The Vermillion Rotary Club held its weekly luncheon meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 27, at the Neuharth Center on the USD Campus. President David Hussey opened the meeting and Rotarian Dameon Donahoe gave the invocation.
This was followed by a round of singing, announcements, and the introduction of guests, which included two students from Vermillion High School who told us a little about themselves and their plans for the future.
President Hussey introduced April Jungwirth as our speaker for the day. Ms. Jungwirth is a junior biology major at USD. Since the start of her college career at USD, the Habitat for Humanity organization has been a large part of her life.
The USD Chapter is composed of more than 40 students who enjoy involvement in community service. Some of the projects they have been involved with include: Meals on Wheels, Welcome Table, Spaghetti Supper, volunteering at the Siouxland Habitat for Humanity in building houses, and spending their spring break working in a community in the U.S. with Habitat for Humanity.
Their spring break earlier this year was spent in Biloxi, MS, and their next spring break will be in Los Lunes, NM helping to finish 18 houses there.
Ms. Jungwirth stated that Habitat for Humanity has touched lives in other communities. Why not here in Vermillion? Her challenge to the Vermillion community is to assist in building a Habitat for Humanity house in our community.
"When everyone comes together great things can happen. We can make a difference. That is why we are here," she said.
The first step, she said, is to hold a community meeting to see if there is interest in pursuing such a project. This meeting is scheduled to take place Sunday, Dec. 2, at the UCC Church at 3 pm. She said that if the Vermillion community were willing to take on such a project, Siouxland Habitat for Humanity would be willing to help.
There would have to be three committees formed: a Site Selection Committee, a Family Selection Committee to screen applicants, and a Fundraising Committee. In addition to finding a site and finding a family that qualifies, a minimum of $35,000 would need to be raised.
The family would have to be residents of the community, have a stable income level, live in substandard conditions, and fit the current year's income requirements. The family would be required to volunteer to work a certain number of hours on another Habitat house, invest at least 250 hours in their own home, and make mortgage payments which would be interest free even though the funds have been donated. In addition, the community would have many ways to get involved.
The USD Chapter is already working with the city to explore possibilities.
4-H Club makes holiday plans
Jolly Juniors and Juniorettes met Nov. 13 at the 4-H building. President Jackie Hulse called the meeting to order. Ellen Hanson gave the secretary 's report and Brittany Hanson gave the treasurer 's report.
We talked about the recognition event on Sunday, Nov. 18 at 2 p.m. at the 4-H building.
Community service projects for November are making Christmas cards for Operation Military Kids, donating a Thanksgiving food basket to a needy family in Vermillion and making Thanksgiving centerpieces for the community Thanksgiving meal.
In December we will ring bells for the Salvation Army at Wal-Mart and we will donate a baby food basket to the new year 's baby.
Our next club meeting will be Dec. 3 at 6:30 p.m. at Vermillion Assisted Living. We will sing Christmas carols and then return to the 4-H building for a Christmas party.
Demonstrations were done by Ellen Hanson on a first aid kit and Marley Hanson on fudge brownies. If you are interested in 4-H, contact the Extension office at 677-7111.
Ladies ' Auxiliary conducts meeting
The regular meeting of the Ladies ' Auxiliary to Clay Post #3061 was held Tuesday evening, Nov. 20, with President Delores Gregg presiding. Roll call of officers was taken and recorded. Chaplain Opal Smith offered the opening prayer.
Minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved. The treasurer 's report was filed and accepted as read. Correspondence included General Orders #5 – Connie 's Communique.
Thank-you notes were read from The Veterans ' Hospital for 168 packages of microwave popcorn, a phone card for Seth Erickson and funeral lunch after prayer services for Dick Zimmerman.
Reports were given on Buddy Poppies – we sold 397 poppies. We made 65 table favors for the nursing home using 521 poppies. Cards were mailed to members, Hospital Equipment on Loan, Road to Recovery, Hospice, cribbage playing at Nursing Home, Voice of Democracy had 22 entries – winners were from Irene-Wakonda School. Our VFW Auxiliary will pay half of Voice of Democracy prizes. Patriot 's Pen winner was Sydney Kronaizl and a monetary gift was mailed to her.
VFW Auxiliary played bingo at the nursing home with 20 players and gave them prizes and served lunch. Plans are to make homemade candies for cheer plates and two-dozen cupcakes for the Welcome Table on Jan. 7, 2008.
A report was given on pillow cleaning.
The meeting adjourned to reopen Dec. 18 with a Christmas party.
Pottery artist addresses Rotary
The Vermillion Rotary Club met at noon Nov. 20 in the Freedom Forum on the USD campus. Following an excellent meal of build-your-own tacos, President David Hussey called the meeting to order. The Rev. Robert Grossmann led in prayer and President Hussey led in an opening song, America the Beautiful, with Jack Noble accompanying on the piano.
Following the introduction of guests, including three Vermillion High School seniors, who introduced themselves and spoke of their plans for the future, Vermillion veterinarian Dr. Al Pravacek ably carried out his duties as sergeant of arms by raising some cash for charity by leveling a few fines. Announcements included that Rotary will be bell-ringing for the Salvation Army on Dec. 1, for which volunteers are needed, and that our club will be supplying Christmas gifts for two needy families in Vermillion this year. Members are invited to supply one of these gifts personally.
Our program was provided by Michael Hill, a local pottery artist who is an artist in residence at The University of South Dakota. Mr. Hill also served for 11 years as an adjunct professor of art at the university. He owns a property outside of Vermillion where he has a studio and 14 pottery kilns. His kilns are of different designs and are fired by various fuels, from gas to local hardwoods, each of which provides a different finish and texture to the finished project.
Part of his presentation was to show slides of the building of a large wood-fired kiln that is 20 feet long, eight feet wide and seven feet high. Its design is based on American, English and Japanese kiln design principles to produce a large and versatile firing instrument. This kiln operates at temperatures around 2,450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Mr. Hill 's pottery is usually utilitarian, ranging from coffee cups to bowls and vases, but he also does pottery sculpture. One project was the design and casting of several larger-than-life Indian figures for display at the Winnebago tribal headquarters in Nebraska.
The figures were sculpted, several piece molds were made of them, and the figures were then cast in a special mix of concrete. Mr. Hill is truly a versatile artist and hard-working artisan who is an asset to the Vermillion community. His works can be purchased at several stores in Vermillion and Sioux Falls.
Our meeting was closed with the usual singing of the first stanza of My Country 'Tis of Thee.