Rochester Lions describe healthy diet project

By JOHN DAVENPORT Rochester Lions Club

 Rochester Lions describe healthy diet projectROCHESTER — Lions are known for their work with sight and hearing, so why are the Rochester Lions getting their hands dirty in a plot of land on Franklin Street?

Their newest project is a garden that is providing fresh vegetables to Gerry’s Food Pantry. It all started when the local club realized that diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of blindness in the United States and that a diet filled with fruit and vegetables was one way to prevent the disease. With this fact in mind, Lions adopted diabetes awareness as a long-term commitment. They knew that the cause of diabetes continues to be a mystery but diet and a lack of exercise, appear to be correlated to its diagnosis. The garden project became a way to get high fiber fresh food to people who may lack them because of cost.

The project started in the spring when Sharon Davenport contacted the Rochester School Department and asked for permission to raise vegetables on a plot of school land on Franklin Street. With the School Department’s permission Lions started preparing a 30′ by 30′ plot in April. Members started plants in their homes. Plant donations were made by Martha Whitehouse at the Richard W. Creteau Regional Technology Center. By May, they were ready to plant. Into the ground went 40 tomato plants, zucchini, summer squash, sweet corn, butternut and acorn squash, and potatoes. Soon the effects of sun and rain could be seen from the street as plants grew and bobbed in the breeze.

Asked about the project, Davenport said, “Approximately two percent of all people who have had diabetes for 15 years become blind, while about 10 percent develop a severe visual impairment. Lions are committed to changing those figures.”

Ralph Brock, who has been a Lion in Rochester for over 50 years, said, “It’s a fun evening to get together with club members and get a little dirt under your nails.”

Jim Brock, treasurer, pointed out that in this economy there are people without insurance who need glasses. He hopes that the Lion project will lower the need for glasses in the long run, and that in the short term people in Rochester will help the Lions by joining and supporting the club. Anyone wishing to join can come to a meeting on the first Wednesday of the month at the Rochester Library in the meeting room on the top floor. They can also call 332-5627 for more information.

Now that a frost is just around the corner, the Lions Club is about to harvest the last fruits of their project. The summer squashes are all picked and some of the tomatoes still have a few green fruits. The pumpkins and winter squash are ready. The Lions Club is about to show that a diet to fight diabetes is one that’s naturally rich in nutrients and low in fat and calories. In fact, it’s the best eating plan for everyone.

Lions Club Helped Restaurant Become First in state with large print menus

By Diana Baird / Messenger Index

LaCosta Restaurant was the first restaurant in the state of Idaho to get the new large print menus for the blind.During an orientation at the Idaho Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired some teens discussed how much they hated going to restaurants and having to ask their friends to read the menus for them. These comments sparked a statewide campaign to have large print/high contrast menus as well as braille menus placed in all Idaho restaurants.

The ICBVI has teamed with the Idaho Lodging and Restaurant Association, Idaho Lions Clubs, Lt. Gov. Brad Little’s office, the SW Idaho Chapter of the National Federation for the Blind and the Idaho Council of the Blind to make it easy for restaurants to comply with this request.

Idaho restaurant owners are asked to join in this effort by having large print menus available in their restaurants. There would be no cost and really no effort other than getting a copy of menu to the ICBVI. If the business is a customer of FSA or Sysco, they will print one or two menus for free the next time new menus are requested. For others, simply get a menu to a local Lions Club member or directly to the ICBVI and it will be turned into large print and returned. The participating restaurant will also receive a sticker like the one below to let prospective customers know that the business is taking part in this program. Again there will be no cost, with the ICBVI doing all the printing and teaming with the Idaho Lodging and Restaurant Association in paying for the stickers. In addition the business will be listed on the ICBVI website, as well as the ILRA website and newsletter.

For more information, e-mail the Idaho Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired at Menus can also be mailed to the ICBVI at 341 W. Washington, Boise, ID. 83720, or given to any Lions club member. This program will not only help the visually impaired across the state of Idaho, but also has the potential to increase business.

Karingal Lions Club helps families of disabled kids take break


Karingal Lions Club helps families of disabled kids take breakCHILDREN with intellectual disabilities will be able to enjoy a holiday with their families, thanks to support provided by the Karingal Lions Club.

The club has reserved the Lions Wilderness Village at Licola for the end of this month to give families a much needed holiday.

During the weekend, children will be able to enjoy activities such as rock climbing, archery and canoeing.

Lions club member Marianne Meehan said it was a great opportunity for families to spend some quality time together.

“It is very difficult for families with intellectually disabled children to get out and participate in activities,” she said.

“This is a bit of support and allows parents and siblings to spend some quality time together.”

Dunkley federal MP Bruce Billson is urging local businesses and community organisations to get behind the initiative and help fund the weekend.

“The Lions Club of Karingal have led the way in devising this camp experience for local families with special-needs kids who keep giving day in day out and deserve a family weekend retreat,” he said. “Fund-raising efforts continue with bookshop sales, trivia nights and auctions, but I hope some big-hearted local businesses and community organisations can not only count their blessings but also contribute to raising the money needed to fund this year’s retreat and to make it an annual event.”

Antigua Lions Host District Governor

Antigua Lions Caribarena news Antigua News

The Antigua Lions Club recently welcomed Lion Lloyd Barker, MJF, District Governor of 60B. Lion Barker, according to a release, was making his official visit to the Lions and Leo clubs to conduct audits and discuss his goals for the District during his tenure.He also paid a courtesy call on Governor General Dame Louise Lake-Tack last week. Lion Barker, whose home club is Barbados East, will leave on Tuesday to continue his duties in St Maarten.

District 60B is comprised of 61 Lions clubs and 40 Leo clubs stretching from the Cayman Islands in the north to Grenada in the south.

The Lions Club of Antigua was chartered in 1968, and meets on the first and third Tuesday of every month at the Lions Den.

Virginia’s Oldest Lions Club marks 90th year

By Sandy Wells

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Ninety years ago, on a hot afternoon in late September, a spectacle in downtown Charleston brought the city to a virtual standstill.

A behemoth seaplane, the first ever to visit Charleston, rose smoothly from the wharf at the end of Capitol Street and roared over the city — a demonstration to promote a proposed commercial seaplane line from New Orleans to St. Louis.

Spectators jammed the South Side Bridge, craning their necks. On city sidewalks, pedestrians stopped to gawk at the sky. In buildings all across town, people leaned from open windows, peering for a better look.

That same day, something else took place downtown, something of far more lasting significance.

In a dining room at the nearby Ruffner Hotel, buffeted from all the commotion, a group of civic leaders gathered for the first meeting of the Charleston Lions Club.

Nine decades later, few recall the mighty seaplane’s visit; the commercial line never got off the ground. But the stalwart Charleston Lions Club remains a community icon to this day.

At 6 p.m. on Sept 29, the oldest Lions Club in West Virginia, joined by members from other district clubs, will gather at the Summit to celebrate the Charleston organization’s 90th anniversary. Robert Browning of the Pineville Lions Club, a former international director, will be the featured speaker.

The year the local club formed, America was re-energizing after World War I. Warren Harding was president, Adolf Hitler became chairman of the Nazi party, Atlantic City hosted the first Miss America Pageant and Coco Chanel introduced Chanel No. 5.

In West Virginia, repercussions from the mine wars dominated newspaper headlines along with Ku Klux Klan violence in the south and problems with Prohibition.

In Charleston, a special commission wrestled with plans to replace the state Capitol, after fire destroyed the Capitol Street edifice in January.

On the day of the first Lions Club meeting, the Gazette ran an editorial decrying the manipulation of crude oil prices. Sports pages reported that Babe Ruth was suffering from grippe.

The Strand Theater offered Cecil B. DeMille’s “Affairs of Anatol” with an all-star cast that included Gloria Swanson. Honeydew melons sold for a dime at the Piggly Wiggly.



From the beginning

“Lions International was only four years old when we started our club,” said 86-year-old Jason Conley, a former president and district governor. “The international was formed in 1917 in Chicago.”

During the first Lions Club session at the Ruffner, the Rev. B.P. Taylor, pastor of the First Methodist Church, explained the meaning of the lion’s head symbol and reviewed the code of ethics.

“The lion has been from time immemorial the symbol of strength, greatness and unrivaled courage,” he said.

Taylor described Lionism as “the greatest degree of strength and courage, the highest and best that is.” It is accepted, he said, that the “lionized” man must accomplish something remarkable for the betterment of humanity.”

Over the years, the Lions Club’s “betterment for humanity” credo has centered primarily on the preservation and restoration of sight. Through the Sight Foundation, Lions provide eyeglasses and eye operations for people who can’t afford them. They also sponsor eye exams, screening clinics and an eye bank.

At a Lions convention in 1925, Helen Keller dubbed the organization “Knights for the Blind,” citing the many contributions to eyeglasses, cornea transplants and other sight-related projects.

“The main thrust is service to the community,” said current president Darius Sigmon, “and the Sight Foundation is still our primary focus.”

Other programs are aimed at combating drug abuse and diabetes, helping the deaf, disabled and elderly and providing college and summer camp tuitions for those in need.

To fill the fund-raising coffers, members have sold brooms, light bulbs, license plates, perfume and Blenko bowls. They also raise money through community events.

In 1929, the Lions Club sponsored the first “Water Regatta” on Labor Day. (A speaker from Western Electric predicted that some in the audience would live to see television perfected.)

For years, the Lions Club sponsored the North-South football game.

In 1960, the group introduced the first West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference basketball tournament. City manger Hugh Bosely, a Lions member, helped get the ongoing benefit off the ground.

During Jason Conley’s presidency in 1972, the tournament enjoyed a record turnout. “The game was in the old arena at the Civic Center,” he said. “Morris Harvey was playing West Virginia State in the final game. The place was teeming.

“The fire department came and threatened to shut us down because there were people standing in the aisles. They broke the back doors trying to get in, and we had to pay to get them fixed.”

In 1981, the club’s 60th year, Charleston Lions made a $12,500 pledge to struggling Sunrise that included a $10,000 challenge gift. In an editorial, The Charleston Gazette praised the organization for its altruism and chastised the Charleston Rotary for not contributing more to the community.

“At one end of the spectrum is Charleston’s Rotary Club, one of the community’s oldest service clubs and surely its most prestigious,” the editorial noted. “The membership includes the community’s most influential and wealthiest citizens. The club, however, does next to nothing in the way of good works…”

Referring to the Lions Club as “the valley’s busiest luncheon club,” the editorial observed that Charleston Lions are into everything. “When members tackle a task, they do so with gusto and are determined to succeed. A good example is the state college basketball tournament.”

Under Conley’s leadership in 1972, the club purchased the first ambulance chassis for Charleston’s Emergency Medical Service.

A Lions member for 62 years, Conley, a retired insurance agent, joined the North Charleston club in 1949 and transferred to Charleston in 1961 when the North Charleston group disbanded.

Recalling his stints as a light bulb salesman, Conley said the bulbs always sold faster in working class neighborhoods than South Hills.

“I had Washington Street to Piedmont Road and had the best sales of anybody. People would say, ‘Oh, the Lions Club. They help poor people with sight problems, don’t they?’ And they’d buy the bulbs.”

During the state’s 100th anniversary in 1963, special commemorative centennial license plates sold quickly, he said. “We made $1 apiece on each one, and we sold 20,000. We donated $20,000 to the Sight Foundation.”

In 1957 and 1958, the local club enjoyed worldwide prominence when Charleston businessman Dudley Simms served as international president.

John Hutchinson, a future Charleston mayor and congressman, lead the Charleston Lions in 1965 and 1966. His wife, Berry, held the presidency in 1977 and 1978.

Lions International has 1.4 million members in 190 countries.

In 1977, John Charnock, a former club president, wrote a kind of mission statement about the significance of the Lions emblem:

“…In our now turbulent times where strife and violence seem to be the keynote, Lionism has proved that everywhere men can be found who forget all thought of personal reward when they can do some little thing to make life better and happier for others.”

Lions project to aid city park


After receiving word that the new president of Lions Clubs International had established a goal of planting 1 million trees worldwide within one year and that District Lion officials were encouraging local Lions to participate, Urbana Lions contacted the city’s Shade Tree Commission, which is intent on replacing ash trees that have been and will be removed due to the Emerald Ash Borer’ destruction.

“So far, worldwide, 302,000 trees have been planted,” Urbana Lions President Barb Keller said. The goal of International President Wing-Kun Tam of China is off to a good start, considering his one-year time line started in July.

To do their part, Urbana Lions talked to Doug Crabill, member of the Shade Tree Commission and assistant to the city director and learned that about 45 ash trees need to be removed from Melvin Miller Park. Planting replacement trees at the park seemed a worthy goal.

A challenge first went out to Urbana Lions. When a member purchases a tree at a cost of $75, the club will donate funds for another tree. Keller said the club will be able to match members’ donations for trees until club donations reach $800. She said that should buy about 10 trees.

Keller said that while the club only will be able to match club members’ donations, she and her fellow Lions hope Urbana residents, businesses and service clubs join the effort and send $75 donations to the club for more trees. Those donations will be turned over to the city, which will purchase trees this year and plant them this year and next spring.

Crabill said the estimated 45 ash trees to be removed and replaced at the park are in the frequently used areas.

He said there are more ash trees in the park’s upland woods that are not scheduled for removal at this time.

He said if the project goes extremely well and more than 45 trees can be purchased, they all will be planted in the park. “There’s plenty of land out there for them,” he said.

Asked whether the city will purchase any particular kind of tree, Crabill said a diverse selection is important.

“We’re always trying to increase the diversity of trees,” he said. “Some cities lost whole streets of trees because they only planted ash. You need diversity in case something else happens.”

Rights of way

Urbana’s rights of way along city streets will lose about 110 ash trees, and the city will be able to replace 75-100 of these trees thanks to a $10,500 Ash Removal-Canopy Restoration grant from the Ohio Division of Natural Resources. The city is financially responsible for the removal part of the project and is advertising for bids for that work. The grant will pay for replacement trees.

Crabill said he expects trees in the rights of way to be removed in October and replacements to be planted in October and November.

Want to buy a tree?

Knowing many people are familiar with Lions’ interest in helping people who are visually impaired, Keller said Lions also have been involved in environmental projects for several decades.

“That’s why we are doing our part to reach the goal of 1 million trees throughout the world,” she said. Other club projects have included providing eye exams and glasses for people, providing annual school scholarships, collecting and recycling used eye glasses and sponsoring eyeglass education for elementary students.

Lions need support to serve more

The Carmel Lions Club (Indiana) celebrated 75 years of service this spring with Lions from throughout Indiana and many friends of the Lions.

We are very proud of our service to Carmel over the past 75 years. We are extremely excited about what we will accomplish over the next 75 years. We are a growing and dynamic club.

With nearly 100 members, our service to Carmel, the state of Indiana and the world community continues to grow. We need the continued assistance of the Carmel community to sustain our growth.

First, please patronize our many great community events. We have two exciting upcoming events: The IU Health North Hospital Pumpkin Patch 5K, presented by the Carmel Lions Club, will be Saturday, Oct. 8, and our Fall Pancake Breakfast will be Saturday, Oct. 22.

We just concluded our 73rd annual fish fry, which is the longest-running community event in Carmel. Other events include our strawberry festival during the CarmelFest parade, breakfast brat sales at the Carmel Farmers Market, spring rummage sale and holiday fruit sale.

Second, please consider joining the Carmel Lions. The more members we have, the more people we can help. We provide meaningful service opportunities to those with busy family and professional schedules.

All our events, including meetings, are family-friendly.

Meetings are the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. at our clubhouse at 141 East Main St. in the Arts and Design District. We have no mandatory attendance requirements.

The Lions’ motto is, “We Serve.”

We provide eye exams and glasses to those in need in Carmel. We are parade marshalls for the CarmelFest Parade. We assist in providing leader dogs to the visually impaired at no cost. We provide meeting space for senior citizens, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and 4-H.

When disaster strikes Indiana, Haiti or Japan, Lions are there with immediate assistance. We collect and sort used eyeglasses (these eyeglasses are provided to the needy in Third World countries at no charge).

We support Meals on Wheels, Children’s Wish Fund and the Carmel Clay Historical Society, among many others.

India Lions Club distributes sewing machines

PATNA: Lions Clubs International, under its self-employment scheme, distributed 100 sewing machines at a function held here on Tuesday. The machines were distributed by international director, Lions Club International, Narendra Bhandari, and Ranjana Bhandari.

As many as 100 poor women from rural areas, who were trained by the SBI and the PNB training wings, but could not afford to purchase their own machines, were given machines.

Narendra appreciated the efforts of the club`s district governor. Madhusudan Kumar of the club said more such schemes would be launched in the future for helping the poor and downtrodden.

Meanwhile, the Lions Club of Patna Favourite donated tables and chairs at Balchandra, a school for the underprivileged children on Notre Dame Academy premises. Academy principal Sister Mary Tesse and prominent members of this club were present on the occasion.

Lion Burger satisfies countless stomachs, club’s fundraising needs

CHILLICOTHE — During fair week, the Chillicothe Evening Lions Club hangs its hat on a sandwich so popular it’s become an attraction unto itself.

The Lion Burger — a half-pound double cheeseburger stacked high with sauce, pickles, lettuce, onion and tomato — is reason enough for some fairgoers to step foot onto the grounds. For the Lions Club, the burger represents a chargrilled boon to its fundraising efforts.

All of the proceeds from the Lions booth go to help support 17 local and international charities, several of which are tied to the club’s philanthropic focus — sight conservation.

The Lions collect used eyeglasses at the fair as part of a year-round campaign that brings in an average of 3,000 to 4,000 pairs annually. They’re cleaned at the Ohio State University and then distributed in Central and South America. The club estimates it has collected more than 100,000 pairs and raised more than $1 million during the course of its 87-year history.

The Chillicothe Evening Lions Club was chartered in 1924. Club members first served food at the fair in 1946, and a permanent booth was built two years later.

The club has 82 members and devotes more than 900 man-hours to its booth during the fair.

“We sell an awful lot of (Lion Burgers) and I do the cooking in the evenings, so I can attest to that,” club President Emmitt Hempstead said.

Hempstead said the booth cooks about 100 pounds of beef each day, which would amount to 200 Lion Burgers. But the menu is more than one sandwich, no matter how popular that one sandwich might be. Members also offer regular hamburgers and cheeseburgers, hot dogs, eggs for breakfast and various other items.

Mike Hathaway, a club member, conceded the Lion Burger has some similarities to a certain famous double-decker burger served by a popular fast food chain.

“We had the idea first,” Hathaway said, before backpedaling a bit. “OK, I can’t say that for sure.”

Those who pass by the Lions booth cannot only smell the Lion Burger being grilled, they can hear it being sold. Every time a customer buys one, the Lions ring a bell.

In something of an ironic twist, as much as Hempstead touts the burger, he’s never actually eaten one. He has a sensitivity to gluten, so he can’t eat the bun.

Wymondham Lions spread word about Message in a Bottle

Wymondham Lions spread word about Message in a BottleWymondham Lions Club has joined forces with Norfolk Police to spread the word about a campaign which could save the lives of people with medical conditions.

The Message in a Bottle initiative involves people writing down details of any illnesses, drug prescriptions and allergies on a piece of paper within a small bottle which is placed in their kitchen fridge.

If they become seriously ill at home and the emergency services are called, all the paramedic, fire fighter or policeman needs to do is open the container to find an instant medical history of the victim which could lead to quicker and more effective treatment. The bottle also comes with special stickers, which are stuck to the inside of a person’s front door and on the door of their fridge, to alert members of the emergency services to its presence.

Wymondham Lions have donated 210 bottles for the scheme, which are free to collect from police stations in Bethel Street, Norwich, Great Yarmouth, Wymondham, North Walsham, Thetford and King’s Lynn.

PC Gail Kevern, force crime prevention officer, said: “The message in a bottle scheme gives the emergency services a single reference point for essential information within a household. Storing vital medical details in special bottles can help save lives.”

Jim Cawte, vice-governor of Lions Clubs East Anglia and member of Wymondham Lions Club, added: “It’s an absolutely wonderful idea. We know of many incidents where it has proved to be very effective.”