Posted by Frank Wooldridge on May 02, 2018
As I am stumbling through my notes here, I am going to try and put together your weekly Breakfast Rotary Newsletter. For those who were absent, you certainly missed a meeting loaded with energy, unexpected revelry, and fellowship. So, I will do my best to give you the lowdown and hope to see you at next Wednesday’s meeting.
We enjoyed the presence of visiting Rotarian Nancy Pollard of Twilight, who by the way, is their President-Elect. Obviously, she is getting a taste of how Rotarians start the day opposed to how they end the night. Great to have her with us.
Loyal and unselfish Rotarian Bill Black and his gracious wife Jan took time to visit Wendell Kenny to celebrate his 100th birthday at Rosewood. Hey, if any of us makes it to our 100th birthday, who is going to help us off the roof during one of our roofing projects? Those who have been members of Breakfast Rotary for several years will remember Wendell as our very own pianist who would open our meetings with “God Bless America.”   Happy Birthday Sir!
Mistakes and Miscues can be attributed to our own Neil Walker who effortlessly, and with the timeliness of a rainstorm at an outdoor wedding, announced that he forgot to mention the presence of another visiting Rotarian, Scarlet Saben. More on Scarlet later.
Anniversaries anyone! Absolutely! We were honored to be in the presence of a couple of some very long-time Breakfast Rotarians:  Dale “Philosopher” Bender and Marianna Buoni who have given us 25 and 28 years respectfully of consistent and loyal community service. You are what makes us GREAT and we love you both.  Brenda and Glen Nakanishi are celebrating their 36th wedding anniversary today. Well actually, I was with Brenda last Friday night at a local event and from what I remember I recall her starting her celebration last week.  Oh well, we will save that story for another time.  Brenda is a hoot to be around.  Congrats!
Speaking of a hoot, our vocational moment was filled by Kathy Anderson, manager of Broken Yolk Restaurant. Chickens hoot, don’t they?  Well, they do lay eggs kind of like this newsletter.  (Editor’s note:  this last disclaimer is written by Scribe Frank.)   Kathy has a lot of broken eggs at her restaurant. What I found inspiring was her story as to how the restaurant was started by their founder. Only in America baby! And did you know Kathy’s restaurants, yes there are two of them, are now open for dinner. Please make Broken Yolk one of your stops for full service breakfast, lunch, and dinner and tell a friend about their new dinner hours.
Yours truly was given the opportunity to speak about the Rotary House Retreat.  I serve on the Board of Directors. Started by local Rotarian John Pryor of the West Club, the aim is to provide emotional relief to emergency first responders such as those in law enforcement, fire personnel, and ambulance EMTs. Often compounded stress builds in our local heroes and wearing that suit of armor sometimes becomes broken due to the constant bombardment of traumatic calls for service that these community servants respond to. To help them cope with the most chronic cases of stress related issues stemming from critical incident response, Rotary House Retreat provides a 5-day workshop that helps participants to weld their personal lives back together so they can continue serving their communities at the highest level. Thank you to John and all the local Rotarians and workers involved in this very vital Rotary effort.
We look forward in anticipation to the 2019-2020 Rotary presidency of Cheryl Scott, but with anticipation Past President Kay Pitts announced that following a meeting of the minds of our past and current president that Ed “Rotarian of the Year” O’Donnell has been selected to take the helm for the 2020-2021 year. Atta boy Ed!
President Denise requests that we strive towards having 100% participation in our pledge giving. We are almost there so com’ on everyone - let’s do this. Plus, it feels good! The “Pres” is also looking with Heather “Mom Machine” Ward for sponsors for Thousand Flags. Yep, it is coming soon and we will need volunteers. This Sat. at the Jim Burke Ford dealership on Oak Street between 9am and 11:30am, is the All-Club Rotary service project. If you have not come out for a weekend project in a while, this would be a great one to attend. Come help and get energized about your membership.
Mark your calendars for our monthly upcoming social at Dionysius May 17th at 6pm.  Great food, beverages and Rotary revelry found here. Don’t miss it.   
The Ronald McDonald House is nothing to clown around about. With very modest beginnings, the “house” has been a blessing and haven to thousands of families of children who have been stricken with illness. One has no idea of the value the “house” provides during these most desperate times in a family’s life. Scarlet Saben who is on staff at the “house” told us an inspiring story of how the “house” came to be and its growth and value to our community now bringing their love to 42 countries around the world. Who would have known Shamrock shakes, hamburgers, and community support could partner to maintain something so vital to families with ill children, a place of aid in the healing process.  Please come May 21st at 1 pm to the “house” located to the eastside of Memorial Hospital on 34th Street for the ground breaking of their expansion.
We have some Happy Rotarians so let me hear ya holler for Pete “The Fish” Leveroni who has completed 1000 miles swimming at the McMurtrey Pool.  Absolutely amazing!  No cardiologist for this guy. No fine for happy Ed O’Donnell who appeared in Family Magazine helping as a mentor with the Kern High School Leadership and ethics conference. This Ed is one active cat. Greg Desme’s son, who has been coaching high school baseball in Florida, is taking a jump back into professional baseball by pursuing a contract in the Independent baseball league. As you know, Grant Desme was in the Oakland A’s organization. Personally, I wish him the best and to follow his dream and heart always. We celebrate Pat Thompson for his tireless effort and goal of obtaining the most significant commercial real estate agreement our community has ever enjoyed.  It involved the purchase of the State Farm Insurance building by California Resources Corporation.  We all benefit from this, folks. Thank Pat and his generosity towards providing a “substantial” gift to our club and foundation.  We love you, man!
And then we come to Bree Goodman who has not been happy enough.  Poor Bree. Well she is working all the time so what do you expect? But she was able to resource a happy moment to share with us.  Bree enjoyed the annual CSUB Jazz Festival with friends.  We hope to hear more happy times from Bree and other Rotarians soon.
Finally, whew, the lucky winners are DA da da da: Paul Harris goes to Pat Thompson, deservingly so, and $70 cash goes to me, no darn it, Shawn Kelly.
See you at next week’s meeting, Frank Wooldridge.