Clubs Clay County Democrats

The Clay County Democrats held their April meeting of 2002 at noon on April 10 at the Pro's Restaurant. The meeting was called to order by co-chair Allen Johnson. Reports covering recent activities were given. Among the guests introduced was local Democratic office director, Anna Koerner. Koerner was recognized by the group for the honor of receiving the prestigious Truman Scholarship. She will use the award to continue her studies in Washington, D.C.

Koerner was recognized for her work as a page in the South Dakota Legislature, her work in previous campaigns, and for the good job she is presently doing as office manager. Brenden Richards, Hub City, was also introduced as a candidate for the Clay County Commissioners. Richards is a life-time resident of this area and mentioned that he is renovating the family home and is the fourth generation to live in that house. Previously, he worked at the USD Foundation and is currently employed in Yankton.

Guest speaker was Jim Hutmacher, Oacoma, candidate for the governor of South Dakota. Hutmacher cited his previous service which includes 15 years as a school board member in the Chamberlain area, and election to the State Senate in 1994. During his second term, he became the Democratic whip for the Senate and is the Democratic leader of the Senate.

Among the strengths he listed as his qualifications to lead the state of South Dakota, he stated that he understands the need for funding and is a firm believer in local control. While education is his number one priority, he also lists concerns regarding agriculture, value-added industries, and economic development.

He feels that we need to appropriate adequate funds to enable communities to discontinue opting out of formula funding. He also feels that a vehicle for creating new businesses would be a good goal to accomplish. The formation of a group Entrepreneur Development Council, EDC, was a resource he would like to see developed. This would give individuals a source to explore when they wanted to research whether or not a business could be implemented in South Dakota.

He also feels that a state bank similar to the one developed in North Dakota would be valuable in that the state bank could underwrite loans to aid new business ventures. Many concerns were mentioned including health care and prescription drugs. Hutmacher told the group that he would immediately institute an "open-door" policy for the governor's office and conduct an audit of the state's fiscal affairs.

He also mentioned mistakes made in the juvenile correction system and the closing of the facility at Plankinton. As far as making any pledges that there would be no new taxes, Hutmacher addressed problems which could come up that would make that an undue hardship for the citizens of South Dakota. Such things as the Spencer tornado, water damage to roads, etc., were mentioned. Hutmacher addressed many problems and talked about how he would address those problems.

After a question and answer period, the group was reminded about the "Come Home America" dinner to be held in Mitchell on April 20. This day will honor South Dakota's native son, George McGovern. The day will be dedicated to his efforts to represent our state in an honorable fashion and in honor of his efforts to eradicate world hunger. State candidates will be introduced. The annual Clay County Democratic banquet will be held on May 23 with a social hour beginning at 5 p.m., banquet at 6 p.m. with speakers and an auction to follow. Tickets are available from Clay County Democrats. If you would like to be called and reminded about morality meetings, please let your co-chairs know.

Vermillion Beautiful, Inc.

Vermillion Beautiful, Inc. met April 11 at 7 p.m.

The minutes of the last meeting were read and approved, as was the treasurer's report.

Old business: Fund raising for the flower planting project is still ongoing. Judy Clark, president of Vermillion Beautiful, Inc. spoke to both the Lions Club and Rotary.

Discussion turned to reviewing planting plans. The flowers, mulch, and peat moss will be purchased from Hy-Vee, the low bidder.

Judy showed the map where various groups are signing up for different plots. More individuals are needed who will come Saturday morning May 18 at 9 a.m. to help plant the unassigned beds and the large flower pots. We may try to do more places along Cherry Street which are in the public right of way.

Joe Hoffman brought soil preparation and planting instructions for the group to look over. We will need to have the plots tilled and the soil amendments worked in the week before the planting date. On Saturday, May 18, pick-ups will transport the required number of plants to each bed. Judy has been contacting the churches and organizations to take responsibility for individual beds.

Recognizing the individuals and groups who plant the flowers may be done in two possible ways. There may be a marker in each bed recognizing the group responsible for perhaps one empty store window may have a display for that purpose.

New business: Judy told about a new program at the university where students are required to give so many hours in volunteer projects. She will suggest a Vermillion tree inventory where the trees in the right-of-ways are identified as part of a "Living in a Quality Environment" category.

Members divided the list of contributors who gave so far this year in order to send thank you notes.

The next meeting is 7 p.m. May 9 at the Austin-Whittemore house. If you are interested in helping with projects to make Vermillion a more livable city, please come to the meeting. Vermillion Beautiful, Inc. meets the second Thursday of each month.

Vermillion Rotary Club

Vermillion Rotarian Bob Grossman addressed his fellow club members at Tuesday's noon luncheon to share a pilot's view of the effects of Sept. 11's terrorist attacks. Grossman, a Vermillion pastor, also owns an airplane and has logged hundreds of hours in flight.

"We're angry at those who perpetrated this terror but we're also frustrated that the aviation industry has had to bear the brunt of the burden of government reaction to these events," he said.

Grossman noted that terrorism, the taking of innocent lives, can never be justified. He added that it's impossible to foresee all of the methods terrorists may use in the future, particularly on an airliner. That's why he favors making airliners' cockpits secure, and arming pilots so they can defend themselves.

He hasn't limited his flying to only his own plane since Sept. 11. "I would take an airliner any day," he said, "because the security is much better than before. We need to concentrate on keeping hijackers off of airliners."

Vermillion High School students visiting Rotary this week were Nicole Veitz and Ben Williams.

Coyote Cubs

The Coyote Cubs 4-H club met Sunday, March 17, at the 4-H center.

President Shelli Knutson called the meeting to order. The roll call topic was "Your Favorite Winter Pastime." The secretary and treasurer's reports were read and approved.

A community service report was given by Amanda Aga. We discussed the donation we made to "Relay for Life." Then we made decorative Easter centerpieces, which we donated, to the Senior Citizens Center.

We also made a club project of etched glass. We each brought the glass object of our choice, then etched it with a stenciled design. We now have a project ready for fair.

There were no club demonstrations, due to the club project.

Hosts were Kate, Emily, and Julie Renner.

Our next meeting will be on April 21, at 6:30 p.m.

Tony Hubert,


Country Gals and Guys 4-H club

Our meeting was at the 4-H center on Oct. 14. The election of officers took place. We elected the following officers: president � Meagan O'Connor, vice-president � Brittni Stewart, secretary � Michelle Rydell, community service � Colette Joy, and reporter � Stacey Joy. Two practice photography judging took place. Everyone is to bring cookies for recognition event.

Our meeting was at the 4-H center on Nov. 20. Meagan O'Connor called the meeting to order. Meagan O'Connor led the flag pledges. We discussed record books as old business. Our new business was our plans for Christmas community service. We discussed that the SESDAC Banquet benefit needed servers. Meagan O'Connor adjourned the meeting. Iris Rydell gave a demonstration on snowman soup.

Our club met at the 4-H center on Dec. 16. The Country Gals had a Christmas party with our parents. A potluck was held, and party subs were catered. Everyone enjoyed a white elephant gift exchange. We made a food basket for the food pantry as our community service that month.

The Country Gals 4-H club met on Jan. 14, at the 4-H center. We went to a SESDAC group home. We met some very neat and fun ladies. We played the game Jenga with them, and had a lot of fun.

Our February meeting was canceled.

On March 11, our club met at the 4-H center. Meagan O'Connor called the meeting to order. Angela Rydell led the pledges. Our club talked about the SESDAC banquet; which was held April 6. Our club members will be servers at this event. We made cookies for practice for county fair. This way we found our what the judges are looking for, by making the cookies.


Stacey Joy

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