Clubs and Organizations

Clubs and Organizations Sons of Norway discuss Hostfest On May 19, Lillehammer Lodge #1-633, Sons of Norway, met at Christ the King Lutheran Church. President Valorie Philipp led the group in the national anthems of Norway and the United States and the flag pledge. The minutes of the April meeting were read by Secretary Carol Broderson and approved. Treasurer Gene Iverson gave a report of the Lodge finances, noting expenses and incomes; accepted by the members. President Valorie gave a report on the benefit that was held on May 18 for St. John's Lutheran Church. The music was fantastic and everyone enjoyed it. Connie Kendall reported on visiting several members. Margo Larson is now at home. Viona Ranney, travel representative, talked about plans for the fall trip to Minot, ND for the Hostfest which will include an additional day at the Fest for 2009. "Church Basement Ladies" will be presented several times and many "big name" entertainers are already booked to perform. She also is planning a bus trip to the Quilt Expo in Des Moines, IA in October. Contact Vi for further information on these, she has these offered at very reasonable rates. She is also putting together a Scandinavian trip that several SON members are interested in for 2010. It was mentioned that emblems (in two sizes, for $3 or $5) are available from the secretary and please let the secretary know if you are interested in a name tag and/or vest. As soon as we have a list for these we will order them as they are less costly if several are ordered at the same time. A new stamp coordinator is needed and Connie Kendall volunteered to do this. It required packaging the stamps after members have turned in the clipped stamps before they are sent to SON at Minneapolis. She replaces Mardell Antes for this task. A motion was made, seconded and unanimously approved to pay the $30 fee to reserve a picnic shelter for the July picnic at the park along the river. Connie Kendall read a letter from a cousin in Denmark. This cousin, at age 100, recalled school days, her family of 14, and growing up in Biri, Norway. Connie recalled that her parents had visited this family in Norway and stayed for three years. Some of the children in Connie's family went to school while there. President Valorie proposed purchase of a book of folk tales to be used for the school project that is being planned. The birthday song was sung for Earl Reese, the only member with a May birthday. The Norwegian table prayer was spoken by all members and a social time with lunch was enjoyed. A special lunch was served in honor of May 17, Norway's Independence Day. Respectfully submitted, Secretary Carol Broderson Clark addresses Rotarians Tuesday  The Vermillion Rotary Club held its weekly luncheon meeting on Tuesday, June 9, at the Neuharth Center on the campus of USD.  President Mary Edelen opened the meeting and led us in the invocation.  This was followed by a round of singing, introduction of guests, and announcements.  We also bid farewell to our Rotary Exchange Student, Rafael Gontijo, as he heads off on a trip around the U.S. with other Rotary Exchange students and then home to Brazil. We will miss him. Rotarian Ralph Brown introduced Matt Clark as our speaker for the day. Matt is the state investment officer of the South Dakota Investment Council.  He began with a little history. The South Dakota Investment Council began in 1983 with an initial investment of $133 million. Five years ago this investment had grown to $6.1 billion. As recently as a year ago or so it had grown to about $10 billion.  Because of the current financial crisis the total portfolio saw a downturn, as did most investments. Currently they manage about $7.5 billion, which is up about 35 percent since the start of the year.  This has been a very volatile period with the most losses since the Great Depression. The council is responsible for the management of the retirement system, trust funds of various kinds, and the state checking account.  Members of the executive board are selected by the legislature on a by-partisan basis. There are a total of eight members. There are a total of 28 persons working for the council; 22 of them are investment professionals. The council is unique in that they do research on investment opportunities internally. Most states outsource this task. Mr. Clark remains optimistic that we will get through the current financial crisis, partly because of liquidity infusion by the federal government.  The recovery may take some time, but he said the council takes a long view and are optimistic. The council's concept of long-term investment means having patience and focusing on the long view. They take care to hire the best raw talent available and train them in applying "their" investment process. They instill a teamwork philosophy because they believe a well-functioning team is superior to individuals. They believe patience and discipline are key concepts. They also believe in freely admitting mistakes and learning from the experience. The goal is more important than individual egos. The council believes in extensive research before buying inexpensive stocks that they believe will appreciate in value over the long term.  They also believe that one should then sell the stock when it becomes expensive. Matt also suggested that if you wait for the really big opportunity, you might never do anything.  Even buying on the way down can be a reasonable strategy because predicting the bottom is really difficult.  He ended his presentation by taking questions from the audience. Garden club hosts convention District 6 Garden Clubs, Vermillion, Wakonda and Centerville, hosted the 65th Annual State Convention June 5 and 6. It took place at Trinity Lutheran Church Fellowship Hall in Vermillion. The theme was "Greening the Earth, One Step at a Thyme." The meeting was opened by Margaret Strayle of Sioux Falls, state president. The American flag was presented and salute led by Sam Person, Cub Scout Pack #165. Mayor Dan Christopherson welcomed guests to the city. A tour of the Healing Garden, Sanford Vermillion Hospital, was very much enjoyed. Gene Lunn greeted tour guests. Friday evening meal and breakfast was catered by Jones' Foods & Catering. Saturday luncheon was salads and rolls provided by Vermillion Garden Club members. Board meetings were conducted by President Margaret. Cynthia Berman, Clay and Yankton county Extension agent, presented the program, "Gardening Green." Diane Hofer, Diane's Backyard Gardens, Beresford, presented the "Recycled Garden." The flower show was judged by Eline Forsberg, rural Sioux Falls. Miss Haily Hagendarn, Lennox Elementary School, was presented a savings bond for being the winner of the Smoky Bear Woodsey Owl poster contest. A memorial for deceased 2008 gardening members was conducted by Sioux Falls Garden Club. Gus Miller and Louie Fostvedt, Vermillion Garden Club members, were in charge of the "ways and means' table. Articles pertaining to gardening, brought and purchased by members to cover expenses. There was installation of new officers and an invitation to the 2010 convention. Great fellowship, door and raffle prizes completed the 2009 convention.

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