David Bolson & Robin Callan
President Martinka called the meeting to order, and David Bolson delivered the Invocation, giving personal thanks for the opportunity to distribute dictionaries to third grade students, along with Wendi Fischer and Paul Chapman. Robin Callan greeted visiting Rotarians and guests.
Notice of Election
President John Martinka
President Martinka reminded that the BBRC annual election will take place in a month.
In accordance with the by-laws, he announced the slate of new officers for the 2012-13 Rotary year: Outgoing officers include Paul Chapman, Kaj Pedersen, Jane Kuechle, Al Forney, Wendi Fischer, and Chuck Kimbrough.
Returning officers are Lee Smith, Mike Ralph, Kim Shrader, Colleen Turner, John Martinka, and President-Elect Chris Monger. New officers will be Girish Bhatia, Katherine DeStephano, Ruben Ladlad, Bob Holert, and Morris Kremen. President-Elect for 2013-14 is Scott Sadler and for 2014-15, Wendi Fischer.
Paul Chapman was otherwise occupied, so asked Girish Bhatia to do the honors of kicking off the drive to provide Thanksgiving turkeys. Girish did a splendid job by getting everyone to kick in $5 toward the cause, all the while lamenting that he was a poor choice for the job since he is India Indian (not a descendant of the Plymouth Colony neighbors) and a vegetarian!
Kim Shrader & Jeanne Thorsen
Kim Shrader again requested those BBRC members who had not contributed or pledged to do so, and Jeanne Thorsen again reminded that incentives in the form of prizes of wine and books will be raffled off on November 18. At least six prizes will be available, and each BBRCer who contributes before November 6 will be given two chances to win a prize, with all others being given one chance.
Student of the Month: Sarah Krawczak
Larry May & SOTM Sarah Krawczak
Larry May introduced Sarah Krawczak, from Eastside Preparatory School, the November Student of the Month. With Sarah were her parents, Joe Krawczak and Debbie Johnson, and her twin sister, Elizabeth. Also attending were her counselors/teachers/administrators from Eastside Prep, Matt Delaney, Kirsten Pike, and Lauren Formo.
Sarah has an impressive GPA and just as impressive a list of community activities, including three years of work at Seattle Childrens Hospital, being a student ambassador, and also a coach of a Boys and Girls Club volleyball team. She would like to attend a liberal arts college and pursue a career in international medical work.
Fellowship: Anniversary Dinner
Elena Howell & Paul Chapman
Elena Howell and Paul Chapman, resplendent in his tuxedo, made another pitch for attendance at the Second Chance Prom, otherwise known as the BBRC Anniversary Dinner, next Friday evening at the Hilton Hotel in Bellevue. REMEMBER: NO MORNING MEETING NEXT FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 11.
Given the auspicious date of 11/11/11, Paul encouraged all veterans who were still capable of fitting into their uniforms to wear them proudly. And all attendees are requested to send Michel Carter a high school picture.
Ministress of Mirth aka Sergeant at Arms
Wendi Fischer added to the treasury by providing a list of accomplishments and six BBRCers to match them to. The audience was not at all successful in connecting the dots. The proper matching is as follows:
Laura Adams Guy: visited the Hofbrau Haus in Munich at ages 18 and 25
Chuck Barnes: threw out an opening pitch at a Mariners game
Al Forney: bribed a guard and climbed one of the pyramids in Egypt
Chuck Barnes, Brad Baumann, Laura Adams Guy & Desiree Yuzawa
Brad Baumann: had three kids before the age of 27
Desiree Yuzawa: owned a quarterhorse
Mark Hough: with son, named Tichuck, a sea otter at the Seattle Aquarium
“Africa Rarely Seen,” Erica Varga, Safari Specialist, Acapella Safaris
Husky Bob Holert introduced Erica Varga of Acappella Safaris, who presented a great slideshow on safaris, mainly in Botswana. She also extolled the availability of safaris in neighboring countries of southern Africa — Namibia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe, and even in East Africa, like Kenya. Erica has a degree in Cultural Anthropology and a masters degree in Musiology, which, for you who were not present, is the study of museums.
Safari is a Swahili word meaning journey. Erica focused on the Okavango Delta at the edge of the Kalahari Desert — the “jewel of the Kalahari” and the largest delta in the world. She identified Botswana as the “life preserver of Africa” for its success in a neighborhood of African countries with many problems. Being a cultural anthropologist, Erica emphasized the significance of meeting and relating to the people of Africa who provide services in the safari industry. She identified June to October, the dry season, as the peak safari season, and November, when the rains start, as a particularly good time, since it is birthing time for many animals and, consequently, a prime time for predators. But, she noted that great trips can be had at virtually any time of the year.
President John Martinka thanks Erica for her presentation.
Erica noted the great variety of safaris available, from relatively Spartan adventure camps to luxurious camps with all the amenities, and stationary camps and mobile safaris where the camps follow the game. Travel in Africa is by bush plane and Land Rover type vehicles. She recommended one company in particular, Wilderness Safaris, for its groundbreaking work in conservation and sustainability, and providing trust funds and an education program in management and guide services.
Erica Varga talks with Rourke O'Brien and Curtis Cummings.
Erica’s company, Acappella Safaris, is able to give advice on safaris and connect with safari companies like Wilderness Safaris and can design trips for a variety of pocketbooks and interests.