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2008 January February March
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2009 January February March
April May June
September October November
December
2010 January February March
April May June
September October November
December
2011 January February March
April May September
October November December


May 2010

My Fellow Lions,

What is that I am seeing in my front yard? Could it be that spring is here? Is that really green grass I see? Are the flowers starting to come up? Do I have to get the lawn mower ready? Is our Lions Club still hard at work?

The answer to all the above questions is YES!!! Especially the question pertaining to our club. Even though the Lions year is winding down, we are still hard at work with our Nursing Scholarship Program and our Annual Golf Outing.

Lion Fred reports that we are ahead of last years' signup so far. He reports we have 26 golfers signed up and paid for. Let's hope the enthusiasm doesn't wane and we can have another spectacular outing. we are still looking for gifts and sponsors and more golfers. Letters have been sent out to banks and businesses in town and we have gotten some response from them. If everyone could bring in one sponsor and one gift from a business it would be a big help. We will be needing help so anyone that can assist at the outing, please contact Lion Fred or Lion John.

Lion Ed is hard at work with our nursing scholarship program and will be in further contact with our schools to get applicants. It is hard to understand why we cannot get more students interested in nursing or even the ones that are interested - why don't they apply for the scholarship? Lion Mike will be presenting the scholarship at the high school.

Lion Mike is hard at work with his public relations programs. He has been in contact with the local TV station and papers advertizing our golf outing and keeping them abreast of what is happening within our club.

My thanks to Lion Mike for running the first meeting in April while I was away on business. I will be traveling again next month but hope to make our scheduled meeting.

A reminder to all members. We will be having one meeting in May and one meeting in June. The dates are 12 May and 16 June. The June meeting will be the last for the Lion's year and will also be installation night. We will be inviting our graduating nursing scholarship student and this years' new scholarship winner along with their families. Set aside the dates and help make it a festive evening.

Speaking of festive evenings, this past Sunday was the District Charity Ball. It was attended by 12 members and family from our club. I am proud to report that we had the largest turnout of any club in our District. Lion Governor Jim expressed his gratitude to our club for our support. Everyone who attended had a great time and it was good to see some old faces again. You can view photos of the event, courtesy of Kash at his Picasa site:

http://picasaweb.google.com/102391778829062401217/CharityBall16E2010AtEBChateau?authkey=Gv1sRgCMPzutyB15SvPw

Keep 26 May in mind for our Golf Classic.

We have been missing some familiar faces at our meetings and we hope all is well with them. Hope to see you all at our next meeting.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


April 2010

My Fellow Lions,

This year has been filled with many rewards and many new challenges. We have seen old projects flourish because of our dedication, we have seen new ideas merge with new members and old projects set aside because of current situations and new directions. What has not changed is our strength as a club to move forward and continue the ideals that were set down before us and to continue with the traditions this club has always followed.

When I look at what we do as a small club I am filled with pride that almost 40 years ago someone asked me to become a member of the East Brunswick Lions Club. I have made so many close friends I could not begin to count them all. During this time I have also lost some old friends that have guided me in many ways. I hope that every member of this club can look at themselves and say the same. I never would have imagined that my life could be so filled with good memories.

We have had a few months of shortened meeting dates because of weather conditions so it was rewarding to see so many members at our last meeting. It was great seeing Lion Bill up and around after his hospital stay. Welcome back Bill, you were missed. As always it is great having Lion Fred back to old form. You just cant keep a good Lion down.

Our best wishes to Eds wife Santina after her double knee replacement surgery. Lion Ed has told me her rehab is going well and soon she will be able to resume her lawn cutting and house painting activities.

At our last meeting we discussed our regular committee business starting with the upcoming Golf Outing. We are looking for sponsors, golfers, and prizes along with volunteers.

Next we discussed our participation at the Brunswick Square Malls Community Day. Lion Mike reported we had a good day with the members that showed up to help. It would be great if we could get more help next year. A few contacts were made and invitations to attend one of our meetings were offered to prospective members. When they do attend a meeting lets make them feel welcome.

Lion Ed spoke about the Nursing Scholarship program with the schools. Lion Ed has supplied the school with all the information that is needed for a student to apply for the scholarship. Hopefully we will have several applicants this year.

Lion John reported about his conversation with the school nurse at Churchill school regarding eye exams for students. Lion John contacted Pearl Vision who will work with the nurse to provide the needed exams. Thanks, John this is what we are all about, helping those less fortunate.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


March 2010

My Fellow Lions,

News Flash - Next year the East Brunswick Lions will be selling snow shovels as a fund raiser. Not really, just a little humor to ward off the snow.

This month, like last month, we only had one meeting due to inclement weather. But it was a good meeting. We were missing some faces but we had enough members present to conduct our business.

I hope everyone is well and there are no sore muscles or back pain due to snow shoveling. As the old saying goes, "Beware the Ides of March." So hang in there for one more month and we should start to see some nice weather.

There are some topics that need to be brought to the attention of all the members. The first is the 16D Charity Ball coming up in April. The 16D committee had asked to use our license for the raffle to be held at the event. We had voted to let them use our license as long as the club was fully protected for tax purposes and we would have had the responsibility to oversee this raffle. Since our last meeting in January the charity ball committee has dropped the raffle so they will not be using our license for this event. But please note that all members and their guest are invited to attend this function as a club and in so doing the club will pick up the cost for member and guest. Every year the club budgets to purchase two tickets for the President to attend. It has been many, many years since we have attended and the monies always went back to the treasury. So it was voted upon that the club would pick up the cost for this year's affair. Further information will be given as we receive notice from 16D.

The new slate of officers had its first reading this past meeting. Discussion was held upon reducing the number of Vice Presidents back to one. It was voted upon and approved so we now will have only one Vice President.

The slate of officers will be:

  • President - Michael Barnett
  • Vice President - Kashmiri Delory
  • Secretary - Edward Spinella
  • Treasurer - John Ryan
  • Lion Tamer - James Clark
  • Tail Twister - Alfred Tomchuk
  • Immediate Past President - Howard Adams

Under new business Lion Fred brought up the Big Breakfast we hold every year. Lion Fred mentioned that this year our profit was less because of fewer slots being sold and that thirty were purchased by three people. Most of the purchases were kept by the individuals responsible for selling them or given away. This has become a burden for some individuals every year and since we have been having very successful White Cane Days it was brought up as a motion to drop the Big Breakfast. After much discussion it was voted on and approved. After the vote was taken Lion Fred was thanked for running this fund raiser for the past 100 years. Seriously this fund raising event started out in the 1965-1966 Lions year and has run uninterrupted since then. As always, a great job Lion Fred.

Now we have to continue to make the White Cane Day a success. In order to do this we need the help of every member. All that will be asked is to donate two hours on a weekend to help out. If we get everyone to do their part we can make this the success it has been the past few years.

On March 7 we will be at the Brunswick Square Mall for Community Day. Lion Mike and Lion Ed have made all the arrangements and it will start at 11 AM. Lions Mike and Ed will have everything set up so all we need are volunteers to help staff the booth. Please call either Lion Mike or Lion Ed if you can help out.

Hopefully we will be back to our two meetings per month schedule in March and as always I hope to see you all at the meetings.

One special note. If you have not sent in your dues please do so ASAP. Send your check to the club address or directly to Lion John Ryan.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


February 2010

My Fellow Lions,

With the recipt of this letter we will be closing the first month of 2010. The holidays are over, the decorations are down, the gifts have been returned or exchanged and we can relax - OR CAN WE?

No - we are now putting together our calendar for 2010 and the projects we have upcoming. In case you have missed the past few meetings we have been working with the District to sponsor the raffle drawing for the Charity Ball. What this means is that the District will be using our registration with the NJ Games and Lottery Commission for the raffle to be held at the Charity Ball. This involves a lot of work and coordination between our club and the District to make sure we do everything correctly. Lions John Ryan, Tony Beatrice, and I will be working closely with the District in the coming months.

We have also discussed the participation of club members in attending the Charity Ball which will be held on Sunday, April 25th at the East Brunswick Chateau. It was agreed by the members in attendance that the club will pick up the cost for members and their spouses who wish to attend this function. While the club normally only pays for the President and his/her guest we have extended this to all members. The reason why we came to this conclusion is that for the past 8 years or more noone has used the money budgetted for this event; thus the money has gone back into the treasury. Look for more information about the Charity Ball, the raffle and the assistance of our club in this function.

Lion Ed has secured a table for us for the Community Day which will be held at the Brunswick Square Mall on Sunday, March 7th. we participate in this event every year as a way to let the community know who we are and what we do. The event normally lasts from 11 to 4 so it is not a long day. We would like to get full participation from the membership to staff the booth for this event. Lion Ed will be posting more information shortly.

Lion Tony reported that our annual participation in the Holiday visitation to needy families was a great success. The families were very grateful for the generous donations and the children were especially filled with laughter and smiles for the gifts. Lion Tony related a special story to us at the meeting pertaining to one family and their son. It was a heartwarming story that brought tears to several eyes. We will be sending out thank you letters to all those that supported this event.

Lion Dave brought a guest to the last meeting. Her name is Irina and she may be interested in joining our club. Thanks Dave.

Watch the local papers as Lion Mike will be using them frequently to make announcements to the community as to our upcoming projects. Lion Mike will also be setting up the slate of officers for 2010-2011.

Keep in mind our Golf Tournament coming up in May. Lion Fred is already hard at work and remember, this is a club project and I will be asking for volunteers to take over parts of this major fund-raiser. Lion Fred will not do it all himself. Be at the next meeting to hear the break down of help that will be needed. Look for golf hole sponsors to keep this project the success it has always been.

For those who have missed meetings, we have missed you also. Try and come to the next meeting.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


January 2010

My Fellow Lions,

We have just completed out final meeting for 2009 with a grand event. It was our annual Family Holiday Party. We had 19 members and guests in attendance. My wife was home sick and Lion Barbara Fink could not attend because her daughter, Mollie, was also ill. We wish them both a speedy recovery. It was a festive occasion with gifts for the wives and female club members. Fabulous food, laughter, and Lion Fred had eight (8) drawers to give away. It was a little odd that Lion Fred won three of the drawers but the best part was having Lion Fred back with us. It was great seeing him back on his feet and hearing his laughter. All he has to do now is get the "Upper Echelon" to listen to him.

Before the meeting started Lion Mike gave me the check for our White Cane Day at Shop Rite. The check was made out for $600. Lion Dave has another $19 that he collected after Mike left.What a great fund raising event!

As I mentioned in an earlier Lionize we did our collecting differently in that we were outside at the two entrances with our banner at one entrance. Thank you again to everyone that participated and especially to all of our helpers. The "Princess and Baroness" did a great job.

I hope everyone saw the "Thank you letter" in the Home News. Thanks Mike for adding to my letter. I have received numberous phone calls saying they saw the letter and thought it was a great thing to do. It cost us nothing but meant a lot.

There hasn't been any business to discuss since we did not have a formal meeting but at our next meeting I will be asking for opinions on District 16D using our license for the Charity Ball. Please think it over and give me you opinion.

Lion Ed is getting closer to finishing up the Macy's Day fund raising event. I think he only has one more person to collect from and he is already over $500.

I would like to close with a Holiday Letter to all the members and their families.

Once again, in this time of giving and gratitude I would like to send wishes through the wonderful world of technology our Lionize.

Most of you know me long enough to know how much you all mean to me in all different aspects of my life, some through an eternity of friendship, some through Lions, and some just because. I have always believed that people you love and care about can never hear that you love and care about them...enough.

So to all of you...I wish you the season's very best, filled with the love you deserve and the knowledge to recognize that love. The compassion to share that love with "Those less fortunate than yourself and finally the wisdom to appreciate every single second that we walk this planet realizing what has been created for us and that it should never be forgotten. Let's not forget those that are in harms way protecting our right to walk in freedom. Keep them in your thoughts during the holiday season and the families they are separated from.

May the time ahead be filled with these same blessings and always keep in your heart that my life and that of my family has been touched by each and every one of you. And to that I say thank you for helping to create the person I have become.

The Best to All this Holiday Season.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


December 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

By now we have all had our Thanksgiving dinners with family and friends and probably began preparing for the upcoming Holidays. I guess what our parents always used to say, "the older we get the faster the time goes by " is definitely true. It just seems like yesterday that we had our installation dinner and here we are into the holidays.

We had our first White Cane day on November 22 and I do not have any idea how much money we raised. I turned our "cash" over to my trustworthy assistant and I am hoping at our first and only meeting in December that I will be surprised by the results. It was a beautiful day, warm and sunny and the people were very cordial to us while I was there. I was worried about how the donations would go, what with the state of our economy, but people seemed to be very generous. I want to thank the following people who volunteered their time to help out; Lion Ed, Lion Ann, Lion Tony, Lion Mike, Lion Dave, and Jamie. We also had our Lion helpers Marisa, AJ, and a friend that Jamie brought to help out. It was a little different this year as we were outside manning both doorways. This seemed to work out very well for us and I feel it is something we should consider doing in the future. Once again my thanks to all who helped with this fund raising project.

Our first and only meeting in December will be held on Wednesday, 16 December at the East Brunswick Chateau. This will also be our Holiday Party for Lions and guests. It will start at 7 PM with three meal choices. Let's try and get everyone out to this event so we can close the 2009 year on a joyous note with good fun, laughter, and togetherness.

Lion Ed has just about completed his Macys Day fund raiser, so look for his final report to follow. Lion Ed has taken this project on and has made it a success for the past three years. Thanks Ed!

Since November and December are short meeting months there is not much to report except at our last meeting on November 11th we had our visitation from Lions District Governor James "Jim" Dougherty and his Cabinet Secretary Lion Ben Yashinski. the Governor spoke about ongoing Lions activities and the newly developed Action Plans for Membership, Extension, Retention, and Leadership (MERL). This prograam is designed to improve club communications and involvement in the District, State, and International. Secretary Ben also asked us to sponsor the raffle being held on April 25 here at the East Brunswick Chateau because we already have an approved license number. I have asked each member that was at the meeting to think this over and get back to me at the meeting in December. For those of you who were not there I would appreciate your thoughts on this matter.

Well that about does it for this letter except Judy and I hope you all had a Happy and Safe Thanksgiving and hope to see you all at our Holiday Party.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


November 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

Brrrrrrrrr. Guess what? I think the rainy and hot summer weather has finally left us and we are into autumn. the leaves are changing, the nights are cooler, the squirrels are hoarding their food supplies and the Lions are still working hard. We don't sit idle when the weather changes. In fact we are probably busier this time of year than any other.

Our meetings in October were inspiring. We had great turnouts at our meetings which made for better communication and with the added input from different members it makes the meetings more interesting and new ideas are always welcomed.

Lion Fred has started his Big Breakfast event with the first four drawings held this past Wednesday. To those of you who have not paid for your tickets, please get your money to Lion Fred so you won't lose out on a drawing.

Lion Ed has completed his Macy's Shop for a Cause fund raising event and there are still some outstanding monies; contact Lion Ed so we can get a final figure. this was a bigger success than last year. What a great way to start off the new Lions year.

At our last meeting, I passed around the work sheet for the Lions White Cane Day, to be held on 22 November. This can be a great fund raising event if we can get everyone to pitch in with a few hours work. It is the Sunday before Thanksgiving so the opportunity for us to "Be In Front" of the public could never be better.

All I am asking for is a few hours from each Lion and we can make this work. I need people all day so please don't all plan on being there at 9:00. We will start at 9:00 and I would like to make it till 4:00 so please, please everyone donate a few hours spread out during the day.

At the second meeting in October it was voted on and approved to have just one meeting in November and one in December because of the Governor's Visitation and the holidays. Mark your calendars accordingly.

We have a lot of work to do in the next month or so with our Holiday Party coming up in December and Lion Tony's needy family sponsor project coming up.

Let's keep up the great attendance at our meetings.

That's the latest update and I hope to see you all at the 11 November and 16 December meetings. It is still at the same place (East Brunswick chateau) and at the same time (7:00 PM).

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


October 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

September has passed and we have had our first two meetings. The attendance has been okay. I say okay because we have been missing a few people that we haven't seen in a while. I know we all have work and family business but we do miss you at the meetings. Please try and make the next meeting if you can.

During the first two meetings we discussed all the upcoming projects and verified the project chairmen. Please note the dates for upcoming projects in the Lionize. You will be hearing from the chairmen for sign up times and dates.

The summer is officially over but who knows what tricks Mother Nature has up her sleeve with the weather. It may turn out to be an Indian summer this year. I hope you all enjoyed your vacation and renewed your energy for the upcoming year. We will be asking each Lion to step up and help out more this year with our bigger projects. The most important one will be our golf outing next year. Lion Fred will be the chairman and I will be looking for volunteers to take over parts of the project such as the food, beverages, gifts, mailings, the raffle and whatever Lion Fred may need help with. It is too big a project for one individual and since it is our most important fund raising project we all need to pitch in. You will be hearing more about this project in the upcoming months.

By now you should have received your Macy's Shop for a Cause tickets from Lion Ed. This is our kickoff fund raising project so please try and do your best to sell your tickets.

Lion Fred has given out all the numbers for the Big Breakfast. If you have not received your numbers please come to the next meeting and I am sure Lion Fred will have your numbers available.

This year our first White Cane day will be held on 22 November. This is different from previous years in that it is on the Sunday before Thanksgiving, not on a Saturday. There will be a sign up sheet available at all the meetings so come early and pick your time.

Lion Kash has been working on a project with the schools he is associated with in a program to help the kids have a Dress Up Friday at school. he has asked that anyone with old men's ties donate them to this project. They are also looking for skirts and tops to give to the girls so they can dress up for this school day. This is what we are all about - helping those less fortunate than ourselves. So let's empty the old closets of ties for the bosys and skirts and tops for the girls. This is a good way to get rid of the summer clothes and bring in the winter items in our closets.

We have heard from East Brunswick Township regarding our annual Holiday Fund Project where we help out four families for the holidays. I have spoken to Lion Tony and he will be again chairing this project for us. Let's see if this year we can find more volunteers to help out with distributing the items and maybe even wrapping the gifts.

That's the latest update and I hope to see you all at the next meeting on 14 October. It is still at the same place (East Brunswick Chateau) and at the same time (7:00 PM). See you there.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


September 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

Our summer, what there was of it, is almost over. The rain storms along with the cloudy days finally broke in August to give us our dog days, Humid, Hot and Hazy.

But there is something else coming soon and that would be the Lions Days. We will be starting up our new year with our first meeting on 9 September. Where did the two months go? This coming year you will notice some minor changes in our list of officers. We have added, or I should say re-added two officer positions. we now have a Second Vice President - Kash Delory and a Third Vice President - Dave Prestup. These additions will bring new spirit and enthusiasm into our decisions. Please welcome them and assist them in any way you can.

This past summer we had a board meeting at the home of John Ryan. We didn't have a big turnout but we did discuss some important business and set the tone for our upcoming year. We discussed our projects to see if they were all viable and to see how we could make them run smoother and get the club as a whole more involved. We know some changes will be made with project chairpersons and we hope that all the members will make themselves available to help out where needed and to volunteer, if possible, to chair a committee.

While on the topic of committees I would like to announce the date of our White Cane Day this year. The date is 22 November. This is a change from previous years in that we will be doing it on a Sunday. Please set this date aside as it is our second fund raising project of the New Year and a chance to be in front of the public.

Lion Ed is hard at work with our Macy's Day project and should have updated information available at our first meeting.

Lion John has been working to bring our Treasurer's paperwork to some semblance of order. He has broken down each category so we can accurately watch and control our spending. As you all know this is a very important part of our organization and I want to than John for stepping forward and assuming the position of Treasurer and putting things in order.

Every year our Lionize has been published by our Secretary Lion Ed. I don't know if everyone realizes how much work it takes to put this together, get it printed, published, and mailed out. This is a tremendous job that has gone the ways of all our project chairman. It goes unnoticed and un-thankd. Lion Ed, along with his committee of one, Santina, works hard to get the information needed from committee chairmen, president's letters, updates, Lions information, calendars and humor. Thanks Ed.

As you can see this will be a difficult year for the club in that we all have to pitch in and do the work. Let's all make a concentrated effort to ease the burden of the Project Chairmen. Let's make this another banner year for the club.

Hope you all had a great shortened summer and hope to see you all at the first meeting in September.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howie


June 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

Once again, the East Brunswick Lions Club has outdone itself! Even in the worst economic climate since the Great Depression, the club has not faltered in its dedication to the community. This has been another banner year of fund raising and good deeds. Our fund raising results have demonstrated that the public understands the plight of those less fortunate than themselves; we have had record breaking collections of money from "shaking our cans" at ShopRite. I would especially like to thank the children for contributing to our efforts (that means both the Beatrice and Barnett families). Our other activities served to get the word out that the East Brunswick Lions are an integral part of the community.

This year was a year of professional growth for me as well. During the Lions year I had to study and take two certification exams nearly at the same time. I can say that my achievements at work can be attributed in part to the lessons I have learned being a member of the East Brunswick Lions Club. I know that dedication and perseverance pay off. Since we are small in numbers, our club needs to work harder and persevere to succeed. I had to battle with management and the government to be allowed to pursue these certifications. While my achievements benefitted myself, the information I gained benefit my company and more importantly the Warfighters that I support. We Lions attempt to try to do the right thing for the right reasons as well.

I found a couple of quotations regarding perseverance that I would like to share:

"People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don't believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can't find them, make them."
- George Bernard Shaw

Our club may be small, and we have suffered some losses this year, but we are large in spirit and we will find or make the circumstances for our continued success. With our incoming officers comes a renewed sense of purpose and optimism for next year.

"The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is that one comes from a strong will, and the other from a strong won't."
- Henry Ward Beecher

Our club (and many individuals within it) does have a strong will, and we shall carry on in the footsteps of those who have come before us. Our members continue to provide exemplary service to the community and Lions everywhere despite their personal problems and difficulties. I must say that you all help provide role models to my children as well as myself.

I thank you for your support this year and look forward to returning that support to our incoming officers. May the East Brunswick Lions Club be blessed with the ability to do more for more people next year. By working together as a team and family, I am sure that we will persevere. Thank you for the honor of being your Lion President.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


May 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

Even in these dark economic times, you can count on people to do the right thing. As Lion Howie reported at our last meeting, we had a record-breaking collection in our White Cane collection at Shop Rite. It should make everyone who participated feel good that the people understand the impact of the economy on those less fortunate than themselves and empathize with their plight.

I think that one of the reasons we became Lions is that we share that empathy, through good times and bad. Yes, we do get a warm feeling and a sense of accomplishment when our projects are successful, but the main motive for doing what we do is to help others - We Serve.

Another project that was successful was our partnership with Catherine's Closet (see www.catherinescloset.org). The announcements on Channel 3 and in the Sentinel seemed to resonate with the people of East Brunswick. Our club managed to turn in almost two dozen dresses to Catherine's Closet, and I am still receiving phone calls about donations. Unfortunately, we could not make arrangements with the High School to distribute the dresses, but the people at Catherine's Closet gave us special permission to bring the gowns up during their first sale day. My wife was mobbed by girls when they saw the clothing that she brought in. The people who coordinated the dress sale expressed their deep appreciation for our efforts.

This may be the last newsletter for this Lion's year, but the East Brunswick Lions Club is still busy. We are in the process of getting applications for our Nursing Scholarship; we are guaranteed a candidate for this year's award. We hope that we have to decide among multiple applicants. In these economic times, every little bit helps.

Of course our biggest project, the Golf Outing, is still in its final weeks. Lion Fred and all of our members are well on their way to making this event our most successful one ever. Please support this project with golfers, sponsors, prizes, and, most of all, your presence so that we have the people to make this event run flawlessly.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for your support during this Lions year. Even though many of us had other personal challenges this year, both professionally and physically, we all worked together as a Lions family to make this a very successful year of service. I know that the incoming officers will succeed next year as well, as long as we stick together as a club and as a family. Through good times and bad we argue and we debate, but we also have fun as we achieve much more as a group than we can as individuals. This is what we are, this is what we do - we are Lions.

Be proud to be a part of the East Brunswick Lions Club. I look forward to serving the club next year and you should too. We can accomplish so much as long as we do it together.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


April 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

"Behold, my bothers, the spring has come; the earth has received the embraces of the sun and we shall soon see the results of that love!" - Sitting Bull, Sioux Chief

Spring is here, though getting snow on the first day of spring sure doesn?t give me much trust in warmer weather. Spring is often considered a time of rebirth, in some religious celebrations (e.g., Christian Easter, Roman Bacchanalia, Mayan Return of the Sun Serpent, Bahai and Zorastrian Nawruz) as well as Nature?s rebirth (e.g., the buds starting to form on the trees and the bulbs producing shoots coming out of the ground).

The rebirth of nature shows us that our own lives are capable of this same rebirth. Not withstanding the Internal Revenue Service (yet another harbinger of spring), spring is a time for us to come out of the cocoon of our homes and spend more time outdoors. It is a time to once again be with people, whether it be at a spring festival, in a park, or at a Lions activity.

The East Brunswick Lions Club has not sat idly by all winter. Lion Fred continues his preparations for our golf outing in May. Please support him by getting golfers, sponsors, and prizes and by volunteering to help out on the day of the outing. Lion Howie has scheduled a White Cane at the East Brunswick ShopRite for the weekend before Passover and Easter. He needs our support in order to maximize the time spent getting the generous donations from the public.

The East Brunswick Lions are looking forward as well. Thanks to Lion Kash, we have partnered with Catherine?s Closet in collecting and offering used prom dresses for/to those in need. We will finalize our new slate of officers for the next Lions year (2009-2010). I ask all of our club members to support our new officers. In these hard economic times, our new Lion President and cabinet will have many challenges ahead, finding innovative ways for fundraising and supporting those who are less fortunate than us.

Let us use spring as an opportunity to re-dedicate ourselves to the world?s largest service organization, to make more of our individual time available to help our fellow townspeople, those in our state-sponsored Lions projects, and those projects endorsed by Lions International. Let us do all we can to make a difference as the East Brunswick Lions Club.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


March 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

"Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared." - Buddha

I have written about the benefits of doing service to those less fortunate than ourselves. The Dalai Lama has said that the closer a person is to realizing his Buddha-nature, the more selfish that person is. Buddha-nature involves becoming less concerned with self and more involved with the interdependency of all things. The Dalai Lama goes on to explain that these people understand this interdependency and therefore are more likely to empathize with others. When they do this, they reduce the anger and sadness in the other person which in turn increases the happiness in themselves. So they can be altruistic for selfish reasons.

Lions serve to reduce the suffering in others. We take great pride in supporting worthy causes. And we get a lot of benefit in return. The support of our local community makes for a better place to live. The support of world-wide causes makes everyone's life better. How much would the world's economy benefit if Lions Club International Foundation achieves its goal of eradicating all preventable blindness around the globe? How much less the world would have to spend on medical treatment and tools to help those who are blind and visually impaired?

It would be wonderful to have a crystal ball or time machine to see the full ramification of our actions. The East Brunswick Lions Club sponsors a nursing scholarship each year, helping out in a small way a student who attends a four year nursing program. Perhaps that scholarship was a factor in allowing that student to be able to purchase books for that semester. And because of that decision, that person saved many lives by serving as a nurse. Our single candle, the nursing scholarship, has not only increased the overall happiness in the world, but also increased the lifespans of many others who can further spread their happiness.

One requirement of our nursing scholarship is for the recipients to let us know how their studies are proceeding. Even if we do not see them in person, the excitement and happiness comes through in the students' letters back to the club. They are fulfilling their dreams in a field that is dedicated to reducing people's suffering. The members of the East Brunswick Lions Club receive happiness in hearing how they have contributed to the student's happiness.

No one begrudges the Dalai Lama for his selfishness in bringing happiness to the people who believe in him, his faith, and his cause. He selflessly serves his people and his beliefs. We Lions are just carrying out the work in accordance to our motto - "We Serve." In return, we receive some other benefits such as networking, socializing with those who think like ourselves, and having opportunities for personal growth.

Why not share the happiness with your friends, your coworkers, your spouse? The more members that we have, the more candles that we can light and spread that light around the world. So consider who you know to share the joy, the sense of accomplishment, and the satisfaction of being a Lion. To conclude, far be it for me to improve on the words of Buddha, but I would amend the last sentence of the quotation that started this letter to read: Happiness never decreases by being shared; it can only increase.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


February 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

With the inauguration of President Barack Obama, the country looks toward a new way of doing business in Washington. According to the Washington Times, this is only the tip of the iceberg.

"America's greatness was not crafted in skyscrapers alone...But on the ground by those who could see what needed to be done." Thus begins an advertising campaign that President Obama is promoting as part of his Renew America Together initiative. The initiative began on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, January 19, and is using modern communication methods such a Facebook to get all Americans to log on to USAService.org.

"President-elect Obama believes each of us, as Americans, has a responsibility to do what we can for our communities and fellow citizens," Josh Earnest, the inaugural committee's communications director, said in a statement.

"We've launched USAService.org to connect volunteer organizations with Americans in their community and make it easier to serve on Martin Luther King Jr. Day and beyond," Earnest added.

It seems ironic to me that there are so many service organizations that are well established throughout this nation who are not being mentioned as part of this initiative. For example, the East Brunswick Lions Club is entering its 57th year of service to our community, our state, our nation, and around the world. If Renew America takes wing and energizes the public to consider participating in community service, we need to be there to provide opportunities for people to serve as part of a local organization. Perhaps the Lions need to be on Facebook.

The fact of the matter is that Lions are on Facebook. A recent issue of Lions magazine discussed virtual Lions clubs and how clubs are using the Internet and Web 2.0 to expand the work that they do. The East Brunswick Lions already has a web site and these monthly messages from the President are posted. The site informs people of upcoming events and even has some pictures of our handsome club members (this includes both our male and female members) having fun and doing service.

We need to connect with President Obama's initiative. Our club is already registered as a certifying organization for former President Bush's Volunteer Service Award, part of the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation (http://www.presidentialserviceawards.gov). We have spread the news to the Boy and Girl Scouts in the area that we will provide awards to individuals or groups that meet the criteria for service hours. There are gold, silver, and bronze awards based on the number of hours of service. We also provide certificates to Eagle Scouts. These certificates come from Lions International and are presented to the newly inducted Eagle Scout.

The more we interact with the public and enable their need to perform community service, the better off our club and the community can be. I ask all of our members to come up with other ways in which we can involve others in our activities. And for our web audience, I challenge you to contact us and join us in serving those in need.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


January 2009

Dear Fellow Lions,

December 10 was the date when we celebrated the holidays as a club. It was just that morning that I was talking to a wife of a coworker (she works for another company who supports Fort Monmouth and I get to work with her on projects from time to time). She asked me what time my company's holiday party began. I had to tell her that I was not attending the company party since I had my East Brunswick Lions Club holiday party. She went on to say how much she did not like going to work-related holiday events. I responded by saying that our Lions party was different; that it was more like a family dinner. We discussed this idea some more and ended the conversation with her asking whether the Lions could adopt her for the evening. If she and her husband did not live and work in the Red Bank area, I certainly would have invited her to join the family on a more permanent basis.

Again I want to thank Lions Howie and Jimmy and most importantly Judy for getting the wonderful gifts for the ladies in making it a wonderful evening. Of course I want to thank all the Lions who could attend. I believe I speak for all of us when I send our hopes and prayers for a speedy recovery for Lion Bob.

Looking back at our holiday partys, it does seem like a family get together. We have our differences and are not too shy to air them, but like family you feel that you can express your feelings and know that you will be forgiven. And like a family, our club evolves. Members come and go. Our newest member Kash was able to come and we met his wife Avinash for the first time. I hope we did not overwhelm her with all of the family joking and bickering. It was great that Lion Anthony and Jaime brought her cousin Nicole and her fiance Danny to our get together, somewhat reminiscent of a family member bringing her intended to his first family affair. We hope to see more of the two as they become active in our club. I have to make the analogy that I felt like I was seated at the kid's table; it just happened that "less mature" Lions and their guests sat at the rounded part of the table on one end.

According to www.infoplease.com, "It is believed that the Babylonians were the first to make New Year's resolutions, and people all over the world have been breaking them ever since. The early Christians believed the first day of the new year should be spent reflecting on past mistakes and resolving to improve oneself in the new year." Nowadays these resolutions have become something of a joke. Alex Epstein wrote an article titled "The Meaning of New Year's Resolutions" in a 2006 issue of Capitalism Magazine where he analyzes: "Consider what we do when we make a New Year's resolution: we look at where we are in some area of life, think about where we want to be, and then set ourselves a goal to get there...Is this a laughable act of self-delusion? Hardly. If it were, then how would anyone ever achieve anything in life? In fact, to make a New Year's resolution is to recognize the undeniable reality that successful goal-pursuit is possible--the reality that everyone at one time or another has set and achieved long-range goals, and profited from doing so. Indeed, not only is it possible to achieve long-range goals, it is necessary for success in life. To make a New Year's resolution is also to recognize the undeniable reality ...-- that to get what we want in our lives, we must consciously choose and achieve the right goals. We must be goal-directed."

We (as Lions at least) are goal-directed. We see needs in the community, in the state, in the country, and in the world and proceed to satisfy that need. Our Lions Club International Foundation has enriched the lives of hundreds of thousands of people, providing disaster relief and eye clinics and so much more. Our support of the winners of the East Brunswick Lions Club nursing scholarship encourage them to pursue a profession where there is a chronic shortage of people. The Lions International Sight First campaigns have raised hundreds of millions of dollars with the goal of wiping out preventable blindness throughout the world - certainly a lofty goal, but one where much progress is being made. I would like all of us as a club, as a family, to continue to make New Year's resolutions on how we can do more to help others. So when you are coming up with your New Year's resolutions, think about how we can better serve as Lions.

I hope you have had a wonderful holiday season, and I look forward to starting the New Year with renewed vigor and commitment to our Lions family. As with family, we will support each other to accomplish much more together than as individuals. Happy New Year.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


December 2008

Dear Fellow Lions,

November was a good month for our club. At our first meeting we were honored by a visit from our District Governor. He was extremely pleased to hear of all the work we do. Even though we are few in numbers, we are continuously active. As we informed the Governor of our activities he provided us with new ideas, mainly to increase our membership. With new members come new ideas and better ways to serve the public.

Another way to get more done is to form strategic partnerships with other organizations in the community. I would like to acknowledge our Vice President Anthony Beatrice and of course his wife Jaime in planning, organizing, and running a food drive through the Boy Scouts for the items needed for our holiday baskets. Lion Anthony reports that much of the canned goods were collected, thus freeing up money to provide gifts of toys and clothing to the families that we sponsor during the Christmas season.

Speaking of money, it was wonderful to see how generous the public is even during these tough economic times during our White Cane drive at the East Brunswick ShopRite. Thanks to everyone who volunteered. It was great to have the entire Beatrice family helping out. The White Cane Chair Past President Lion Howie wants me to send a special thank you to my daughter Marisa, who once again energized us all and made sure everyone who contributed knew that they were helping the East Brunswick Lions Club help those less fortunate than ourselves. We also need to thank the folks at ShopRite, who are more than willing to give us the dates of our choice to "shake our cans."

It is the time of year for thanks. I cannot thank our club members enough. In an age where people are so preoccupied with their own business, where the economy is faltering, and people are filled with uncertainty about the future, we Lions continue unflaggingly to support our community and others. I give thanks that our members selflessly give of their time and money and epitomize the Lions motto "We Serve."

I wish everyone a wonderful holiday season. I look forward to seeing all of you at our holiday party. It is sure to be a great one; not just because of the outstanding job that our committee does, but because our club gets together to celebrate as a family. Let us all make a New Year's resolution to expand our Lions family next year. Peace be with you.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


November 2008

Dear Fellow Lions,

This month I am going to let the literature speak in my place. We all know that it is good to be a Lion; few of us realize that we benefit ourselves while we help others. Albert Schweitzer once said, "The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve." The International Association of Lions Clubs have taken that quotation to heart - "We Serve" is the motto for the Lions.

I have a link to an article from the Corporation for National and Community Service that appeared on 7 May 2007. It summarizes a series of studies concerning volunteerism and health. There are other benefits of volunteering besides health benefits. In a National Survey of Giving, Volunteering and Participating (NSGVP) in 2000, 79% of volunteers said that their volunteer activities helped them with their interpersonal skills such as understanding people better, motivating others, and dealing with difficult situations. About 68% of volunteers said that volunteering helped them to develop better communication skills Sixty three percent reported increased knowledge about issues related to their volunteering.

Once people experiences the joy and fulfillment they get in helping others they will be a volunteer for life. Just think back to your first activity as a Lion. Remember the feelings that went through you as you, say, delivered the food and gift baskets to needy East Brunswick residents.

I remember the fledgling Little Falls Lions Club, my former club, trying to find a hands-on project to serve others. We finally contacted a local group of parents of mentally impaired children who were looking for an organization that would treat their kids to a Halloween party. We had never worked together as a team in planning and executing such a project. However, we were all engineers used to managing and building sophisticated systems for the government. We did our research and then assigned tasks for each of the seven of us to accomplish. The issue of money was resolved when the parents agreed to chip in. Our Lions Club was used to working under tight budgets, so we did some shopping at discount outlets and managed to decorate, feed, and provide games and prizes to a dozen or so kids of varying ages. Once we saw the looks on their faces, we knew we were truly a Lions Club. This project came to be our favorite project, not only because it was our first success, but because we could directly see the results of our efforts.

Perhaps we should spread the word that Lionism is good for your health. Maybe this will entice others to share the great feelings and the sense of accomplishment and comraderie that come from being a Lion.

May you and your loved ones have a safe, happy, and healthy Thanksgiving. I know that everyone is truly greatful for the blessings we have and will continue to act as Lions in giving to those less fortunate than ourselves.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


October 2008

Dear Fellow Lions,

It was gratifying to see so many of you at our second September meeting. It was a good meeting, just the right blend of business and camaraderie that we try to attain for all of our Lions activities. Lion Ed reported on our successful Community is Fair Day event, and Lion Anthony explained why we needed to postpone the Tricky Tray.

Autumn is usually a busy season and this one is no exception. We will be holding our White Cane at the East Brunswick ShopRite on the weekend before Thanksgiving and will be working with the Scouts for our Sight Night event where we have the trick or treaters collect eyeglasses. Lion Dave is about to make another run to Jamesburg, where we drop off the eyeglasses to be sorted and recycled.

Seeing us all together brings to mind that we are a Lions family. We also are in the process of welcoming a new member to our family. Kash brings us new insight into what other Lions clubs do. He mentioned that a Lions club in India whose meeting he went to has entire families attend. There is a DJ and children run around the hall where they hold their meeting. While we do not often get the families together (exception - our Lion cub Molly attended this meeting), our families are always there to support us. At the Community is Fair Day, Lion Ed's wife Santina, her sister Grace, my wife Robyn, and my daughter Marisa all pitched in to help. It seemed like we could not inflate enough Lions balloons to satisfy the crowd. It was wonderful to see a sea of purple and gold Lions balloons all around the Municipal pond.

Besides supporting us in our projects, we try to give each other moral support. We hope we have done enough thus far to support Lion Anthony and his family with the recent passing of his father.

There is strength in family; the sum of the people in a family is greater than the individuals. So it is with Lions; we band together to help those in need. As individuals we can contribute our time and money, but as a club we can do much more to serve those less fortunate than ourselves. As a group, we can divide up the work so that it is not onerous, yet accomplish more than if we did it on our own.

This reminds me of the native American allegory of the bunches of sticks. An Indian chief lays out a bunch of bound wooden sticks on the ground before his son and asks him to pick up the bunch and break it. His son, though noted for his superior strength among the tribe, tries in vain to break the bundle. Then, untying the bundle, the chief gives him the sticks to break one by one. This the son does with the greatest ease. Then the father says, 'Thus, my son, as long as the tribe remains united, you are a match for anything, but separate, and you are undone.'

The Lions are a family, at the club level, at the District level, at the State level, and at the International level. Each level is a bunch of sticks that grows larger and larger and thus harder and harder to break. Think of what we can do together and be proud to be a Lion.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


September 2008

Dear Fellow Lions,

Welcome back from our summer break. I hope that this note finds everyone healthy, reenergized, and ready to make this another banner Lions year. Things will be different this year. We have a new slate of officers shaking up the status quo; we have a new project - the Tricky Tray - thanks to Jaime and Anthony Beatrice. Our first White Cane is scheduled just before the Thanksgiving holiday - thanks to Lion Howie. In other words, we hit the ground running.

As the adage goes, the more things change, the more they remain the same. What is the same is our dedication to serving our community, our state/district charities, and Lions International. No matter how different the activities, the members of our club never forget that they are Lions and that "We Serve." However, by rededicating ourselves to our motto, we need to be ready to adapt to the needs of those who we serve. We need to find better ways of raising funds and raising awareness for our causes. And we need as a club to grow and adapt to the environment. One way of doing this is to grow our organization. Bringing in additional people allows us to do more; we can tackle bigger projects and make more of a difference. So let's make a concerted effort this year to increase our membership.

Most of us have been Lions for so long that it is difficult to remember how we came into the club. There are those who literally grew up with the East Brunswick Lions. I started as a Lion in Little Falls, NJ. I had the solemn job of closing down the Little Falls Lions Club. We had resurrected the club by uniting four people who worked at my company and taking over the debt that the club owed the state and International. From those four people, we managed to grow to 23 strong.

But with retirements, layoffs, and relocations, the club declined to six people, many of whom were considering retiring or relocating. So we decided to give back our charter when we could not seem to gain community interest in maintaining the club.

I was one of the members who relocated. I contacted the state Lions office and got a list of Lions Clubs in the East Brunswick vicinity. I made a few phone calls to other clubs in the area, but happened to go with my family to the Middlesex County Fair. While there, we came upon a ring toss booth run by the East Brunswick Lions Club. When I mentioned that I was a former Lion looking for a club to transfer to, I was immediately approached by Lion Lou Samaro. Lou was District Governor at the time. The enthusiasm that Lou radiated was more than enough to convince me that this was my new Lions club.

We all need to recall the feelings that make us proud to be a Lion and especially a member of the East Brunswick Lions Club. We need to use those feelings when we speak to people about our club and when we approach prospective members. People can sense when you are genuine, and the love we all have for helping others can be contagious. We need not only concentrate on new members; what about former members, those that left the club due to personal reasons? Perhaps their situation has changed so that they can rejoin the camaraderie and rekindle the emotions that they once felt being a part of the club.

I challenge you, my fellow Lions, to bring back our former members and bring in new members this Lions year. This will help us help others and evoke those feelings that originally made you want to be a Lion.

Thanks for your support. Together we will do great things as the East Brunswick Lions Club.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


May 2008

Dear Fellow Lions,

Here we are in the final stretch of another year. It just seems like yesterday that we started off the year with our Macy's fund raiser and here we are preparing for our final fund raising event - our Golf Outing.

What a great year we have had. All our projects were successful. All our fund raising events were successful. We have had great attendance at our meetings. We have a new member. We have our new cub. Next year's slate of officers has been approved and we will be seeing some new faces taking office. This will be a welcome change for the few of us to have some time off as officers and return some of the favors we received when we were in charge:-). All kidding aside, it is great to see some new volunters step forward and I know they will receive the same support I have received this year.

This club is not built on individualism but companionship as a group. This is what has kept the club together for so long and I hope it will last another 50 years. It is enlightening to see wives jump in with new ideas to help the club. Sometimes as members we become too set in our thing and we need the new ideas. This is our Lions Family.

This is the last issue of the Lionize for this year and I want to take this opportunity to thank Lion Ed for another great job as our editor, our printer, and our publisher. I also want to thank Santina for her devoted assistance to Lion Ed. There is a lot of work that goes into preparing the Lionize every month and making sure it gets out in time. Thanks Ed for all your help.

Like I mentioned earlier our Golf Outing is approaching fast and Lion Fred has finalized plans with a new caterer. We have the starting times filling up, we have our Hole in One set up, and we are still looking for more sponsors and prizes. This is our biggest fund raising event dedicated to our nursing scholarship so let's end the year with another successful tournament. Maybe this year we will finally get some good weather and everyone will be happy. Thanks Fred.

I would love to take the time to thank every chair or co-chair of all our projects but our editor has limited the space I have in this final issue. To all our project chairs, thank you, thank you, thank you.

Being President is a privilege but it becomes an honor when you get to work with such a great group of individuals such as all of you.

Remember our meetings in May are the first and third Wednesdays instead of the second and fourth. In June our installation night will be 11 June and our last meeting for the distribution of funds will be 25 June. I know Lion Mike and Lion Jimmy have a spectacular evening planned for Installation Night and I hope to see all of you there.

Thank you all for another great year.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


April 2008

Dear Fellow Lions,

Well the month of March lived up to its history with a mixture of weather but it did not deter our enthusiam. We are working hard to bring our projects to fruition and make it another successful year.

We have missed some members at our last meetings and hope that all is well with everyone and their families.

We have completed our meetings for March and along with our meetings Mike Barnett, Chairman of our Nominating Committeee has completed his third and final reading for the new officers for 2008-2009. Thank you Mike for another great job.

Lion Mike has also been working hard to get articles into the local papers. His last article announced our Nursing Scholarship Program and his next article will be for our Golf Tournament.

Did someone mention golf? Along those lines Lion Fred has been working endless hours with his staff to make this another great tournament. We will be having a new caterer this year so Lion Fred has had to do extra work in completing this portion of the project.

Keep the date open, 28 May for our Twelfth Annual Golf Classic. We do mean classic in every sense of the word. This is all due to the efforts of Lion Fred who always makes it special. One of these years he will get the weather to cooperate and we can have a better time ;-)

Lion Fred received a Gold Sponsorship from our GREAT FRIENDS at Roof Deck Inc., a foursome from the East Brunswick Chateau, and a hole sponsorship from the Chateau. So you can see we are well on our way to haing another great tournament. No more "putting" around. Let's all "pitch" in and do our part.

Lion Ed has given all the information needed for our Nursing Scholarship program to the East Brunswick High School so we should start getting some more applications for the Nursing Scholarship. Thanks Ed for taking the time out from your hectic schedule to drop off this information.

Our Community Day project was a great day. Our chairman Lion Mike reported we had a successful day. Thanks to the following members for being in attendance. Lions Mike, Ed, Dave, Fred, John, Anthony, and Howie handed out literature for Lions along with information about our Golf Outing. Great Job!!!

The list of new officers for the upcoming year is as follows:

  • President - Lion Michael Barnett
  • Vice President - Lion Anthony Beatrice
  • Secretary - Lion Edward Spinella
  • Treasurer - Lion John Ryan
  • Lion Tamer - Lion James Clark
  • Tail Twister - Lion Alfred Tomchuk
  • Immediate Past President and Membership Chair - Lion Howard Adams

Let's all give them our full support for next year.

Stay safe, enjoy the upcoming warmer weather, and see you at the next meeting.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


March 2008

Dear Fellow Lions,

Here we are into the most unpredictable month of the year - March. Remember the old saying, "Beware the Ides of March". Well it looks like it is going to come in like a Lion. Did someone mention Lions?

That must be us.

I am glad to be back amongst my fellow Lions. As most of you know I have missed the past two meetings being sick with pneumonia. My utmost thanks to Lion Mike for taking over the meetings and of course my thanks fo out to all the Lions that attended the meetings.

We are moving forward and growing at the same time. Well at least our internal family is growing. Lions Barbara and Bob were blessed with the birth of their baby girl on 6 February at around 3 PM. The baby girl is named Molly Olivia. Everyone is doing fine so we now have a new Cub in the Club. Congratulations Barb and Bob.

We had a great meeting on February 27 with 8 Lions in attendance. As always we had a fabulous meal. We went through our Lions business including an up to date Treasurer's Report. Thanks Lion Ed for bringing the needed paperwork to the bank in order to get the proper signatures and our books in order.

Lion Fred gave away his final two drawers and gave his final Big Breakfast report. Great job as always Fred.

Lion Fred also gave an updated golf report and we received our first foursome for the tournament. I am asking once more that anyone who can help in any way, whether it is time or gifts please get in touch with Lion Fred or his committee. Lion Fred also stated that the recent fire that destroyed the clubhouse will not interfere with our tournament. The grill will be available for our lunch. It should be another "HOT" tournament.

We had a unique program this meeting, as Lion Bob brought his PC and showed us pictures of the new baby, Molly Olivia. There were also pictures of Bob with his daughter, and even some of the baby with Barbara. Lion Ed gave Bob a brief editorial on important events that occurred on 6 February and the club presented the proud parents with a small gift from the club.

It was another good meeting. My thanks to everyone that attended. I hope to see many of you at the Community Day at Brunswick Square Mall on 2 March, and all at our next meeting. Be safe and stay warm - summer will soon be here.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


February 2008

Dear Fellow Lions,

Here we are already into the second month of the New Year. Where does all the time go? The holidays are past and I guess we are all thankful for the mild weather.

At our last meeting we had a great turnout. Thank you, thank you, thank you. It is great to have such a large group present for our meetings. We get so much more accomplished with everyone's input. The meetings are livelier, we have laughter, and as always great meals.

We don't acknowledge the fact of how great our meals are, so "Thank you Jimmy, Russ, and your staff for the great service."

Our committees are active, especially our golf chairman Fred. Now that he will be losing all his drawers he will be on everyone's case to get golfers, prizes, gifts, adn ads for our 12th Annual Golf Tournament. We have secured Laffin Chevrolet as our Hole in One sponsor again, so now we can concentrate on bringing in the golfers and ads. Lion Fred is working hard to make this a special tournament so let's all do our part in helping make it a success.

We will be having another White Cane Day sometime in the near future at a site in East Brunswick. More news will follow shortly about this project.

We are always looking for new members so please keep this in the front, not the back of your mind. Along with that, we are waiting for a few more members to come out to the meetings. We miss you.

If anyone has any news or reports you would like published in the Lionize please contact Lion Ed.

Hope to see you all at the next meeting.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


January 2008

Dear Fellow Lions, Family and Friends,

Another year is about to close and a New Year is about to open.

We had our last meeting for the year on 12 December. This was our annual Holiday Party. We had 13 members and spouses attend the party. It was a great evening. Lion Mike did a great job with the menu and as always the Chateau went above and beyond our expectations.

Thanks to Lion Jim for his hospitality and thanks to my wife Judy for picking out the holiday gifts. There were a few Lions missing because of personal reasons and I will make sure they receive their gifts at our next meeting.

As usual we do not conduct any business at this meeting but there were a few Lions that had some reports that were necessary. The first was Lion Anthony who reported on the five families we will be delivering food and gifts to for the holidays. Lion Anthony has made some great contacts for items we will be delivering. Or maybe I should say his wife Jamie has made the contacts. Either way Anthony is on his way to making this a success again. We will be delivering the donations on Sunday December 23rd, leaving his house at 10 AM. If you could spare some time helping out, it will be appreciated.

Now saving the best for last, Lion Fred had his drawers drawn four times at the party (or something like that).

There is not much else to report except I would like to take this opportunity to "Thank" all my fellow Lions for the start of a great 2007-2008 Lions year. Relax and be ready to start the New Year off with our first meeting on 9 January.

From Judy and I, we would like to wish you all a happy, safe, and prosperous New Year. See you in January.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


December 2007

My Fellow Lions,

Since we only had one meeting this month there isn't too much news to report to you. We had another great meeting with a great turnout on 14 November. We were missing a few members but it was still a great evening. Another fabulous meal served by the Chateau (see new business notes regarding this).

Starting with club business, Lion Fred is off and running with his drawers again. If you haven't gotten your money in to him for your tickets, you may not become a winner if your number is drawn. Don't miss out on this opportunity.

Lion Fred reported that he has secured the date for next year's golf tournament so we will be gearing up for this after New Year's. If you come up with any ideas, just let Lion Fred or his right hand man, Lion John Ryan know. we are always looking for giveaways.

Lion Ed reported that we have a final tally on the Macy's Shop for a Cause with a total of $600 raised. Great job Lion Ed and a great way to start the year off.

We had our Lions White Cane Day on Saturday, 17 November at the East Brunswick Shop Rite. We started off at 9 AM and wnet through to 5 PM. We had a total of 11 Lion's members and family show up to help out. We also had a young girl volunteering for community service help us out. We raised a total of $450, making this our best White Cane Day ever. My thanks to all the members who helped out and our hats off to Shop Rite for their help. Lion Fred and I met the new manager and Lion Fred explained to him how Shop Rite has assisted us in the past. He said that they will continue to do so.

Lion Mike and Lion Jim have set up our Holiday Party for 12 December. The meal choices are meat, fish, and chicken.

New business Notes:

At the last meeting the club voted on presenting the Chateau with a plaque/award for their years of service to the club. Lion Ed and I will pick out the plaque and have it lettered and presented to the Chateau as soon as possible. We would like to have it before the Holiday Party, but because of the delay time in having it engraved it may have to be presented at a later date. We feel we need to show our appreciation to the Chateau for the service, meals, and support it has shown us for many years. More information will follow.

That's about all there is to report. Judy and I hope that you and your family had a Happy Thanksgiving. Looking forward to seeing you at the Holiday Party on December 12th.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


November 2007

My Fellow Lions,

Brrrrrr. Guess what? I think the warm extended summer weather has finally left us and we are into autumn. The leaves are changing, the nights are cooler, the squirrels are hoarding their food supplies and the Lions are still working hard. We don't sit idle when the weather changes. In fact we are probably busier this time of year than any other.

Our meeting in October were inspiring. We had great turnouts at our meetings which made for better communication and with the added input from different members, it make the meeting more interesting. New ideas are always welcomed.

Thanks to Lion Mike for running the first meeting of the month for me while I was away for a short honeymoon. Please note in your Lions directory that next to my name please add the name (Judy). We had an absolutely beautiful, fantastic wedding ceremony and reception, then spent five days in Cape May to recuperate. Now I have a ready-made family of a son and daughter, a daughter in law, son in law, five grandsons, and a mother in law. You can't forget the mother in law.

Getting back to Lions business, Lion Fred started his Big Breakfast event with the first four drawings held this last meeting. To those of you who have not paid for your tickets, please get your money to Lion Fred so you won't lose out on a drawing.

Lion Ed has completed his Macy's Shop for a Cause fund raiser and there are still some outstanding monies, so contact Lion Ed so that we can get a final figure. This was our second year of doing this great event and it is a bigger success than last year. What a great way to start off the new Lions year.

At our 14 November meeting, I will be passing around the worksheet for the Lions White Cane Day, to be held on 17 November. This can be a great fund raising event if we can get everyone to pitch in with a few hours' work. It is the weekend before Thanksgiving so the opportunity for us to "Be In Front" of the public could never be better. All I am asking is for a few hours from each Lion and we can make this work. I need people all day so please don't all plan on being there at 9 AM. We will start at 9 AM and I would like to make it til 4 PM so please, please everyone donate a few hours spread out during the day.

At the first meeting in October, a resolution passed to have only one meeting in November and one in December because of the holidays. Mark your calendars accordingly.

We have a lot of work to do in the next month or so with our Holiday Party coming up in December and Lion Tony's needy family sponsor project coming up.

Lion Fred is already hard at work on his Golf Tournament. He has already collected shirts and clubs and soda certificates for next year. Keep your eyes open for ideas to help Fred with his project.

Remember the dates for the next meetings: 14 November and 12 December.

Let's keep up the great attendance at our meetings.

Yours in Lionism,

Howie


October 2007

My Fellow Lions,

Fellow Lions, where did the summer go? Here we are already through the month of September and Fall is here. Time passes quickly when you are busy, and we Lions have been busy as you all know during the "summer recess"

The Board of Directors had meeting to finalize the budgets and to plan for our first project - the Community is Fair Day at the Municipal Center. We thought we had everything ready to go until Lion Ed tried to order the helium for the balloons. We discovered that there is a worldwide shortage of helium and we could not obtain any. So, we decided we would just do without balloons this year. At our first meeting we had an attendance of 10 members and one guest. Lion Bob Fink said he would make a phone call to see if he could get us a tank of helium. Well, Lion Bob made the contact and we were able to secure helium for our balloons. So thanks to Lion Bob for his help in making our first project a success.

We had a great day at the Municipal Center. We started setting up at 10 AM. We had our pop-up tent, our balloons, and our hand outs. The following Lions were in attendance - Lion John, Lion Ed, Lion Mike, Lion Fred, Lion Lou, and myself. We gave out over 300 balloons and information to the attendees. We had a few inquiries about joining the club so we hope they contact us. We did invite them to attend a dinner meeting. It was great to look around and all you could see were Lions balloons in the air. Thanks to Lion Mike for setting this up, to Lion Ed for getting the balloons and literature ready, and to the other Lions for being there.

Like I mentioned earlier, we had a fantastic turn out for our first meeting of the year. Our newest member, Lion Bill Arfken who transferred in from the Spotswood-Monroe Lions was warmly welcomed by everyone. Lion Bill will be a great help to our club.

We reviewed our proposed budgets and they were voted on and accepted. We discussed the Community is Fair Day and announced that our next project will be Lion Fred's Big Breakfast which will start October 1 with the first "four drawers" being held at the second meeting in October. If you haven't gotten your numbers yet please see Lion Fred.

Our first White Cane Day will be held on November 17. This is the weekend before Thanksgiving so it is an ideal opportunity to be in front of the community. In order to make this work we need the help of every member. We need to have alternating Lions during the day. We can't have everyone show up at 9 AM and no one there later on in the day. This is a club project so please set aside a couple of hours when you can be there. There will be a schedule passed around at our first meeting in November with time slots. You have over a month to select a time you would like to be there. We have about eight or nine members who can support this activity, so if we could split this up in two to three hour shifts we can cover the entire day. I will be there all day, as chairman of the event, but I do not expect anyone else to do this. Let's all fully participate to make this a success. Mark the day on your calendar and set aside some time.

We have also received notification from the township asking us to again sponsor some families for the upcoming holidays. Lion Anthony will once again be handling this project but he would welcome any help he can get. Keep your eyes open for ideas to help him. This is a heartwarming project we do every year. To bring food items, clothes, and toys to needy families will weaken even the strongest person.

I would like to thank Lion Mike for taking charge of the last meeting as I was stuck in NY City with work. Unfortunately, but for a fortunate reason, I will not be at the next meeting. Judy and I are getting married on October 7 and we will be away the following week on a short trip. Lion Mike will be running the meeting and I would hope that we can keep up the good attendance at the meetings.

Keep up the good work while I am gone.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


September 2007

Dear Fellow Lions,

These letters get harder and harder to write with every term of office. I know I can always talk about Lions business but this is our club letter so it should contain more than that. Let's see, this is my seventh term as President and with one letter for every month and one at the end and beginning of each term - that means this is my 72nd letter for the Lionize. Talk about trying to think of things to say. I almost asked Lion Ed to go back to my first or second term and repeat the letters but I guess talking about the County Fair Booth, the parades, the Night at the Races, and the Pancake Breakfast just doesn't work anymore so the letters will have to be new ones.

I am happy to report that the club has been busy over the summer. We had a board meeting at my house pertaining to the committees, the budgets, and upcoming events. Let me bring you up to date.

  1. We have established and passed the Administrative and Activities Budget for 2007-2008. this information will be available to you at the first meeting in September that will be held on the 12th at the East Brunswick Chateau starting at 7 PM. There, Lion Ed will hand out the new directory.
  2. The committees have been established for the coming year. I was overwhelmed at the enthusiasm of John Ryan when he volunteered to do all the committees. After careful consideration we decided it was a little too much for one person so we divided them up among the members. I am happy to report that Lion Fred will be the chairman for the golf committee and Lion John will be his right hand man or left hand. Lion Ed has taken responsibility for the "Shop for a Cause" committee and by now you should have received your fund raising tickets. This is a great event that starts our club off in the right direction with our first fund raising event.
  3. Lion Mike will be taking care of "Out Community is Fair" event to be held on Sunday, September 16 at the Municipal Complex. This event is where we present ourselves to the community with flyers, giveaways, and balloons telling everyone who we are and what we do.
  4. Lion Mike is also taking care of our Middlesex County Fair Challenge. The Fair put out collection bottles for participating non-profit organizations. Whoever collects the most money will be given an additional $500 courtesy of Bonamici, Colletti and Company.

    If our "older" members think back - in 2000 we were still at the County Fair, and we won this prize. However, this is the first year since then that we have heard about the challenge. Thanks Mike for keeping us informed.

  5. Lion Fred will once again be doing our "Big Breakfast" event so get yourselves ready for that.

Well that covers the up and coming projects that will be starting in September. The rest of the committee names and the budget you will see in the directory. This is our 56th year in Lionism and we are still going strong for our size. Let's not forget to support the upcoming projects and I am looking forward to seeing you all at our meetings.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


May 2007

My Fellow Lions,

Back in the September newsletter, I started discussing change and how that would be the theme of my year as President of the East Brunswick Lions Club. When I talk about change, I do not mean changing regardless of the reason. What I am trying to convey is that the East Brunswick Lions Club is like a biological organism. If an organism does not change to cope with its environment it perishes. But why is it so hard to embrace change?

Actually, there is a biological reason for resistance to change. The part of your brain responsible is a tiny, almond-shaped part called the amygdala. When you hear that something changed, the amygdala, whose job is to protect the body from change, involuntarily kicks in the biochemical hormones of fear, flight or fight, telling the body, "Red alert! You are in danger."

To overcome this natural tendency, we need to calm down so that we can listen rationally. Once that adrenalin has subsided, the approach should be to sit back and understand the change, i.e., what is the problem that caused you to change the way you do things and what benefits are realized from the change. You need to realize that the reason that we are changing our way of doing things is to better serve those who need help. You should focus on the benefits to our community and our club, answering the question "What's in it for me?"

Often the change is seen as a loss of control. We work to serve others, regardless of how we go about doing it. We can and should strive to make our efforts cost efficient and effective using the resources that we have.

Over the course of this Lion's year, we tried to introduce new projects and initiatives in our club. We began a dialog with a local Boy Scout troop and had them participate in Sight Night. We offered support to those members of their troop who were becoming Eagle Scouts. We looked into a program to offer child ID kits to the public. But not everything was new. We considered having a pancake breakfast once again. We continue to show ourselves to the public at community day events. However, we are changing the way we do business. We showed podcasts from the Lions Quarterly magazine when we had our booth at the mall.

Change does not have to be frightening or a loss of control. Just as our lives constantly adapt as our personal environment changes (e.g., remember when your children first went away to school or moved out of the house), so our club changes to meet the needs of the community and refines our ability to support it.

The best way to be a change agent is to understand and believe in the change. Genuine enthusiasm about a change comes across when talking to others. Enthusiasm is contagious; it may go a long way to convincing yourself or other club members that the change is good. I hope that I have convinced my fellow Lions that our club can change where it needs to and still remain the same in the areas that count - in our fellowship, our humor, and, most of all, our dedication to helping those less fortunate than ourselves. No matter how much we change, we are still Lions and "We Serve." I thank all of you for supporting the East Brunswick Lions Club.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


April 2007

My Fellow Lions,

I tend to harp on the Lions motto, "We Serve." We, as Lions, should be proud of that motto and strive to keep it foremost in our minds as we perform the charitable acts that we do. I am not the only one who focuses on serving others. I recently took a book out of the Library titled The Power of Serving Others by Gary Morsch and Dean Nelson. I highly recommend it. It is an easy read - less than 125 pages, but I think that the words and ideas will resonate with the members of the East Brunswick Lions Club.

Gary Morsch is the founder and president of the Heart to Heart International, an internationally recognized relief organization. The founding of his organization happened because of an impromptu speech he gave at his Rotary Club when the scheduled speaker did not appear. Dr. Morsch had recently returned from a medical relief mission to Cambodia and was asked to step in and talk about his work there. At the end of his speech, he was suddenly inspired to come up with a challenge to his club.

"Why don't we, who are more prosperous than 98% of the rest of the world, find a group or a place or a project to commit to, and do something to help relieve someone's suffering?"

His Rotary Club started by refurbished a YMCA building in Belize that had been damaged in a hurricane and returned it to use as a community center, education building, and a public health clinic. That challenge kept his Rotarians involved, and provided the seed for Heart to Heart.

Dr. Morsch bases his ideology on the following premises:

  1. Everyone has something to give.
  2. Most people are willing to give when they see the need and have the opportunity.
  3. Everyone can do something for someone right now.

As a medical doctor, Dr. Morsch keeps up with research that claims that serving others is as much a part of our genetic code as self-interest is. Altruistic behavior may be a basic survival instinct. Our country is founded on such behavior. The Mayflower Compact included a pledge for all of the Pilgrims to mutually care for each other. Look at the pioneers who moved out West in wagon trains. They cared for each other on the hazardous journey across the plains. Remember how popular the Peace Corps was when President Kennedy established that volunteer organization? See how Lions Clubs are growing in third world areas?

Why don't we see the same fervor for service in the United States? In our busy world, with two spouses working, it is difficult to find the time or energy to serve others. The opportunity is just not there. However, we certainly saw Dr. Morsch's premise number two in action in the aftermath of 9/11. We also saw that people were willing to give during our White Cane at the East Brunswick ShopRite. Even though fewer people ventured out in the post ice storm weather, those who did generously donated to the East Brunswick Lions Club. I do thank everyone who participated in this event.

Many people do serve, but in less obvious ways. Just listening to a friend or co-worker vent about something going on in their life is serving the other person. S/he gets something off their chest and may feel better. The listener connects with the person and gives by doing nothing more than being there.

What can we as Lions do to help people help others? We need to make people aware of the opportunities they will have when they join the Lions. We need to make people understand that there are no special tools or education that people need to serve their community. What Lions provides is a framework and focus that helps our members see who is in need and what they can do to help. And the Lions provide a means to help people right now.

Towards the end of the book, Gary Morsch proclaims, "You can make a living, which is to measure what you get or you can have a life, which is to measure what you give." We, as Lions, live every day. We are part of something that makes a difference to a child whose parents cannot afford the cost of an eye examination as well as an organization (Lions Clubs International Foundation) that is bigger than the Red Cross, providing disaster relief to Hurricane Katrina and the tsunami victims. As Lions, we serve our neighborhood, our country, and our planet.

Give someone else a chance to "have a life." Take some time and consider who you know that is looking for an opportunity to help others. Invite them to a meeting so that they can see firsthand what the East Brunswick Lions Club does and who we are. Let's all give others a chance to join the greatest service organization in the world. That is another way that "We Serve."

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


March 2007

My Fellow Lions,

Even though the ice storm cancelled one of our February meetings, March brings the onset of Spring. Spring is considered a time of renewal, a fresh start. In Spring, a young man's thoughts turn to ... golf. Remember to support Lion Fred by getting sponsors and prizes for our eleventh annual golf outing.

As the saying goes, "March comes in like a Lion..." We will be at the Brunswick Square Mall for the 18th annual East Brunswick Community Day on March 4. We hope to show that our Lions Club is a part of the 21st century by bringing a laptop and displaying photos from our last golf outing and some podcasts from Lions International. For those of us who are not quite there yet, a podcast is a video presentation that can be put on the iPods that all of the kids seem to have. We will show videos from the Lions Quarterly news magazine. Come on out to support our club. We always meet some interesting people when we attend this event.

We will also be gearing up for our first White Cane Day for 2007 at the East Brunswick ShopRite. But just what is a White Cane Day? Here is a short history:

Blind people have used canes as mobility tools for centuries, but it was not until after World War I that the white can was introduced. In 1921 James Biggs, a photographer from Bristol who went blind after an accident, was feeling uncomfortable with the amount of traffic around his home so he painted his walking stick white to be more visible. In 1931 in France, Guilly d'Herbemont launched a national white stick movement for blind people.

In the United States, the introduction of the white cane is attributed to George A. Bonham of the Peoria, Illinois Lions Club. In 1930, a Lions Club member watched as a blind man attempted to cross the street with a black cane that was barely visible against the dark pavement to motorists. The Lions decided to paint the cane white to make it more visible. In 1931, Lions Clubs International began a program promoting the use of white canes for the blind.

Peoria passed the first special White Cane ordinance in December 1930, granting blind pedestrians protections and the right-of-way when carrying a white cane. On October 6, 1964, a joint resolution of Congress, HR 753, was signed into law authorizing the President of the United States to proclaim October 15 of each year as White Cane Safety Day. President Lyndon Johnson was the first to make this proclamation.

Today, instruction in the use of white canes is taught by schools for the blind. This includes explanations of white cane laws which state that motorists must yield the right-of-way to the blind and visually impaired.

As Lions, we need to "spring" into action and help our community. We also need to help ourselves. Spread the word and let people know what good the East Brunswick Lions Club does. Let us all try to recruit new people to join our club so that we can do even more to support the good causes that we endorse.

Being out in public at the mall or soliciting at ShopRite shows that we are a club that supports the community and gives the public an opportunity to associate a face with the Lions. We cannot sit by and have people think that those are the people who just do something with eyeglasses. We need to tell and show the story of how our club sponsors nursing scholarships; that our stat organization supports charitable activities like Camp Marcella, a camp for blind children that does not receive any money from the taxpayers; and that our International Association is the largest charitable organization on earth, doing more for, e.g., disaster relief around the world than the Red Cross. We have a good story to tell; find someone who is looking to do something for others and tell it to them. There is strength in numbers - we want to be as strong as a Lion when "We Serve."

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


February 2007

My Fellow Lions,

This is a fresh year, filled with promise and opportunity to even better serve our community. And the East Brunswick Lions Club continues to change to meet the challenge of doing as much as we can with the resources that we have to serve those in need. While we may not be able to organize a pancake breakfast, we are already beginning to work toward our annual golf outing, tentatively scheduled for 30 May. We cannot rest on our laurels - support Lion Fred in getting sponsors and prizes in order to make this year's event bigger and better than ever.

How many people read the Lions information that we receive from Lions International or the district? In this busy world, people often just glance at the Lions magazine or scan the NJ Lions newspaper. However, sometimes something catches your eye or spawns an idea.

In the last issue of the NJ Lions newspaper, there was mention of an activity that the Wewonah Lions performed that I read with interest. They found an organization to work with to distribute child ID kits. For qualified organizations such as the Lions, these kits are made available at no cost and even come with mention of the Lions club printed on the kits themselves. The kits, which include fingerprinting and DNA sampling capabilities, were distributed by the Lions to parents for their individual use.

Since the East Brunswick Lions do many activities in support of youth, we are looking into participating in a similar activity. We hope to be able to distribute the kits when we take part in the community days at the municipal complex and at the Brunswick Square Mall.

This is the type of activity that is different and a great opportunity to contribute to protecting our children. It is something that we have not done, but directly affects the community in which "We Serve."

I encourage you to read these publications and use other resources to come up with ideas for the East Brunswick Lions Club. With a little ingenuity, you can "think outside the box" and develop a project to allow us yet another way to help.

In order for the club to grow, we need to do activities that span the scope of the community's needs. Our town is a mix of generations, and the Lions need to serve wherever and whoever is needy. Whether it is a family who cannot afford to make the holidays special, a person who does not have the money to afford eyeglasses, or a child who is vulnerable to predators, the Lions see and fill the need to help. We must continue to be vigilant and spot opportunities where we can meet the challenges of those less fortunate than ourselves. This is what we are, this is what Lions do.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


January 2007

My Fellow Lions,

Well, you more than lived up to my expectations! I stated in the last newsletter that I expected everyone to attend our Holiday Party and I was not disappointed. It was fabulous to see Barbara and Bob Fink for the first time in a while. Don't be strangers - we do miss you. It seemed that everyone enjoyed the party. We all thank Howie and Jimmy for outdoing themselves in arranging the gala. I must also thank Robyn for once again coming up with unique gifts for the ladies.

Anthony Beatrice unofficially reported on the holiday gift basket activity. We are providing four families with food and gifts for the holiday season. As part of this project, Anthony screens the recipients and reports back to the township. The Lions serve by giving those in need a brighter holiday, and we let the town know of people who are taking advantage of the public by falsely claiming to be needy.

I wanted to relate a story that Alice Tomchuk told me at the party. Our club has been giving nursing scholarships for decades. Usually we award the scholarship to an East Brunswick High School student who is pursuing a nursing degree. However, Lion Fred came to us a couple of years ago with a candidate who had not gone to public school, but instead attended parochial school and was unaware of our scholarship program. This prompted us to change our process (I seem to always find a way to insert the change theme into my messages) and make sure that we include all East Brunswick resident students in our candidate screening. We also agreed to accept this woman, a neighbor of the Tomchuks, as a nursing scholar, though she was already attending college.

As you know, both Fred and Alice were hospitalized recently. This was mentioned at the church where the family of our nursing scholar also belongs. The next thing they knew, the Tomchuks see the nursing student and her family out in their yard, raking and bagging the leaves. This was their way to show their appreciation for the Lions' generosity, and gave them a chance to give something back to one of their benefactors, who were now themselves in need of assistance.

As Lions, "We Serve" is our motto for performing our charitable projects. However, it isn't often that we see that helping others is contagious. Our actions positively affect the lives of those who we touch. We don't merely give handouts in order to feel good; we are genuinely engaged in helping people help themselves. Whether it is giving a child a holiday gift that matches their interests and desires, or assisting a person who studying to be a nurse (a giving profession), the East Brunswick Lions Club actively serves in helping those in need. That is why we should all be proud to be Lions, and prouder still to belong to the East Brunswick Lions Club.

Enjoy this holiday season and may 2007 be your best year ever.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


December 2006

My Fellow Lions,

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I expect to see everyone at our Holiday Party. It is about time to replace last year's pictures, and we would like to immortalize everyone by putting their smiling faces on our web site.

I would like to thank the boy scouts, who did participate in our Sight Night activity. Though they were not able to collect many pairs of eyeglasses, they spread the word that the Lions are looking for glasses and that people can drop them off at LensCrafters and the library. We hope to work with the scouts again next year.

The holiday season is too often a time of stress; everyone is hustling about trying to finish your holiday shopping and make arrangements for visiting or hosting family and friends. I am proud that the East Brunswick Lions Club does not forget about those who "We Serve" at this time of year. Many thanks once again to Anthony Beatrice for leading our Holiday Baskets committee, where we distribute food and gifts to needy families.

While we take time off to celebrate (the only meeting this month is our Holiday Party), we recharge our batteries so that we can begin working on the Golf Outing. Lion Fred needs all of our help in keeping up the tradition of making each year's event bigger and better. See if you can get a new sponsor this year, or find a prize donor.

The end of the year is also a time of change. We did not seem to get to see the colors of the leaves this fall; with all our rain and windstorms, the leaves just came off the trees before they had their show. But the colors signify that there is change coming. The hot days of summer become a pleasant memory and we prepare for the cold winter nights. As we have said before, everything changes.

The same is true of the Lions. If you have been reading the Lions magazine from Lions International, you may have noticed all of the changes to the organization. One change initiative is the Baby Boomer Lions, where those people born in the post-war generation are being actively recruited to become Lions. For those like me who started their families later in life, the Lions have created a Family Membership program, where the entire family can become Lions. These intiatives join the New Generation Lions program, where young adults can serve as Lions members.

While all these programs are to bolster the number of Lions, it is not just about the numbers. At this time of year, we think of giving - giving to our family and friends, giving to our religious institutions, and giving to charities. For many people, there is a deep rooted need to give to others. Thinking back to when you initially joined the Lions, do you remember the feelings you had when you participated in your first activity? I submit that those feelings of satisfaction, of selflessness, and of compassion far outweigh the feeling that you get when you write a check to your chosen charity. The act of giving and doing for those less fortunate than ourselves provides you with much more.

What Lions International is doing by creating these recruitment programs is to furnish more people with the opportunity to join the world's largest service organization, to supply an outlet for people to give back something to the world that they live in, and to experience the wonderful feelings that come from that giving. Acting as a Lion is a selfish matter as well as a selfless affair - we do good and we feel good about it. It is true what Lions International is saying in their Baby Boomer campaign - we do finally have the opportunity to change the world.

Some of our members cannot participate in delivering the holiday gift baskets. When they see the recipients' faces, they understand what it means to be needy and what it means to be thankful for the Lions' help. Our nursing scholarship recipients send us letters describing what it means to become a nurse; the feelings that they get when they can help a sick or injured person recover. And our nursing scholars are thankful to the Lions for our help in making that possible for them. Giving and taking are two parts of the whole. Today's Lions Clubs are not the pure altruism of the 1960s. Lions are men and women who unite to give practical assistance to those in need. The baby boomers wanted to change the world. By being a Lion, they can do just that. But they also do something more - they change themselves.

I wish everyone a happy and healthy holiday season. May we all change only for the better.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


November 2006

My Fellow Lions,

It was great to see everyone back at our last meeting. Lion Fred, here's to your full and speedy recovery. Even though you weren't too steady on your feet, you managed to give us four draws. Thanks Ann for making more meetings. Better late than never. We appreciate your company and input.

Alphonse Karr said: "The more things change, the more they remain the same." Though I tout myself as a change agent, many of my suggestions are simply getting back to the roots of the East Brunswick Lions Club. One case in point is that we are planning a return to the VFW next year for a Pancake Breakfast. This was a long time favorite project for our club, but we have not held this event for many years. What is new is the VFW hall, and that we are partnering with local Boy Scout Troop 223 to ensure the fundraiser's success.

The Boy Scouts are also working with the club on Sight Night. The troop will be collecting eyeglasses as they trick or treat this Halloween. We distributed notices that the boys will be hanging on their neighbors' doorknobs in advance, publicizing the troop and the Lions.

Speaking of publicity, please visit www.geocities.com/eb_lions. We have renovated the website and have joined a Lions webring. A webring is a collection of websites joined by a common navigation system. For those who are not so computer literate, it means that people who are looking for Lions websites can easily go from one Lions site to another using the webring. Thus, we should get a lot more visibility from those interested in Lions. The next step is to try to get an award for an outstanding website from those who manage the webring.

So what do we do with all of the eyeglasses that we collect from Sight Night, The Library, and Lenscrafters? Lion Dave takes them to the NJ Training School for Boys (NJTS) at Jamesburg. NJTS is the Juvenile Justice Commission's largest facility currently housing approximately 300 male juveniles. It was opened in 1867 as a home for troubled youth. Today's residents range from 12 to 23 years of age with the vast majority of residents being 16 to 18 years old.

The primary focus of NJTS is to provide care, treatment and custody for juveniles committed by the courts and to create programs that will rehabilitate young offenders. The Training School offers several unique vocational opportunities including an optical lab program which teaches juveniles to craft eyeglasses. NJTS supplies eyeglasses to all juvenile and adult residents in the state. Through this program, several youth have received jobs with optical employers after their release. We can be proud that the East Brunswick Lions Club helps provide the raw materials for recycled glasses and aids in the rehabilitation of the boys. Hats off to Lion Dave for continuing to lead this project.

I also want to extend my congratulations to Lion Howie for his receipt of the New Jersey Distinguished Service Medal for his tour in Vietnam. This medal was originally issued in 1858 for distinguished service in the NJ Militia but was infrequently used until Governor Thomas Kean re-authorized it in 1988. The name of our organization is also an acronym. LIONS stands for Liberty, Intelligence, Our Nations Safety. We are proud to have a club member who epitomizes working for Our Nations Safety.

We may be small in number, but you can see that sometimes we forget all of the things that we do as members of the East Brunswick Lions Club. Sure, we have major events like the Golf Outing, which requires a lot of time and effort from all of our members. However, activities like Sight Night and the year round eyeglass recycling may not take much effort, but their impact can be great. Let's keep up the good works and grow in number so that we can do bigger things for our community, our state, and our country.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


October 2006

My Fellow Lions,

I was gratified by the attendance at our first meeting of the Lions year. It was good to see and catch up with our members, listening to the good and the bad. We learned that John Ryan's wife Jo had a medical procedure, but she is doing fine now. Lion Dave continues to attend our meetings, and is recovering nicely.

Among those who could not attend was Lion Lou. Lou, we hope and pray that you recover and return to your Lions family soon.

As I mentioned in the last newsletter, our club has hit the ground running this year. We will begin our public appearances on Sunday, October 8 at the East Brunswick Cultural Festival held at the Municipal Complex. Our booth will include Lions information, balloons, and other giveaways. We successfully completed selling the Macy's Shop for a Cause! discount tickets. Many thanks to the Lions who participated in this project and I hope that those who purchased the tickets found some great discounts. This month, we will work with children in collecting old eyeglasses for Sight Night. When the kids say "Trick or Treat" on Halloween they will also ask for glasses.

We are also considering other projects for this Lions year. One proposal is to participate in International's Lions Young Leaders in Service Awards program, where young people, ages 12-18, who have completed at least 50 hours of community service are presented with certificates for their efforts. This project could provide the club with high visibility in the community with minimal cost. These are the types of projects that we need to examine - those that match the club's membership and budget.

Again, I encourage all members to make suggestions for projects that make a difference in the community, and maybe allow us to have fun while "We Serve." Come to a meeting and let your voice be heard. As a Lions family, we can all share in your enthusiasm for a fund raiser or service project, we can build on your ideas to improve them and achieve more success than you may have imagined - as long as we do it together.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


September 2006

Dear Fellow Lions,

I mentioned in my acceptance speech at the installation dinner that my position at work entailed being a change agent. The model that we use for process improvement or change is called the Capability Maturity Model Integration(R) or CMMI(R). This model was developed by a consortium of government, academia, and industry and is used extensively in government contracts. The CMMI is composed of items known as Process Areas; these are major areas where, if you follow the practices in the model, you will be following best practices from the last forty years and have a much better chance of being successful in providing the product or service to your customer. Two of these Process Areas are Project Planning and Project Monitoring and Control. These are keys to project success.

If anyone was able to get through that first paragraph, I will now tell you what this has to do with the East Brunswick Lions Club. Our club is small in number yet strong in service. How do we achieve this? We follow the best practices that have made us successful over 55 years of community service. Can we continue to do things the same way we did them 30 years ago when we had 55 members? Of course not. We need to adapt our practices to reflect the number of members we have. There is strength in numbers, but to retain the same strength with fewer people requires planning and foresight.

At our Director's meeting, I could see that our club officer's understand and exhibit the foresight to allow our club to excel. We made some difficult decisions regarding the budget and will put into motion actions that will allow us to track our costs to the budget so that we truly know that we are getting the most "bang for the buck" - serving East Brunswick and the Lions communities as best we can with the resources we have. We have taken some of the best practices from the Project Planning and Project Monitoring and Control Process Areas of the CMMI and have adapted them to our club. For those Board of Director's members who were at the meeting - my last statement is true. You may not have known how to spell CMMI, but a best practice is nothing more than common sense, which you have no lack of. Thank you for a successful meeting and your support.

Fellow Lions, we are hitting the ground running for this Lions year. By the time you read this letter, you will have been contacted concerning our Macy's Shop for a Cause promotion, where we sell discount tickets to Macy's stores and earn money for our Nursing Scholarship. We have registered to participate in the Community is Fair Day at the Municipal Complex so that we can educate East Brunswick as to the work that we do and have done for over half a century. And on a different level, Lion Howie has once again offered his house for a Lions picnic - something that we have not done for several years. I hope to see all of you and your families there.

As you can see from this letter, one of my themes for the Lions year is change. We do not want to change for the sake of change, we have to strategically change where necessary to provide the same level of service to those less fortunate than ourselves. Our Board of Directors is seeing that it happens this year with the East Brunswick Lions Club.

Being open to change also means that we need ideas for strategic change. I invite everyone to make suggestions for ways that we can do more for our community. Once we get used to embracing change for the correct reasons, these changes can energize and revitalize the club.

Finally, for those who managed to make it through this rather long letter, thank you. Part of my job at work is to write a monthly process improvement newsletter. I tend to concentrate my thinking on change in order to create articles for the newsletter. My hope is that this letter affected you in some way. You may disagree with my ideas. If so, I expect you to do so in the open forum of our meetings where we can share our ideas and opinions. I would like those of you who do agree to share your feelings as well. I previously used the bromide that there is strength in numbers. Together, the East Brunswick Lions Club cannot fail in any undertaking. Let us change for the better together.

Yours in Lionism,

President Mike


May 2006

Dear Fellow Lions,

Wow what a fantastic meeting. Oh you missed it? We had it on Wednesday, April 26th at the East Brunswick Chateau (in case you don't know where we hold our meetings). Anyway it was a great evening. We started the meeting with five members, missing Uncle Fred who couldn't be there, but while Secretary Ed was reading the minutes, in walks Lion Dave Prestup and his wife Jane. You heard me right - it was Lion Dave. What a surprise to see him up and about. He looks great and he had a smile from ear to ear. Jane said you could not keep him away from the meeting.

After greetings from everyone, we sat down to continue the meeting and after the minutes were read we continued into our Board reports and had Lion Dave do our final reading of the slate of officers for next year. Absolutely fantastic. So if you weren't there, you missed it.

After the meal, we went through our committee business and Lion Ed had a report from Lion Fred on the golf tournament. We are still looking for golfers. Let's all do our best to bring in the golfers and look for sponsors or gifts to give away. This is our Tenth Anniversay Tournament, so let's all take that extra step to make it a hug success and help out Lion Fred.

We already have one applicant for the nursing scholarship for next year so we know the school is doing their part in getting the information out to the students.

Our second White Cane day was a success as reported by Lion Lou with thanks going out to East Brunswick Shop Rite for their help.

As mentioned earlier, we did the final reading for the new slate of officers and Lion Secretary Ed cast the one ballot. The following is the slate of new officers:

PresidentMike Barnett
Vice PresidentAlfred Tomchuk
SecretaryEd Spinella
TreasurerLou Samaro
Lion TamerJim Clark
Tail TwisterDave Prestup
Immediate Past PresidentHoward Adams

Let's all support the new slate of officers for 2006-2007.

Incoming President Lion Mike asked if everyone would remain on the same committees and we all agreed to that and Lion John (that's Lion John Ryan) volunteered to be on all the committees. See that is what we need, more of that good old enthusiasm.

On a sad note, I am sorry to say that this will be the last Lionize for my term in office. I know I don't have to tell you how much I appreciated all your efforts this past year.

Lion Mike reported on Installation Night which is June 14th at 7:00 PM. The meal choice is either Prime Rib or Catfish Supreme. We hope to see you all there.

In closing, let's all make a concerted effort in making next year another successful one. This is our 55th Successful Year so let's keep up the tradition.

My enthusiasm and love for this club and Lions will never dimish. I hope the same is true for you. Have a great summer, keep a smile on your face and be well.

Lion Dave, thanks for making it a great evening and keep going strong.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


April 2006

Dear Fellow Lions,

Goodbye, March. Brrrr. I think we were spoiled by the fantastic weather we have been getting and then along came March. I guess the old saying, "Beware the Ides of March" holds true.

As cold as it may be, we will not let this dampen our spirits or our enthusiasm for our ongoing Lions work.

I was away on a business trip for the first meeting of the month but Lion Mike filled in for me and did a great job. Thanks Mike for always being there.

We had six members at our last meeting on the 22nd and I still can't find those few missing members. We all know that work doesn't allow some of us to make all the meetings but the end of the year is coming to a close very fast and we would like to see you make some of the meetings. Other members have stated that they can now make more meetings, but they are still missing in action. Everyone in the club, not just myself, thoroughly miss you at our meetings.

Some urgent news

A few weeks ago, Lion Dave was involved in a serious car accident and is currently in Kessler Rehabilitation Institute. If you would like to send Dave a card his address is:

Dave Prestup
c/o Kessler Rehabilitation Institute
1199 Pleasant Valley Way Room 111-1
West Orange, NJ 07052

Dave would love to hear from you. Lion Dave, our prayers and best wishes are with you and your family. Make a speedy and complete recovery. You are an important part of our family and we miss you. I know you did not want to do the new slate of officers for the upcoming year, but you didn't have to take such drastic measures not to do it.

Seriously Dave, relax, recover, and come back to us soon.

Okay, back to Lions business.

Golf Tournament

Lion Fred reported that he has received confirmation from EB GMC about the Hole in One sponsorship, he has spoken with Laffin Chevrolet about being a sponsor, he has received a great sponsorship from The East Brunswick Chateau, and is looking for more. We all know Lion Fred will never stop looking for sponsors so if you have any way of helping out with a sponsorship for this, our Tenth Tournament, please contact Lion Fred. Let's also get the golfers for the tournament. There are a great number of prizes this year so let's fill up the starting times with golfers.

You will notice that in the coming month or so there will be announcements about our upcoming events in the local paper thands to the efforts of Lion Mike. Mike has been sending in notices to the paper and we are waiting for them to appear. Lion Mike will also be doing an announcement for the local cable TV channel.

White Cane Day

Lion Lou is looking to fill up the roster for the next Lions White Cane Day. It will be held on 8 April at the East Brunswick ShopRite in the Mid-State Mall. We will be starting at 9 AM and running until Lou closes up shop. Lion Lou will be calling all of the members so please donate a couple of hours to make this a success.

Installation Night

Preparations have been made for Installation Night to be held on 14 June at the Chateau. The menu will be Prime Rib or the famously prepared Catfish Supreme. Mark this date down on your calendar; the dinner will start at 7 PM.

While I was in England on business I had the opportunity to meet with the President of the Cambridge Lions Club. We spent time talking about our clubs, our projects, our membership and the struggle to get new members, his enormous pin collection and the awards he has received for designing Lions pins. Since he is a tour director for the American/British Air War Museum at Duxford, I was able to get a free tour of the facility. The Cambridge Club sends us their warmest greetings and considers us a sister club. They are struggling as we are to maintain membership; they only have six members at the present time. We are all going through the membership hard times but like us they have fund raising events during the year where they raise a lot of money for local charities and approved projects. It was a pleasure meeting with them and I hope to visit with them again.

That's all the news to report at this time.

We all know what the upcoming projects are so let's do our part in supporting them.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


March 2006

Dear Fellow Lions,

Another month has passed us by and we are hard at work with new projects.

Of course, Lion Fred is pushing everyone for the golf tournament. Lion Fred has made inquiries to East Brunswick GMC for the Hole In One sponsorship, Sports Authority, Dicks Sporting Goods and Laffin Chevrolet, just to mention a few. He still wants more golfers and more sponsors, so let's all go that extra step in helping Fred make this Tenth Anniversary Tournament something special. Remember that every member is part of every committee, so let's all do our part in helping out.

On 5 March we will be at the Brunswick Square Mall with our annual table at Community Day. We will hand out information to members of the community about our club and look for prospective new members. We all know how hard it is to get new members so we must take advantage of every situation we can to attract them. Lions Ed and Mike will be in charge of this event so if you can spare some time, stop by and help out.

The date for our second Lions White Cane Day is 8 April at the ShopRite in the MidState Mall. Lion Lou will be getting touch with everyone to set up times so mark this day on your calendar. We have a great location and it is the week before Easter so it should be a busy shopping day.

We had seven members come out to our last meeting and another great evening. Once again the Chateau outdid themselves with the great catfish dinner. I am still looking for a few missing faces at our meetings. You know who you are so please try to make the next meeting. Unfortunately, I will be out of the country on business but Lion Mike will be running the meeting for me. Thanks Mike.

Lion Dave will be preparing the slate of officers for next year so if you want to volunteer for a new job, please contact Lion Dave. Lions Lou and Ed, you have no choice in jobs. You are going to keep doing the job you have now forever and ever. Like I was told, "Keep doing it until you get it right."

Watch the next few editions of the local paper for news articles about our upcoming events. Lion Mike will be sending in information to be published but sometimes it gets delayed getting into print.

I will be visiting with members of the Cambridge Lions Club in England and bring along some of the old state pins I have collected. I will give them to their members on behalf of our club. Lion Ed, please credit me with a meeting attendance. We know how strict you are with attendance.

That's about all the news there is. Hope to see you all upon my return.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


February 2006

Dear Fellow Lions,

Here we are, already into the second month of the New Year. Where does the time go? The holidays have passed and I guess we are all thankful for the mild weather.

At our last meeting we had nine members - a great turnout. Thank you, thank you, thank you. It is great to have such a large group present for our meetings. We get so much more accomplished with everyone's input. The meetings are livelier, we have laughter, and as always, great meals.

We don't normally acknowledge the fact of how great our meals are. "Thank you Jimmy, Russ, and your staff for the great service."

Our committees are active, especially our golf chairman Fred. Now that he has lost all his drawers he will be on everyone's case to get golfers, prizes, gifts, and ads for our 10th Annual Golf Tournament. We have secured East Brunswick GMC as our Hole in One Sponsor again, so now we can concentrate on bringing in the golfers and ads. Lion Fred is working hard to make this a special tournament so let's do our part in helping make it a success.

We will be having another White Cane Day sometime in the near future at one of the sites in East Brunswick. More news will follow shortly about this project.

Lion Fred gave a final report on his Big Breakfast and as always Fred did a spectacular job. Even though we hear him complain he always goes that extra mile to make it a success. Thanks Fred for a "Job Well Done."

We are always looking for new memebers so please keep this in front of your mind, not in the back part.Along with that we are waiting for a few more members to come out to the meetings. We miss you.

Lion Lou reported there is nothing new to report on the International and State level but we still have a few outstanding dues. Please, if you haven't sent in your dues yet, please do so.

If anyone has any news or reports you would like published in the Lionize please get in touch with Lion Ed.

Hope to see you all at the next meeting.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


January 2006

Dear Fellow Lions,

Guess what? Another year is rapidly coming to a close. Another chapter in our 54 Year existence. Another year where we have followed the Lions Motto, "Helping Those Less Fortunate Than Ourselves." What a great feeling that is. What a better feeling knowing we are still going strong in all of our activities. Sure we have made some changes here and there but they have all been for the better. Let's take a moment in our hectic life to remember East Brunswick Lions Members and members of their families that have passed away.

So, where were you on Wednesday the 14th? I know where most of you were but we were missing a few. Most of us were having a fantastic evening of togetherness at the Chateau with our annual Holiday Party. Great food, great fellowship, laughter, friendship, and plenty of smiles. Great job by Lion Dave for putting the meal together. Once again Lion Mike did a fantastic job with the gifts. I don't know if Mike did the work or if Robyn did the work but "Thank You" both for a great job. We had ten members show up and it was great to see Rich Kadash that evening. So with guests and friends we had 18 people at our party. It is hard to explain the feeling that comes from being together with friends and fellow Lions. I have always said that we may be small in number but when we get together there is nothing we cannot do as a group. We have so much to be proud of for what we do in our community. STAND TALL FELLOW LIONS.

Lion Fred gave up his four drawers that evening. It must have been cold going home that night. We also had some gifts by Lion Ed and myself and the club. Those pens are a hot item. I spoke with Lion Anthony that evening about our Holiday Family and he said he is well on his way to getting everything we need.

Congratulations to Anthony and Jamie on their new baby. Hey Jamie, still going down like water?

We didn't do any business except to turn over $347 to Lion Lou from our White Cane Day. Many thanks again to ShopRite for their help in making it a success. They have also said they would help out with our Holiday Family baskets.

Keep in mind, our 10th Golf Outing coming up next year. Let's all try to get a sponsor and maybe some golfers. That's about all there is to report until next year ... except that it is rumored that Lion Fred may have a date for our Golf Outing. Come to our January meeting and find out.

To all my fellow Lions Club Members, to their spouses and families I would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and a Safe and Happy New Year. Thank you all for being Lions.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


December 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

November has come and gone and with its departure the summer months are behind us, but we are already hard at work for next summer. I will explain more about this later on in my letter.

We only had one meeting this past month but it was a great meeting. We had a very good turnout for the Governor's visitation with nine members in attendance. Thank you to all the members that came to the meeting. We may be small in numbers but gigantic in strength.

Governor Eddie Hui visited us along with Mike Butrica from the Milltown Lions Club. Governor Eddie thanked us for being able to visit with us and gave us greetings from International President Ashok Mehta. He also passed along some great information for our club to use. The Governor invited us to send a letter to him that he can put in his newsletter and gave us some new pamphlets we can use to give out to prospective memebers. He also presented me with a Multiple District 16 banner and new state pin.

We briefly went over our club business with reports from Lion Fred on the upcoming golf outing next year. Preparations are being made and we would really like this to be a special tournament since it will be the Tenth Anniversary Golf Tournament. We are looking for donations and sponsors for the tournament. Please keep this event in your mind and help wherever you can. More information will be available shortly. We have confirmed four participants that will be visiting us from the UK for the tournament, so let's all do our part to help Lion Fred make this a great tournament.

Lion Fred also had four drawers at this meeting.

Lion Dave reported on the great success of the Walk for Juvenile Diabetes held October 30th at Cook College. Lion Dave also reported that he will have about 1000 pair of eyeglasses to give to Jamesburg School that he has collected from LensCrafters and from fellow Lions. Good job, Dave.

Lion Ed read a letter sent to the club from Marianne and Roger Hall, who visited with us at our last meeting in October. It was a letter thanking us for the outpouring of friendship and warmth that made them feel right at home with us. This warmth that we showed them is what isbringing them back next year to our Golf Outing. Good job, fellow Lions.

Lion Dave also made a report about our Holiday Meeting, which is our one and only meeting in December. It will take place on December 14 and this will be an invitation to bring your wives or sweethearts out for a night of fellowship, warmth, and laughter. The meeting will start at our regular time. Please try and be there for our last meeting of the year.

Wishing you all the best during the upcoming Holiday Season. From my family to your family, be safe, be happy and continue keeping your spirit up as a Lion. As District Governor Eddie said at our meeting, "You have been a Lions Club for over 50 years so you must be doing something right. Whatever it is, keep doing it.

Hope you all had a Happy Thanksgiving and see you on December 14.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


November 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

Here we are into our fall season, leaving October on an upbeat note. Why an upbeat note? If you don't know, then you missed the last meeting. But let's backtrack a little.

We only had one meeting in October because our first meeting conflicted with the Holidays. So our last meeting was a Board of Directors meeting and a Regular meeting.

Now you want to know why it was special. My company had some visitors from England that I brought to the meeting, Marianne and Roger Hall. What a fantastic evening of fellowship we had. The club went out of their way to welcome them and make them feel at home. They were so impressed with our group of Lions and the work that we do they purchased two "Big Breakfast" tickets from Lion Fred and promised to be back next year to participate in our golf tournament. Roger will be bringing three of his golfing companions with him to make up a foursome. The evening was filled with laughter, good food and fellowship. On the way home from the meeting, they could not stop talking about what a wonderful evening they had and how impressed they were with all the projects we do with our limited membership. If you missed the meeting, you missed a fabulous evening. As was told to me by at least two members, "We need to do more of this." I truly believe this will enlighten our members and strengthen our effort to continue our hard work.

We went through a lot of business at the meeting and here are some updates. Lion Mike Barnett has put an article in the Sentinel about our upcoming Halloween Project, Sight Night. I hope you all had a chance to read it. It was a great article and should be an eye opener for anyone who reads it.

We will be having our first "White Cane Day" on November 12 at the Shop Rite on Prospect Avenue in East Brunswick. (A tentative date for next year is March 18, 2006). Mark the date down and let me know if you can spare an hour or two to be there. I would like to know by the next meeting so we can put a schedule together. Help is needed as we will be short handed.

Lion Fred had six drawers at our last meeting. Not one, but six. That's a lot of drawers. As always, good job Uncle.

Lion Dave mentioned that there will be a walkathon on October 30 for the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation at Cook College. A few of us will try and attend to help out where we can.

Lion Lou reported that the International Convention that was to be held in New Orleans has been moved to Boston. Boy, from Louisiana Southern Cooking to Baked Beans! We all extend our best wishes to everyone decimated by the horrible storm. We know Lions International is there donating time and monies to aid individuals. We are always there when needed.

Let's see, who did we forget with a committee report? How about Lion Fred with a golf report? We are going to have a fantastic Golf Tournament next year. Not only will we have participants from overseas but we will have some new sponsors also. Lion Fred is already hard at work lining up prizes and sponsors. Every year it grows and grows and new ideas emerge. Great job as always, Fred.

Well that's about all for now.

Wait, I'm not done yet. We will only have one meeting in November on the ninth due to the Thanksgiving holiday and one meeting in December on the fourteenth because of the holidays. Please try to attend these meetings. We miss having everyone together, especially before the holidays.

Hope to see you all at the next meeting and hope that everyone is in good health.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


October 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

We have just finished our first month of our 54th year in Lionism and we have already completed one project. Where you there? If not, let me tell you what it was.

On Saturday, October 24th we were at the 31st annual Village and Street Fair held in the "Oldest" section of East Brunswick or what was once part of Old Bridge. Lions Ed Spinella, Lou Samaro, Mike Barnett, Fred Tomchuk, Dave Prestup and myself were there talking to the residents of East Brunswick about our club and what we can offer the residents. It was truly a magnificent day, with a cool breeze, bright sunlight and an excited group of Lions, ready to spread the word. Unfortunately, the attendance was less than anticipated from the previous years. There were other activities in close proximity to East Brunswick that drew away the participation. Overall it was the opportunity for our club to partake in an East Brunswick town function and re-introduce ourselves to our neighbors.

We have completed two meetings this past month. The first meeting had a great attendance and we would like to see this continue and grow. All our activity chairmen are hard at work with their projects so be prepared to volunteer your help.

Our next project will be a White Cane Day so look for the date to be announced.

Don't forget our Holiday Baskets coming up. Ideas are always welcome.

In keeping this short, I would like to see you all at the next meeting.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


September 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

Well, another year has passed and another job well done by last year's officers and members. We may be small in number but we do a big job year after year. My congratulations for a great year to Lion Dave Prestup.

This will be a new experience for me to serve you as President but I feel I can do a good job. Why do I feel that way? Because I know the support that I can get from my fellow members. I have also taken on this responsibility to push myself into being more active. My work has made it difficult for me to make all the meetings last year. But this year I am rededicating myself.

I have discussed some new projects with the board at the July meeting at my house. There is a Street Fair coming up on the 24th of September that we will participate in. We will set up a table and have some pens and other gooodies to hand out with literature about our club.

I will also be calling on some "distant members" to get them back into the activities of the club. As always, we need to be watchful for new members and not to shy away from asking people if they would be interested in joining the club.

I am not going to make this a long letter because you know I say what I have to say in as few words as I can.

Let's keep our enthusiam up, our sights set high and our fellowship strong.

Yours in Lionism,

President Howard


May 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

TICK. TICK.

TICK. TICK. TICK. TICK.

It's happening again -- TICK. TICK. TICK. and difficult to stop it from occurring...so why bother

TICK.

We are continuing to move on and work to make it better for all.

To those who got to celebrate Easter or Passover with your family and loved ones, I hope you had a joyous time for all. It is a very special time of year. Both holidays give us a chance to reflect on how lucky we are to come together and REMEMBER.

Important dates: Mark them on your calendar.

The New Jersey Lions 84th Annual State Convention is at the Doubletree Hotel in Somerset, NJ.

The 8th Annual Lions International Convention will take place from June 27 through July 1 in Hong Kong. It will feature several of the traditional favorites - flag ceremony, parade, international show - as well as new events like the International Academy Awards Banquet and a number of complimentary tours. If you have attended a convention in the past, you are aware of the pride that is felt throughout the event and look forward to the annual pilgrimage. If you haven't why not???

Of importance to us locally, we have been working diligently on our 9th Annual Golf Outing on June 1 at Bunker Hill under the leadership of Lion Fred. News has it that if some lucky golfer gets a hole in one - four chances to do it - s/he will win a new car or other fabulous prize. This promises to be the best golf outing to date. So, I am asking all of us to step it up and turn it up. Your help and assistance is of the utmost importance to ensure its success. I know that this year will be the best year ever. I am confident that we will shine.

As always, I am urging all of us to continue to be on the look out for prospective members. It is vital that we continue to be on the look out for them. Once found and enlisted in our cause, they make us viable and of greater impact to those we serve.

Lions Information and Noteworthy Projects

Peace Poster Contest

"Peace Without Borders" is the theme of the 2006-2006 Peace Poster Contest. Lions clubs can sponsor the program in their community for children in local schools or organized, sponsored youth groups. Students, aged 11-13 on November 15, 2005 are eligible to participate. Through the contest, students are encouraged to visually depict their interpretation of the contest's theme. Anyone interested in chairing this project????

Lions Environmental Project

Every Lion (from a club in good standing) can enter a photograph of his or her immediate surroundings into the club-level Lions Environmental Photo Contest. Winning photographs will advance through the district and multiple district competitions to the international contest held during the Lions International convention. Would anyone in our club like more information???? If so, let's hear from you.

Tick ... Tick ... There goes that sound again. It seems that I am not able to get it to stop.

I am very proud to serve as your President.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


April 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

I heard it ... tick ... it's a sound that keeps on sounding off ... reverberating in my head. I cannot stop it, so ...

It is there if you will just take notice ... Enclosed for your perusal are some very special and noteworthy messages for us Lion members taken from Dr. Tae Sup Lee, Lions Club International Foundation (LCIF) Chairperson tlee@lionsclubs.org

  1. One of the true gems of the LCIF website are the fact sheets on donations, grants, major projects, and resources. These fact sheets are concise, up to date summaries of LCIF's activities and projects. They enable you to get a good grasp of LCIF in a matter of minutes.
  2. Lions worldwide continue to donate funds to LCIF for tsunami relief. Donations currently total US$3.5 million, and Lions have pledged another $3 million so far. This unparalleled generosity will allow LCIF and Lions of Southeast Asia rebuild schools, home and orphanages. Thanks to Lions, children and adults who have endured a terrible tragedy will be able to rebuild their lives.

Around the district from Zone Chairman Bob Virgadamo comes the following news:

  • The 4th District Cabinet meeting takes place on Monday, April 21 at the Spain Inn in Piscataway. The meeting will start promptly at 7 PM.

Last but not least is the news on the home front.

  1. Thanks to all you Lions that showed up on March 6 at the Brunswick Square Mall and helped with the Community Day activities. A job well done by all who gave of their time.
  2. Lion Lou Samaro has been working diligently and has confirmed that our Springtime White Cane event will take place at the Spotswood ShopRite on April 9. Give him a shout and lend your support; we will be collecting from 9 AM until 1 PM.
  3. I am excited to announce that our Golf outing is off to its best start ever. Lion Fred and committee members have been working very hard to ensure a day of fun for all in attendance. If you know any golfers, sponsors, additional give-aways or anything to assist us in this project, your support will be greatly appreciated.

As always, we need you to come out to our meetings and make your voices heard. I know that we make a difference in so many ways, providing assistance and helping people, causes, etc. so that the communities "We Serve" are much better off.

Tick, tick. Hear it ... I do.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


March 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

Well - there it goes again - it's a sound I have heard before but with a different and unique ring to it. If you listen closely I am confident that you too will recognize it. Just close your eyes and ... listen for it.

At our meeting held this past week several noteworthy events are scheduled in which you can participate:

  • Saturday, March 5 - Our annual District 16D Charity Ball will be taking place at the McAteers restaurant, Somerset. NO tickets will be sold at the door. The price includes hors d'oeuvres and dinner. There will be dancing until 11 PM. Plans are to have a megaraffle that will generate fun and excitement and a lot of charity money. A fun time for all.
  • Sunday, March 6 - The annual East Brunswick Community Day will be held at the Brunswick Square Mall. Set up time is 10 AM. If you could spend an hour or two, why not show up and lend a helping hand.
  • Wednesday, June 1 - Our ninth annual Golf Outing is being held at Bunker Hill Golf Club. I heard from a reliable source that a celbrity golfer might be planning to make an appearance if his schedule permits. (His initials are AT).

    Give Lion Fred a call to lend your support. I am certain that he would appreciate it.

  • Wednesday, June 8 - Lion Mike Barnett is planning for the best ever Installation Dinner for the club officers for the 2005-2006 Lion's year. Last year's event was great and all in attendance had an evening of fun and enjoyment.
Additional Newsworthy Activities

Canine Hearing Companions

Canine Hearing Companions, Inc. of Vineland, NJ, founded in 1992 and a MD 16 State Lions Project, is the only hearing dog center in the NJ-PA-DE tri-state area. This organization rescues dogs from shelters and trains these dogs to be the ears for deaf and hearing-impaired individuals. The program also involves the Fairton Federal Correctional Facility where inmates are taught to handle and train these dogs.

Lions Clubs International/United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Lions Clubs International is working with UNICEF and its School-In-A-Box Program to address the educational needs of children affected by the recent tsunami in South Asia. UNICEF estimates that 1.5 million children in the region are in critical need of basic care and support. Lions clubs, through the donation of School-In-A-Box kits, can help children in adverse circumstances to continue their schooling. Each kit provides essential school supplies in emergency situations for an instructor and up to 80 students.

Lions Clubs International's support of the School-In-A-Box Program has made a difference in the lives of thousands of children around the world. Individual Lions or Lions clusbs wishing to donate toward the purchase of kits can make out their checks directly to Lions Clubs International Foundation, earmarked School-In-A-Box. Each kit costs US$188, although contribution may be made in any amount. Every year the association presents UNICEF with a check of total donations at Lions Day with the United Nations.

Worldwide, more than 120 million children lack the opportunity to attend school. Many Lions and Leo clubs have generously donated School-In-A-Box kits, providing desperately needed educational opportunities. Thank you for giving help and hope to children in need.

For more information, you can email the Lions Services for Children.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


February 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

I hear it again - TICK...TICK... and just as loud as ever before. And I thought it had gone away, but ... it got even louder.

Here's hoping that all of you and your families will have a healthy and prosperous New Year.

2005 has arrived and we are ready to take charge and go forth. With half of my term as President over, I am looking forward to the completion of some new and old projects that we will be hosting.

Lion Fred Tomchuk has begun working again on our Ninth Annual Golf Tournament, schedules to take place on Wednesday, June 1 at Bunker Hill. I am certain that with Lion Fred at the helm and the support from our membership, that this year will be the best of years for us. He is in need of much help and will be looking for our support and assistance in any are you could offer. Why not spread the word - GOLFERS WANTED ... Do you know anyone???? Hole Sponsors are also desired, as well as Prizes for the participants. Give Fred a call and lend him a hand.

Our club still is listening for some new ideas that might occur. Let your voice be heard at one of our meetings and make it become a reality. Who knows - it could have a major impact on someone's life, affect a positive change, and/or make our communitities a better way for all.

With all of the problems facing us in the world, "We Serve" surely can help reduce and even eliminate many of the ills that are mingled within our lives. I believe that we can and do make a difference.

Just recently we witnessed on our TV sets and heard all over the radio how over 225,000 people died in what might have been one of the world's most deadly of disasters. Lions around the world are providing support and assistance to the tsunami victims. As of January 3, Lions Club International Foundation (LCIF) has issued 17 emergency grants totaling US$170,000. In addition, Lions have also approved Major Catastrophe Grants totaling over US$250,000.

LCIF has also created the South Asia Tsunami Disaster 2004 Fund where we Lions and others wishing to help are welcome to support. Donations will be forwarded to the affected areas for both immediate and long-term needs of the victims. Further information can be found on our Lion's International webpage. I will keep you abreast of information as we hear of any new developments.

Other interesting tidbits that note mentioning include the celebration on January 13 of Melvin Jones' birthday. Let's blow out 24,600,000 candles for SightFirst. That's how many people have been given the precious gift of sight thanks to SightFirst. Since its inception in 1989 to battle preventable blindness, we Lions have restored sight to 4.6 million people through cataract surgeries, have prevented serious vision loss for 20 million people, and improve the eye care services for hundreds of millions. So, the next time you put on your Lions vest, attend a club meeting or perform community service as a Lion, go ahead and take an extra measure of pride in being a Lion. You deserve it.

On January 24, many Lions will celebrate World Peace Day. Lion's International encourages us Lions to honor this day in ways consistent with local customs and cultural practices. This day provides an opportunity for Lions to promote world peace. Why don't we consider holding a kick-off event to sponsor a school for the Lions International Peace Poster Contest for 2005-6.

An Interesting Story

While on my winter vacation from school, and recuperating from a very bad fever and cold I saw one of the most moving stories on a TV show hosted by Jane Pauley.

The story focused on a very rural community located in Whitwell, Tennessee, population 1800. It involved the eighth grade students of the middle school in an after school project learning about the Holocaust. It focused on how prejudice and power in the wrong hands can have catastrophic results.

The student body consists of about 425 students who are mostly Christian with vey little cultural diversity. The entire student body has only five African-American students. Those five students represent all of the cultural diversity in their community. With the support of their teachers, school administration, and their community, the students began studying a history lesson that they had never learned before - the Holocaust. In August, 1999 teacher Linda Hooper and Vice Principal David Smith held a series of meetings with parents and convinced them to support these lessons.

The first class began in October, 1999. Ms. Sandy Roberts, the eighth grade English teacher, was chosen to lead the project with Mr. Smith acting as supervisor. She began by reading to the children from Elie Wiesel's Night,The Diary of Anne Frank, and history books. However, many of her students were having a hard time understanding the magnitude of the Holocaust when it was taught that 6 million Jews, as well as thousands of Gypsies, Rues, people who had a disability, etc. had died under the merciless tyrannical had of the Nazi oppressors.

The students had never seen 6 million of anything. So to help them better visualize just how many 6 million was, they came up with the idea to collect 6 million paperclips. The Paperclip Project had begun. What did this have to do with the Holocaust? Being Jewish I felt anxious to find out and see how paper clips played an important role in history.

Students chose paperclips for two reasons. First, during World War II, Norwegians wore paperclips on their clothes to show their opposition to their captors and the anti-Semitism being displayed. Secondly, paperclips symbolized holding things together within their country that was occupied by their enemies.

The eighth graders in Whitwell began asking everybody they knew for paperclips. They sent letters to celebrities and even created a web site. At first they received lots of clips. Many came with letters from people with Holocaust stories to tell. Every Wednesday after class, the kids would count the arriving paperclips and read the letters aloud. By the end of the school year, they had received only 100,000 paperclips. Then the momentum died. The project might have died too, were it not for Lena Gitter, a Washington Holocaust survivor, and hers friends Peter and Dagmar Schroeder, journalists who cover the White House for a German-langurage newspaper group. They decided that they would write a story for their Austrian and German newspapers. At first, their editors in Germany were reluctant, but soon gave their approval for them to write the story. At the time, newspapers were filled with stories about demands for reparations from German companies that had used slave labor during World War II.

Soon after the story was published in Germany, paperclips, lettes, poems, and even works of art poured into the town of Whitwell. To house the paperclips in a fitting venue, the students came up with a novel idea. Why not put them into some kind of container? Then one of the students discovered a museum in Germany that had several cattle cars used to transport victims to the concentration camps. What a perfect symbol!

The Schroeders offered their assistance in procuring one of the railcars. They traveled to the small town of Robel, north of Berlin, where the railroad museum is located. They found a cattle car that had been used to take prisoners to the camps. It was built in 1917 and was found after the war near the town of Chelmno, Poland. The Schroeders managed to convince the curator of the museum to sell the cattle car for $6,000. Thus began the lengthy process of transporting and sending back the cattle car to the United States.

The railcar arrived at the port of Baltimore on September 9, 2001, and was refused entry. Customs officials were stymied - there is no category in the department rulebook for historic wooden railcars. Then the Department of Agriculture stepped in. The car was made of untreated wood and might be a carrier of un-American insects. The Schroeders had lived in Washington long enough to know how things worked. They called a rabbi friend in New Jersey. The rabbi called his uncle, Representative Benjamin Gilman, who got the final approval from the Secretary of Agriculture that the railcar would be inspected and approved for entrance into our country. From there the cattle car was hoisted onto a truck for the final leg of its journey. It arrived in Whitwell on October 5.

For the next month, volunteers worked on the railcar and the little park surrounding it. The memorial was dedicated on November 9, 2003 - the 63rd anniversary of Kristallnacht, the "Night of Broken Glass" when Nazi-inspired gangs smashed windows and looted Jewish homes, stores, and synagogues in Austria and Germany. The entire town came to the dedication. Dinitaries spoke. Dagmar and Peter Schroeder and kids from the eighth grade class talked. A Hebrew school class from Atlanta came to say Kaddish, the Jewish prayer of mourning.

The Paperclip Project had finally become a living tribute.

Eleven million paperclips now reside behind plexiglass walls - for the 6 million Jews and 5 million others killed in the Holocaust. The Schroeders' book rests on top of one pile of aperclips. On the other side of the car, a battered suitcase sites on top of more paperclips. A class of German schoolchildren filled the suitcase with letters of apology to Anne Frank. Then they sent it to Whitwell to be part of the Children's Holocaust Memorial.

... There is a saying that from the smallest acorn a mighty tree can grow. We, as Lions, can and do make things grow. We sometimes forget how much we can affect someone or something. I can vividly remember the smiles we gave to some at our annual County Fair soccer ball kick or ring toss booths or the laughter and joy at the basketball games between us and the New York Giants. I still recall the happiness and excitement during the Day at the Races we held for mentally challenged adults. Remember the "thank you" we receive for delivering food baskets and toys to those less fortunate during the holidays, and getting a thank you note from a nursing school student who is very grateful for the Lions nursing scholarship? I am certain you too can remember that special gift we gave to someone ... Do you remember???

Thank you for bcoming a Lion ... Thank you for caring and helping ... I am proud to be your President.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


January 2005

Dear Fellow Lions,

Tick...Tick, I still hear it. Don't you????

It's hard to believe, but a New Year has begun; the old one has ended. Half of my term of office as your President is over. This past year is now history, filled with so many exciting, interesting, unusual, aned even troublesome times and memories for all of us to forego.

As I reflect upon the past several months of my tenure as your Prisident I cannot believe that it went so fast. Where did the time go??? It is certainly true that time marches on and waits for no one.

I trust that all of you and your families had very joyous holidays with the celebrations of Chanukah, Christmas, and New Years. Time well spent with family and friends is always the best.

Our Holiday party held on December 15th was a huge success. All in attendance had a night of fun and enjoyment thanks to the fantastic job by Lion Mike Barnett, assisted by his lovely wife Robyn. Lion John Ryan, as usual, had us all in stitches with his great humor and wit. He is leaving again to go away on business. Have a great trip - we look forward to your safe return and for some more good stories to enjoy.

While we were celebrating the holidays, Lion Anony Beatrice his wife Jamie hosted a very successful food delivery to some of the neediest families in our town on Sunday, December 19th. It made me feel how fortunate I am for what I have.

Now with the New Year upon us we begin anew. What will it be like? Will our year be as memorable as our past year or years gone by? I am looking forward to the remainder of my term, as an exciting moment to continue our mission To Serve.

Much more needs to be and can be accomplished. I will continue to strive to make you - our membership of our great organization, residents of our communities we serve, and to the people we are helping be proud of me as President of our club. It is a task that you have entrusted in me when you elected me as the head of your organization. I thank you for your trust and confidence. Tick... Tick... There it is. I hear it even louder than before.

Now let us continue where we left off. There is so much to be done. I am getting ready. Are You?

Yours in Lionism,

President David


December 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

Tick. Did you hear it? No, just listen closely. Tick,tick..... Keep listening and I am sure you will hear it.

I hope all of you and your families had a most enjoyable Thanksgiving. I surely did. We all have a lot to be thankful for. Wouldn't it be great to celebrate Thanksgiving every day? Sometimes we tend to forget how lucky we are, and what we have. We take so much for granted. Do we really see or hear?

At our last meeting, we had District Governor Al Brewer pay us a visit. It was extremely gratifying to hear how our club is recognized by other clubs within our District 16D. Another highlight of his presentation was a brief history of our club for the past 53 plus years, especially noting the date when we were chartered in 1951.

Lion Ed read a most informative letter that we received from our nursing scholarship recipient Ms. Erika Goldman. She is going to make us proud and become an exceptionally great nurse upon her graduation. I am quite certain that the medical field is going to be quite fortunate to have a person of her caliber join their ranks. She is quite a remarkable and talented young lady.

We are still waiting to hear from one of the township engineers on the status of the cornerstone plaque at Welsh Park that was in place when your club was in its infancy, over 45 years ago. At that time, our club donated to the residents of East Brunswick a wading pool. If we can retrieve the plaque, we would like to donate it to the historical museum for all to see the remains of one of our prized and cherished projects.

Please be advised that our annual holiday party is scheduled to take place on December 15. Lion Mike Barnett is working extremely diligently in maiking this evening a great time for all. We are looking ofrward to seeing everyone attend. So mark it down on your calendars, and try to make a concerted effort to be there. Give Lion Mike a call and let him know your choice of meals. It promises to be an evening of fun and enjoyment.

We also had at our meeting a special guest of Lion John Ryan, Mr. Dan Zigby. Dan happens to be a member of the Anaconda Lions Club. Anaconda is approximately 150 miles west of Idaho in the state of Montana.

Don't forget about our Holiday Basket Drive in which we will be delivering food baskets to those in need. Lion Tony Beatrice and his lovely wife Jamie are coordinating the efforts and making the difference for several less fortunate families within our area.

Last week I received an interesting phone call from the LensCrafters store of East Brunswick. for the past several years they have acted as an eyeglass depository and recycling source for us, usually collecting 350 to 500 pairs of eyeglasses annually for us to deliver to the Jamesburg Training School. There, in their state of the art eye lab (a program set up by the Lions of District 16D), they recycle the eyeglass frames and make new lenses for any inmate in the state penal facilies whom are in need of eyeglasses, saving the taxpayers of NJ the expense. It is one of several vocation they offer to teach inmates while they are serving time. Other vocations that the inmates can choose include upholstery making, embroidery, graphic arts, and a GED degree if one should desire pursuing it. When I arrived at the store they informed me of their attempts at making this past month a banner month for eyeglass donations. The results were amazing to say the least. They collected over 1200 pairs of eyeglasses! More to follow...

They also informed me about a new campaign entitled Hometown Day, in which they would like to team up with us and help supply up to 25 families who are in need of eyeglasses. They will offer a free eye screenin as well as fitting for any pair of glasses at no expense to the family. To date, we have contact the East Brunswick and New Brunswick school systems, resulting in receiving 11 families who are in need.

On behalf of my family, we wish each and everyone in your family a vey Happy Hanukah, the merriest of Christmases, and the Happiest of New Years. May this coming year be the year of Peace and Prosperity for us all.

As you can see we are involved, but we still would like to hear more ways we can make a difference. Let your ideas be heard... And perhaps you too will hear the sound... Tick, tick... Do you hear it now?

Yours in Lionism,

President David


November 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

... And it continues to tick...

The clock is still ticking...

Time moves on, not stopping, not waiting... it just keeps going forward. We, as Lions, are determined to make that time count. We can make things happen.

However...

If we cannot gain your support for these projects planned during the next few months, it will not come to pass. We need you to rally around our efforts and make them happen.

Thanks to Lion Lou Samaro for a great job of chairing our White Cane and to those Lion members wh came out and worked the two day event.

It was a huge success. We will be hosting two more in the spring.

Kudos to Lion Mike Barnett and to his daughters for collecting eyeglasses as part of "Sight Night" during the Halloween evening festivities. Our Big Breakfast is off and running successfully due to Lion Alfred Tomchuk. You still can get involved, so give him a call and lend your support. He will really appreciate your efforts.

My thanks and appreciation to those wh cam out on Sunday, October 31st at Cook College and helped with the Mid Jersey Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation's Walk to cure Diabetes. Over 1200 walkers attended the walk (the largest walk to date), raising additional monies for the cure for one of the most dreaded diseases we know.

Two other events are worth mentioning to add to your calendars. Lion Anthony Beatrice is hosting our Holiday baskets drive for some needy families in our community. This project is a fantastic way of helping someone less fortunate than ourselves.

Anthony will be seeking donations, so why not give him a call and offer to lend your hand in making the event a most memorable one.

Lion Mike Barnett is planning our annual holiday party. Even though it is almost two months away, he would appreciate any additional assistance you could offer him. Give him a shout with any ideas.

Please note that in November we only have one meeting. For this meeting, we will have a visit from our District Governor, Al Brewer. Come and see what other Lions are doing within our district to make a difference. Lastly, on bahalf of my family, we wish to each and everyone of your families a very Happy Thanksgiving.

Remember ... Time keeps ticking...

Yours in Lionism,

President David


October 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

The clock is ticking ...

Those of you who did not attend the last Lions meeting missed a wonderful evening of fun, interesting scenarios, and many kinds of surprises. As I wondered what to say to all of you in this month's issue of Lionize, it became crystal clear to me of what I could write.

We as Lions provide a valuable service to the communities we serve without any fanfare, notoriety, and/or publicity. How does one measure:

  1. Pairs of donated used eyeglasses, recycled and given to Jamesburg Correctional Prison in Jamesburg, New Jersey. These glasses go to their optical laboratory, where offenders can learn the craft of making eyeglasses, and thus get prepared for a new career once leaving the prison. The lab was set up over 50 years ago by the Lions Clubs of our District. Who knows, but perhaps a pair of glasses worn by you or someone you know might have been made by one of the students who learned their craft while serving time in prison.
  2. Seeing the smiles on the faces of mentally challenged adults, after winning on a horse race.
  3. Offering to help a college bound student who will study and eventually enter the field of nursing.
  4. Delivering food baskets during the holiday season to those individuals less forunate than ourselves and exhibiting the true meaning of the holidays.
  5. Using the District 16D Eyemobile for eye screening and discovering a person who has glaucoma or a cataract.
  6. Raising much-needed funds for a variety of charities and causes.

Plus much more, with much to follow.

Events are being planned for club members to participate in. It can and will occur. It is only with the support and assistance from you - our membership - can these events reach even highter heights imaginable. Below is a listing of a few upcoming events that we all can participate in the upcoming months.

Our annual White Cane event under the capable leadership of Lou Samaro will be held at the Spotswood Shoprite on October 17th from 1 until 5 PM. Pencil it in your calendar books and give Lou a call. I am quite certain that he would be most appreciative of your help and support.

Another event planned is the "Walk For The Cure" for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation of Central NJ, held at Cook College Campus on Sunday, October 31 from 9 AM until 2 PM. Not only do they need walkers for the event, but they need volunteers to help at the checkpoints, help with food preparation of breakfast and lunch, handing out of snacks, face painters, and counting the donations. Last year's total amount raised exceeded 150 thousand dollars. It was a great time for all.

Lion Fred has handed out to all of us our "Big Breakfast" information that will raise additional sources of revenue for our club.

As you can see, your club is actively getting involved with our community. Your input and time is essential if we are to become successful.

Remember, the clock has begun ticking.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


September 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

The clock is ticking and the time keeps moving as our new year begins again.

We, the members of the East Brunswick Lions Club, are ready to take up the challenge to look for more ways to answer the call to serve those whom are in need of our services. Ask yourself - are you ready????

Throughout our 53 years of being in existence, we have never hesitated to help a person in need of glasses, have provided scholarships for nursing, hosted a Day at the Races for mentally challenged adults, delivered holiday baskets for someone less fortunate than ourselves, and helped otheres wherever possible, plus much more ... whenever called upon to help or give assistance we were ready and eager to go forward and do what needs to be done.

At the 87th Lions Club International convention held this past July, newly sworn in President Clement P. Kusiak, from the Brooklyn Baltimore Lions Club reiterated that whenever there is a need at home or around the world Lion members are there to help. These words have a special meaning for me. As your newly elected President, I will to the best of my ability continue to strive to make our club a viable and successful entity within our community and county. One that will be recognized.

For that reason, I am challenging each and every one of us to look for ways we can achieve that goal. Ways we can achieve it and make it happen. ARE YOU READY???

I am and I look forward to gain your support in making this happen. Let the clock begin...

Yours in Lionism,

President David


June 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

Our Golf Outing was a huge success. Thanks to all who came out to support this event.

Thanks to Lion Mike for providing a gala evening as we inducted our officers for the coming Lions year. A good time was had by all, and I got the chance to thank all of our club for working so hard this year. I look forward to leading you again in the coming year, where we will be doing even more to help those who cannot help themselves.

Have a safe, happy and healthy summer and come back to our meetings recharged and full of ideas.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


May 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

I trust that all of you had a happy Easter and a joyous Passover holiday.

Spring has finally arrived, the flowers are starting to bloom, and the days are getting longer. Now that the weather is changing for the better (hopefully), it is time to shake off the winter chill and spring forward.

Please Save These Important Dates

  • June 2nd - at the Bunker Hill Golf Course - Our annual golf outing under the capable leadership of Lion Fred Tomchuk will occur. It is important that we, as a club, give our full support by getting golfers, prizes, sponsors, etc. in order to make this event the best ever. I am very confident that this year will be even better than the years previous. Lion Fred would appreciate any additional assistance you could offer.
  • Sunday, October 2, 2004 - We will be showing off our new Eye Mobile with the latest equipment for testing glucoma, cataracts, and/or eye problems at the historic district in East Brunswick. More information to be followed shortly in our next newsletters.
  • Plans are underway to host our second White Cane event at the Shoprite Supermarket in Spotswood sometime within the next two months under the capable hands of Lion Lou. At our first meeting in April, he reported that on our March 27th White Cane Day, we raised over $350. Kudos to Lion Lou and all those Lion members who came out to support our worthy cause. We could not have succeeded if not for your support.

As you can see in our newsletter, your club is in the midst of a restructuring process. Please note that we still need your support to make this process work. If there are any committees that you would like to be on, and/or perhaps be considered for, kindly contact your officers and let your voices be heard.

Finally - Your Lions club can light the fire of world service. All it takes is your idea to start the process to become a reality. Why not get the ball rolling????

Your idea can make it happen.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


April 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

Did you realize that our club is part of the world's biggest service association, with over 1.4 million members in 182 countries and geographic areas?

That We Serve - and answer the needs that challenge the communities of the world. We attempt to tackle tough problems like blindness, drug abuse prevention and diabetes awareness. We also try to improve the quality of life in our local communities by building parks, supporting hospitals, rescue squads, and help our local youth programs...

For over 85 years, wheneve there is a need at home or around the world, Lions members are there to help - WE SERVE...

I bring this to your attention simply because I sometimes need me to remind myself of all of the remarkable things we, as Lions throughout the world and in around our community are attempting to achieve.

We, as Lions, continue to strive and make our communities a better place to live.

For over 52 years, members of the East Brunswick Lions Club have unselfishly thought of others, and provided many valuable services to the residents of our community.

You can be very proud of these achievements that we have accomplished. Much hard work and dedication from all of us made it happen. We Make a Difference, and I am glad that we are part of the solution.

Keeping that in mind, I would like to thank Lion Lou for his help in the White Cane project we held on 27 March.

Lion Fred is working very hard to make our golf outing a huge success. Not only do we need workers for the 2 June event held at Bunker Hill, but we also need golfers as well as volunteers to solicit hole in one sponsors, donations of prizes, etc. Give him a call and lend him your support.

Again I ask you to try to get another friend, colleague. etc. to become part of our great organization and join us. So many things still can be achieved. With your help, it will become a reality. Thank you for your efforts.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


March 2004

Dear Fellow Lions and Lion Friends,

Last night at our regular meeting, plans were discussed for three projects, which need the support from all of us.

  1. On Sunday, March 7 we will be setting up at the Brunswick Square May from 11 AM til 4 PM an informational booth on ourselves and hopefully getting our message of whom we are and what we do for our community. Why not come out and join us? Who knows - we may even get some additional persons to join our great organization.
  2. Under the capable direction of Lion Lou Samaro, we will again be hosting our White Cane project on Saturday, March 27 from 8 AM til ... at the Spotswood Shoprite. I'm quite certain that Lion Lou could use your valuable support and assistance. Give him a call.
  3. Plans are underway for the largest money-maker for our club. Lion fred Tomchuk is again chairing our golf outing, which will be at Bunker Hill on June 2. Not only do we need golfers for the tournament, but we also need sponsors and donations in order for us to be as successful as we were last year.

I am urging all of us in the club to band together and come out and support all of these projects. With your valuable assistance, we will be able to succeed beyond our imagination. It truly takes a united effort by all of us working untiringly til the task is successfully completed.

We still are in need of new members. I am quite certain that if we ask a neighbor, church member, friend, acquaintance, colleague, buddy, chum, etc. that we can gain members.

Lastly, your club is in need of ideas of things that we could do to improve the quality of life around our respective communitites. I really thing that one of us could come up with a suggestion that would have a major impact on our society and make the difference in some small way in making this place called home better.

So ... let your voice be heard. Speak up ... and sound off. You can make a difference. We as East Brunswick Lions have been doing just that for the past 52 plus years ... and we will not be silenced.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


February 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

A happy and most of all a very healthy New Year to you and your families for this upcoming year.

For those of you who missed our second meeting last month, you missed the comaraderie and friendship of our fellow Lions from the Milltown Club. It is most pleasant to me when we as Lions can get together and enjoy and exchange ideas with one another on how to make our place of residence a better place to live for all. Several noteworthy ideas were brought forth and discussed, and perhaps may be attempted in the spring. All in attendance had a fun time.

By the way, do any of you have any idea(s), suggestion(s), or plan(s) that you may want to see come to fruition? Why not bring them up at one of our meetings for discussion, and we could brainstorm and make it happen. If you are unable to attend our meeting, pass your idea(s) off to one of us officers so we may consider undertaking such an endeavor.

REMEMBER - the most difficult of anything planned starts with a single idea.

Let's hear your idea(s).

I received an interesting telephone call the other day from Camp Daisy. While going through their records, they stumbled by accident upon information regarding our club being involved with the Mentally Challenged Adults within their program.

Several years ago, one of our former members, Kevin Foley, involved us in "A Night at the Races". This turned out to be a club favorite with each and everyone. It became one of our most enjoyable and worthwhile projects to do. All of us whom attended can attest to that. I am quite certain that many of us 'old timers' warmly remember the event and the joy which was exhibited throughout the event.

Evidently, Camp Daisy is interested in us hosting a similar event for the Adults enrolled in their program. More details to follow.

In February, why not come to our meetings in order to hear the latest ideas to come about?

As members of the Lions Club, please note that LCIF has been forming new partnerships with corporations and foundations. This will allow us to help more people while limiting our own costs. For example, LCIF has partnered with Johnson & Johnson on the Sight for Kids program. More than 600,000 children in the Far East and Southeast Asia have been screened so far for eye disease.

Lions around the world are also involved in a variety of other activities to improve their communities and help people in need, such as assisting the hearing impaired, providing diabetes awareness and education materials, working on environmental projects and developing youth programs.

I am looking forward to the second half of my term as President, and with all of your help and assistance I am confident we will succeed in improving the lives of many whom are in need of our services.

LET OUR VOICES BE HEARD ...

Yours in Lionism,

President David


January 2004

Dear Fellow Lions,

I trust that Santa and Chanukah Harry delivered to you and your family members all the gifts that were asked for as well as desired. It is further hoped that you all celebrated and had the happiest of New Years. May this coming year be the best ever to you, your family and to your friends.

It is hard to believe that half of my term as President of our great organization is completed. A special note of appreciation to several members who have been working hard to make our year more memorable. Lion Fred Tomchuk is again successfully running the "Big Breakfast" campaign. If you have not signed up for it, there still may be time to join in the festivities.

We thank Lions Mike Barnett and Jim Clark for their super efforts in making our December 17 Holiday Party a huge success. The food was great, as well as the fellowship that was present. I am quite certain that all in attendance had a fantastic time.

Also over hors d'oerves Lion Ed Spinella recited and delivered a most impressive, moving, and unusual rendition of a literary piece of literature for all of us to take note of. It contained a very special holiday message to each one of us.

As a wise sage once said, "One must be present to enjoy the fruits of the presenter." If you missed the reading you still can enjoy the message by reading it in its entirety here. Maybe with a little coaxing we can prevail upon Lion Ed to read it again at one of our future meetings, or perhaps do a recital (Ha, Ha, Ha).

Another great time was had by all on December 21, under the capable direction of Lion Tony Beatrice. The selection of needy families for holiday food baskets makes one truly aware of how lucky we are for what we have. We sometimes lose sight of this and forget there are many whom are not as fortunate and able as we are. Thank you Lion Anthony for keeping us focused on our mission - WE SERVE.

Lastly, I would like to commend all of you Lions that have continued to come out and support the activities we have planned for this upcoming year. The success or failure of any project depends upon each and every one of us.

I am quite confident that within our 'special' group of volunteers that there are more successful missions that we all will proceed to venture. So let your voices be heard. We do make the difference.

On behalf of your officers, we ask all of you to try to attend our monthly meetings. For our first meeting in January, we will be hosting a joint meeting with our friends from the Lions Club of Milltown. Lion Anthony also promises that we will have another interesting program to hear. I will look forward to seeing you there on January 14.

Yours in Lionism,

President David


December 2003

Dear Fellow Lions,

I trust that all of you and your families had a fantastic Thanksgiving celebration, as I most certainly did.

Perhaps we should all take a moment and reflect upon being thankful for what we have and what we have received.

It appears to me that all too often we sometimes forget this important message and tend to make it less important than it really is. Being thankful for our family, friends, and others is the true message that one should celebrate not only for Thanksgiving and/or other holidays but also for each and every day of the year.

Please note that District Governor Art Roedel visited our club at our last meeting. It was an excellent meeting, one in which all in attendance enjoyed immensely. Art is a great friend of our club and we wish him the best during this year.

As the holiday season approaches, please keep in mind two noteworthy items to place on your December calendar agenda and team up with your Lion membership.

What better way to celebrate the festive holiday season than to team up with Lion Anthony Beatrice and help with the delivery of holiday food baskets with all the fixings to those families who otherwise would not be able to celebrate it. This year should be bigger and better than years previous. Give Lion Anthony a call and lend your support to one of our notable of projects. Your support would be greatly appreciated.

On December 17, we will be hosting our annual Christmas/Chanukah Party at the Chateau with our Lion families and friends. Both Lions Mike Barnett and Jimmy Clark promise to make it an evening of fun and frolic for all who attend.

I look forward to seeing all of you that evening. Why not come out and celebrate with all of us?

On behalf of my family and myself, we want to wish all of you a very joyous of holidays, and the happiest of new years. May this year be prosperous, healthy, and most of all peaceful to your families, relatives, and friends.

Have a safe and wonderful New Year. See you at our holiday party and/or in January at our next meeting.

Yours in Lionism,

President David