) Raise funds and have more (3) fun. Doug went into greater detail on all three at our club meeting.where several people chimed in on his goals and offered suggestions on how to make them a reality. Frank Celico challenged each of us to invite potential new members to future meetings. He would like to see each of us sponsor one new member or more in the next year.

Doug talked about three potential fund raisers for the coming year; A golf tournament in October, the Chowder Festival in February and a charity auction in May. Frank Celico is chairing the golf tournament. Doug and Rose will oversee the Chowder Festival again. Steve Cofone and Ted Avedesian will organize the Auction.

It was a great first meeting! 


President Doug's First Meeting Clayton Lord 2014-07-09 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Clayton Lord on Sep 15, 2013

The Weekly Meeting - September 9th

On Monday night we heard a report from the Board of Directors. All but three members have paid their first installment of their dues. Ten members have paid the total amount for the year. Rose has had to pay our dues to Rotary International for the twenty two members on our roster. She reminded us that is why it is important to pay in a timely fashion. Our next dues payment will be sent on January 1st for the second half of the year.

We noted that Edgar Morales has accepted a transfer and will be managing a Providence store. We will truly miss him but understand this is a good move for him vocationally. We hope to be able to express how thankful we are to him for all he has done for the club and our community at some point in the future. Meanwhile, we will try to make a connection with the new manager of the local Walmart.

Dan Alvino and Bruce Morrow will be chairing the Pasta Dinner for the Johnnycake Fuel fund again this year. Dan has made contact with the Elks and the Lions Clubs to see if they are interested this year. The Elks are willing to host it and M & M Caters will help us out again. The date for the dinner is Thursday, November 14th. We will be hearing more in the next few weeks.

We talked about the special meeting on September 23rd and our hope that every member will try to be there and work to invite one or two guests to the event. Spouse and significant others are welcome as well as friends and potential Rotarians. If you know someone who would make a good Rotarian, invite them. Our guest that night will be Robert Steele, author of the book, The Curse: Big Time Gambling’s Seduction of a Small New England Town. We will be having a buffet dinner downstairs at the Venice for the usual price of $20 per person. We have guaranteed them at least twenty five people.

We also talked about the leadership of the club. Dan Alvino, Doug Rayner and Bruce Morrow will work with me to come up with a slate of officers for the 2014-2015 year.

We closed out our meeting by reporting that we had voted to give $500 toward the International Project at the CCC of La Penita and send it down with Dan when he goes back to Mexico this winter.
9 Sep 2013 Tattler Clayton Lord 2013-09-16 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Jun 25, 2013

President Cal has taken over duties of publishing a weekly newsletter and has elected to re-produce the old "Tattler" in a new format - not originating from the website.  Everyone should be receiving it via email or regular mail.  If you are not receiving this newsletter, and would like to be added to the mailing list, please send an email to (Rose) or (Cal).

Westerly’s Change of Command Celebration
This year’s change of Command Dinner will be on Monday, July 8 at 5:30 p.m. Spouses and guests are invited to join in the celebration. A sign up sheet will be going around at the meeting on July 1st. If you can’t make that meeting, or if you want to make your reservation now while you are thinking about it, you can email Rose with your reservations at
Our slate of officers 2013/14 The following slate will be voted upon at the July 1 meeting: President: Clayton A Lord, Jr. President-Elect: to be determined Vice President (July/Dec): Daniel Alvino Vice President (Jan/June): Douglas Rayner Secretary/Treasurer: Rosemarie A Russo Director-at-Large: Franklin Celico Director-at-Large: Ronald Roberts The Nominating Committee also proposes a resolution to authorize one additional Director for the year ended June 30, 2014. 

First Tuesday Lunches will begin on Tuesday, July 2nd at noon. Join us at the Mermaid Café at 19 Margin Street in Westerly. It is a great opportunity for a make-up or to bring a potential Rotarian out to lunch. The one hour format will include a meal, a short agenda and an occasional short program Meals will be chosen right off the menu.. We anticipate these meetings will be less formal and more fun.
These lunches will NOT take the place of our regular meeting. They will be in addition to the regular Monday meeting and offered as and additional opportunity for members of our club and others to meet their weekly meeting obligations.

ON JULY 29, 2013

AT 5:30 P.M.

25 June 2013 News Rosemarie Russo 2013-06-25 14:57:41Z 0
Posted by Clayton Lord on Jun 12, 2013

First Tuesday Lunches

First Tuesday Lunches will begin on Tuesday, July 2nd at noon. Join us at the Mermaid Café at 19 Margin Street in Westerly. It is a great opportunity for a make-up or to bring a potential Rotarian out to lunch. The one hour format will include a meal, a short agenda and an occasional short program Meals will be chosen right off the menu.. We anticipate these meetings will be less formal and more fun.

These lunches will NOT take the place of our regular meeting. They will be in addition to the regular Monday meeting and offered as and additional opportunity for members of our club and others to meet their weekly meeting obligations.First Tuesday Lunches

A special presentation

Mario Celico was presented with a certificate of recognition in honor of his new status as an Active Excused member. Mario has been a member of the club for twenty three years. Add that to his age and you get the magical “85” which means that he is no longer required to attend meetings every week. That is the rule of 85.An active excused member still has to pay his dues and is expected to participate in the club’s activities. The only difference is that attendance at weekly meetings is no longer required to be in good standing.

Membership news
Rosemarie Russo has decided to rescind her resignation and remain with the club… Steve Salerno has officially taken his name out of consideration for the position of President-elect. His business in Connecticut needs his full attention right now… We welcomed back Frank Toscano and Bob Boughner… Our thoughts and prayers are with Roy and Louise Seitsinger upon the passing of her dad…

Report of the nominating committee

Dan Alvino sent along a report of the nominating committee. Due to membership changes since annual meeting in December, 2012, the Nominating Committee has had to re-convene to amend the previously voted upon 2013-2014 Slate of Officers. The following slate will be voted upon at the July 1 meeting:

      President: Clayton A Lord, Jr.

      President-Elect: to be determined at later date

      Vice President (July/Dec): Daniel Alvino

      Vice President (Jan/June): Douglas A Rayner

      Secretary/Treasurer: Rosemarie A Russo

      Director-at-Large: Franklin Celico

      Director-at-Large: Ronald Roberts

The Nominating Committee also proposes a resolution to authorize one additional Director for the year ending June 30, 2014. 

Change of Command

This year’s change of Command Dinner will be on Monday, July 8 at 5:30 p.m. Come join us as we celebrate the past year under President Cal Lord’s leadership and look ahead to next year. We will officially induct him, the officers and the Board into office. Spouses and guests are invited to join in the celebration. Please email Rose ( or 401.315.5868) with your reservations or sign up at the next two meetings.

New Missed Meeting Policy

Beginning July 1 we will be instituting a $2 charge for every missed meeting for active members of the club. Currently we are receiving $1 for every meal purchased and a donation of $2 for those who attend but choose not to eat. This helps defray some of the administrative costs of the club and allows us to keep our dues at a reasonable price for everyone. The thought was that with this change the costs of administration will be shared by those who have to miss meetings as well as those who are present.
Active Excused members, those on a leave of absence and those who do a make-up within two weeks of their absence will be exempt from the $2 charge.
weekly meeting news - 10 June 2013 Clayton Lord 2013-06-13 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on May 24, 2013

Guests included Honorary Rotarian Joe Potter and Speaker Deborah Nigrelli of RI Assisting Those in Need.

Members present  =  10 of 23

Joe shared with members that he visited the Green Valley Arizona factory where the EMILY Robot is manufactured.  He said that it was an interesting visit to see the different models that they are working on.

President Cal reported on his weekend at the District conference.  He attended Past Pres Bob's session on dementia.  There will be an installation dinner on 7 June for incoming District Governor Bilger.  Best of all, President Cal brought home some awards:

       Service Longevity Award for Vinnie Gaccione who has been a Rotarian for 53 years

       Club Achievement Award - recognizing that the Club has demonstrated a high level of active participation in Rotary on the District level

       Best Club Bulletin Award  - recognizing the consistent effort and hard work that is required to effectively and continuously communicate with Club members

Guest Speaker RI Center Assisting Those in Need, Founder and Executive Director Deborah Nigrelli

She spoke of new things happening at the Center, which has moved to 805 Alton Carolina Road in Charlestown.  They've worked for months to paint and repair the historic building - having received a grant to assist with the improvements.  With the help initially from Walmart and later Stop & Shop, she began an Food Rescue Program - a Friday program that provides supplemental food items "rescued" from the two stores and is available to all people in the community without eligibility requirements.  This food, she said, was headed into the dumpsters due to store guidelines but still within time usage limits.  She shared several pictures and graphs concerning the building and clients served at RICAN.  Deb said that new volunteers are always needed, as well as food items and furniture or clothing in good condition.  

For more information, go to or or call 401.364.9412

RICAN's motto:  To serve with respect, dignity and without discrimination all those in need statewide, primarily in the southern Rhode Island area.

  Image    You can.  We can.  RI CAN!





















Weekly Meeting News - 20May2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-05-25 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on May 13, 2013

Guests included Principal Ruscito and May Student of the Month Katherine Eichorn as well as the GSE Team from France.

Members present  -  9

May Student of the Month, Katherine Eichorn, was introduced to members by Principal Steven Ruscito.  She is a National Honor Society student whose favorite class is Calculus II.  Katherine has 300 - 400 hours in Community Service and has achieve Ambassador level in Girl Scouts.  She is President of the High School Student Council, is a freshman mentor and has completed a Certified Nursing Assistant course.  After graduation she will be able to apply for her CNA license.  She hopes to study Anthropology in college but is also leaning toward a career in Nursing.


 Group Study Exchange Team visited Westerly on Monday, 13 May.  They were sponsored on this trip by District 1790; Kirsten Gorg, Team Leader, is a member of the French-German Rotary Club which meets in Saarbruecken, Germany and Forbach, France, alternately.  Our busy day began at McDonald's at Exit 3A off of I95 at 8:30am.  Our first stop was at the Westerly-Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce.  The team picked up several brochures about our area and Donna, Lisa's assistant gave the team "Save the Beach" t-shirts and the 2013 Calendar which highlights the Men of Westerly.


Next stop was Westerly High School -  the Team was greeted by twelve students, selected by Principal Ruscito, to talk with the Team and take them on a tour of the Science Wing.  We ended this visit in French Class.  The team really enjoyed meeting the students and the discussions with them.

 Image GSE Thomas Huguin sneaked into the picture with the students: Jessica Algieri, Sishi Chen, Charles Elliot, Danielle Gilluly, Joyce Hou, Danielle Kubicsko, Jessica Lawrence, Betsey Matczak, Olivia Obertello, Ryan Quattromani, Emily Walker, Julia Wicklund



Next stop was Wilcox Park on a tour with Park Manager Alan Peck.

 Image    Rotarians President Cal, Kirsten and Rose

 Image  Is Thomas really going to dunk Chloe?? 


 And then we headed over to the Bridge for lunch.  Danny Alvino, Bob Elmer, Doug Rayner, Katherine Taylor and Alan Peck joined us for lunch.



After lunch, the Team had a bit of time to walk around the shops downtown, followed by a tour of Watch Hill and Misquamicut and a bit of time to walk on the beach.  Cedric attempted to have a little swim but found the water a bit chilly.  Last stop was a visit to Cottrell Brewery in Pawcatuck.  Charles Buffum treated us to tastings of his beers - Old Yankee Ale, Mystic Bridge IPA and Perry's Revenge.  We also tasted a specially brewed Perry's Revenge which spends some time in whisky barrels and attains the flavor of oak and whiskey.


And finally we get to Venice Restaurant for dinner meeting.  

  Image exchanging of club banners and gifts







Weekly Meeting News - 13 May 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-05-14 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on May 08, 2013

  Week of 29 Apr 2013

Guest for the evening was Paul Duffy who is Director of Parks and Recreation.  He has been with the Town for over twelve years and spoke with pride about the work and legacy of Rotary Park.  He was delighted that we are still as committed to making improvements to the Park and has spoken to the folks responsible for maintaining the Park about our work day project.  Also he asked that, if we plan a future improvement project, the Donor sign is in need of repair or replacement.


The work day at Rotary Park has been rescheduled to Tuesday, 14 May 2013, at 9:00 am.  If you wish to help out, please dress appropriately and bring gloves and pruningbut tools, rakes, etc.

Week of 6 May 2013

Notes:  Board met at 4:00 - discussion included Chowder CookOff results - not all funds are in but may be the lowest net revenue in five years; reviewed status of Summer Pops plans - most concession items have been ordered, the rest is in process  -  Rose will prepare an outline of Pops Day Job List for signup as the day draws closer; Past President Bob is speaking at one of the 3:00pm Sessions at the District Conference on 17 May; Work Day at Rotary Park is rescheduled to 14 May 2013 at 9:00am; President Cal received a letter of resignation from Rosemarie Russo and after discussion, the Board voted to accept it.  Also, Cal expressed concern about planning events going forward.  He believes that we should plan to do only two fundraisers next year with one of those being the Summer Pops.  In addition, he wondered if we shouldn't consider a "missed meeting fee" for members who miss a meeting and don't make up and if we should reduce the number of speakers each month.



WARM Shelter sent a thank you note for the final 2013 contribution for the "Dollar makes a difference" program.


Weekly Meeting News - 6 May 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-05-08 22:31:50Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Apr 25, 2013

15 Apr 2013

Guests included Theresa Cavaliere, Chariho Rotarian, and Susan McCoy.  Welcomed back was Dan Alvino and Joe Potter.  

Pres. Cal's Notes:

Last Monday night we had a special Board meeting and took some time to discuss our club and the challenges we have ahead of us.  We covered everything from whether changing the time and/or day of our meetings would make a difference, to looking at ways to engage those of you who have not been able to get to meetings, and how to reach out to new members.  Nearly everyone has agreed that what we do is valuable to our community and meaningful to them.  Realistically though, we talked about the large number of outside events that we support and how it may be causing fatigue and burn-out.  We talked a bit about the history of our club.  I shared the results of the survey that I sent out.  As a result of our discussion this week I have a question for you today  -  some of you have had a hard time making it to meetings on a regular basis.  We would like to know why and if there is anything that we could do to change that?  (You are important and we miss you!)  So please drop me a note or email and let me know.  Let's talk about it.

Our sympathies went to Joe on the death of his sister, Frances Green.

Chowder Cook-Off -  Tickets were distributed at meeting.  If anyone hasn't received tickets or needs more, contact Rose.

Past President Bob will be speaking at the District Conference in Plymouth.

Lisa Konicki is looking for volunteers for the BoldrDash event at Misquamicut  -  contact Donna Greene at  - if you can help on May 18 or 19 anywhere from 6am to 5pm.

Guest Speaker - Donna Nabb from Westerly Parent Academy

Donna updated members on the success of the Parent Academy in its first year of bringing courses and services to parents.  It Mission Statement states that "the Westerly Parent Academy is a community-wide collaborative of learning opportunities supporting the success of our youth, parents and community."   Working with community partners, the "academy" provides courses at no cost to parents and guardians to assist and support them to increase their knowledge and develop their personal, educational and vocational skills.



 22 April 2013

Six of us attended International Night at White's of Westport.  Celebrating twenty years of exchange students in our District, begun by attorney David J Oliveira who was President of the Rotary Club of Westerly.  Rona Mann has taken up the task over the years working with the short-term students and organizing the International Night event each year.  This year's group includes inbound students from Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Germany, Peru, Poland and Slovakia.  Outbound students - three long-term and 7 short-term -  will be going to Denmark, France, Germany, Italy and Spain.  They all recently participated in the RYLA weekend and spoke highly of the weekend.  Monday evening was wonderful - the food fantastic and the students were the best ever!!!










Weekly Meeting News - 22 Apr 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-04-26 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Apr 10, 2013

Members present  =  13

Guests for the evening include April Student of the Month Celine Gouvin, 2013 RYLA Student Julianna Morrone, and WHS Principal Steven Ruscito

 Image   Happy Birthday greetings to  Christopher DiPaola, 13 April 2013


    International Night, 22 April 2013.  There will be a round table at Venice for members not attending International Night dinner.

    District Work Day is 20 April 2013 at Rotary Park.  Coffee and donuts at 9:15am.  Dress appropriately for yard work, bring gloves and garden tools.

    Chowder Cook-off is 4 May 2013 at Venice Ballroom from Noon to 3:00pm

NOTE:  The annual Scholarship/Charitable dinner has been postponed


2013 Rotary Youth Leadership Award Student is Julianna Marrone                                                           

Image    Julianna is a Sophomore at Westerly High School and plays basketball and volleyball.  Principal Ruscito said that he asked previous RYLA winners Austin Menta and Ryan Quattromani to assist with the selection process.  Students completed applications for the award but it was Julianna's statement "leadership is someone who creates their own path" that won the day.  A very impressive young lady, the membership looks forward to her return visit after her RYLA experience.

April Student of the Month -  Celine Gouvin

  Image Principal Ruscito introduced Celine, saying that each student of the month selection is special in their own way.  A Senior, member of National Honor Society, Rhode Island Honor Society, Cheerleader and Captain, Celine took the lead to put together the Unified basketball tournament for special needs students.  In addition, she runs camps of the Pee Wee cheerleaders.  She has applied to several colleges and hopes to study in the field of pre-med or health sciences.  


Congratulations to Mike Smith

     Image  President Cal awarded Mike Smith a certificate for his five years of service in Rotary.  But, sadly we were saying good by to this fine young man.  He recently accepted a position at a newspaper organization closer to home in Connecticut and he, therefore, has had to terminate his membership in this Club.  We all wish him the very best.  Godspeed, Mike.






Weekly Meeting News - 8 April 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-04-11 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Apr 02, 2013

 Members present  =  12

ANNOUNCEMENT:  New member proposed by President Cal Lord and approved by Board pending membership acceptance and fireside chat.  If anyone has opposition to the acceptance to membership of Brian Gerbutavich of 1 Bridgette Lane, Westerly RI, please contact President Cal by Monday, 8 April 2013.  Brian and his wife attend President Cal's church and volunteered their time at the 2012 Summer Pops event helping in the Gazebo area concession.

The following memo was sent in an email by President Cal  - 




                 Image                                                                Happy Birthday wishes to

                           8 April    Walter Kimball      13 April  Chris DiPaola     18 April  Beth Frenette      20 April  Vin Gaccione       24 April  Donna Celico    

                                                            29 April  Steve Cofone, Bruce Morrow and Joseph Potter          30 April  Thelma Gaccione

                                                                                                             Anniversary blessings

                                                                                              Helen and Joe Nigrelli, 19 April,  61 years 




Weekly Meeting News - 1 April 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-04-03 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Mar 27, 2013

 Members in attendance   8 

Guest for the evening was Speaker Liz Pasqualini from the Jonnycake Center.

No birthdays of anniversaries to share.

Reminder  -  International Night is 22 April 2013  -  so far five members have signed up to attend

Note from President Cal

Hello all,

I am asking you to really try to make our meeting next Monday, April 1st.  I know this is a busy weekend for everyone with family time and Easter Services but we need to talk about the future.  I am sending along a survey for you to fill out.  You can bring it with you or email it back to me......  The more of them I get back ahead of time, the more I can share with the club at our meeting.

As we make plans for next year, the Board will need your input on everything from the way meetings are run, to meeting times, to the fundraising events we hold.  Our club can only be successful if everyone takes ownership of our plan for the future.  Now is the time to speak up.

The Board will be meeting at 4:00pm. and will have some preliminary discussions on the future.  Our whole club meeting will be dedicated to this topic.  You will have a chance to talk about what is good about our club and discuss what we can do to make it better.

As for last Monday, we had a good give and take with our guest speaker, Liz Pasqualini.  She shared what has been happening at the Jonnycake Center and let us in on the Basic Needs Network to address transportation needs of residents in the area.

We heard from Clark and others that Doug Rayner's surgery went well and we said a prayer for him as we closed our meeting.

Thanks for all you do for our community at work and through Rotary.  I hope to see you all on Monday. 

Be blessed. Cal

A Special Thank You to Bob Elmer

The "baby" bibs that we have worn in the past are a "thing of the past" thanks to the generosity of Past President Bob Elmer who has donated REAL aprons to our Club.

  Image  and here's the big guy modeling our new aprons.  Yeah!!!


Additional notes  from editor related to Liz Pasqualini and the Jonnycake Center of Westerly.  Liz provided a colorful sheet of statistics - 2012 in review - here are some of those facts:  The Center provided 5,448 items of clothing; 760 pieces of furniture; served 2,988 individuals and families from Hopkinton, Richmond, Charlestown and Westerly; prepared 237,425 meals; provided financial aid for heating ($33,000), Utilities ($14,000), Housing ($37,000), Medication ($1,300), Education ($6,700).



Weekly Meeting News - 25 March 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-03-28 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie A Russo on Mar 19, 2013

 Attendance  10

Guests included Chef Jaime Finkelstein from the Westerly High School Culinary Department and Alan Peck who is the Wilcox Park Manager.  

No Birthdays or Anniversaries to announce.

The following report comes from President Cal:

Hello all,

I walked away from last Monday night's Rotary meeting with my eyes opened.  I knew that the Westerly Public Library and Wilcox Park are local treasures but I never imagined just how special they are.  It is funny how you take the things you know for granted.

Alan Peck, of the Westerly Library [Wilcox Park], was with us on Monday and he shared some facts and photos about our park and noted how it has some of the finest samples of trees in the state.  He talked about the overall plan and how the park has been carefully cultivated over the years to become what it is today.  Most of us know its beauty but we don't appreciate the thoughtful work that goes on behind the scenes to make it what it is.

  Image  Alan is showing the group one of the Park's Champion Trees

Our own Kathryn Taylor followed with a bit of what she does as an advocate of the Westerly Library and libraries across the state.  Not only does she do a great job ensuring that our library is a vital community resource able to meet the needs of our residents, she also works to advocate on behalf of all our public and private libraries with the state legislature.  Recently she got them to drop a bill which would have devastated libraries like ours who rely on public funding and private gifts to make ends meet.  Kathryn also spoke about the changing aspects of the collections to meet the technological needs of the day.  I think we all learned at least one thing we didn't know before.

 Image  Kathryn [as we usually do, a book was donated to the Westerly Library in her name]

We also had Chef Jamie, who heads the Westerly High School Culinary Arts Program, with us.  He shared his vision for the CFhowder Cook-off.  He and his students will be doing all the "leg work" this year and helping us to resurrect the event on Saturday, May 4 from Noon to 3:00 pm at the Venice Restaurant [ballroom].  We are working on the logistics of how the judging will take place now and getting tickets prepared.  We hope to have them available very soon.


Two other things to note from the meeting:  1)We will be hosting the incoming GSE team from France on Monday, May 13.  Volunteers are needed to spend part or all of the day with our guests. 2) The District Convention will be in Plymouth this year from May 17 to 19.  To register or get more information to to

Weekly Meeting News - 18 Mar 2013 Rosemarie A Russo 2013-03-20 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Mar 10, 2013

 4 March 2013

Members present  -  13

Board met at 4:00  -  Board determined that there had been inadequate preparation for the Chowder CookOff event and it was, therefore, cancelled for 2013.  As a result, there will be no donations made until further notice.  Treasurer's Report was completed by Secretary Rose for the months of January and February.  Review of attendance over the past several months indicated that average attendance is 65.7% compared to 60.4% same period last fiscal year.  Nevertheless, attendance at last four meetings was 50% or less.  Edgar Morales' leave ends on 11 March - we will be reaching out to him.  Cal will also be reaching out to some folks who attended the "meet and greet" night to follow up with their potential to join the Club.  International Night will be 22 April at White's of Westport.  Bob Elmer volunteered to contact Principal Ruscito to select our 2013 RYLA student and, in the meantime, the RYLA application and payment was completed and forwarded to RYLA chair.

11 March 2013

Members present  -  10

Guests included WHS Principal Ruscito,  March Student of the Month Monique Walmsley and Guest Speaker Mike Smiles from the New England Science & Sailing Foundation (NESS).


The Rotary Youth Leadership Award is in process with huge thank you to Past President Bob Elmer.  Principal Ruscito's selected student may possibly attend the April 8th dinner meeting prior to attending the conference on April 19 to 21 at the Cape Cod Sea Camps in Brewster, MA.  Students spend three days at the camp "where they learn valuable leadership skills that will aid them in their futures."  This program is run by Rotarian advisors and previous RYLA alumni.  Our Club is sponsoring one student from WHS.

International Night will be on April 22, 2013 - 20th Anniversary of this event - to celebrate the Exchange program for high school students.  As in the past, it will be at White's of Westport.  Sign up sheet will be available next week.  Individual tickets are $45 per person or $350 for a table of 8.

Group Study Exchange Team is coming from France this year from 12 May to 17 May.  If our Club decides to host a day, as we have in the past, we must find  suitable businesses for them to visit.  The Team members are Chloe Oswald, Marketing Assistant; Cedric Staudt, nuclear electric power plant engineer; Thomas Huguin, CEO/Consultant in Biodynamic agriculture; Augustin Burkel, Commercial technician in thermocouple energy.  Team Leader is Rotarian Kirsten Gorg.

District 7950 Conference will be in Plymouth, MA on 17 May to 19 May.  Registration information and forms are available at the District's website.


Image        Happy Birthday to  Helen Nigrelli (Mar 4) and Mike Smith (Mar 14)

                              Club Anniversary:  Mike Smith  (Mar 16)      

President Cal's Thought for the day came from Benjamin Franklin:  "Most miss opportunity because it shows up in overalls and looks a lot like work."


Westerly High School Principal Steven Ruscito introduced his March selection, Monique Walmsley, a really special young lady fluent in French and Italian.  She has volunteered numerous hours to two projects:  a program for third and fourth grades for which she taught French and Italian and fundraising for a non profit organization called, Love 146, to combat child trafficking and exploitation.  Monique plans to further her language studies at Providence College with the goal of teaching secondary education.  She said that the Westerly High School teachers have inspired her to accomplish her goals and to give back.  She also volunteers at the Westerly Library.

 Image  President Cal with Monique

PROGRAM  -  J. Michael Smiles of New England Science & Sailing Foundation

Mike was a former member of the Mystic Rotary Club and has recently become involved with "NESS", which is located on Water Street in Stonington Borough.  The non profit organization's core purpose is "to inspire individuals (from age 4 to adult) to discover themselves through the enjoyment of the sea."  The staff includes "experienced marine science, adventure sports, and sailing instructors to provide exceptional hands-on experiences."  Over 100 instructional courses are offered and watercraft include kayaks, windsurfers, stand-up paddle boards, power boats, surfboards and sailboats.  NESS has partnered with US Sailing and Connecticut Schools with sailing "as a platform to advance Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM) based education  through their Science Center classrooms and the Atlantic Ocean.  Mike provided a wonderful video showing the program in action.  For further information, go to, call 860.535.9362 or visit them at 70 Water Street.

  Image  President Cal and Mike Smiles


FOUNDATION MOMENT  -  Rotary news by Arnold R. Grahl

A Rotarian-led team of hydrologists, engineers, geologists, and other experts traveled to the Thane district in Northwest India in October, 2012 to help local Rotarians and their international partners design a global grant project to bring clean water and sanitation to more than 1,800 villages.  The Project Enhancement Process was designed to enlist the help of Rotarians experienced in the areas of water and sanitation so that clubs could put together large-scale, sustainable projects.  After assessing the needs of local wells and problems, the team formed its recommendations such as rainwater-harvesting structures, trenching and diesel pumps for irrigation.


Weekly Meeting News - 4 Mar and 11 Mar Rosemarie Russo 2013-03-11 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Feb 25, 2013

Guests at this meeting included Joseph Shea, Past President of the Rotary Club of Essex and Ed Russell.  They were guests of Doug Rayner.   Ruth Tureckova, Executive Director of Literacy Volunteers of Washington County, joined us for dinner as well as to be our evening's program.

Members in attendance  =  8


ImageHappy Anniversary Blessings to Valerie and Clark Rumfelt (21 February) and Evelyn and Steve Cofone (23 February)


Story Section on website includes a "hot off the press" article about Past President Dan Alvino being honored for his work and our club's support to projects in La Penita, Mexico.  Dan will be making a presentation to the Club upon his return.

We ask that everyone keep Steve Salerno and his family in your prayers.  Steve has not only been working very hard to help his brother the past few weeks but has also been dealing with health issues.


Guest Speaker  -  Ruth Tureckova, Executive Director of Literacy Volunteers of Washington County

It was a pleasure to meet Ruth, who has been in her position for about eight months.  Her enthusiasm and excitement  about the mission of Literacy Volunteers and the people it serves was very apparent.   Ruth explained that their programs assist adults who are "interested in improving their literacy skills".  There are various reasons, she explained, that find adults with little or no reading and writing skills - from being in a farming family that requires them to be working in the fields as young children instead of going to school to being a new immigrant to the United States.  LV services include basic reading, math and writing literacy, English as a second language, citizenship preparation, financial literacy, workforce literacy and even GED preparation.  Trained volunteers work individually with participants for typically two hours per week.  LV also has a ten-computer lab available for additional individual study use.

Literacy Volunteers' office is located at the Tower Street School, units 25 and 26,  here in Westerly and their service area includes all of Washington County and the Pawcatuck/Stonington communities.  For more information, go to, call 401.596.9411, or email



NEXT WEEK  -  Board meeting at 4:00 pm, followed by general meeting at 5:30.

President Cal's "thought for the day"  -  The best antidote I know for worry is work.  The best cure for weariness is the challenge of helping someone who is even more tired.  One of the great ironies of life is this; he or she who serves almost benefits more than he or she who is served  -  by Gordon B. Hinckley


Weekly Meeting News - 25 February 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-02-26 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Feb 11, 2013

 4 February 2013

Members Present  -  7

Board met at

All donation requests have been tabled until after Chowder Cook-Off Event.  Refinishing of Rotary Park sign is being researched.  Mario is also researching replacement of the Rotary Park sign with a Granite structure.  Still in research is finding a more reasonablly priced storage facility.  The Reforest the Trees project at Westerly Middle School should be in progress - our first payment was submitted to RTT.  Rotary Park project is in process with Paul Duffy and mark your calendar to work on the park's walking trails on or about 27 April 2013 -  if you have Girl or Boy Scouts in your family, bring them along to earn service credits - more hands get the job done quicker and better - especially young hands!!!  A tentative date has been scheduled for the Charitable/Scholarship Dinner/Auction Event - 8 June - at the Cooked Goose.  It was announced that former Westerly Rotarian Rona Mann was selected to be the next Assistant District Governor when Russ Bertrand completes his term on 30 June.  Membership Committee will be doing some follow-up with folks who attended our "meet and greet" event.  Chowder Cook-Off is scheduled for 23 March.

At dinner we were happy to welcome Christine Viele, who works at the Newport Fed Bank in Stonington.  She heard Past Pres. Bob's Rotary "minute" on WBLQ.

11 February 2013

Members Present  -  7

Image      BIRTHDAYS:  Feb 4  -  Kara Smith    Feb 5  -  Jeff Frenette     Feb 13  -  Marty Boughner     Feb 14  -  Edgar Morales   

                                   CLUB ANNIVERSARIES;  Feb 9  -  Bruce Morrow and Steve Salerno 


Guests at this meeting included Melanie and Tom Visgilio, Visiting Rotarians from Pennsylvania; Brian Gerbutavich, prospective member and guest of Cal Lord; WHS Principal Steven Ruscito, January Student of the Month Shu Hua Lin and February Student of the Month Kevin Wong; Current ADG Russell Bertrand and Incoming ADG Rona Mann.



Steve Cofone addressed the membership to express his appreciation of Chris DiPaola's extreme efforts at WBLQ to keep the residents of Westerly up-to-date with efforts around town to restore electricity, road clearing, etc.  Like during Hurricane Sandy, his service to the town is priceless!!!!  Rotarian values in action!!Image 


January Student of the Month  -  Shu Hua Lin 

Introduced to the membership by Principal Ruscito, Shu is a Senior at Westerly High School, member of the Outdoors Club and Student Council.  For her community service, Shu and other Westerly High School artists created a mural at Westerly Middle School.  She thanked especially the WHS art teachers for helping her during her high school career and announced that she had been accepted to attend the Art Institute of Boston.  Currently, the Artists' Cooperative Gallery of Westerly  is presenting a WHS Student Art Show and some of Shu's art work can be seen there. 


February Student of the Month  -  Kevin Wong

Introduced by Principal Ruscito as a four-year Honor student, Kevin hopes to study electrical engineering.  He has over 75 hours in community service at Westerly Hospital and is a member of the Academic Decatholon.  Kevin is also a member of Musica Dolce and plays violin. 



Guest Speaker  -  Vicki L. Anderson, Executive Director of the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center

Vicki told the membership that she had been a member of the Rotary Club of Groton Ledyard but found that she was unable to maintain adequate membership when she took her position at the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center, which is currently in its 27th year. of providing basic needs services.  Vicki has been with this 501(c) (3) organization for eleven years.  Half of their work is in Human Services  -  emergency food, emergency fuel assistance, job search assistance.  They also help Seniors with grants provided for transportation needs - medical appointments, grocery shoping, banking, social events - throughout the Stonington/Old Mystic/North Stonington and Westerly areas.  Their Senior Programs include lunch, game days, exercise programs, Art and writing classes.

PNC's Mission is stated as "we improve and enhance the quality of life of residents of all ages by providing basic human needs, social interaction and senior transportation to obtain medical care".

For more information, go to or call 860.599.3285.  PNC is located at 27 Chase Street, Pawcatuck CT 06379.  The 10th Annual Cabin Fever Festival and Chowder Cook-Off, which will be held at Olde Mystic Village on 23 February will benefit the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center.



President Cal's Thought for the Day   -

"Keep reaching out because you may help pull someone out of darkness and guide them into the light."   from Caroline Naoroji




Weekly Meeting News - 4 Feb and 11 Feb Rosemarie Russo 2013-02-12 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Feb 02, 2013

 Guests at this meeting included Beth Frenette - wife of new member Jeff Frenette, Steve Crino - guest of Clark Rumfelt, Nick Stahl - Executive Director of Development for Westerly Hospital and Foundation, and Guest Speaker Dr. Christopher Lehrach - Chief Transformation Officer at Westerly Hospital.

Nine members were present.



We are very happy to report that a new member was inducted at this dinner meeting -  Jeffrey J. Frenette.   Jeff works at the Technology office of The Washington Trust Bank at the facility near Westerly Airport.   Sponsored by Honorary member Joe Potter, Jeff - and Beth -  have been active participants with the Columbus Day Parade Committee along with Joe.  While President Cal explained what it means to become a Rotarian, Past President Bob presented Jeff with his Rotary pin and badge.




Current ADG Russ Bertrand will visit the Club Monday evening 4 February along with Incoming ADG Rona Mann.

Reminder that Vicki Anderson of the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center AND the January and February Students of the Month (Shu Hua Lin and Kevin Wong) will be visiting the Club on 11 February.

Reminder also that 18 February is President's Day - so - no meeting.

The Scholarship Application has been inserted into website for access - see "Download" section - if you know of an eligible Westerly student, please encourage them to download the application.



Dr. Lehrach began his talk by providing the membership with a little background.  He was an ER doctor and was CEO of Outpatient services of the Atlantic Medical Group.  He earned his MBA at Yale.  Currently Dr. Lehrach lives in Charlestown with his family - his children were born at Westerly Hospital. 

He explained that his title (Chief Transformation Officer) refers to the task of transitioning Health Care between L&M Hospital with Westerly Hospital.  Dr. Lehrach said that the hospital is currently operating at "breakeven" and is doing a better job with revenue collection.  They are also working at improving the uses of operations and are closing operations that were losing.  Union contracts, stipend and lease arrangements have been or are in process of re-negotiation.  He said that L&M's operating margin was mandated at 3% and this mandate will also apply to Westerly Hospital.

Speaking lastly of the Maternity department closing in June, Dr. Lehrach stated that a shrinking population, cost of living, lower number of pregnancies all directly relate to this decision.  It just did not make sound fiscal sense to keep and maintain the staffing and building cost necessary with just one or two deliveries a day.  L&M has a big maternity facility with neonatal and fertility care as well and it really isn't unreasonably distant.  








Weekly Meeting News - 28 January 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-02-03 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Jan 27, 2013

Jeffrey J. Frenette was formally inducted Monday evening, 28 January 2013, into the Club by President Cal Lord and Past President Bob Elmer.  Jeff was sponsored by Honorary Member Joseph Potter.  Jeff and his wife, Beth, were first introduced to the membership as Joe's "right and left hands" on the Columbus Day Parade Committee.


WELCOME - NEW MEMBER Rosemarie Russo 2013-01-28 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Jan 18, 2013

 The news report will cover both the 7 January and 14 January meetings due to work/time conflicts.

The Board met on 7 January and voted to hold all charitable giving until after the Chowder CookOff event.

Ron Roberts reported that the CookOff will be held on March 23 from Noon to 3:00pm in the Venice Ballroom.  Date was confirmed prior to 14January meeting.  The Board requests that all members participate fully with attendance day of event and/or inviting friends and family to attend.   It was also decided that there should be three categories of CookOff participants - retail (restaurant), educational institution, and nonprofit - with award winners in each group.  Apparently, not everyone appreciated the fact that the Westerly High School students won first place last year.  So, we must make every effort to help participants with advertising and encouraging customers to come out and vote for their favorite restaurant, school and nonprofit group.  It is hoped that we can get Chariho and Stonington High Schools to compete with Westerly High School.  If you have a connection with the chefs at Clipper Home, Westerly Adult Day Center, Westerly Health Center, WARM, Olean Center, Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center or other similar organization, it would be appreciated if you would contact them and offer an invitation to participate - or give the name to Ron Roberts or Steve Salerno.

A copy of the poster will be found on the center section of the website.

Thank you notes have been received from the YMCA, Jonnycake Center and WARM for the December contributions.

PROPOSED MEMBER:  The Board voted to accept Jeff Frenette into membership.  A Fireside Chat was held on Tuesday afternoon at The Elms' lounge attended by Cal Lord, Bob Elmer, Steve Cofone, Rose Russo and, of course, Jeff.  He will be fomally inducted on 28 January.   

Guests at the 7 January meeting included Jeff Frenette and the Visgilio's, who were visiting from Pennsylvania.

January student of the month visitation has been postponed until February's student visitation.

On 14 January President Cal presented Past President Bob Elmer with his Paul Harris Sapphire Pin in recognition of his second $1,000 level of giving to Rotary Foundation.  Well done, Bob!!!  


Guests at the 14 January meeting included Jeff Frenette and Guest speaker Russ Partridge from the WARM Center.

Russ  begani his talk with a brief history of WARM which had its beginnings with a collaboration of local churches.  They recognized that there was a need in the area for short-term emergency shelter for the suddenly homeless.  They soon realized that the problem wasn't going to go away.  Temporary shelter in churches evolved into a 501(c)(3) organization called WARM which evolved into a 19 bed transitional housing, a two-year program; 17 rental units spread throughout Westerly as part of the Harvest Home Program for homeless families; lunch and dinner program 7 days weekly that served 35,000 meals in 2012; an "Attire for Hire" program that helps folks by providing good used clothing during job search; permanent safe housing for people with disabilities.  Russ said that WARM's mission is to help people to get back on their feet.  He spoke very highly of the cooperative efforts of 40 other agencies who all meet monthly to share issues and solutions.

A startling fact that Russ shared had to do with what people lose when they become homeless - three most important documents: birth certificate, social security card and picture id.  He said that if often takes months to get replacements for these important items.  How do they get lost?  Imagine coming home for work one day and finding that you have been locked out of your home or apartment.  Then when you find a way in, you find that all your possession are gone.  And, it's not your fault - your landlord failed to pay the mortgage, didn't bother to warn you that the bank was about to foreclose - the nighmare begins.  To these folks - WARM is a haven - a port in the storm.





Weekly Meeting News - 14 January 2013 Rosemarie Russo 2013-01-19 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Dec 17, 2012

 Members present  =  11                 Members absent  =  12

Guests at Monday's Christmas gathering included Rotarian spouses Donna Celico, Florence Alvino, Jean Rayner and Valerie Rumfelt; WHS Principal Steven Ruscito, Patrick Regan, Denise and Tony Pelligrino.  Also attending dinner were 2012 Scholarship Award winners Jena Piccolo and Kevin Conway, November Student of the Month Hannah Schilke and December Student of the Month Austin Menta.

Dan Alvino and Frank Celico spoke to the young people about being a Rotarian and the many good works accomplished by this organization both on a local level as well as the world over.

Principal Ruscito introduced Hannah and Austin to the membership with quite a list of all their accomplishments - details can be found at the Site Page "2012-2013 Students of the Month. 


President Cal called Jena and Kevin to present them with their scholarships and each spoke a bit about their first semester.  Jena is at the University of Rhode Island studying Nutrition and Dietetics.  She continues to do community service by helping at Habitat for Humanity and a school organization called RAK for Random Acts of Kindness.  Kevin is attending University of Mississippi and is on the Track Team.  His major is Exercise Science and he also continues community service by tutoring.


Regarding the November Pasta Dinner to benefit the Jonnycake Center, the final donation delivered on Tuesday was $1,777.64.  Cal and Ron delivered that check as well as the current donation from Dollar Makes a Difference Fuel Assistance collections to Russ Partridge.  Ron also delivered the RICAN Christmas donations on Tuesday to Deb Nigrelli.


Our Senior "exempt" members were recognized with a certificate and free meeting dinner award -  Doug Rayner, Bob Elmer and Steve Cofone.  Although, Doug has been exempt for quite awhile, RI records with upgrade to ClubRunner were not up to date.  It has now been officially corrected.

Pastor Clark was asked to give a Christmas reflection and he spoke of THE wonderful Christmas story of Joseph and Mary and how each did the unexpected but "crazy" thing  -  so unlike what was expected in that time and place.

President Cal then called Victoria forward and presented her with a thank you gift from the members in attendance.  Anyone who hasn't contributed can contact President Cal or bring your gift to next meeting on 7th of January.



Birthdays  -  Carmen Morales (Dec 6), Jean Morrow (Dec 12), Carol Potter (Dec 16), Florence Alvino (Dec 21)

Anniversaries  -  Gloria and Walter Kimball  (Dec 25)

Thought for the Day

God is so wise that he never created friends with price tags.  If He did, I wouln't have been able to afford precious friends like you.

Author Unknown




Weekly Meeting News - 17 December 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-12-18 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Dec 11, 2012

Saturday evening at the Venice Restaurant Ballroom  -  Friends and family of the Chariho and Westerly Rotary Clubs, along with the volunteers of Rhode Island Assisting Those in Need, gathered together to celebrate Christmas and to raise funds for the organization's fuel and food assistance needs.  Deborah Nigrelli, Executive Director of RICAN, welcomed attendees and provided a video presentation.  Past President Bob Elmer provided introductions and thanked all present for their donations and dinner entrees.  Music was provided by DJ Caswell Cooke.  And, best of all, there was a surprise visit by Santa Claus for all the little ones.  A wonderfully festive evening with great friends, great food and BIG hearts!!!  Over $3,100 was raised in cash donations, gift cards, books and toys.  A big thank you to all who participated and especially to Steve Salerno, John Huhtala and Ron Roberts!!




RICAN Christmas, 8 December 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-12-12 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Dec 10, 2012

                                                                              New Proposed Member Announcement

     The Board has voted to approve Jeff Frenette to become a member of our Club.  A fireside chat will be held on 17 December at 4:00 at the Venice Restaurant  -  any member of the Club is welcome to attend the "chat" and share their reasons for becoming a Rotarian.  Jeff has been sponsored by Honorarian Rotarian Joe Potter.  Jeff is employed by Washington Trust Company in the area of Technology.

                                                                                 Annual Meeting, 10 December 2012

     President Cal called the meeting to order at approximately 6:00pm for the specific purpose of voting in the Nominated Slate of Officers for 2013-2014 and changes to the Scholarship Fund Policy   - 

                    Officers for 2013-2014:  President  Clayton A. Lord

                                                                  President Elect  Steven Salerno

                                                                  Vice President  (July/December)  Daniel Alvino, (January/June) Douglas A. Rayner

                                                                  Secretary  Rosemarie A. Russo

                                                                  Treasurer  Ronald Roberts

                                                                  Director at Large  Frank Celico

                                                                  Immediate Past President  Robert E. P. Elmer III

                   Scholarship Fund Policy Change:  Originally the Club annual event was designated as the Scholarship Fundraising Event - Board and membership voted to change this special function to Scholarship/Charity Fundraising Event.  Originally all funds from the event were to be deposited into the Club Scholarship account  -  Board and membership voted to change to a 50% split of funds between the Scholarship and Charitable accounts.  Originally the dollar amount to be awarded annually was a minimum of $2,000  -  Board and membership voted to increase the annual award to a minimum of $4,000.


Members Present = 12        Members Absent = 11

Guests:  Scott Keller of Reforest the Trees,  Jeff Frenette and members of the Westerly Innovations Network - students Cassandra Lin, Isaac Kaufman, John Perino and Cassandra's parents, Jason and Sherry Lin.

          Project T. G. I. F.  -  Turn Grease Into Fuel.   WIN is a non profit 501(c)(3) organization, a student-led community problem solving team.  Six members of the team are now freshment in high school.  After extensive research and testing, collaboration with a biofuel facility, the group developed a strategy to collect waste cooking oil from local residents and restaurants and convert it into biodiesel.  Then they give the biofuel to families in need through the existing local emergency heat assistance agents.  Currently, "118 restaurants are donating their used cooking oil and 21,000 gallons of biofuel has been donated with a worth of close to $81,000 and helping 210 families."  WIN recently donated $25,000 worth of BioHeat to five charities.

     The Team has won EPA's President's Environmental Youth Awards, the Sea World/Busch Gardents Environmental Excellence Awards in 2010; they represented the USA to compete at UNEP's VolvoAdventure Awards and won fourth place in Sweden in 2011; and they won the Grand Champion on Community Problem Solving at the 2012 FPSP International Conference at the Indiana University.  In 2011 Governor Lincoln Chafee signed the team's Used Cooking Oil Recycling Act into law - it mandates that all businesses recycle their waste cooking oil.  The group also won the John H. Chafee Conservation Leadership Award for its project.   Last week the team was featured on CNN Heroes: An All Star Tribute, hosted by Anderson Cooper, to honor ten CNN Heroes from around the world who have improved the lives of others.  Each honoree will receive a $50,000 grant and the "Hero of the Year" will receive a $250,000 grant.





Weekly Meeting News - 10 December 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-12-11 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Dec 03, 2012

         Member present  15       Members absent  8

Monday evening the Club held a "prospective member night", made especially festive due to the Christmas decorations by the Venice staff, who also provided sandwiches, cheese and crackers.  The Membership Committee sent invitations to several businesses; and while some folks told President Cal that they couldn't visit the Club now, they might consider doing so in the future.  We were pleased and honored that the following guests attended this event:

     Alan Brinton of Grey Sail Brewers     Chief Edward St. Clair of Westerly Police Department      Chief John Mackey of Westerly Fire Department                                   

           Sergio Cherenzia of Cherenzia Construction     Jon Weeden of Buckler Johnston Funeral Home     Denise Pellegrino of Ashley Brides

                          Russ Partridge of WARM Shelter     Brian Gerbutavich of Electric Boat     Patrick of Venice Restaurant

                                                          John Hall, former Rotarian and Past President of Rotary Club of Westerly

John Huhtala introduced President Cal, who spoke of his first experience in Rotary at the Norwich Club and how he became a Rotarian.  He was followed by Dan Alvino, Chris DiPaola, Bob Elmer, Ron Roberts, Steve Salerno and John Hall.  Each member and former member shared their feelings of what it means to be a Rotarian - service to the local and international community, camaraderie, family, international effort to eradicate Polio throughout the world.







Board News

Thank you notes were received from the Westerly YMCA, WARM Shelter and the Jonnycake Center for the recent donations by our Club.  President Cal spoke of the prospective member event and the goals of membership. 

December 8 event is coming together with about 150 attendees expected, DJ Caswell Cooke, RICAN Executive Director Deborah Nigrelli, and several raffle items.  Bring a friend or two, lots of food, gift cards and a contribution for RICAN - open your heart!!   Special guest for the evening will be SANTA!!!!!  

The Club's Annual Meeting will take place on 10 December  - key items to be voted upon will be the 2013 to 2014 Slate of Officers and a couple of changes to the Scholarship By-Law.  In addition, the Westerly Innovations Network Team (WIN) will be visiting to speak about their projects.  This amazing group of young people have recently been interviewed on TV, have been featured in the Westerly Sun and Catholic weekly newspaper.

December 17, our holiday party, will also include our two June 2012 Scholarship Award winners, Jena Piccolo and Kevin Conway, and November Student of the Month Hannah Schilke and December Student of the Month Austin Menta (he was our 2011 RYLA student).  Should be a wonderful evening - BE THERE!!!!  Important Note  -  our annual collection for our weekly server will take place at this dinner -  so, if you cann't attend, be sure to give your contribution to Treasurer Ron at the December 3rd or December 10th meetings.

The Board voted to approve Jeff Frenette for membership and will plan a "fireside chat" before his induction.

Several organizations have written to request funds but the Board decided to postpone any decision until January.  The Board did approve contribution to the Annual Rotary Rose Parade float.

The Granite Theatre sent a letter offering group tickets sales of $15 per person for Friday, December 21.  Contact President Cal if you are interesting in attending along with a group from the Central Baptist Church.




Weekly Meeting News - 3 December 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-12-04 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Nov 29, 2012

            Guests at dinner meeting on 19 November 2012 included Jeff Frenette and speaker, Roberta Mudge Humble, of the Westerly Armory.

            Members present  =  12              Members absent  =  11

SPEAKER  -  Roberta Mudge Humble, Professor at Community College of Rhode Island, Director of Westerly Armory, Author of five books and four games about Rhode Island.  Roberta presented a very entertaining and informative video and talk about the special things about Little Rhody and the Other 49 - which is the title of her latest book.  Things like Rhode Island has the longest official name of all the states but the shortest motto - do you know what each is??  Also, did you know that the old Ann & Hope store was the first self service store in America and the idea was stolen and developed into Walmart  -  and so much more to tell  -  for those who weren't there, you missed a very enjoyable evening.

Roberta also brought Westerly Armory membership forms and current newsletter and spoke of the much needed Capital project soon to begin at the Armory.


3 December 2012   -   Board meeting begins at 4:00pm, followed by "Prospective Member Night" in the lower level dining room at 5:30pm.  As of Friday afternoon, President Cal has confirmed 11 guest attendees.  It is hoped that full membership will be in attendance - if just for a short while.

8 December 2012  -  RICAN Christmas.  Steve Salerno expects about 150 attendees for this event.  Reminder to Westerly Rotarians to bring Italian themed entree - about 5:30.  If you are bringing little ones, Santa will visit and pictures may be taken with the big man.

10 December 2012  -  The Annual meeting will take place to elect the 2013/2014 offiers and to vote on the Scholarship ByLaw changes.

Guests will be the Westerly WIN Team.  The 8 November issue of Rhode Island Catholic included an article about this great group of young adults.  WIN stands for Westerly Innovations Network and the team is all about recycling.  It was established by a group of fifth graders, "the state's only non profit entity that collects and donates used cooking oil to heat the homes of those in need."  They work with 117 restaurants that donate used cooking oil, which is collected by Newport Biodiesel and transported to their refinery and converted into biodiesel fuel.  The refined biodiesel fuel is known as bioheat and it is donated to charities.  So far, the team has donated 21,000 gallons of bioheat to help 210 families stay warm throughout the winter months.

17 December 2012  -  Holiday dinner for members.  Guests will include November and December students of the month, June 2012 Scholarship award winners Jena Piccolo and Kevin Conway.  Spouses, partners and friends are also invited - just be sure to let President Cal who will be attending.

Weekly Meeting News - 19 November 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-11-30 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Nov 18, 2012

                          Check Presentations

See the "Stories" section at website.  This past week President Cal met with Liz Pasqualini at the Jonnycake Center, Russ Partridge at the WARM Center and Tim Babcock at the Westerly/Pawcatuck YMCA and presented each with checks to assist with their Hurricane Sandy efforts (in the case of Jonnycake and WARM) and capital building project (YMCA).


                         15 November 2012  -  Rotary Foundation Dinner





                                                  PROPOSED SLATE OF OFFICERS FOR 2013 - 2014

The Nominating Committee as submitted the proposed slate to the Board via email on 18November2012.  President-elect Steve Salerno has, for personal reasons, requested that he not assume the Office of President of the Rotary Club of Westerly for the 2013-2014 Rotary year.  Therefore, the slate of Officers will remain the same except that Frank Celico will replace Mario Celico as Director at Large.

Although the Club will have guests at the 10December2012 dinner meeting, the Annual Meeting will take place during this evening.  the 3 December meeting has been scheduled as a special evening for prospective members and all current members are urged to bring a guest.

The Annual Meeting will have two proposals to vote upon:

     1.  2013 - 2014 Slate of Officers                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

                    President:                                Clayton A. Lord, Jr.

                    President Elect:                      Steven Salerno

                    Vice President:                        Daniel Alvino (July/December)      Douglas A Rayner  (January/June)

                    Immediate Past President:   Robert E. P. Elmer III

                    Secretary:                                  Rosemarie A. Russo

                    Treasurer:                                 Ronald Roberts

                    Director at Large:                     Franklin Celico

     2.  Changes to Scholarship







Special Report for week ended 17 Nov2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-11-19 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Nov 18, 2012

With the Rotary Club of the Stoningtons, our Club celebrated the congenial football rivalry between Stonington High School and Westerly High School along with some very special guests - former Coaches John Stellitano and Sal Augeri.

ImageImage                                                                                                                  They contributed some very interesting stories which then led to introduction of the current coaches  - WHS's Coach Wriedt and SHS's Coach Massengale.  They each spoke of the pleasure of working with the fine young men on their teams.   They commented that each one would go on to do great things, that it didn't matter how many great players but did matter how they go into the game.  Thursday's game would be the 153rd meeting of the two teams - with Stonington leading the rivalry 69 to 66 with 17 ties.

Image Stonington High School Football Seniors: Cory Candelet, Ian Capazzoli, Jay Nieuwenhuis, Jake Radack, Nick Silvia, Kyle Woodworth   Head Coach AJ Massengale and Assistant Coach George Burnside

Image Westerly High School Football Captains Kyle Burbine, Joe Colao, Phil Lynch, Adam Mitchell   Head Coach Chris Wriedt, Assistant Coaches Bill Samiagio and Matt West


                 Both teams and Coaches

Emcee for the evening was Chris DiPaola.  Also present was David Tranchida, from The Westerly Sun and guest of Mike Smith.                

Annual Football Night Rosemarie Russo 2012-11-19 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Nov 13, 2012

                Members present 10           Honorary Member present  1            Members Absent  13

Monday evening guests were ADG Russell Bertrand, Joe Potter's grandson, Paul Grube and Proposed member Jeff Frenette.


Next Week  - 19 November - Westerly/Stonington Football Night will be hosted the our Club beginning at 6:00pm at the Venice Restaurant, lower level dining room.  Steve Cofone asked that members bring a guest.  What better night to bring a friend or prospective member than a celebration of high school football with the camaradarie of the Rotary Club of the Stoningtons.

26 November - Guest Speaker will be Roberta Mudge Humble of the Westerly Armory.  See "Stories" section to read a little about the expected presentation.  And, this is another great evening to bring a guest.

Prospective Member Night is 3 December 2012 - lower level dining room at the Venice Restaurant.  Monthly Board meeting at 4:00 will precede this event.

Host Dinner Night is 8 December 2012  -  Christmas for RICAN - a joint event with the Rotary Club of Chariho.  RICAN requests gift cards for teens and reading books.  Also, Stop & Shop gift cards are a good choice as they can be used to purchase food or gas.  The Westerly Club will bring Italian dishes, Chariho will provide meats and Chowder, RICAN staff will bring desserts and sandwiches.  John Huhtala is heading up the search for raffle items.  If anyone can contribute or help him, please contact John at 401.322.4034 or

Annual meeting will be on 10 December which will also include Guests, the Westerly WIN Team..


Unfortunately, Vicki Anderson of the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center had a calendar glitch Monday evening.  Clark has rescheduled her visit to the Club to 11 February 2013.

Jonnycake Pasta Dinner Chair Dan Alvino spoke about last week's event.  He said that an event's success can't only be determined by the funds achieved but should also include the participation of those involved.  Dan was very proud of our Club for our participation and the spirit of cooperation of all three Clubs despite the poor turnout due to the inclement weather.  Thirteen Rotarians were present and quite a few Elks and Lions.  The final count will be announced upon receipt of the Lions' funds.

President Cal announced a challenge to Rotarians  -  from now to July 1st, the first person to bring in the most new members will receive 250 points from his account for PHF use.

Last Saturday evening, President Cal, Dan and Florence Alvino attended the WARM Shelter's Celebration of Jean Barry's thirty years of service.  Dan said that it was a wonderful evening and new Executive Director Russ Partridge announced that the new building will be named the Jean Barry Center.  Our Board has also selected Jean as our Rotary person of the year.  


Weekly Meeting News - 12 November 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-11-14 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Nov 08, 2012

     Members present  = 12    Honorary Member present = 1     Members absent = 11


WARM Shelter's Dollar Makes a Difference began 1 October and runs through 1 April 2013.  The collection container was passed around at Monday's meeting and will be available each week.

Next week - 12 November - Vicki Anderson of the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center will be speaking to the membership.  There will be a special auction offered at dinner - two tickets to the Chorus of Westerly Concert on 18 November - $74 value - originally intended to be raffled at the Pasta Dinner

Annual Football Night, 19 November, is hosted this year by our Club, jointly with the Rotary Club of the Stoningtons, and will be held at the Venice Restaurant lower level dining room.  This event celebrates the football teams of the Stonington and Westerly High Schools and their annual Thanksgiving competition.  Steve Cofone asked that members invite a guest.

Prospective Member Night, 3 December 2012, will be held in the lower level dining room at the Venice Restaurant.  Instead of a "sit-down" dinner, we will enjoy appetizers, beer and wine.

Host Dinner on 8 December - Christmas for RICAN - a joint event with the Chariho Rotary Club to benefit Rhode Island Center Assisting Those in Need.  RICAN requests gift cards for teens, instead of toys, and reading books.  Also, Stop & Shop gift cards are a good choice as they can be used to purchase food or gas.  Westerly Club will bring Italian dishes, Chariho will provide meats and Chowder, RICAN staff will bring desserts and sandwiches.  John Huhtala is heading up the search for raffle items.  If anyone can contribute or help him, please contact him at 401.322.4034 or

Annual meeting will be postponed to 10 December - topics will be election of 2013 officers and approval of Scholarship bylaw changes. Guests at this meeting will include the Westerly WIN Team, who were originally scheduled to attend on 26 October.  Monthly Board meeting will take place on 3December at 4:00pm.

Member holiday party will take place at the Venice Restaurant on 17 December.

Due to the holidays, there will be no meetings on 24 December and 31 December.

                            BOARD NOTES

The Board voted to donate $1,000 to the Jonnycake Center and WARM for their assistance to Hurricane Sandy victims in our area, to donate $500 to the Chamber to provide food for volunteers from Friday to Sunday this week, to donate $500 to the Rotary Club of La Penita, Mexico for their Community Center project - Dan Alvino will be providing hands-on assistance in January, and to pledge $5,000 to the Westerly-Pawcatuck YMCA's Capital Campaign to be paid over the next five years.  

Eight members have 100% attendance, some achieved with makeups, and all dues are current.  Steve Cofone has achieved "exempt member" status.

Clark reported to President Cal that the RI Blood Bank would like our Club to sponsor a blood drive and the Board discussed how we could do this.  It was suggested that the Chowder CookOff event might be a good fit to accomplish both projects.  It will be discussed further.  






Weekly Meeting News - 5 November 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-11-08 22:34:26Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Oct 23, 2012

      Correction for typo in 15Oct2012 News - Joe Potter's grandson is Paul Grube.

      Guests at 22 Oct dinner meeting included October Student of the Month Ross Richins, RYLA 2012 Student Ryan Quattromani with his Mom, Cindy Morrone, and Westerly High School Principal Steven Ruscito.      Members present = 12; Honorary Member present = 1; Absent members = 11


      The Host Christmas Dinner to benefit RI Assisting Those in Need has been changed from December 7 to December 8  - a Saturday evening.

       John Huhtala is responsible for gathering raffle items for the RICAN Christmas event and he passed around a sign up sheet for folks to help him with this effort.  If anyone can help John, please contact him at 401.322.4034 or

       Steve Salerno announced that several members and guests participated in the Operation Christmas Child project and returned their shoeboxes Monday evening.  He thanked everyone who participated; and said that, if anyone else wishes to participate, please contact him at 413.221.6608.

       There are quite a few events coming up so please be sure to check the calendar.  

       The Membership Committee is planning a Prospective Member Night  to take place in the Lower Level dining room at the Venice Restaurant.  Instead of a sit-down dinner we will enjoy appetizers, beer and wine, allowing members to mingle with guests. Date is to be determined.

       A special meeting was called to order at 5:50pm for the purpose of getting membership approval to fund the Prospective Member Night  -  proposed by John Huhtala and seconded by Bob Elmer.   In other words, the food and beverage cost for the evening will be covered by the Club.

       24 October is World Polio Day  -  District 5500 is sponsoring a "Ride to End Polio on 17 November  -  wearing the Rotary Colors 200 plus Rotarians, friends and family will participate in the 2012 University of Arizona Medical Center El Tour de Tucson to raise money to end polio.  They hope to raise $200,000.  Cyclist participants can ride 42, 60, 85 or 111 miles.

                        RYLA 2012  -  RYAN QUATTROMANI

        Ryan is a Junior and Honor Student at Westerly High School.  Much like the student of the month selection process, Ryan was chosen by Principal Ruscito and his staff for his academic and community service achievements.  He is currently President of the Future Business Leaders of America, is a member of the National Junior Honor Society, is a volunteer at the Dunns Corner Fire Department and is a Boy Scout.  Ryan is working to achieve the rank of Eagle Scout status and is running a Teen Drive to gather items for teens in need.  Scattered throughout town are collection boxes for donation of items; drive ends 21 November.  He said that he very much appreciated the opportunity to attend the Rotary Youth Leadership weekend last May and was putting to good use those skills learned there.   The three-day event provided both mental and physical challenges to improve communication and conflict management skills.  Ryan thanked the membership.                                  

Image  President Cal, Ryan and Mom, Cindy Morrone


                          OCTOBER STUDENT OF THE MONTH  -  ROSS RICHINS

        Ross is a Westerly High School Senior, is a member of the National Honor Society and enjoys physics and science.  He has contributed over 110 hours of community service - a good percentage of those hours at a day camp for children in Boston.  Currently, he volunteers at the Tower Street After School Program.  Ross hopes to attend Bates College in the field of Dentistry.

        Image  President Cal and Ross




             Happy Birthday Blessings to Kathryn Taylor -  October 24

Weekly Meeting News - 22 Oct 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-10-24 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Oct 16, 2012


Guests were the very special Jean Rayner, Paul Rube (Grandson of  Rotarian Joe Potter) and Beth and Jeff Grenette (friends and Columbus Day Parade helpers of Joe Potter).   There were 17 members and 1 honorary member present but 6 members were absent.



Rotary Night at the Dunk  -  2 November.  Providence Bruins vs. Worcester Sharks.   Ticket cost is $13.00 with $5.00 going to PolioPlus  -  if you cannot attend, purchase a ticket anyway and give it to someone who can and you will be giving twice!!!   Great deal!!!!  A signup sheet was passed around Monday evening; but please call Cal at 860.917.8320 or Ron at 401.218.8752 to add your name to the list.

Elks/Lions/Rotary Pasta Dinner to benefit Jonnycake Center will take place on 7 November at the Elks Club.  Bruce Morrow handed out five tickets to each member at the Monday meeting.  Those who did not attend the meeting should contact Bruce at 860.908.7592 to arrange pickup of tickets - or for anyone who needs additional tickets.  800 flyers were delivered to the Westerly-Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce for inclusion in the next newsletter.  Also 200 copies were left at the Monday meeting for members to take and share.

President Cal with Dan and Florence Alvino will represent our Club at the Retirement Dinner for Jean Barry on 10 November.

The District 7950 Paul Harris Foundation Dinner will be held on 15 November at the Venus deMilo Restaurant in Swansea, MA.  Cost is $45 per person.  Social hour begins at 5:30pm and dinner at 7:00pm.  If you wish to attend, please contact Pres. Cal at 860.917.8320, Ron at 401.218.8752 or Rose at 401.315.5868 prior to 9 Nov.

Steve Salerno asked everyone to participate in the Operation Christmas Child program and boxes were distributed.  If anyone has questions, please contact Steve at 413.221.6608.

Ron Roberts announced that all but one of our members have participated in the EREY program to date.


               AWARD TO RAYNERS

Beth Frenette and Joe Potter presented the Rayners with a special plaque recognizing them as the Columbus Day Parade 2012 Grand Marshalls




Happy Birthday Blessings to Steve Salerno (October 13) and Ted Avedesian (October 19) AND a Happy 64th Wedding Anniversary to Thelma and Vinnie Gaccione (October 11)


                    PROGRAM  -  DAN ALVINO, Working with Rotary Clubs in La Penita Nayarit, Mexico and Sedona, Arizona

From Danny's notes of the past winter and spring:

  The primary project of the Jaltemba Bay Club of La Penita Nayarit, Mexico, was the completion of a second Kindergarten building in the area.  The $500 donation from the Westerly Rotary Club for this International Project, coupled with Dan's personal contribution of $300, was used to purchase doors and windows.  Most of the construction had been completed prior to Dan's arrival in January, but he became involved with installing several hundred feet of cyclone fencing around the perimeter of the building.  In addition to the fencing, Dan assisted with the planting of 85 trees and shrubs around the playground area.  Along with members of the Jaltemba Rotary Club, parents children and other volunteers from the community participated on each of the work days.

  While in Sedona, Dan assisted with the Sedona Red Rocks Rotary Club major fundraiser of the year - the Howard Hawk Memorial Golf Tournament.  The project nets approximately $17,000 each year.  Dan received a citation for his work in procuring auction gifts, tee box signs, and advertising.  He also assisted with the setup of the project on the day of the event.



                NOTES ON DAY OF SUCCESS SEMINAR, 8 October 2012

The seminar was attended by Ron Roberts and Rose Russo.  The session began with the singing of O Canada and God Bless America.  The Keynote Speaker was RI Director Bryn Styles of Ontario, Canada (Zone 24,32).  Rose shared some notes from her attendance at the Public Image session which dealt with topics of use of Facebook , Clubrunner, radio, newspaper, brochures, twitter, linkedin - how the use of any and all media help to spread the word of the good works of Rotary.  Did you know that Rotary is on Twitter and is the largest group using it? 

Among the suggestions and comments gained from this session  -  1) to reach a younger generation to let them know what Rotary does and get them interested, Clubs have to be willing to join the social media groups, 2) don't neglect "old" social format - newspaper - put an article in the newspaper each week to include upcoming events, fundraisers, or upcoming speakers - use it as a means to entice a potential new member to attend a meeting, 3) build a "friends of Rotary" email list and include them in the weekly Club bulletin to keep them informed about the Club's projects and events. 

If anyone travels to Boston, look for a billboard paid for by a Matching Grant from Rotary International (it is just like the banner unfurled at the Pawtucket Red Sox game in August) and the same banner also appears on buses in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  In addition, the District announced that the large street banner can be borrowed by any Club for special events.

And tell your friends about the Rotary Radio Show on AM790 hosted by Dave Clifton - every Wednesday from 4 - 5 pm - but you can listen to a "podcast" any time if you go to  AND Dave said that there is the possibility to take the show "on the road" to a local Club event..

Weekly Meeting News - 15 Oct 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-10-17 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Oct 06, 2012
Despite the cloudy skies, the parade began with Tony the Dancing Cop to start it off, followed by Columbus Day Parade Committee President (and Honorary Westerly Rotarian) Joseph Potter followed by the Grand Marshals Jean and Doug Rayner.  They were followed by a few hearty members of the Chorus of Westerly.  In all there were ten divisions which included town and state officials; Westerly High School Band, Honor Society students and Athletic Teams; Stonington High School Band and Athletic Teams; Fire and Police District from both towns; War Veterans; Kentish Guard Fife and Drum; Mystic Aquarium and
many more.  The following are just a few pictures of Divisions One to Three  -
  ImageTony "the Dancing Cop" (retired Providence Police Officer)
ImageColumbus Day Parade Committee President Joseph PotterImageFly Over above the Parade route
ImageKnights of Columbus
ImageVintage Westerly Fire Truck
ImageGrand Marshal Banner
ImageGrand Marshals Jean and Doug Rayner with a few members of the Chorus of Westerly  -  after the Parade on the steps of Christ Church
ImageWesterly Town Hall
Columbus Day Parade 2012 with our friends Rosemarie Russo 2012-10-07 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Oct 03, 2012

      Monday evening Rotary members attended the Columbus Day Parade Committee's pasta dinner at the Calabrese Club to honor Doug and Jean Rayner, who will be the Grand Marshalls of the parade on October 7th.  There also were four visiting Rotarians who came from Texas and Oklahoma.

Image    Monument in Wilcox Park.  An inscription reads "Christofor Colombo  Intrepid explorer who linked the old world of our fathers to the new world of our sons".  The monument was dedicated by the citizens of Westerly RI and Pawcatuck CT in 1949.


           Board Notes

The Board voted to contribute $100 (as provided in 2011) to the St. Michael's Education walkathon and festival.                                                                                                                

Perfect attendance for past three months:  Dan Alvino, Cal Lord, Doug Rayner and Rosemarie Russo

District Simplifed Grants:  Two grant applications were submitted by deadline date  -  $2,000 request to support purchase of a picnic bench and water fountain for the new tennis court area at Rotary Park and $2,000 request to support the ReForest the Trees project with Westerly Middle School.

Jonnycake Pasta Dinner:  The annual Pasta Dinner to benefit the Jonnycake Center sponsored by the Elks, Lions and Westerly Rotary Clubs will take place on 7 November at the Elks Club from 5 - 7 pm.   Mark the date!!!

Football Night:  The annual dinner to celebrate the football teams of Westerly and Stonington High Schools will be hosted this year by Westerly Rotary Club at the Venice Restaurant on19 November .  This annual Stonington Rotary/Westerly Rotary event includes coaches and team captains, alumni coaches and captains.  Mark the date!!! 

RICAN Christmas:  Board decided to proceed with this event and Pres. Cal and Steve Salerno were planning on attending a Chariho Rotary meeting to invite them personally to participate with our Club to make this a successful fundraiser for RI Assisting Those in Need.  Date to be determined.

Rotary Day of Success, 6 October:  Ron Roberts and Rose Russo will attend

Chowder CookOff:  Ron Roberts will be organizing this event in 2013.  Date to be determined.

Scholarship/Charitable Dinner:  Date to be determined


Weely Meeting News - 1 October 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-10-04 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Sep 24, 2012

      Monday evening's guests included September Student of the Month Emily Dobson and her Mom; Westerly High School Principal Stephen Ruscito; Bob Aneyci, a RICAN volunteer and guest of Steve Salerno; Paul Grube, grandson and guest of Joe Potter; and Guest Speakers Dr. Herster Barres and Scott Keller.

                                            Members present     15                          Honorary Members present  2                           Members absent  8  


     1 October  -  Board meeting at Venice at 4:00pm.   Dinner meeting will be at The Calabrese Club at 28 Pleasant Street, 5 - 7 pm, $10.00 per person  -  celebrating the Columbus Day Parade 2012 Grand Marshalls Doug and Jean Rayner.  Pres. Cal said that a roundtable will be present at Venice for guests.

     8 October  -  NO meeting  -  Holiday              7 October, 1:00 pm    The Columbus Day Parade

           Foundation Moment 

     How Africa Can Feed Itself and the World (from the September, 2012 issue of The Rotarian)  -  "Agriculture is the fundamental humanitarian challenge of our time.  The urgency was highlighted throughout 2011 as food aid was rushed into Kenya and other countries in East Africa to counter yet another drought and famine.  Food aid is vital in saving lives.  But only agricultural development  -  increased access to the seeds, soil nutrients, financing, and expertise common everywhere else  -  can prevent the next famine."

     "This principal is at the center of the U.S. government's Feed the Future initiative and the efforts of big donors like the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Howard G. Buffett Foundation.  The Rotary Foundation is helping small farmers for the long term, through a new focus on sustainable economic development and projects that deliver wells and irrigation systems."         

     Smallholder farmers know "that increasing their agricultural productivity with new farming methods is their only chance of escaping the hunger season, and of improving the health and education of their children.  They want to advance from farming to live, to farming to make a living."

           September Student of the Month

     Principal Steven Ruscito introduced the September student  -  Emily Dobson  -  calling her a true student leader - setting the bar high for students to follow.  She has already garnered over 200 hours of community service working on projects like the YMCA's basketball camp and hosting bible camp here in Westerly and Arizona.  She is Captain of the WHS girls' volleyball team and plays on the WHS girls' basketball team.  Emily said that she is very happy that Principal Ruscito has started a Special Needs basketball program and hopes to help with this program.



           Program  -  Reforest the Trees, Inc.  -  Dr. Herster Barres and his nephew, Scott Keller 

     Reforest the Trees, Inc. is a "nonprofit organization dedicated to sustainable development and the mitigation of global warming through carbon sequestration in tropical farm forests."    RTT reforests tropical pastures with tree speciies that grow quickly, form straight trees, and produce valuable lumber.  And, these managed forests, located in Costa Rica, are designed to be profitable for farmers and highly effective at sequestering CO2 emissions.

    "An applied research program demonstrating climate change mitigation through sustainable farm forestry"  -  participating schools can watch the forest change the environment from pasture to mature trees.  A participating school will learn about climate change and the role of tropical forests.  A forest is dedicated to the participating school, identified by signage and managed by RTT staff.  A CO2 emissions inventory is done by the students under RTT guidance, progress followup with email and photo reports to the class to watch the forest habitat grow, including wildlife, continued participation in research to develop a better forest.

     Dr. Kerster said that there are 18 schools participating in this program with over 70 sponsors.  He brought some seedlings of the Klinkii tree.

     The goal is to teach children how to calculate emissions and to find ways to help the environment through growth of trees to store carbon for 100 years or more.  To learn more about this program, go to

     Club Past President Dr. Dan Alvino has proposed that we join in this effort for the benefit of the Westerly Middle School and has the approval of both WMS Principal Paula Fusco and Westerly Schools Superintendent and Rotarian Dr. Roy Seitsinger.  We are applying for a Disrict Simplified Grant to help in this effort and Dr. Alvino announced Monday evening that Edgar Morales has applied for a Walmart grant for this project.

 Image  Dr. Barres, Pres. Cal and Scott Keller


 ImageA carbon offset forest managed by RTT, the forest contains a variety of carefully selected tree species  -  pictured above

 Image  A Klinkii seedling  -  from Costa Rica to Westerly, RI





Weekly Meeting News - 24 Sep 12 Rosemarie Russo 2012-09-25 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Sep 18, 2012

        Guests were Honorary members Bob Boughner and Joe Potter and Visiting Rotarians Linda Reilly of the Hammondsport NY Rotary Club and Jane Russell of the Bath NY Rotary Club.  Nine regular members were present and 14 members were absent.

Image   Visiting Rotarians Linda Reilly and Jane Russell with President Cal Lord exchanging banners.

         District Events Coming Up  -     Rotary Day of Success, 6 October  -  seminars covering Rotary Foundation, Membership, New Generations, and Public Image.  The District Board would like to see at least four members from each Club attending this event.   Providence Bruins Night, 2 November  -  Rotary Night at the Dunkin Donuts Center.

           24 September Speaker  -  Reforest the Tropics, Inc.    Located in Mystic, CT.  Invited by Dan Alvino, we hope that all members will plan to attend this meeting to hear about this organization.  Dan has prepared a District Grant application with the goal of having RTT work with Westerly Middle School on an educational program designed to teach students about the effects of carbon emissions on global warming and the environment.  Please make every effort to attend this important meeting.

          1 October Meeting  -  Board will meet at 4:00; however, instead of 5:30 dinner at Venice, members will meet for dinner at the Calabrese Club to lend our support to the Columbus Day Parade Committee and celebrate our very special Rayner family.  Ryan Quattromani, the 2012 RYLA student, was supposed to attend our meeting; he will be invited to join us at the Calabrese Club or visit with us another evening. 

         8 October  -  Columbus Day Holiday  -  NO meeting

         Foundation Moment  -  Tremendous efforts are being undertaken, led by the Pakistan government, in implementing a national polio emergency action plan to mobilize all government and civil society resources.  Says Robert S. Scott, chair of Rotary International's PolioPlus Committee, "There is strong evidence that implementation of the emergency plan is showing results, particularly in key reservoir areas such as Balochistan and Sindh."                            



              Program  -  Westerly Pawcatuck Downtown Business Association

Rotarian Christopher DiPaola is President and owner of WBLQ Radio and is also President of the Westerly Pawcatuck Downtown Business Association.  The Association's mission is to "foster economic growth, to promote and enhance the Westerly-Pawcatuck downtown area."  It is a non profit group with an elected slate of officers with 65 members covering businesses in the "downtown Westerly - Pawcatuck area.  Full members (downtown businesses) pay annual dues and have voting privileges; however, other nearby businesses or organizations can become Associate members but cannot vote.  Chris said that the organization works in conjunction with the Westerly-Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce and encourages businesses to remain open during those events.  It also acts as a conduit between the town, police and local businesses on issues affecting the downtown area.


Weekly Meeting News - 17 Sept 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-09-19 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Sep 11, 2012

    Guests Monday evening included Honorary members Bob Boughner and Joe Potter.  Joe also brought along his grandson, Paul Grube.

    Member present    12          Members absent   11

    Frank Toscano was installed - reinstalled - into our Club.  Frank was previously a member from August 1982 to November 1996.  Mario Celico, who brought Frank back into the Club, spoke of their long friendship.  Frank has retired from his business and will soon be traveling down to Florida for the winter.


Foundation Moment

    Steve Salerno began with mention of the anniversary of September 11 and told the group about the California Club that visited Puerto Rico and delivered dictionaries and computers.  Steve urged everyone to remember the Club's goal for 100% participation to EREY giving  -  just give what you can.

Board Notes

    Four members have Perfect Attendance for the months of July and August:  Dan Alvino, Bob Elmer, Doug Rayner and Rosemarie Russo.

    We will not be participating in Fall Fest but please try to attend and provide support to the Misquamicut Business Association.

    President Cal will be attending the Chamber EMILY demonstration on 14 September at the Windjammer.

    Board voted to contribute $100 to the Columbus Day Parade and President Cal put forth the question to members about participating with a Club float.  Contact him if you have an interest.  Mario Celico has offered use of his truck.  Would be a great way to promote Rotary and Polio Plus.

    Ron has suggested that the Club could meet its goal of $500 by designating fines once a month for Polio Plus.  It was also suggested that there should be just a special collection for that purpose.

    Board has discussed two major projects involving District Grant application:  The first is related to improvements at Rotary Park.  Two additional tennis courts are in process.  Most of the construction cost per Paul Duffy is covered with the exception of Lighting, picnic benches, landscaping, drinking fountain, signage and small bleachers.  Paul provided estimated costs for each of these items.  Mario Celico would like to have a more permanent Rotary sign installed.  The second project is related to our September 24 speaker - Reforest the Tropics, Inc..  Dan Alvino has been doing some work with the group, whose home base is in Mystic, to bring their education program to Westerly Middle School.  The Board will be putting together grant applications for both projects in the next week or so.

      CELEBRATIONSBirthday Wishes to Frank Celico on 11 September,  Lori Lord on 9 September and Valerie Rumfelt on 10 September.  Wedding Anniversary blessings to Carol and Joe Potter, 58 years, on 11 September.

    Rotary Day of Success, October 6 at White's of Westport, beginning at 8:00am.  Four separate "track" seminars will cover Membership, Rotary Foundation, New Generations and Public Image.   Interested members should contact President Cal or Treasurer Ron by 21 September to register.




Weekly Meeting News - 10 Sept 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-09-12 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Aug 27, 2012

     Guests included Jennifer Gibson and Andrew Nathan, owners of The Cooked Goose; Jean Rayner and Program Speakers Ryan Saunders and Andrew Howell, Executive Director and Music Director respectively of the Chorus of Westerly.

     Member present, 14, and Members absent, 8

     Reminder:  If you have not paid at least the first half of the 2012/2013 dues, please do so as soon as possible.  Invoices were sent either by mail or email during the first week of July.

     Events coming up will be found in the Calendar section of the website.

     Please note that a link to the Westerly Parent Academy website has been set up in the "Sponsor" section of the website to facilitate and promote this organization which will benefit so many families in our community.  This link gets you to the website for additional information and also to access the coming semester catalog of programs and online registration.

    Our previous week guest speaker, Erin O'Gara, sent an email requesting a couple of volunteers for the Westerly area's clients of Meals on Wheels.  Currently Meals on Wheels serves forty clients in our area.  Meals are delivered to the Westerly Senior Center and volunteers would pick them up there for delivery to the clients Monday through Friday.  If anyone has the time to volunteer as a regular drive or to be a substitute driver, should call 401.351.6700, ext 140.

   Celebrations:  Club Anniversary on 29 August for Roy Seitsinger 

   SPECIAL PRESENTATION  -  After dinner, President Cal asked Past President Bob Elmer to come forward to announce a special presentation and he then called on Jennifer Gibson and Andrew Nathan to stand up with him.  He said that it was time to show appreciation for all that they have done at The Cooked Goose for our organization  -  and asking Ryan Saunders to join them  - also for the Chorus of Westerly.  Bob noted that their donation of venue and food at our Scholarship/Charitable dinner allowed 100% of proceeds for use of our educational and charitable projects.

Two of Doug Rayner's beautifully handcrafted Cross Brace chairs, with specially engraved brass plaques by Nitgrelli's Jewelry, were presented to Jennifer and Andrew  - one from our Club and the other from the Chorus of Westerly.




   Ryan Saunders, Executive Director of The Chorus of Westerly, first thanked the Club for all that has been done over the years, especially during Summer Pops.  When asked about the "bucket brigade" collections, he said that it was successful with the highest amount donated, he believed because it was the first time that Pops' attendees heard how much it cost to put on this free event.  Many people made pledges and followed up with checks or online payments.  He said the response was very much appreciated.

   By way of introducing Andrew, he explained the process undertaken to search for a new Music Director after Maestro Kent's surprise retirement announcement at the Chorus annual meeting in June 2011.  A Search Committee was formed that included Chorus parents, Board members and others.  With applications received from all over North America, the group whittled down the applicants to ten who were asked to provide additional information including a video of themselves in action.  Out of this group came the three finalists who participated with the whole Chorus family in a special four day event in February.  Each of the finalists worked separately with the children, the adults and then both groups combined for a final "performance" to end each's special day.  Andrew was the last finalist and it was very evident to all at the end of this performance that Andrew at the spirit and energy to bring this 53-year-old organization forward and continue the legacy begun by Maestro Kent.

   Andrew addressed our membership by speaking of his beginning with the Chorus  -  with no music experience whatsoever, "encouraged" by his mother to become a Chorus Treble, attending Music Camp and becoming hooked, going to to college to get degrees in music education, organ performance and conducting  -  and now has fulfilled his dream to become the next Music Director of the Chorus of Westerly.

   He shared plans to start some new educational programs at the Hall this season beginning with a Children's Training Choir.  This program will teach new child singers music reading basics.  There will also be a literacy class for adults to help those less fluent in reading music and a voice class to help singers improve and protect their vocal instrument.

   He also shared information about the 54th Concert Season, especially the March 2013 concert which will feature music of American composers and a special commission dedicated to Maestro Kent.  This choral piece is being composed by Peter Niedmann who is also a former Chorus singer.

   In the works for 2014 is an European Tour, which would include Vienna, Budapest, Prague and possibly Munich.




Weekly Meeting News - 27August2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-08-28 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Aug 13, 2012
  Holding the District banner with DGN Dietrich Bilger: Bob Elmer, Rose Russo, Mario Celico's grandson, Dan Alvino and Ron Roberts

    Bob Elmer and Celico family
Rotary Night at Paw Sox 14 August 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-08-14 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Jul 22, 2012
This past Monday evening, the attending membership and guests were treated to a visit from the Rhode Island Destination ImagiNation Team along with their Coaches and DI Coordinator.  Our Club sponsored this group so they could travel to Tennessee for the International competition in May, 2012.

The non-profit organization, which began in 1999 with over 200 international volunteers, was dedicated to create a global creative problem solving program for young people.  The program has grown to include over 125,000 students and 35,000 volunteers across the United States and more than thirty countries.

DI's mission is to "encourage teams of learners to have fun, take risks, focus, and frame challenges while incorporating STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), the arts and service learning."  Participants learn patience, flexibility, persistence, ethics, respect for others and their ideas, and the collaborative problem solving process.  Their solutions are showcased at local and international tournaments.

Rhode Island's 1st Place 2012 Destination ImagiNation Team:  Coordinator Jennifer Brinton, Coaches Karen Champ and Kristin Martino (daughter of our own Daniel Alvino) and Students Grace Brinton, Ryan Brinton, Hannah Champ, Maya Champ, Bereket Janat and Isabella Martino.



Destination ImagiNation Team visit 23 July 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-07-23 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Jul 04, 2012
     President Bob rang the bell at 5:30 to begin the festivities with the Pledge of Allegiance to the great flag of the United States.  This was followed by an Invocation by Rev. (Past President) Clark Rumfelt.  Greeting special guests attending installation of Incoming President Cal Lord, President Bob announced Past District Governor William "Bill" and Mrs. Tina Vangel, Assistant District Governor Russell and Mrs. Karen Bertrand, Past Westerly Rotary First Lady Ada Elmer, Incoming Westerly Rotary First Lady Lori Lord, Sarah Lord (daughter of Cal Lord), Westerly Fire Chief David Sayles, Past Chief of Stonington Police Dept David and Mrs. Marcia Erskine.

     Secretary Rose was asked to announce other special guests including Visiting Rotarians from the Rotary Club of Norwich, CT -  Gary Young, Dr. and Mrs. Hong, and Barry Shead; Visiting Rotary from Rotary Club of Green Valley, AZ and Westerly Past President Joseph and Mrs. Carol Potter; Visiting Rotarian from Rotary Club of Kalamazoo, MI Robert and Mrs. Marti Boughner; Visiting Rotarian from Rotary Club of Tampa Bay, FL Sharon Jacovi; New Executive Director of WARM Shelter Russell Partridge; Parishioners of Central Baptist Church Cindy Capizzano, Frederick and Meredith Eckel, Bill Garrity, Brian and Janet Gerbutavich, Harry and Barbara Higgins, Lisa LaPointe and Craig Stron, Tony and Kay Perrone; Rotary Club of Westerly Members and Wives Dan and Florence Alvino, Frank and Donna Celico, Mario Celico, Chris and Lana DiPaola,  John Huhtala, Walter Kimball, Joseph Nigrelli, Doug and Jean Rayner, Ron Roberts, Clark and Valerie Rumfelt, Rosemarie Russo, Steve and Valerie Salerno, and Roy Seitsinger.

     Special anniversary wishes were extended to Marti and Bob Boughner, who celebrated 59 years of marriage on July 3rd and to Donna and Frank Celico, who will celebrate 48 years of marriage on July 4th.

     Happy and sad dollars collected by acting Sergeant-at-arms Mario Celico garnered $191.00 and Incoming President Cal Lord said that these funds would be donated to PolioPlus.

     Visiting Rotarians Joe Potter and Bob Boughner were asked to come forward.  Earlier this year, the Board voted to make these two fine gentlemen Honorary Members of our Club for all the support they have given while in summer residence in Westerly.  They were given Certificates and Honorary Member badges.

     Venice Restaurant provided a wonderful buffet dinner with salad, potatoes, mixed vegetables, chicken and pasta.  Great desserts of cheesecakes, tarts, and chocolate cake were provided by Mario Celico.

     While attendees enjoyed coffee and dessert, Incoming President Cal shared a video presentation of the President Bob's past two years "at the helm".  President Bob then spoke a few words about the Club's accomplishments and awards and closed with a thank you to Ada, the Board and the membership.  Past District Governor Bill addressed the group and stated that this was the start of a new Rotary year.  He thanked the Club for its support, in particular, for contributions to Rotary Foundation, noting that every dollar given to RF helps a project somewhere in the world.  Thanking President Bob for his leadership and dedication over the past two years, Cal presented him with a Past President Gavel/plaque and Badge.  Attendees stood to give President Bob a well deserved thank you and First Lady Ada was given a bouquet of flowers and a "women in Rotary" pin.

     Joe Potter came forward to say a few words about Cal, calling him the "energizer bunny", and he thanked Lori for giving him to the Club.  He then led Cal in reciting the oath of office and this was then followed by the Board officers standing to also recite their oath of office.

     Speaking his first words as President of the Rotary Club of Westerly for the 2012/2013 year, President Cal recalled an invitation to attend a Rotary meeting in Norwich a few years ago and learning that Rotary meets every week  -  "kind of like attending church".  He said that he loved Rotary and found that it was a very unique organization in that it is an organization that "looks outward to make a better world".  He said that Rotarians are people who care, who put service for others above self needs.  His goal is to grow the Club during his year so we can do more and perhaps change a life.

With the gavel handed off, our dinner meeting was adjourned.

Change of Command Ceremony, 2 July 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-07-05 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Jun 27, 2012
   The day could not have been a more perfect weather day!!  It was a beautiful day for Pops!!!  Most Westerly Rotarians were present at some point during the day.  Cal and Clark brought a few of their parishioners to help as well  -  our grateful thanks to all.  A special thank you to Chair Steve Salerno for all his preparation efforts, to the setup and cleanup crews and to all those who worked during the concert.  It was a very long day for some of us.  The concert, as expected, was outstanding, the fireworks were fantastic, attendees were festive.  Everyone showed their deep appreciation for Maestro Kent's 53 years of providing beautiful music and leading the Chorus  -  equal to Boston Pops or the NY Symphony!!!!!!  Final tally of receipts and expenses resulted in more than $5400 being donated to the Chorus  -  a record for concession sales.

    See the Photo album for additional pictures.

Summer Pops 23June2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-06-28 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Apr 23, 2012
 The Tattler received the honor of best bulletin of 2011/2012.  Monday evening, April 23rd, President Bob presented a beautiful crystal plaque to editor Rose, who was left speechless.   All those hours spent trying to create an interesting newsletter were worth it!!
Best Bulletin of 2011/2012 Award Rosemarie Russo 2012-04-24 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Apr 23, 2012
Saturday evening, 9June2012,(RESCHEDULED DATE) at The Cooked Goose on 92 Watch Hill Road, Westerly RI.  Cost is $25 per person.  Cocktails at 6:00pm.  There will be wine tasting provided by The Wine Store and wine may be purchased with proceeds, after cost, coming back to the Club.  There will also be a Live and Silent Auction.  The proceeds, after expense, from this event will be split between our Scholarship and Charitable funds.

Over the past year, our Club has provided assistance to  ----

      Two $1,000 scholarships to Westerly High School graduating seniors
      Warm Shelter
      Jonnycake Center
      Rhode Island Center Assisting Those in Need
      Camp for a local Girl Scout
      Camp for a local Y child
      Chorus of Westerly
      Blue Star Moms
      Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center
      Literacy Volunteers of Washington County
      EMILY project in cooperation with Town of Westerly and Great Westerly/Pawcatuck area Chamber of Commerce
      Rotary Foundation and Polio Plus
      Footballs for PeeWee Football
      Lucy's Hearth
      Westerly Parent Academy
      Westerly Hospital Foundation of Polio Survivors
      Westerly Adult Center
      Westerly-Pawcatuck Columbus Day Parade,
      Rotary International Rose Bowl Parade Float
      Westerly Library Reading Project
      St. Michael's School
Charitable Scholarship Dinner Rosemarie Russo 2012-04-24 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Apr 22, 2012
At the District 7950 Conference, which was held recently in Newport, the "Tattler" received the "Best Bulletin of 2011/2012" Award.  This bulletin does not appear in Club Runner as the membership elected to maintain the previous format.  Editor Rosemarie A. Russo was very honored to receive this award at Monday evening meeting.

Tattler wins "Best Bulletin of 2011/2012" Rosemarie Russo 2012-04-23 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Apr 15, 2012
The day began at 8:45 with pickup of the Team at the Wakefield Mall.  Returning to Westerly, our first stop was at the Greater Westerly-Pawcatuck area Chamber of Commerce where Lisa Konicki, the Executive Director met us and provided a little talk on the attributes of the Westerly Area.  Next, we visited Hauser Chocolatier with a self-guided tour of the factory along with a bit of sample tasting.  After a quick telephone call, we were able to get into a small veterinary clinic, Pawcatuck Veterinary Clinic, in Pawcatuck, CT to accommodate Dr. Arvind Sharma.  Since we were ahead of schedule, we included an unscheduled visit to President Bob at one of the Elms' Alzheimer's residences.  Lunch was at Asian House, one of the restaurants that participated in our recent Chowder Cookoff.  The group was welcomed there by Doug Rayner, Mike Smith and later Steve Salerno and President Bob visited also.  After lunch, we were welcomed at the Westerly Urgent Care office by Dr. Andreozzi's office administrator who answered quite a few questions from Muskaan and Manraj.  Then we moved on to The Westerly Sun where Mike provided a tour of that facility and Amit met the Sun's editor.  The Sun provided the group with their Rhode Island 101 book.  Moving on to Watch Hill, we arrived at the extraordinary Ocean House and received a wonderful tour by Ebbie Elmer.  After a short rest at Casa Russo, with Rose, Doug, President Bob and Vinnie, the group headed off to dinner at International Night where we all enjoyed the fellowship of Rotarians of District 7950 and met the new class of exchange students.  Long day for all but most enjoyable.
Group Study Exchange Team from India Rosemarie Russo 2012-04-16 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Feb 26, 2012
      The Eighth Annual Chowder Cook Off Event was held 24 March 2012 from 12:00 to 3:00 pm at the Venice Restaurant.  We extend grateful thanks for the participation of the following restaurants:  Andrea Restaurant, Asian House, Breachway Grill, Fatti Macs, Ninety-Nine Restaurant, Phil's Marketplace, Two Little Fish, Venice Restaurant, Windjammer & Surf Bar Restaurant and special guest participant  -  Westerly High School Culinary Student Chefs. All proceeds will support the Club's charitable activities.  We also extend a huge thank you to all those who attended to choose their favorite Westerly chowder for 2012.  More pictures can be found in "Chowder Cook-Off 2012 Photo Album".

Image1st Place:  WHS Student Chefs

2nd Place:  Venice RestaurantImage

Image3rd Place:  Andrea Restaurant
8th Annual Chowder Cook Off on 24 March 2012 Rosemarie Russo 2012-02-27 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Feb 26, 2012
Image      In partnership with the Westerly-Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce and the Town of Westerly, our Club has pledged to support the purchase of two EMILY robots (Emergency Integrated Lifesaving Lanyard)  -  these are motorized high speed surface rescue devices.  85 pounds of flotation, 24 pound displacement and programmed to travel at 24 mph for 15 minutes, this technology will help first responders save lives.  The purchase of these robots will provide the opportunity for our community to be the East Coast model to keep our residents and visitors safe.

     The EMILY robots have been used at Zuma Beach in Malibu, CA, for over a year, at Depoe Bay, OR and with the Swift Water Rescue Team in Green Valley, AZ.  EMILY has received the Invention of the Year 2010 for Security Category by Popular Science Magazine, ranked #7 of 50 Best Inventions of 2010 by Time Magazine, listed as top innovation by Autonomous Unmanned Vehicles System International.  For more information, visit,0,6211063.story
E.M.I.L.Y. project Rosemarie Russo 2012-02-27 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Nov 13, 2011

ImageLast evening our club had the pleasure and honor of two visiting Rotarians - Past District Governors of District 7410, Melanie Tek-Visgilio and Thomas Visgilio III.  Melanie is a member of the Rotary Club of Hawley and Tom is a member of the Rotary Club of Wilkes-Barre.

Special Guests attend Monday meeting, 14 Nov 2011 Rosemarie Russo 2011-11-14 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Oct 16, 2011

 Dr. Daniel Alvino received his Paul Harris Fellow at the 17 October 2011 dinner meeting.  Receiving his PHF pin and certificate from District Governor William R Vangel, Jr., Dan became the 49th Paul Harris Fellow of the Rotary Club of Westerly since it was founded in 1958. 


New Paul Harris Fellow - Dr. Daniel Alvino Rosemarie Russo 2011-10-17 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Oct 16, 2011

 DG Bill and ADG Russell met with the Club's Board of Directors "to have a conversation" about the Club's goals.  This meeting was followed by a dinner with the membership.  DG Bill spoke on plans for coming year District-wide and Internationally.  He announced his "Governor's Challenge" to begin 29 January 2012 with a handout listing goals and achievements to be met applying the four-way test, of course.  Recognition in the Rotary 150 Club will be announced at the 20 April 2012 District Conference in Newport.  He said that 20 April 2012 is designated as "Service Above Self" Day and urged that each Club would plant a tree in honor of Rotary or do something special on that day for their community.


District Governor Bill Vangel visits Club, 17 Oct 2011 Rosemarie Russo 2011-10-17 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Sep 16, 2011
       The Club participated in the MBA's Fallfest event last weekend to promote Rotary and PolioPlus.  The Ocean Club Resort provided us with a large TV screen and dvd player upon which we were able to show the Club's 50th Anniversary video .  We also set up one of our Wishing Wells to get donations to benefit PolioPlus.  As a result, we collected approximately $285 over the weekend and members who were not able to help at the event added another $76 dollars at the following Monday evening meeting.  Final tally amounted to $363 for PolioPlus.  it was surprising how many people commented that they thought polio had been totally eliminated.  Image
Misquamicut Beach Association FallFest, 16 to 17 September 2011 Rosemarie Russo 2011-09-17 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo on Jun 24, 2011
     It began as a tribute to the region for its support to fund the first international concert tour of the Chorus of Westerly.  This year marks the 31st Summer Pops Concert, which now takes place in the lovely Wilcox Park.  The Chorus with the Boston Festival Orchestra will perform at 8:00pm with special guest, Mina Um, and will "feature fireworks by Grucci, Canons from the Newport Artillery and the pealing church bells of Christ Church" in the grand finale - Tchaikovsky's Overture of 1812.  More information, especially concerning park and parking guidelines, can be found at the Chorus website,  The Rotary Club of Westerly will have two food and beverage stations in the Park with the net proceeds going to the Chorus.  We will have pretzels, pizza, hot dogs, popcorn, soda, water and some novelty items such as glowsticks.  The Pre-show begins at 6:30pm with local entertainment.
Pops2011 Group in Gazebo
Summer Pops 25June2011, 8:00 pm Rosemarie Russo 2011-06-25 00:00:00Z 0
Posted by Clayton Lord



On Monday, June 30 Douglas A. Rayner was installed as our club President by RI District 7950 Governor Valerie Perry. Sitting Club President Cal Lord welcomed everyone and thanked those Rotarians who were present for coming. Clark Rumfelt offered the Invocation and Walter Kimball, a fifty year Rotarian, led us in reciting the 4 way test.

Bob Elmer took over as the Master of Ceremonies and spoke about the history of the club. While we were waiting for the buffet to be set up, Marty Boughner came forward to present Doug with the winnings from their little wager on "state superiority." It seems the two of them had a wager on college sports teams from their respective states, Michigan and Connecticut. 


President Cal then shared a twelve minute PowerPoint presentation titled "This is Westerly Rotary" that featured photos from our activities over the last six years. From Summer Pops, to pasta dinners to check presentations to WARM, Jonnycake and RiCan, to the Columbus Day Parade and Christmas Parties it reflected the depth of our involvement within our community and beyond. There were photos from International Nights and District Conferences, work days at Rotary Park and visits from past District Governors. It featured the great work the club has done under the Presidencies of Clark Rumfelt, Bob Elmer and Cal Lord.

Dinner was a wonderful buffet that included pasta, chicken ,potato, bread and salad. Two very rich cakes were offered for dessert.

District Governor Valerie Perry invited Doug and Jean to come forward as she installed Doug as our new President and welcomed Jean into her role as First Lady. Doug is no stranger to the office. He was club President from 1980-81. He was also club secretary for several years and has worked on many projects including the recent very successful Chowder Festival. 

Doug went on to share his vision for the club in the coming year. He highlighted increasing our membership as his first priority. Frank Celico is going to be working hand in hand with him to encourage every member to bring in a new member in the coming year. He also noted that he intended to increase our fundraising efforts so that we could be more philanthropic going forward. He has penciled in three fund raisers in the next year: a golf tournament in October, the Chowder Festival in February and a charitable auction in May. 

Assistant District governor Rona Mann then installed our officers and Board of Directors for 2014-15. She gave them instructions on how to support the President and to build a better club. 

As the evening drew to a close, President Doug thanked President Cal for his efforts over the last tow years and presented him with some gifts, including a past President pin and badge. 


Then President Doug adjourned the meeting and wished everyone a good night.

Welcoming our New President Clayton Lord 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

The Rotary Club of Westerly is pleased to present our newest member - Brian Gerbutavich.  Brian was inducted Monday event, 27 January 2014.

From the Westerly Tattler issue of 27 January, President Cal Lord writes: 

On Monday night we welcomed Brian Gerbutavich as our newest member of the Westerly Rotary Club. Brian has been attending meetings and coming to events for over a year. He works at Electric Boat and is in Materials Management.
Brian was sponsored by Cal Lord and really enjoys doing community service. Brian was first introduced to Rotary when he and his wife, Janet, helped out at Summer Pops in 2012.
Since then he has helped at a couple other Rotary events as well.
Brian is married to his college sweetheart. They live in Westerly and have two grown children. Brian is a member of Central Baptist Church and has always been active in the community.


New Member Induction Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

Our tenth annual Chowder CookOff, at the Venice Restaurant's Ballroom on 1 February 2014 from Noon to 3:00pm, was a huge success.  Attended by almost 300 adults and children, the event brought in over $4,000 - a record for this event - and will be used over the next year through the Club's giving programs.


The Rotary Club of Westerly supports several of our local organizations, such as the WARM Shelter, the Jonnycake Center, to name just a couple.  We also support Rotary Park, which originated a few years ago through the efforts of Westerly Rotarians.  We have supported an environmental study program at Westerly Middle School provided by Reforest the Tropics, Inc.; supported the Chorus of Westerly's Summer Pops for many years; supported the school improvement projects of the Rotary Club of La Penita in Mexico; and supported many Rotary International projects such as PolioPlus, ShelterBox to provide shelter for Haitians.

This year the Club received sponsorship funds from Avie's Ski/Sport, Edward Jones Investments, Lawrence & Memorial Hospital, Nigrelli's Jewelry, The Westerly Sun, Trestle Park Storage/Robert & Erin Celico and children, Valenti Subaru and WBLQ, headed by our very own Chris DiPaola.  Their sponsorship funds and donated services allowed us to advertise the event to reach a wider audience.

Another addition to this year's event was a visit from guest Chef Frank Terranova, of Johnson & Wales University and WJAR-TV's "Cooking with Class".  Chef Terranova was asked to choose a "chef's choice" award in the restaurant and school divisions.  He said that it was a tough choice to make because they were all so very good; but he finally selected Shelter Harbor Inn and Westerly High School.  We are delighted that he accepted our invitation to attend and he had such a good time that he committed himself to participate again next year.

Rotarian Bob Elmer, our emcee for the event, helped to tally up the popular vote cards and noted to attendees that the votes were really close.  So - the People's Choice awards for 2014 are:

                                  Restaurants                                        Schools

      1st Place         Venice Restaurant                      Westerly High School

      2nd Place        Shelter Harbor Inn                    Woonsocket High School

      3rd Place         Sunny Side Up                            Rogers High School

Our grateful thanks to all those who attended, or bought tickets but couldn't attend, to all our supporters without whom this event would not happen.  A very special thank you to the Venice Restaurant for all they do for our Club during this event and throughout the year.  Our grateful appreciation to Chris DiPaola and WBLQ for all the radio time he provided to publicize our event and for WBLQ's presence onsite yesterday.

Cal Lord, our Club President, was yesterday's photographer - below are some of his photos.  More can be found in our "Photo Album" section of the website.

ImageChef Terranova Image Chef Kalble from Rogers High and Event Co Chair Douglas Rayner

Image Guests about to test Woonsocket High's Chowder






Tenth Annual Chowder Cookoff - 1 Feb 2014 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

At Monday evening, 18 November 2013, meeting Assistant District Governor Rona Mann dropped in to present the Club with a Banner recognizing our 100% participation in the 2012/2013 Every Rotarian Every Year (EREY) Campaign.  Our goal for 2013/2014 is to repeat this effort; however, to date only five members have made their contribution.  This is the time of year when folks are doing their year-end gift planning - get a head start and put EREY at the top of your list.  You can make your check payable directly to Rotary Foundation and give it to Rose to forward to Rotary International, you can also go to RI's website and process it online or you can make your check payable to the Rotary Club of Westerly and Rose will forward your contribution to RI. 

A personal goal may be $100 per year to achieve a Paul Harris Fellow in ten years.  Rotary Foundation programs from Polio Plus to Health and Hunger helps people the world over.  Your contribution, whether it is $10 or $100, will do so much good.  Please consider making your contribution by 31December2013.


Every Rotarian Every Year 2013 Award Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

Three guests at the 18 November meeting are prospective members:

Carol Schultz, from the Westerly Sun, has attended a meeting for the second time.  Guests of Dan Alvino, Joyce Murray and Tom Regan were Pasta Dinner attendees and both have expressed interest in becoming Rotarians.

A fireside chat will be organized soon which will also include prospective member Brian Gerbutavich who has already been approved by the Board for membership.

Prospective New Members Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

The Annual meeting will take place on 2 December 2013.  The Slate of Officers for 2014/2015 was announced at the 18 November 2013 meeting by Nominating Committee Chair, Dan Alvino.

     President:                  Douglas A Rayner

     President Elect:          Robert E P Elmer III

     Vice President:           Jeffrey Frenette

     Secretary/Treasurer:  Rosemarie A Russo

     Directors At Large:     Franklin Celico and John Huhtala

To raise an objection or to submit other nominations, please contact either Dan Alvino or Doug Rayner.

Election of Officers 2014-2015 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

 Thursday, 14 November 2013, at the Elks Club at 1 Dixon Street, Westerly

Image  Once again the members of the Westerly Elks Club, Lions Club and Rotary Club will join together to offer a Pasta Dinner to benefit the Jonnycake Center of Westerly's Emergency Fuel Fund.   Westerly Rotary Club Co-Chairs for this event are Dan Alvino and Bruce Morrow.  The tickets are available from members of each club at $10.00 (adult), $8.00 (senior), $5.00 (child).

We are happy to report that yesterday Dan Alvino received $2,000 from the Lions Club; our Club collected $2,015 from ticket sales and donations and another $150 was left at the Jonnycake Center for a total of $4,165.00 collected and delivered to Liz Pasqualini, Executive Director of Jonnycake Center of Westerly.  Great job to all who participated!!   To those who haven't yet turned in their receipts, get to it please  -  there is such a need this year and every dollar will help!!!

Image ImageImageImageImage

Elks/Lions/Rotary Clubs' Pasta Dinner to benefit Jonnycake Center of Westerly Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo
Monday, 7 October 2013, attend the Pasta Supper at the Calabrese Club between 5:00 and 7:00pm to support the Columbus Day Parade Committee.  Rotarians will pay $20.00 per person - to Treasurer Rose.  $10.00 is the price of a dinner ticket and the balance will be donated to the Committee.  There will be no Rotary dinner meeting at the Venice Restaurant this evening.
Columbus Day Parade Committee Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Clayton Lord

Prospective Member Night!
September 23rd – 5:30 p.m

.Program: Bob Steele: Speaking about his new book The Curse: Big-Time Gambling’s Seduction of a Small New England Town.

We need you to reach out and invite potential Rotarians to this meeting. This is our big event for the Fall and we need everyone to think about two or three people they can invite. We will have invitations for you at the meeting of September 16th. Mail them out, hand deliver them, or use them in any way you find helpful.
Think of the people you do business with: Your barber, your financial advisor, your lawyer or pharmacist, your vendors, your golf partners, and friends.
Invite them and then give us a head count the week before so we can reserve the downstairs room and have a buffet.

Program 23 Sep 2013 Clayton Lord 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

ImageWhat a lovely weather evening to accompany a bountiful pot luck picnic with members, spouses, friends and family at Westerly's best kept "secret" - Rotary Park on Airport Road.  Member contributions will go to Polio Plus for the Gates Foundation Match.  Special thank you to our chefs Joe Potter and Vinnie Gaccione, to Bruce Morrow for the use of his gigantic grill, to Cindy and Carol for their assistance to the chefs and to everyone who brought such great "sides" and desserts.  

At the gazebo, DG Bilger explained what the Paul Harris award is and then Chris DiPaola was asked to come forward and he was presented the Paul Harris Award by the membership to honor his service to the community during the town's storm crises the past couple of years.


More pictures can be found in the Photo Album section of our website.

Million Dollar Meal at Rotary Park 29 Jul 2013 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

Image       22 June 2013     The Chorus of Westerly's annual Summer Pops Concert in Wilcox Park

The day began with beautiful breezes and the promise of perfect weather - a promise kept!!!  The Rotary crew began the process of unloading concession supplies at the park at 10 am and finished that part of the work around 1:00 pm.  Next Rotary crew and volunteer helpers arrived around 2:00 pm to do final preparations before sales could begin at 4:00 pm.  Of the 23 Rotarians, 16 helped at some point in the day - either with set up, sales or clean up.  Special thanks go to Steve Salerno, who couldn't be with us on Saturday, but was responsible for making all the initial vendor contacts and to Edgar Morales, who also could not be with us, but was responsible for Walmart's contribution of beverages and other supplies both for the Chorus and orchestra and concession sales. 

The Chorus, dressed in red and white, performed the Armed Forces Salute medley to honor all veterans in attendance, along with an Irish Medley, songs from the King and I, 4 movements from Songs of the Fleet with grammy winner soloist William H. Sharp. and ending with the crowd favorite - 1812 Overture complete with Newport Artillery cannon, Grucci fireworks, and Christ Church bells - followed by the National Anthem.  Early attendees were able to listen to the dress rehearsal which was followed by music of 5 local area groups.  A fantastic show to end Maestro Andrew Howell's first year as Music Director of the Chorus of Westerly.

Extra security greeted everyone at the Park but the day and evening proceeded without incident - a relaxing, friendly and fun event for everyone.

President Cal shares some pictures:


more pictures can be found in the Photo Album Section of Website -  Summer Pops 2013






Summer Pops Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

The 2013 Scholarship winners were announced yesterday in the Club's weekly newsletter.  Two students - Jordan Rosetta and Andrew Iacoi - are graduating from Westerly High School.  The $2,000 awards will be given upon completion of their first college semester at the Club's dinner meeting in December or January.

Jordan has been a member of the Rhode Island and National Honor Societies and was a member of the varsity basketball and golf teams.  For his community service throughout his high school career, he volunteered at the Westerly Apple School, the Westerly Senior Center, the Columbus Day Parade, Substance Abuse Task Force, Beach Clean Up, and coaching youth basketball.  He also participated in peer tutoring, character education and the Best Buddies program.  Jordan was accepted into the Pharmacy program at both the University of Rhode Island and St. John's University.

Andrew has been an honors student throughout his high school career and has been on the indoor, outdoor and cross country track teams during his four years and served as Captain of the teams.  For his community service, he has served as a Freshmen Mentor, Middle School peer coach, Catholic Youth Group at St Pius X, leader in the Varsity Athletes Against Substance Abuse and Character Education.  Andrew plans to continue running track and to study sports biology at Springfield College.


2013 Scholarship Winners Rosemarie Russo 0
Remembering Dr. Fran Gencarella Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

As part of our 2013 Simplified Grant project, we planned a work day to clear the walk ways.  Meeting Tuesday morning are Doug Rayner, Danny Alvino, BobElmer and Rose Russo.

Image  Image

Image BeforeImage After                                                                                            

Image Dan and Doug cleaning up the debris from the main pathway.  Bob Elmer also applied his special magic to shine up the Rotary Park sign out by Airport Road and the Donor Sign inside the Park.



Rotary Park Project May 2013 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

The Ninth Annual Chowder Cook-Off event took place on Saturday, 4 May, with a huge thank you to Chef Jamie and his Westerly High School students who provided quite a bit of assistance.  We can't thank them enough for their hard work.  We had hoped to have a huge crowd of attendees on Saturday but some of our members did not fulfill their responsibility of selling tickets and attending.  Only Nine members were present at some point of the day.  

A very special thank you to our participants for their cooperation through the Rhode Island Health Department's rules and to Nunzio and his staff at Venice Restaurant for all their efforts to accommodate everyone.   A grateful appreciation to the following:

      Andrea Restaurant    Casa Della Luce    Shelter Harbor Inn    The Breachway Grill    Two Little Fish   Venice Restaurant

    Culinary Students of East Providence High School, Rogers High School, Westerly High School and Woonsocket High School

The success and highlight (for this editor) of the day was in the spirit, camaraderie and cooperation among the participants.  The students were terrific - it was a pleasure to watch their dedication.  Even though we could only award a first and second place.  Each participant was a winner!!!!  Please remember the restaurants when you are looking to eat out - visit them as often as you can - they deserve our support!!!  To the young people, we wish them years of success in all they do whether they remain in food service or go on to some other endeavor.  So, now our winners  ---   for the Professional Restaurant Division

  Image  1st PLACE WINNER  -  CASA DELLA LUCE, Mark Lacz


                  and for the High School Culinary Student Division

Image1st PLACE WINNER  -  Westerly High School, Chef Jamie Finkelstein

Image2nd PLACE WINNER  -  Woonsocket High School, Chef Paul Jalaf

 We also send a very special thank you to Chris DiPaola and WBLQ for spending the day with us. 






Chowder CookOff - 4 May 2013 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

Sponsored by the Westerly-Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce with the support of the Town and School Department, residents and students lined up and held hands on Misquamicut Beach this morning to celebrate - our beach is back!!!  And we were there too!!!!Imagethis is just one side

   Misquamicut Beach Back Better than Ever!!

ImageChris DiPaola and WBLQ at the Beach

Hands Across the Sands Rosemarie Russo 0
Flag Day - 14 June 2013 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

The 2013 Group Study Exchange Team comes from France and they will be spending the day in Westerly on 13 May.

Team Leader is Kirsten Gorg.  She is  a Business and Personal Coach, Mental Trainer (teambuilding processes).  Kirsten is married with two children.

The TeamMr. Augustin Burkel has been working in the field of Thermal Heating and Building Efficiency.  Ms. Choe Oswald is a Marketing Assistant in the field of cosmetics.  Mr. Thomas Huguin works in the field of Biodynamic Agriculture.  Mr. Cedric Staudt is a Research Technician in a Nuclear Power Station.


  At first stop of the day  -  Westerly-Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce - see "News" 13 May 2013 for additional pictures and details 



Group Study Exchange comes to Westerly 13 May 2013 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Daniel Alvino

On Saturday, 23 February 2013, the Rotary Club of Jaltemba Bay, La Penita Mexico, presented to Dan Alvino a plaque honoring his service at the newly completed Community Cultural Center in La Penita and the financial support provided for the project by the Rotary Club of Westerly RI.  The presentation was made during the annual fundraiser that supports scholarships and other local projects.

Image  Dan and FlorenceImage The Community Center

Dan Alvino honored by Rotary Club of Jaltemba Bay Daniel Alvino 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

One of our Club's major projects for the 2012/2013 year was to work with a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, located in Mystic, CT - Reforest the Trees  - founded by Dr. Herster Barres.  The organization's mission is "to make a tangible contribution to global sustainability through environmental education and applied research on carbon-offset farm forests in the tropics."  It is an "applied research organization working to mitigate global warming through sustainable forestry and long-term, verifiable carbon sequestration" with actual tree farms - reforested tropical pastures growing tree species that grow quickly to produce valuable lumber, enabling profitability to the farmers maintaining them, in Costa Rica.  Over the past decade, RTT has managed 317 acres of carbon-offset forests on 9 farms in Costa Rica with donations from US sponsors.  Go to for more information.

Our project was to provide initial funding for a three-year education program involving the Westerly Middle School students. RTT's educational program is "designed to educate students about the effects of carbon emissions on global warming and the environment in general."  The students will learn how to measure carbon emissions and how the emissions can be offset by encouraging the growth of forests AND the school will have a tree farm in Costa Rica named after it With the approval of Westerly Superintendent Seitsinger and WMS Principal Fusco, the program is in progress.  In recent email updates from Dr. Herster and the Club's RTT Project Chair, Dr. Dan Alvino, we were told that RTT has had several meetings with the WMS staff and Desiree Derix, Science Department Head, will soon be traveling to Costa Rica for training in the forest.  A recent visit by Dr. Herster to WMS provided Ms. Derix with the scientific background of the UNFCCC (United Nations Climate Change Convention) program in Costa Rica.  On Friday, 15 February, they plan to meet again to coordinate teaching activities.

Dr. Herster also mentioned that Walmart has contributed $4,000 toward the project which will eventually cost $20,000 to completion.  Our Club has committed $4000 also to the project with a portion of that coming from a Rotary District Simplified Grant.Image


 We received an update from Dr. Barres and Ms. Derix on 1 April.  Westerly Middle School Science teacher Ms. Derix recently returned from training in Costa Rica, as part of the RTT Environmental Education Program.  In Semester II, Grades 5 to 8 will participate in the Reforest the Trees program.


REFOREST THE TREES PROJECT with Westerly Middle School Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

Image Liz Pasqualini of the Jonnycake Center, receiving $1,000 check from President Cal Lord.  This donation was made to assist the Center with their needs for victims of Hurricane Sandy.

 Image Russ Partridge of the WARM Center, receiving a $1,000 check from President Cal.  This donation was made to assist the WARM Center for its Hurricane Sandy families.

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 Tim Babcock of the Westerly/Pawcatuck YMCA, receiving the first payment of $1,250 of a $5,000 pledge toward the Y's Capital Building Campaign from President Cal.

Major Donations to Area Organizations November 2012 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

ImageThanks to the Nor'easter that flew in on Wednesday bringing winds, snow, rain and more snow, attendance at the Pasta Dinner was not as well attended as hoped.  Elks, Lions and Rotary members were well represented.  Mike prepared a superb sauce to accompany the meatballs and pasta as well as the most delicious Caesar Salad.  The Wine Store donated a great wine basket for the raffle.  Quite a few kind souls braved the weather to have dinner and others came to take dinners home.  Final tally collected for the Jonnycake Center will be announced next week.


Elks/Lions/Rotary Pasta Dinner to benefit Jonnycake Center Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo
Spearheaded by the Westerly/Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce, Serve RI and the Misquamicut Business Association, hundreds of volunteers have been helping in the cleanup efforts.  The Town mobilized all its vehicles to move the massive amounts of beach sand that rolled over onto Atlantic Avenue.  While the damage in our area is not as severe as that affecting the New Jersey and New York coastal areas, we must do all we can to help our local businesses and families remove the damage so restoration can begin as soon as possible.  Our Club's Board voted yesterday to provide funds to the Chamber for volunteer meals this weekend.
Hurricane Sandy and Misquamicut Relief Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

Roberta will be providing a Presentation on Rhode Island as given to the National Conference of Secretaries of State.  This presentation will be made around the country - it promotes her newest book, Little Rhody and the Other 49, which is a look at some of the more fascinating points about the 49 states and how Rhode Island compares.  Roberta is also the author of three additional books -  Rhode Island's Friendly Faces, The Right to Crow, and Historic Armories of Rhode Island.  In addition she has created two games about Rhode Island - Rhode Scholar Trivia Game and Rhode Side.


Roberta Mudge Humble - 26 November Speaker Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo
       Club members are invited to attend the annual Columbus Day Parade Pasta Dinner at the Calabrese Club at 28 Pleasant Street, 1 October 2012 from 5 - 7 pm, $10.00 per person.  The Columbus Day Committee has selected our very own Doug and Jean Rayner to be the Grand Marshals of the parade in honor of the many years of service to the Westerly community through their leadership and dedication to Summer Pops.
Columbus Day Parade Grand Marshals Doug and Jean Rayner Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo
Monday, 30 July 2012, the membership, spouses, Past District Governor Bill and Tina Vangel, District Governor Joe and Geraldine Clancy and ADG Russ Bertrand joined together over pot luck side dishes and desserts with hot dogs and hamburgers grilled by Honorary member Joe Potter assisted by his wife, Carol, and daughter, Cindy.  All proceeds collected went to Rotary Foundation.  Some members chose to "kick start" EREY by bringing that contribution along as well.

After eating heartily from all the wonderful dishes, we moved from the picnic area to the park's Children's Garden and DG Joe spoke to all about the successes of last year's efforts by PDG Vangel and of the goals that he (DG Joe) planned to achieve through his year of service.  He spoke also about the "moment that changed him and opened his heart to the needs of others" as a new Rotarian in the Weymouth Rotary Club back in 1995  -  delivering Christmas gifts to a family.  His charge to Rotarians is to "keep your priorities straight  -  family, business and Rotary."

President Cal received his Paul Harris Fellow with one sapphire Pin from DG Joe.  Congratulations to Cal!!  The Paul Harris Society, named after Rotary's founder, recognizes donors who contribute US$1,000 or more to the Annual Programs Fund.  For each subsequent $1,000 to $6,999 contributed a sapphire, up to five, is added; these are followed by one to three rubies for gifts of $7,000 to $9,999.

The Board and membership voted to award a Paul Harris Fellow to Rosemarie Russo.  As she was about to take a photo shot of DG Joe, she was called to step into the gazebo.  DG Joe told the attendees of the origin of the Paul Harris Fellow Society and of the many honorees, such as Mother Teresa.  [Editor Note:  What an honor this was for me.  I so wished that my sons were there and couldn't wait to get home to share this with them via email.  As if it wasn't enough to have been awarded the Unsung Hero Award and the Best Newsletter Award at the District Conference.  When we met earlier in the day for our Board Meeting, Bob Elmer casually asked me when and why I joined.  I told him how impressed I was with the 50th Anniversary articles that were in The Westerly Sun.  As a fairly new resident of Westerly and now a "semi-retired" person, I was looking to to become part of an organization that contributes to their community.  I soon found myself filling up all those "nonpaid working" hours with Rotary tasks.  I've had the pleasure of meeting and working with some very special people and we have done some really good things in these four years together for our community and internationally.  I am honored and very grateful.]


 See the MDM July2012 Photo Album for more pictures
Million Dollar Meal at Rotary Park with DG Joe Clancy Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

 On Friday evening, December 9, 2011, the Club hosted a pot-luck dinner to benefit Rhode island Center Assisting Those in Need.  Attended by RICAN's volunteers and Westerly Rotary members and guests, with help provided by a few members of the Westerly High School Football team, the event garnered approximately $2300 in gift cards, toys, checks and cash for RICAN and its clients.  The various Italian dishes, sandwiches and desserts were plentiful  -  so much that at the end of the evening a delivery of food was made to the WARM Shelter's kitchen. 

 We thank everyone who attended, participated and donated.  Special thanks to Executive Director Deborah Nigrelli for sharing RICAN's new video.  Our grateful thanks for the raffle items donated by the following great local organizations:

                   Chorus of Westerly           Dunn's Corner Market          Dusty's Ice Cream          Famous Pizza           Fatti Mac's     

                   Fra's Italian Gourmet        Ocean Club Resort              Phil's Market Place         Rev John Huhtala     The Wine Store

                   Valenti Suburau                  Venice Restaurant               Walmart

Image     ImageImage

Christmas for RICAN Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

 Monday Evening, December 12, 2011, the membership had the pleasure of meeting and listening to Donna Nabb, who has been selected to head the newly organized Westerly Parent Academy.  She comes to this collaboration with ten years of experience working with families in the Westerly Public School System.  She is very excited about this project and the Academy's goals  - 

                  To be a link to a broad network of community learning opportunities

                  To support student learning and success

                  To strengthen communication between parents and their children's schools

                  To help parents build personal, education and vocation skills for job and career growth

The Academy will offer workshops and courses to parents with the help of educators and business professionals in the community.  At a November meeting in Warwick, RI Education Commissioner Gist called for parental involvement in education reform and mentioned the Westerly Parent Academy as the First in Rhode Island.

our Club voted to award the Academy $500 and the check was presented last evening.  Currently two of our members, Mario Celico and Clark Rumfelt, are participating members of the Academy.


Westerly Parent Academy Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

      Monday arrived with the sunshine andn provided a beautiful day for our gathering of fellowship and great food at Rotary Park.  Chefs Vinnie Gaccione and Walter Kimball cooked hot dogs and hamburgers while everyone brought a side dish or dessert.  Guests included Ada Elmer, Florence Alvino, Jean Rayner, Louise Seitsinger, Thelma Gaccione, Valerie Rumfelt, Marty and Visiting Rotarian Bob Boughner, and Steve Salerno's nephew, Andrew.

     Due to the Irene's visit and problems she left behind, District Governon Bill Vangel was not able to attend.

     After dinner, everyone adjourned to the Park Gazebo where Past President Dan Alvino introduced Dr. Roy Seitsinger, who has just completed his first year as Superintendent of Schools here in Westerly.  Dan and president Bob then inducted Roy into the Club.  He previously was a member of the Pawtuxent Valley and North Kingstown Clubs.Image

Million Dollar Meal, 30 August 2011 Rosemarie Russo 0
Posted by Rosemarie Russo

This message was received in an email and I thought, that it so embodies what it means to be a Rotarian, that it must appear in our story section.  And, now it is time to present the fifth lesson.  Food for thought -  The writer of these lessons is a wise but unknown person.

First Lesson - The Cleaning Lady - everyone you meet in life is significant and they deserve one's attention and care - her first name was Dorothy.

Second Lesson - Pickup in the Rain - young white man stopped on rainy evening in the 1960s and gave a ride unknowingly to Mrs. Nat King Cole - unselfishly serving others

Third lesson - Always remember those who serve   -  a young boy, wanting to buy an ice cream sundae, settles for just plain ice cream so he would have enough money left to leave a small tip for the waitress who served him, 

Fourth lesson - The Obstacle in Our Path  -  the peasant learned what many of us never understand!  Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve our condition.

Fifth lesson - Giving When it Counts -  Many years ago, when I worked as a volunteer at a hospital, I got to know a little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare and serious disease.  Her only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her five-year old brother, who had miraculously survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat the illness. 

The doctor explained the situation to her little brother, and asked the little boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister.  I saw him hesitate for only a moment before taking a deep breath and saying, "yes I'll do it if it will save her."  As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and smiled, as we all did, seeing the color returning to her cheek.  Then his face grew pale and his smile faded.  He looked up at the doctor and asked with a trembling voice, "Will I start to die right away?"  Being young, the little boy had misundersood the doctor.  He thought he was going to have to give his sister all of his blood, in order to save her.

Five Lessons in Giving, not taking Rosemarie Russo 0