Friday Feb 9, 2018

Andy Symons

Attorney Inslee Best

“Joke Olympics”

Introduced by: Kit Bowerman

The 2018 Winter Olympics start Friday, February 9 and thus having the “Joke Olympics” is great timing! This is an event where all attending members to our BBRC meeting Friday have a chance to participate, so polish up your best jokes and bring them!

 The original idea for this originated after watching the figure skating competition at the Winter Olympics several years ago.  It was interesting to see how judges would hold up the scores after each skater finished, each judge giving his or her assessment of the performance.  These are of course wholly subjective, and the viewer had little basis to know how the score was reached.  So, the thought is, why not use this same system to score jokes.  This is something where the audience does have a basis to do its own evaluation.  We all have a pretty good idea what is funny and what is not, far more so that how to assess a “Double Salchow” (however it is spelled) or a “Triple Flip,” a “Double Lutz,” or a “Triple Bypass,” or whatever. 

Humor is everywhere.  Judges, bankers, doctors, teachers, and most of the rest of us are regularly given stories in the form of excuses, explanations, “alternative facts,” and rationalizations that require us to put our funny bones in “airplane mode” lest we break out laughing when given these.  There are starving comedians paying good money to writers for lines not half as hilarious as things people say with a straight face.

Here is a chance for everyone to participate!

Club Announcements

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Student of the Month

Student of the Month for February

By Kaj Pedersen

Eliza Marie Escarez from Sammamish HS

Congratulations to Eliza Marie Escarez from Sammamish High School for being selected as our Student of the Month for February. Our Rotary members were thrilled to learn about Eliza’s desire to pursue a career in software engineering and her involvement in robotics.

Eliza Marie Escarez from Sammamish HS
RI Foundation (EREY)

Congratulations on Achieving EREY in Foundation Giving

By Kaj Pedersen

BBRC Members celebrating their EREY achievement

Congratulations to BBRC Rotary members for achieving EREY in donation to the Rotary Foundation. A huge win for our club and the RI Foundation, as we help to make an impact both locally and internationally in Service above Self.

2017-18 Paul Harris Fellows Banner

We also took the opportunity to recognize many of our members for their continued commitment as Paul Harris Fellows – our thanks to each of you of your contributions. We took the opportunity to unfurl our new Paul Harris Fellows banner to celebrate all award recipients.

We are on track to have increased our giving by 8% over last year and this represents an increase of 10% per member in individual contributions. We are on track to deliver $33K to the RI Foundation. Well done to everyone in helping us to reach EREY for this Rotary year.

Fundraising: Bellevue 10K Run/Walk

Rallying our Members for the All in for Autism Event

By Kaj Pedersen

Chris Boland calls out to members for their support in our fund raiser

Chris Boland – this years All in for Autism 5K/10K Family Walk/Race Director gave the Rotary members an update on the club’s fund raiser. He put out a call for volunteers and promotion for the event from members.  We want every member to reach out to their networks to help us secure runners, sponsors and volunteers.

Without this event, we cannot do the amazing work that we do with our local community thanks to the funds we raise from our All in for Autism event.  Click on the yellow button to learn more.

Club Admin: Program Committee

BBRC Hosts Joke Olympics!

By Kaj Pedersen

Joke Olympics at BBRC

Joke Olympics – thanks to Andy Symons for inspiring our members to stand up and deliver jokes to the club. Each comedian was judged by a panel that included President, Kaj Pedersen, Martin Clavijo and Caitlyn Devaney. 

All the participants did a great job of telling jokes that fell within the boundaries of good taste, although slight risque as we would expect for the BBRC.  After judging some ten members, our panel decided on Margie Burnett and Steve Goldfarb as joint winners. What fun!

Fundraising: Bellevue 10K Run/Walk

I'd walk a mile for a ....

By Ann Norman

Major Fun April 29, 2018

Anyone should be able to walk a mile.  Anyone should be able to walk 3 miles.  In the spirit of getting fit, i encourage you to get out and walk.  and while you are at it, we invite you and your friends to sign up for our All in for Autism 5K Walk/Run, 10K Run and Kids Dash on Sunday April 29, 2018.  See you there!

Int’l Svc: World Community Svc Comm.

CIREC project in Colombia (Phase One)

By Kaj Pedersen

Martin Clavijo introduces Dr. Kent Questad to talk about CERIC

BBRC members learned about the CIREC project that is based in Columbia.  We will be donating a total of $5,000 to the project as it rolls out.

In Phase One, BBRC contributed with $1,000 and through leveraging mechanisms, the total amount of this project was $8,000, benefiting thousands of people, most of them victims of personal mines.

This project mapped squarely to our Rotary peace area of focus and was led by the Lake Forest RC in partnership with RC Santa-Fe in Colombia and us.

Another excellent example of how Rotarians coming together can make an impact in the cause of Peace.

Club Admin: Program Committee

Anne Frank Exhibit @ The Holocaust For Humanity Center

By Adam Mihlstin

Anne Frank on the cover of Life Magazine

Just a FYI . . . The Holocaust Center for Humanity will be featuring an exhibit – LET ME BE MYSELF: THE LIFE STORY OF ANNE FRANK.  (March – May 2018).  See Link for details.  This exhibit is world renowned and is making limited stops in the United States.

Dee Simon, Executive Director of the Center was our guest speaker on January 26th.

Membership: New Member Committee

BBRC Welcomes its Newest Member - John Hall

By Kaj Pedersen

President, Kaj Pedersen and Membership Director, Tim Leahy, welcome the Halls to the BBRC

Please welcome John Hall, who has been a prior member of Rotary, for five years in Palm Springs, before stepping away to focus on his business.  We are thrilled to see John back in Rotary and looking to become active with us in Bellevue.   While  in Palm Springs, John was actively involved in the Palm Springs American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) and served in many leadership roles including Commissioner, Fund-Raising Director, Coach and International Exchange Director. In his spare time he also volunteered with Guide Dogs of the Desert!

We look forward to John’s engagement with our club, where we will welcome his energy and passion for our initiatives. We particularly like John’s enthusiasm for getting his hands dirty by doing work that will help advance our mission in the community.

Club Admin: Program Committee

Holocaust Remembrance Day - 2018

By Adam Mihlstin

Dee Simon and Adam Mihlstin – reminding us of the terrible cost of the Holocaust on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day

BBRC was very honored to have Dee Simon, Arik Cohen and Ingrid Steppic from the Holocaust Center for Humanity with us today.  The program was organized in advance of Holocaust Remembrance Day – Saturday, January 27th.

Dee is the Executive Director and spoke about the Center’s mission to inspire students of all ages to confront bigotry and indifference, promote human dignity and take action.  The Center provides educational materials, curriculum and interaction with Holocaust survivors – who tell their stories to 20,000 students annually.  The Center provides teaching trucks (loaded with books, artifacts, videos and other resource materials) that are provided free to schools throughout the Pacific NW and Alaska.

Ingrid Kanis Steppic was a child in Holland during the Holocaust. Ingrid’s parents, Jan and Nel Kanis and their family hid Jews from the Nazis and were instrumental in disrupting the Nazis’ plans throughout Holland.  In 1971, Ingrid’s parents were recognized by Yad Vashem (The World Holocaust Remembrance Center) as “The Righteous”.  {link to Kanis Family Story}

Ingrid Kanis Steppic was a child in Holland during the Holocaust.

The Righteous, honored by Yad Vashem, are non-Jews who took great risks to save Jews during the Holocaust. Rescue took many forms and the Righteous came from many different nations, religions and walks of life. What they had in common was that they protected their Jewish neighbors at a time when hostility and indifference prevailed.  The Righteous and their family members could have been killed for sheltering Jews.

In a world of total moral collapse there was a small minority who mustered extraordinary courage to uphold human values. These were – “The Righteous”. They stand in stark contrast to the mainstream of indifference and hostility that prevailed during the Holocaust. Contrary to the general trend, these rescuers regarded the Jews as fellow human beings.

“It’s a wonder I haven’t abandoned all my ideals, they seem so absurd and impractical. Yet I cling to them because I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart.” — Anne Frank


Community Svc: Service Projects Committee

Got Fruits & Veggies? . . . . Rotary First Harvest

By Adam Mihlstin

David Bobanick receives BBRC’s donation from Adam Mihlstin

This past Friday BBRC donated $6,751 to Rotary First Harvest in honor of Michel Carter’s many contributions.  David Bobanick was our guest speaker this past Friday and received the donation.

David’s presentation highlighted some of the numbers associated with RFH.  Most impressive is the 200,000,000 pounds of healthy fruits and vegetables distributed to food banks since 1982.  This accomplishment is even more impressive as nearly half the food grown in the US goes to waste.  David’s presentation also included a short slide show highlighting Michel.  {Link to Slide Show}

David also presented the Golden Donut Award to BBRC.  The Golden Donut Award recognizes that (per capita) BBRC clocked the most work-party volunteer hours for 2017.

The donation to RFH was a direct result of BBRC members donating to the 2017 annual Turkey Drive which enabled the Community Service Committee to purchase 60 frozen turkeys.  The turkeys were delivered to Hopelink, Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank and the Snoqualmie Valley Food Bank.  We had a surplus of funds and the amount above is what was donated to RFH.

Specific to our Turkey Drive fund raising efforts, a few members stepped-up and generously donated above our expectations. They included, Steven Goldfarb, Matt DiJulio, Alan Bohling, Tom Leonidas and Morris Kremen.  Thank you, gentlemen!  Your support is greatly appreciated.