Rotary Club installs new officers

The Rotary Club of Homer-Kachemak Bay celebrated the accomplishments of the past year and looked ahead to the new one during an informal installation of officers at its regular meeting on June 30.

Working with Homer’s Public Works and Parks departments, the club made several improvements to Ben Walters Park, including adding new playground equipment, building picnic tables and benches, putting in a “yellow brick road” for kids, and clearing brush.

“If you haven’t been to the park in a while, you should go and see the work that’s been done,” said outgoing President Bernie Griffard after the meeting. “It looks amazing. It’s a great example of what we can accomplish through teamwork and partnerships.”

Other highlights of Griffard’s tenure as president included continuing the annual Rotary Health Fair in a COVID-safe environment, resuming the annual Cranium Cup Challenge as part of Homer’s Winter Carnival Festivities and continuing peony sales in cooperation with the Alaska Beauty Peony Co-op as part of Homer’s peony celebration.

The club also gave books to Voznesenka School students, helped sponsor field trips for Nikolaevsk School students, purchased equipment for Homer High School’s art department, and contributed to the Loved and Lost Memorial Bench, as well as continued their ongoing support to many of Homer’s nonprofit organizations.

Eight members of the club also attended the annual Rotary District 5010 Conference in May in Talkeetna. Speakers there included Nick Hanson, who became the first Inuit to compete on the television show “American Ninja Warrior.” Hanson was born and raised in Unalakleet. The keynote speaker of the conference was Sylvia Whitlock, who became the first woman president of a Rotary club.

During the June 30 ceremony, Griffard passed the gavel to President-elect Kim Zook, who will lead the club through June 30, 2023. Other officers who were installed are Joanne Hansen, vice president; Owen Meyer, secretary; Laura Kelley, treasurer; and Jeffrey Eide, director. Continuing to serve on the board will be Griffard in his role as immediate past president; Beth Trowbridge, director; and Marvin Peters, director.

Those going off the board and recognized for their service were Sue Clardy, vice president; Milli Martin, secretary; Read Dunn, treasurer; Dennis Weidler, director; and Lori Evans, past president.

Looking ahead to the new Rotary year, club members once again will sell peonies from the Alaska Beauty Peony Co-op as part of Homer’s annual peony celebration. Sales began Friday, July 8, in front of the Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center. Sales will continue at 10 a.m. every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday throughout the celebration.

This year, as part of the health fair, the club plans to resume the one-day event at Homer High School that makes all kinds of wellness and health care information available to the public. The blood draws will be done in advance at the South Peninsula Hospital campus for four weeks prior to that event

The club meets at noon every Thursday at the Best Western Bidarka Inn. For more information, call Zook at 907-435-7309.

Photo provided

The Rotary Club of Homer-Kachemak Bay celebrated the accomplishments of one Rotary year and looked ahead to a new year at a social gathering July 1. Honored were Kim Zook, left, newly installed president of the club, and Bernie Griffard, immediate past president. At back is Marv Peters, a charter member of the club and one of the club’s directors.