Operation Deep Freeze, with Captain Mac McCullough, U.S. Coast Guard Gold Ancient Mariner. Captain Richard McCullough is commanding officer of the US Coast Guard cutter POLAR SEA, one of the Guard’s three icebreakers. He’ll tell the story of its record-breaking 2004-2005 deployment to the South Pole in support of Operation Deep Freeze. Bring a guest and don’t miss this program, Friday morning, 7:00AM at the Glendale Country Club!


Last chance to bring accounts into balance for this quarter. Send your check to BBRC, PO Box 3003, Bellevue WA 98009-3003; or bring the check to Friday’s meeting; or have the Cashier handle the transaction by credit card. After Friday’s meeting, the club’s leadership is hoping you’ll plan to embark for Leavenworth and participate in all the activities surrounding the 2006 BBRC Planning Retreat. Last minute inquiries can be directed to Jim Zidar or Sayoko Kuwahara.

It’s difficult to inspire others what you haven’t been willing to try yourself. – Author Unknown


Click on the names below to wish your fellow members a happy birthday or congratulate them on their BBRC anniversaries.


Rodd Kippen, 3/3
Bob Moloney, 3/5
Jeanne Thorsen, 3/6
Howard Johnson, 3/7
Greg Hendershott, 3/12
Steve Waltar, 3/15
Scott Hildebrand, 3/16
Fred Barkman, 3/23
Will Einstein, 3/27

Howard Johnson, 19 yrs
Norm Johnson, 17 yrs
Jan Nestler, 16 yrs
Lynn Gauthier, 13 yrs
Sadru Kabani, 11 yrs
Jenny Andrew, 9 yrs
Mary Bell, 9 yrs
Jane Kuechle, 9 yrs
Jeanne Thorsen, 4 yrs
LeeAnn Wood, 1 yr

City of Earth Day
Chip Erickson
BBRC Preserve Planet Earth Committee Chairman

If any of you aren't able to make it to the retreat on Saturday but are looking for something to do closer to home, please consider attending this event:

We celebrate Earth Day early to avoid the rush and because it is a better time to plant native plants.

DATE:  April 1st
TIME:  10:00 am-1:00 pm

Come out to the Sammamish River and celebrate Earth Day (and April Fool's Day!) by planting native trees and shrubs.

The planting site is just south of Leary Way on the west bank of the Sammamish River. Parking is available at the Redmond Saturday Market Lot (off Leary Way just east of the Bear Creek Parkway) and at the East Lake Washington School District Headquarters (in Redmond Town Center near the Marriot Hotel at 16250 NE 74th St.).

After parking, you will need to walk up Leary Way, cross over Bear Creek Parkway crossing over the Sammamish River, and then onto the Sammamish River Trail. There you will find us.

All participants must sign a Volunteer Agreement before working; individuals under 18 years of age must obtain their guardian’s signature.

Individuals under 16 years of age must be accompanied by an adult.

Volunteer Agreements may be obtained in advance here:  

This event is sponsored by the City of Redmond, the environmental non-profit organization Earthcorps, and Recreational Equipment International (REI). Funding is provided by your stormwater fees and from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency (NOAA) Community Involvement Grant Program.

• • •

EADS Auction

Jan NestlerPerhaps the oldest Bellevue organization that has linked up with the Bellevue Breakfast Rotary Club is Eastside Adult Day Services. Now known as Elder and Adult Day Services, Jan Nestler, the BBRC Matriarch, is the leader of that organization. EADS will be one of the recipients of the Bellevue Rotary Club Auction on May 6, 2006, at Meydenbauer Center. BRC has named EADS as the primary beneficiary for the annual Gala and Auction.

The linking of the Bellevue Rotary auction and EADS will serve as the major fundraiser for EADS for 2006. BBRC members are invited to join in by supporting EADS with auction items. Contact either Jan Nestler (425-827-3435) or Tom Miller for event tickets and donations to the auction.


John Mix


Jim Kindsvater



Vol. 18, No. 39, MARCH 27, 2006

The Friday Program:
Journey to Ethiopia

Andrews BurnettIn the best tradition of active Rotarians, the BBRC listened with rapt attention to one of its own — Jenny Andrews — for a recap of her visit to Ethiopia last fall. Jenny, along with a group of other Rotarians from many other clubs, participated in the October NID (National Immunization Day) on behalf of Rotary’s Polio Plus campaign.

Along with BBRC Rotarian Margie Burnett, Jenny told of the wonders of this beautiful country and of her first-time visit to a country that’s received a concentration of Rotary deeds over the past several years as RI helps to combat the polio virus.

Jenny is a graduate of Miami University of Ohio and with husband Tom is co-owner of Verus-Tech, Inc., serving the healthcare industry with specialized software programs.


GreetersFriday Potpourri

After greetings from President Steve, Rupert Szirmai gave the invocation and pledge. This was his last meeting, as Rupert and will return to his more familiar Steve next week.

Paul Chapman greeted a stack of visiting Rotarians: Brian Rayfield, Jim Hogue and Frank Young, all of Bellevue Rotary; Michael Dunlop, Maureen Brotherton, and Kathy Williams, all from Seattle #4; Candice from Fremont; and Dennis Wilford, Gig Harbor Rotary.

Michael McIntoshThe Golf Committee, chaired by Dick Brown, met after the regular meeting to lay plans for the annual Golf Outing on July 7.

Cary Kopczynskiing drummed up a ski outing for the retreat this Friday, and Norm Johnson reported he had room for four more golfers at the Golf Match at East Wenatchee Friday noon.

Michael McIntosh has finished his duties outlined by the Red Badge and received his nice, new Blue Badge. Congrats, Michael. It took a while, but it was worth it, eh?


Sergio Reports

Sergio, a young man who was the recipient of two Sammamish High School scholarships given by the BBRC, reported in during a break in classes at Central Washington University in Ellensburg.

Sergio has earned an accumulative 3.6 GPA and he thanked the club for “supporting my education for last two years. I will start my education courses next quarter, on the way for a degree and teaching certificate. I am grateful for you giving me money for my education. BBRC, you’re wonderful!”


Kremen Comes Aboard

KremenJim Gordon was odd man out, as Morris Kremen, Tom Smith, Greg Hendershott and Steve Lingenbrink formed a new law firm to induct Morris as Rotary’s newest member. Morris grew up in South Seattle, when to Stanford and the Harvard Law School, and now works as Associate General Counsel at Microsoft.

Gordon is Morris’ sponsor, Tom Smith chairs the Membership Committee, of which Kremen will become a member, and Greg Hendershott will be Morris’s mentor.

The President presented Kremen with the Four-Way Test card, with the admonition to “memorize it.” Steve also said to “bone up on the Objects of Rotary and pick a couple areas of servic,” where he will learn more about Rotary. The goal is to learn how to serve best in Rotary. As Steve observed, “There are so many different opportunities. Morris picked up his Red Badge, his Rotary pin and an ovation as the planet’s newest Rotarian!


Adventure to the Summit

There are those members in this club who enjoy great theater, and there was another performance by the Peanut Players Friday, led by John Martinka, who introduced a trip recently taken on a BBRC Adventure.

The five intrepid travelers included Martinka, Mary Bell, John DeWater, Chris Ballard and Steve Lingenotis. With startling visuals, the Adventure started at Lawrence the Florist. Otis Plunkmeyer (or whatever) was the tour guide. The first stop was made at Alvin Goldfarb jeweler where Mary was outfitted with a humungous ring and matching earrings. This was essential outfitting gear for the Adventure.

The Base Camp was the New Westin, where the climbers sought protection from the elements and went camping BBRC style. The Bellevue Way crevice was negotiated over Kemper’s new sky bridge, where the group stopped to get carbohydrates at the local Carbo Store.

Then came the climb up the stairwells toward the Summit, with Daniel’s Broiler the goal. The elevator was in use, so the team did not make summit. However, they were happy to preserve the beauty and splendor of climbing over Bellevue with praises for Kemper Freeman, of giving the team new heights to conquer.


Classification Talk: Steve Szirmai

Steve SzirmaiSteve Szirmai was called upon for his classification talk, and he is currently in between classifications, formerly known as “Business Consultant.”

Steve has had an interesting life. He was born in Munich, Germany, as his parents were in business overseas, so he has dual German and US passports. He was raised in Buffalo, NY, and graduated from Canisius College.

Steve began working for banks — Chase, and Shanghai Commercial Bank — as a financial controller. He asked for a posting overseas and landed a position in Hong Kong. He was then hired by a German bank and sent to Prague. His job was to oversee the establishment of a new branch of the bank. Steve was successful in Prague, so they sent him to Poland for two years in 1994. Then, Steve spent two years in Madrid, followed by a stint in Moscow (not Idaho). Finally, the German bank sent him to Houston, which then led to an assignment in Bellevue. His next-to-last stop was with Boullioun Aviation. That’s where he met Brian Evison, who introduced him to Rotary.

Steve is married to Rena and they have three kids. Today, he is Director of Worldwide Operations for Microsoft Capital Corporation, Microsoft’s captive finance subsidiary. The subsidiary has a presence in about 10 markets, and Steve’s task is to expand into the top 25 markets. To top it all off, Steve assumed the reins as BBRC Treasurer this quarter. He’s a busy guy, traveling all over the world. He’s also a fine Rotarian. Let’s hear it for Steve Szirmai (rhymes with mayonnaise).


District Conference Update

The deadline for the Rotarian discount on hotel rooms at Chateau Whistler has been extended until March 31st. After this date, rates will go up, and hotel rooms will no longer be exclusively reserved for our District Conference.

Below are links for forms and information pertaining to this year's District Conference (all PDF):

Latest District Conference Newsletter

Conference Registration Form

Registration form for bus service to and from Whistler

Information on ski discounts at Whistler Blackcomb

Sign-up form for Friday tennis matches


The Friday Program:
Journey to Ethiopia

EthiopiaIn the best tradition of active Rotarians, the BBRC listened with rapt attention to one of its own — Jenny Andrews — for a recap of her visit to Ethiopia last fall. Jenny, along with a group of other Rotarians from many other clubs, participated in the October NID (National Immunization Day) on behalf of Rotary’s Polio Plus campaign.

Along with BBRC Rotarian Margie Burnett, Jenny told of the wonders of this beautiful country and of her first-time visit to a country that’s received a concentration of Rotary deeds over the past several years as RI helps to combat the polio virus.

Jenny is a graduate of Miami University of Ohio and with husband Tom is co-owner of Verus-Tech, Inc., serving the healthcare industry with specialized software programs.

“Rotary’s goal, as we all know, is ending the scourge of polio worldwide. Rotary is Humanity in Motion and for the past 20 years has transformed lives of people throughout the world. Rotary water projects bring safe, pure drinking water to villages, the Fistula Hospital in Addis Ababa provides life-saving and life-change care for young mothers in Ethiopia, the Rotary Village for homeless women and children affected by AIDS is supported by Rotary International. These are just samples of the projects in this country.”

With “Princess” Margie Burnett, Jenny was joined by Rotarian Dennis Wilford of the Gig Harbor Club and Bill Ptacek, Bellevue Rotary. The group fanned out into the countryside to administer the polio vaccine. “Where is Ethiopia?” you ask. “It’s a land-locked country on the Horn of Africa with 73 million people, twice the size of Texas. The population is very young population with 43% 14 and under. Life expectancy is 48 years. Ethiopia is the only African country NOT colonized. It is now a democracy, a beautiful country with searing and unrelenting poverty.”

Jenny said that many people die from preventable diseases. AIDS is very prevalent. As few as 5% to as much as 20% of the population is HIV positive. The Rotary group visited an orphanage caring for children orphaned by AIDS. The Mary Joy Hospital is heavily supported by local Rotary clubs. All of the children in the orphanage have the AIDS virus and will die by their teenage years.

Polio Plus was a program began in 1985 to bring polio under control worldwide. It has resulted in a 99% reduction of polio cases. Rotary has contributed $600 million to the cause. Ethiopia was declared polio free earlier a couple of years ago, but a Sudan outbreak spilled over borders, resulting in about 20 new cases in Ethiopia. The NID campaign immunized 16 million kids in November/December 2005.

The visiting Rotary delegation met with the president of the country where 70% of the people are Coptic Christians and 30% are Muslim. The Polio Plus campaign was successful in achieving supports from the heads of the various religious denominations to support NID.

Ethiopia“Denny Wilford, from Gig Harbor, was a particular inspiration to our group. He is a new Rotarian and had a reason to support Rotary’s effort, since he had polio at 6 months of age,” Jenny observed. A trip over dusty and rough roads took the group to Ambo, a village 108 miles outside of Addis. There they picked up the containers of refrigerated vaccine and began their work at a pre-school. “Each child is vaccinated four times before they are six years old. Health officials feel this will give life-long protection from the polio virus,” Jenny said.

Also participating were members of Rotaract clubs in Addis Ababa. There are five clubs in Addis. Some of the Rotaractors had never been outside of Addis. After school, the team went door to door to homes made of sticks and cow dung, with no electricity or running water, where they cook on wood stoves. Because of their dependence on woods, deforestation is a real problem in the country. Once a children were immunized, the workers would color their thumbnails to show they had been vaccinated.

The Rotary team also visited a Cheshire Home, a place where kids affected by polio would receive surgery to correct their limbs. They have been dubbed "crawler," because that’s how they’ve got around. The surgery repairs the tendons that caused their legs to bind, thus giving them options of moving around on crutches, walkers or wheelchairs. “These are among the very poorest kids in Ethiopia. While patients at the Cheshire Home, the kids receive physical therapy after their surgery, about 6 months at the home. This is maybe the best they’ll get in their lifetime. A story of incredible care.”

Kim ShraderJenny said the team enjoyed the cheerful, happy kids immensely. “Rotary is making a difference in Ethiopia.” Jenny announced she would be going back this October. She and Margie, along with Mary Bell, are planning to collect books from now until then to distribute to a school with 1,000 students, a school that has not a single book. The primary language in Ethiopia is Amharic, but all kids know English by the second grade. “The school runs two shifts to accommodate the students ... we aim to help them with our book drive.”

Jenny AndrewsIn answer to questions, Jenny said the Cheshire Home is partially funded by Rotary. She commented that the Ethiopian workers are very organized as far as the NID is concerned. “They’ve got it figured out.” She also commented that Muslims sent up alarms about the vaccine which stopped NID in neighboring Niger. They were told that vaccine caused AIDS. After some negotiation, the Muslim leaders agreed to allow the vaccination to continue. “There’s lots of conflict in the area. What Rotary is doing is quality of life issues. What’s wonderful to see are young people recovering from polio and those receiving the vaccine. Yes, Rotary is making a difference!”

Jenny now has her own certificate showing that the BBRC has donated a book in her name to the King County Library System Ready-to-Read program. Our thanks to Kim Shrader for his introduction.



Mensa Invitational


MELANIE (age 5) asked her Granny how old she was. Granny replied she was so old she didn't remember any more. Melanie said, "If you don't remember you just look in the back of your panties. Mine say five to six."

STEVEN (age 3) hugged and kissed his Mom goodnight. "I love you so much, that when you die I'm going to bury you outside my bedroom window."

BRITTANY (age 4) had an earache and wanted a painkiller.  She tried in vain to take the lid off the bottle. Seeing her frustration, her Mom explained it was a childproof cap and she'd have to open it for her. Eyes wide with wonder, the little girl asked: "How does it know it's me?

SUSAN (age 4) was drinking juice when she got the hiccups.  "Please don't give me this juice again," she said, "It makes my teeth cough."

MARC (age 4) was engrossed in a young couple that were hugging and kissing in a restaurant. Without taking his eyes off them, he asked his dad:  "Why is he whispering in her mouth?"

CLINTON (age 5) was in his bedroom looking worried. When his Mom asked what was troubling him, he replied, "I don't know what'll happen with this bed when I get married. How will my wife fit in?"

JAMES (age 4) was listening to a Bible story. His dad read: "The man named Lot was warned to take his wife and flee out of the city but his wife looked back and was turned to salt." Concerned, James asked:  "What happened to the flea?"

The Sermon a Mom will never forget: "Dear Lord," the minister began, with arms extended toward heaven and a rapturous look on his upturned face. "Without you, we are but dust." 

He would have continued but at that moment a very obedient daughter (who was listening!) leaned over to her mother and asked quite audibl,y in her shrill little-girl voice, "Mom, what is butt dust?

• • •


For those of you who have children and don't know it, we have a nursery

Barbara remains in the hospital and needs blood donors for more transfusions. She is also having trouble sleeping and requests tapes of Pastor Jack's sermons.

At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be "What Is Hell?" Come early and listen to our choir practice.

Eight new choir robes are currently needed due to the addition of several new members and to the deterioration of some older ones.

Please place your donation in the envelope along with the deceased person you want remembered.

The church will host an evening of fine dining, super entertainment and gracious hostility.

This evening at 7 PM there will be a hymn singing in the park across
from the Church. Bring a blanket and come prepared to sin.

Ladies Bible Study will be held Thursday morning at 10 AM. All ladies are invited to lunch in the Fellowship Hall after the B. S. is done.

The pastor would appreciate it if the ladies of the congregation would lend him their electric girdles for the pancake breakfast next Sunday.

Low Self Esteem Support Group will meet Thursday at 7 PM. Please use the back door.

The eighth graders will be presenting Shakespeare's Hamlet in the Church basement Friday at 7 PM. The congregation is invited to attend this tragedy.

Weight Watchers will meet at 7 PM at the First Presbyterian Church. Please use large double door at the side entrance.