Rotary Rewind – Oct. 15, 2023

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The rain did not keep Rotarians from doing our semi-annual cleanup of Gales Creek and Thatcher Roads on Saturday, Oct. 14. Photos courtesy of Andrea Stewart.

If you did not make it to our last Rotary Club of Forest Grove meeting, here is what you missed…

This Week – At Forest Grove UCC: This week’s meeting, and all of our meetings during the month of October, will be held at the Forest Grove United Church of Christ, 2032 College Way (across the street from Pacific University). Join us as we conduct a club assembly to do the business of the club and as we honor more Youth Citizens of the Month as we get the program restarted after a COVID hiatus.

Changes To Lunches: After receiving feedback from the club and discussion by the board of directors, lunches will once again be made available at weekly meetings. In order to provide for an accurate head count (and not waste food), confirmation for lunch orders must be received by secretary Janet Peters by the Saturday before each week’s meeting. A sign-up sheet will be available at weekly meetings or you can RSVP to Janet via email.

Satellite Club Meeting: This month’s Satellite Club meeting is scheduled for this Thursday, Oct. 19, 6:30 p.m., at Zesti Food Carts, 2131 Yew St., Forest Grove. All club members and anyone interested in Rotary are welcome to attend.

Hope For The Holidays Wreath Fundraiser: Once again, we are holding a wreath fundraiser to raise funds for our annual Hope For The Holidays service project in December. As in years past, these wreaths are made by Rotarian Melinda Fischer. A 20-inch wreath costs $30 and a 28-inch wreath is $40.

Orders are due by Friday, Nov. 3 and should be submitted to Janet Peters via email, phone or text. Wreaths will be available for Rotarians to pick up on Saturday, Nov. 25. Checks should be made out to the Rotary Club of Forest Grove. Sorry, we cannot accept credit or electronic payments at this time.

Road Cleanup: Thank you to all Rotarians and friends who came out for our semi-annual road cleanup on Saturday. There were plenty of hands on deck and the cleanup took less than an hour to complete. A full list of the Rotarians who took part will be in next week’s Rototeller.

Part of the Washington County Adopt-A-Road Program, our club’s involvement in this effort stretches back almost three decades. Our club has adopted Gales Creek Road between Thatcher Road and Forest Gale Drive, and Thatcher Road between Gales Creek Road and David Hill Road. Our thanks to Paul Waterstreet and Andrea Stewart for coordinating this service effort for our club!

Concours d’Elegance Committee: The Concours d’Elegance Committee is starting the planning for our 50th show on July 21, 2024. If interested in getting further involved with the Concours, the steering committee is always looking for volunteers to prepare for the show throughout the year. For more information, contact Tom Raabe at 503-704-1200 or or Geoff Johnston at 503-939-7868 or

Forest Grove Football Senior Photos: Once again, our club is making available senior portraits of Forest Grove High School football seniors to display in their place of business. After the season, the portraits will be presented to the seniors and their families at the team’s year-end banquet. The pictures cost $25 each to display. If you are interested in taking part in the program, contact Geoff Faris.

PolioPlus Fundraiser: With World Polio Day coming up on October 24, our club is doing a simple fundraiser to go towards our club’s goal of raising $3,000 towards the PolioPlus fund. At Wednesday’s meeting, a red club with Rotary logos was handed out to members. You are encouraged to either put the club out at your place of business or simply place your own spare change in it. Cups will be available at meetings over the next two weeks and funds will be collected on Wednesday, Nov. 1. Thank you for doing your part to put an end to polio forever.

Past Programs: Did you miss a meeting or want to go back and check out a program again? Most of our programs since May 2020 (over 100 videos to date) are archived on our club’s YouTube page. Visit

Service Opportunities For Club Members
Do You Know Of Service Opportunities?: Are you aware of service opportunities in our area that our members might be interested in? We can advertise those here! This space is not limited to club-sponsored activities but to any service opportunity in the community. To promote the service activity, please send a detailed description of the project, the date and time, contact information and a link to register to Rototeller editor Blake Timm,

FGHS Community Food Pantry: Our club’s support for the Forest Grove High School Food Pantry continues.  Thanks to its partnership with the Oregon Food Bank, food donations are still welcome but are of less need at this time. Of need, however, are toiletries and hygiene products as well as household cleaning materials.

The Food Pantry is open Mondays from 4-5:30 p.m. The pantry is located along Nichols Lane between the football field and the Basinski Center. Click Here for more information on the FGHS Food Pantry and on other resources for those experiencing food insecurity.

For information on the Food Pantry, please contact Brian Burke, If you wish to make a cash donation to the pantry, Click Here.

Around District 5100
District 5100 Statement On The Israeli/Gaza Conflict: By now I am sure that you have all heard of the violence in Israel.  It is a travesty that so many lives have been destroyed due to violence. 

We in District 5100 have watched and continue to stay alert to the developing situation in the Middle East with a mixture of horror and anguish.  Our hearts are filled with sadness for the loss of life, and for those families who lost loved ones.  We abhor violence against all. 

We encourage and support the clubs and will promote RI’s initiatives.  Change happens at club level.  Initiatives happen there too.  We challenge everyone to identify what can be done to change outcomes for the future.  When this conflict is over, what steps can each of us take to bring a permanent, sustainable change that will result in a more peaceful tomorrow?  We Rotarians are uniquely capable of convening parties in conflict while applying the four-way test in the search for solutions.  Furthermore, we commit to non-violent resolution of conflict. It is long past time to replace violence with peace.

Renee Brouse
District Governor

Board Leadership Training: District 5100 is offering a board leadership seminar this fall. This training is geared towards current club officers and board members but is open to any Rotarian who is interested in club or district leadership. The training is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 21, 8 a.m.-12:30 p.m., at the Oregon International Air Show office, 3355 NE Cornell Rd., Hillsboro (inside the Hillsboro Airport terminal). This training will touch on financial stewardship, club goals, action plans, management and much more.

There are currently 15 Rotarians from the Western Region planning to attend, eight of which are from our club. There is room for more people and there is still time to register. For more information or to register, please contact assistant governor Tom Raabe.

District 5100 Newsletter: Click Here To View The Monthly District 5100 Newsletter

Around Rotary International
Rotary International Statement On The Conflict In Israel & Gaza: Recognizing there has been protracted suffering in the long history of conflict between Israel and Palestinians in Gaza, Rotary International urges all parties to seek avenues to peace.

At the same time, we unequivocally condemn the horrific attack by Hamas on Israeli civilians and are appalled at the number of people who have been injured, killed, and kidnapped.

As the war between Israel and Hamas intensifies, we remain deeply concerned about the potential for further escalation as well as the loss of life and the humanitarian crisis that is occurring in Gaza. We denounce the violence against innocent civilians and support upholding international humanitarian law.

Peacebuilding is both a cornerstone of Rotary’s mission and one of our areas of focus. At our core, Rotary is a common ground for people to come together – across nationalities and religions, cultures and histories – and connect around their shared belief in a better tomorrow. That connection is what humanizes us in times of conflict and builds a foundation for lasting peace.

Rotary remains committed to working with our members, partners, and communities to find long-term, sustainable solutions that support peace and development in the region and elsewhere.

Last Week’s Program: Riley Stewart, RYLA

Click Here To Watch Last Week’s Program

The Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) program impacts many young professionals throughout our region. Our club is proud to have a long history of sending people to RYLA every year.

Last week, one of our club’s RYLA participants, Riley Stewart, came and talked with us about his life journey and the impact that RYLA had on him. The son of Rotarian Andrea Stewart, Riley attended RYLA this last summer.

A graduate of Forest Grove High School, Riley attended Pacific University where he majored in physics and math and was a student-athlete on the cross country and track and field teams. He went on to earn his Master of Arts in Teaching at Pacific and then spent a year teaching in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He has since relocated to Forest Grove where he works as a substitute teacher and an assistant coach for the Boxers’ cross country team. In his spare time, Riley is converting a used school bus into an RV.

In describing his life journey, Riley initially planned on becoming an engineer but, after an internship, decided that it was not what he wanted to do. He changed to a teaching career so that he could continue to coach and keep running in his life. After college, Riley taught at Aspire Online Academy in Colorado Springs but found that the way that he wanted to teach was stifled in that environment. He returned to Forest Grove seven months later.

Riley described the week-long retreat that is RYLA in general terms as much of the experience is kept confidential in order to continue to provide great impact to attendees. The group spent a lot of time hearing from presenters in leadership, business values, public speaking and more.

In the little bits of free time they had, Riley was able to build some lasting friendships and relationships and even found a girlfriend while attending. Three months after, Riley finds that he continues to spend a lot of time with the friends he connected with at RYLA.

Riley said that RYLA helped him step out of his comfort zone. Self described as an introvert, Riley spent a lot of time in high school and college staying in the background. He went to RYLA with the expressed goal to step out, not be afraid and to fully participate. After his RYLA experience, he feels like he will be a better leader. He also discovered more about his values and feels that compassion, community and growth are his three top values.

Who should attend RYLA? Riley believes that anyone can benefit from the experience. He talked about how 13 of the 16 personality types in the Myers-Briggs Personality Inventory were represented in his RYLA cohort. He believes that the diversity in personalities enhanced the experience for him.

The 2024 District 5100 RYLA will take place July 13-19 in the Menucha Retreat Center in the Columbia River Gorge. Applications will open in January and are open to young adults ages 19-32. If you know of someone who might be interested in attending or who you think might be impacted by the experience, please contact our RYLA chair, Andrea Stewart.

Club Calendar
Wed., Oct. 18: Weekly Meeting, Noon
Forest Grove United Church of Christ, 2032 College Way
Program: Club Assembly/Youth Citizens of the Month

Thurs., Oct. 19: Board Meeting, 7 a.m.
via Zoom

Thurs., Oct. 19: Satellite Club Meeting, 6:30 p.m.
Zesti Food Carts, 2131 Yew St., Forest Grove

Sat., Oct. 21: Rotary District 5100 Board Leadership Development, 8-12:30 p.m.
Oregon International Air Show Offices, 3355 NE Cornell Rd., Hillsboro

Wed., Oct. 25: Weekly Meeting, Noon
Forest Grove United Church of Christ, 2032 College Way
Program: Blue Barbour-Weiss, Rotary Youth Exchange Year In Ecuador

Wed., Nov. 1: Weekly Meeting, Noon
Forest Grove United Church of Christ, 2032 College Way
Program: Miles Glowacki, City of Forest Grove Economic Development

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