March 2018

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Officers & Directors
President Elect
Vice President
Immediate Past President
Membership Chair
Foundation Chair
Tunkhannock Rotary Flash Meetings
On the first and third Thursday's of every month, the Tunkhannock Rotary will hold a flash club meeting at 5:15 PM at Bogey's at Shadowbrook Inn & Resort. This is a 15-30 minute meeting for those members or prospective members who cannot make our regular 12:15 PM meeting. If they so desire, members and guests can stay after the meeting for drinks and/or dinner.
If you are interested in joining Rotary, but cannot make our luncheon meetings, please join us at one of our Thursday flash meetings to learn more about Rotary and our international and community based activities.
Club Information

Welcome to our Website!


Service Above Self

We meet Thursdays at 12:15 PM
Purkey's Pink Apple
651 SR 6 W
Tunkhannock, PA  18657
United States
District Site
Club News
Janet MacKay, Executive Director of the Victims Resource Center (VRC) was the guest speaker at the March 1 Rotary Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple. 

VRC has helped 295 victims and their families in Wyoming County from July through Dec 2017. They also presented various prevention programs to kids in our schools.

They have started a Medical Advocacy project to teach emergency/law enforcement personnel how to screen for domestic violence and to supply them with options as to what the individual can do.  VRC is also starting a support group for domestic violence victims.

The VRC Geranium sale is coming up with the flowers to be available the Tuesday before Mother’s Day. They will begin taking orders next month. 

After Janet’s brief presentation, Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli presented Janet with a check for $1,000 to support the Victims Resource Center.

Janet MacKay (left) receiving a check for VRC from Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli

At the March 1 Rotary Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple, Club Essay Contest Chair Terry Furman welcomed the top 3 essayists to the meeting.  The Rotary District 7410 essay contest was opened this year to both 11th and 12th grade students. The essay topic was “Making a difference”.  From the entered essays, the top 3 were selected by the Tunkhannock Essay Committee to receive awards at today’s meeting. The Club 1st place winner was entered into the District 7410 Essay Contest.
Terry then introduced each of the winners, asked them to read their essays to the club and presented them with their cash awards.

L to R: Sarah Seward (3rd Place), Terry Furman, Leah Rome (1st Place) and Jessica Ell (2nd Place)
At the Feb 22 Rotary Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple, Assistant Governor Norm Kelly talked about his Rotary Moment.  Norm’s moment starts back in 1952 in his stepdad’s Oldsmobile, which broke down on their way to buy groceries. He sold it for $28 to the local garage and borrowed a vehicle to get home with the groceries. On the way home, they passed a house that had burnt down and the people lost everything. Although Norm’s family did not have much, Norm’s stepdad gave them the $28 plus all the food that they had just bought. That has stuck with him to this day that “you have to give back and be part of the community” no matter how much or little that you have.
In his corporate life, he made sure that charitable donations were important in those companies and benefited the communities they served. He commented although it was very nice to receive recognition, “You don’t give to expect a pat on the back or recognition”.
In 2011, they decided to move and retire here. He wanted to join Rotary at the Library fundraiser in 2012; Marta was serving wine and he asked her about Rotary. Five minutes later, Fran Turner and George Gay came over to talk with him and Fran sponsored him for Rotary.  He loves this club especially since it helps both the community and internationally.

Norm Kelly talking about his Rotary Moment
At the Feb 15 Rotary Luncheon, Norm Kelly was awarded his Paul Harris +3 pin by Club Rotary Foundation Chair Al Noble. For every $1,000 that a Rotarian donates to the Rotary Foundation, they receive a pin with different numbers and types of gemstones to indicate their level of support of the Foundation.
Norm Kelly (left) with Club Foundation Chair Al Noble
Our newest 2018-2019 outbound exchange student is Kayla Gavek, who is 16 yr old and in 11th grade.  She was a guest at our Feb 15 Rotary Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple. She takes German, Latin and Spanish at Tunkhannock Area High School and wants to go to college for linguistics to be a military translator.
Although Kayla had been accepted into the exchange student program, she had not yet been assigned to her host country.  Her first choice of countries was Germany and she was informed by Exchange Student Coordinator Anne Sehne that she will be going to Germany.
Exchange Student Coordinator Anne Sehne (left) presenting Kayla Gavek with her exchange assignment to Germany.
Erica Rogler, Executive Director of the Dietrich Theater, was a guest speaker at the Feb 8 Rotary luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple.  Erica updated the club on the various programs at the Dietrich that had been funded by Rotary's 2017 donation to the Theater.  They included programs for children, senior citizens, music and literary programs. 
After her presentation, President Samantha Maruzzelli presented a check for $6,000 to the Theater.  Rotary's Senior Activities Committee had also recently provided the Theater with $2,000 for continuation of the 2018 Chair Yoga classes that are open to senior citizens and $200 for snacks for the winter 2017 Matter of Balance Class to help senior citizens prevent falls. Rotary's total donation to the Dietrich Theater from the proceeds of the 2017 Harvest & Wine Festival totals $8,200.

Dietrich Theater Director Erica Rogler (left) accepting a check for the Theater from Rotary President Samantha Maruzzelli
Executive Director of the Tunkhannock Public Library, Kristin Smith-Gary was a guest speaker at the Feb 8 Rotary meeting. Kristin provided an update on how the money that Rotary donated to the library in 2017 had been used, including support for multiple children's programs, some library renovations, and a subscription to the Wall St. Journal. She pointed out that the Library and Rotary share a common goal to provide a variety of literacy opportunities for our community.
After Kristin's presentation, President Samantha Maruzzelli presented a check for $10,000, which Kristin and Library Board Chairperson, Ann Way, accepted on behalf of the library.

L to R: Library Board Chair Ann Way, Library Executive Director Kristin Smith-Gary and Rotary President Samantha Maruzzelli
TAHS Interact President Alexandria Arndt and Vice President Cheyanne Davy were guest speakers at the Feb 1 Rotary Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple.  They spoke about the fund-raising activities that have been undertaken by the Interact Club over the last several months. They have raised money for backpacks for hurricane victims, sold Pulsera bracelets for scholarships for students in Nicaragua & Guatemala, raised money for pediatric cancer, collected toys for Interfaith Friends for Xmas plus numerous other activities. 
After their presentation, they presented a check for $100 for the Polio Plus Program of the Rotary Foundation.  Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli accepted the check, which will be matched by the Tunkhannock Rotary and then the $200 donation will be made to the Polio Plus program in the name of the TAHS Interact Club.

L to R: Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli, Cheyanne Davy (Interact VP), Alexandria Arndt (Interact Pres.) and Tommasina Fiorillo (Interact Advisor)
Tunkhannock Area School District Superintendent Heather McPherson was the guest speaker at the Jan 25 Rotary Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple.  She discussed the upcoming consolidation of the schools in the TASD and her goals for educational enhancements in the newly consolidated schools for 2018-2019.

Superintendent Heather McPherson

2018 got off to a subdued start as the club bid farewell to long-time member Francis Turner, who moved at the end of Dec from Tunkhannock to Saegertown, PA to be closer to his daughter and her family. Fran has been a Rotarian for over 67 years and a member of the Tunkhannock Rotary for most of that time. He holds the record for length of term for any Tunkhannock club officer, since he served 25 years as Secretary after his term as President came to an end.

Fran, who is 98, was also very active in the Tunkhannock American Legion and served as former Commander of that organization. He was part of the flag honor guard for many veteran’s funerals and for our July 3rd Fireworks display.

He is also an avid golfer, won several of our District Golf Tournaments and still plays golf weekly when the links are open.

Fran will be missed, but we wished him well in his new home by teleconference on Jan 11 and know that he will join the local Rotary Club in his area once he is settled. 

Fran Turner (left) with Assistant Governor Norm Kelly

At our Jan 18 Club Assembly, Ann Way presented her top 10 Rotary Moments. They included highlights such as her first year as chair of the Rotary Relays, where she inherited all the materials but no information on what needed to be done for the Relays. Luckily, her fellow club members jumped in and did what needed to be done without being asked.
She also reminisced on the early discussions regarding the Harvest & Wine Festival and the first year where ticket sales were by phone, which was crazy.
Dictionary distribution to 3rd graders made her list since when she was an elementary school principal, the students continually asked when they would get their dictionaries each year.
Her experiences with the exchange students was also one of her highlights, but her no. 1 moment was "right now" looking around the room at all the members and thinking about the AMAZING things the club has done locally and internationally. 

Ann Way
At the Jan 18 Club Assembly, Tom Kukuchka recalled his top Rotary Moments of his 39 years in Rotary.  Tom recalled the early fund-raising events like the auction, country and western event etc that were a lot of work and not always successful.
He talked about many of the projects that the Club spearheaded in Tunkhannock like the stadium lights and changing rooms.
District Conferences memories were also related along with those from the Rotary Relays, one of his favorite events. 
Tom ended by making a few suggestions for future club projects.

Tom Kukuchka
At the Jan 18 Club Assembly, President Samantha Maruzzelli shared thank you notes received by the club for donations that have been made from the proceeds of the 2017 Harvest & Wine Festival. Thank you notes were received from: the Wyoming County Chorale for our donation of $200, the Northern Tier Symphony Orchestra for the donation of $250 and the Tunkhannock Tree Association for our donation of 10 shade trees in honor of our Rotarian veterans. 
The Tunkhannock Rotary held its post-holiday social at the Shadowbrook Inn and Resort on Saturday Jan 13.  After an excellent dinner, everyone enjoyed the delicious desserts made by Sisile Maruzzelli, a former recipient of a vocational scholarship from the club that she used to attend the Culinary Institute of America, where she graduated as a pastry chef.
After dinner, Rotary District Governor Karin-Susan Breitlauch presented a club designated Paul Harris Fellow to Wyoming County District Attorney Jeff Mitchell in recognition of his work helping people in need as DA, providing leadership in the attempt to reduce the opioid crisis in our area and promoting the natural beauty found here in Wyoming County.  A Paul Harris Fellow is the highest honor that Rotary can bestow on a non-Rotarian for their "Service above self".

Rotary District Governor Karin Breitlauch congratulates new Paul Harris Fellow Jeff Mitchell
2016-2017 Tunkhannock Rotary Exchange Student, Haley Toczko, was the guest speaker at the Jan 11 luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple. Haley did her exchange year in Slovakia, where she experienced many new and old traditions, especially Easter traditions where the men pour water on the single women to give them good health and beauty. She was able to enjoy kickboxing, skiing and other sports, as well as, get to see sights in Poland and Slovakia.
At the end of her exchange, she participated in the Exchange Student Eurotour that took them to 3 countries in Europe (France, Spain and Italy).  She made great friends with whom she has remained in contact and even traveled to London to visit with one of her host families who were visiting there.

Haley Toczko
The Tunkhannock Rotary was pleased to have a visit on Jan 4 from 2014-2015 outbound exchange student Jason Linden, who went to Mexico for his exchange year.  Upon his return to the US, Jason went to college for 1 year and then decided to return to Mexico to study law. He is currently working as a paralegal in Mexico while going to law school.

Dana Kuffa (left), Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli and Jason Linden
Dana Kuffa, our outbound 2016-2017 Exchange Student to Chile, was the guest speaker at our Jan 4 Rotary Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple.  During her exchange, Dana was based in Santiago Chile and went to an all girls' Catholic school. 
With the other exchange students, she went to the beach and got to touch the Pacific Ocean.  She also got to see a lots of landmarks that were close to where she was living.
Their second trip with Rotary was to Easter Island. The Rapa Nui’s did a traditional dance for them.
Her 3rd Rotary trip was to the north of Chile in Atacama Desert. There is lots of salt in the desert and they export it from there. There were lots of alpaca everywhere.
She received Club banners from her host club and from the Easter Island Rotary, which she presented to President Samantha Maruzzelli following her presentation.

Dana Kuffa (left) presenting club banners to Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli
Past President Ann Way presented Rich Seaberg with a check for $2,000 to continue Max, a community service dog’s training with Designing Dogs. Rich commented that Max was invited by the Roslund 4th graders to escort 70 4th graders to the Dietrich last week.  Max and Rich, who are not affiliated with local law enforcement, are trained for drug, explosive and firearms detection and for search and rescue.

Ann Way (left), Rich Seaberg and Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli
At the Jan 4 Rotary Luncheon, Past President Ann Way presented a check for $1,500 to Rich Seaberg, Resource Officer for TASD, to pay for t-shirts and an essay prize for the 5th graders in the TASD, who are participating in the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program.

Ann Way (left), Rich Seaberg and Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli
At the Jan 4 Rotary Luncheon at Purkey's Pink Apple, District Rotary Membership Chair Ron Furman inducted our newest member, Mary Tempest into Rotary. Mary’s sponsor was Norm Kelly.  Please join us in welcoming Mary into Rotary.

Norm Kelly (left), Mary Tempest, Ron Furman and Pres. Samantha Maruzzelli

Recently Cathy Franko, Director of H.A.N.D.S. of Wyoming County, spoke to the Tunkhannock Rotary about their summer FANS camp. The 6-week camp is for children 5-12 years of age from low income families or who have disabilities.

As a result of the very successful 2017 Rotary Harvest & Wine Festival, Rotary presented HANDS with a total of $5,000 toward the 2018 FANS camp.

Cathy Franko (left) received a donation for the 2018 FANS Camp from Tunkhannock Rotary Past President Ann Way.

2017-2018 President Samantha Maruzzelli's Welcome

Tunkhannock Rotary has been a very special organization to me   even before I became a Rotarian in 2007. It  is  a  great privilege to be the President for the 2017- 2018 Rotary year. I started my relationship with Rotary as a host parent to a Rotary Exchange Student, my first of many. I joined the year my father, Albert Noble, was president and  through the years I have served as the Youth Exchange Officer, a Director, RYLA chair and Youth Exchange Counselor along with participating in many of the awesome programs we host. Our group is comprised of many of the most  wonderful people know and I  am very proud to call myself a member  of      Tunkhannock  Rotary.

In  my year, I  have set some goals that focus on making the Rotary experience something that all our members can participate in whether they have to work on Thursdays during our regular meeting time or have difficulty making it to certain projects we are doing. I   believe that this added flexibility will attract even more people to join our organization.

"One Profits Most Who Serves Best" is a motto of Rotary that I would also like to focus on. We are a TRUE Service Organization and we not only grow from the projects we create and implement, but we grow as community members, workers and business owners in the connections we make through our group. We have generated a family atmosphere between our members that will and has lasted a lifetime. Our service work has made us crave more. This year we will create new projects and dream bigger and grow larger.

I  have big shoes to fill from all the great Presidents before me and a huge responsibility to fabricate a well-organized, flexible group to leave for our Rotary successors.  I  promise to reach out to every member and listen to your ideas and your dreams and together we will construct a profitable, respectable 2017-2018 Rotary year!

In 2017-18, we’ll answer the question “What is Rotary?” with RI President-elect Ian H.S. Riseley’s theme, Rotary: Making a Difference. “Whether we’re building a new playground or a new school, improving medical care or sanitation, training conflict mediators or midwives, we know that the work we do will change people’s lives — in ways large and small — for the better.”

Help Eradicate Polio Around the World with Rotary!

Upcoming Events
Club Assembly
Mar 22, 2018
Not One More
Mar 29, 2018
Bob Baker
Apr 05, 2018
No Fake News: Reflections on 15 Years of Covering Wyoming County
Lou Divis
Apr 12, 2018
Peace Camp Update and Check Presentation
Club Assembly
Apr 19, 2018
Club Assembly
May 17, 2018
Club Assembly
Jun 21, 2018