Monday, January 16, 2023

Rotary International asks us to Serve to Change Lives through its Focus Areas

January is Vocational Service Month

This month Rotary International asks us to Serve to Change Lives by helping everyone learn skills that will allow them to become economically self sufficientExplore the possibilities with us at our meeting Wednesday at noon at Wick Park or virtually via Zoom.

The  Zoom ID is: 3567145262

This Week's Meeting

Manuela, RCY’s exchange student from Italy, will join us for lunch Wednesday at Wick Park Pavilion and provide an update on her first 6 months in the United States. She is studying at Cardinal Mooney High School, where she plays basketball, and visiting interesting places thanks to the generosity of Rotarians. Make a point to attend one of Manu’s games or invite her on a day trip.
Also, RCY will continue Vocational Service Month observances with another Member Exchange, featuring retired delicatessen owner Jack Kravitz and Cityscape Program Director Adam Lee.
This meeting will be led by President-Elect Deanna Rossi.

Last Week's Meeting

President Sharon Letson proudly presented round membership badges to two new members, Elsa Higby (who rejoined RCY after moving back from New York) and Dominic Brown. Round badges are symbols of active membership and are earned after meeting certain requirements, which include working at the greeting table at a weekly meeting, joining a committee and attending an event other than a Wednesday lunch. She wants to institute another requirement, that being lunch with the club president, she said.
Moments later, Dominic Brown was back at the podium with Troy Rhoades for a Member Service Exchange. Though they have had light conversations since Dominic started to attend Rotary events last year, the 30-minute phone call they scheduled before the meeting was their first opportunity to exchange information about their careers, Troy observed.
Dominic is a Youngstown native who first worked at General Motors Lordstown Assembly Plant, Troy said. Dominic ascended to a management position, transferred to a plant in St. Louis, and then moved on to a GM foundry in Defiance, OH. He relocated to a plant in Lansing, MI during the COVID-19 pandemic, which meant he didn’t experience much of Michigan outside of work. He is back in Lordstown, working at Ultium Cells LLC Joint Venture Between General Motors & LG Warren. 
Troy works for First Energy as a community liaison, Dominic said. That job reflects Troy’s passion to serve the community and interact with many people. They bonded over geography, as Troy once worked out of Hicksville, OH, about 25 miles from Defiance. 
Dominic said he is tempted to borrow some of Troy’s witty one-liners. For example, when he asked Troy to summarize his daily tasks, Troy’s response was “herding cats and fixing widgets.” Dominic agrees with Troy’s simply-stated philosophy about joining a community service club: “Be All In.” 

Paul Harris Fellow Nomination Form

It is that time of year again to submit nominations for 2023 Paul Harris Fellows to be awarded at our 108th Anniversary Dinner tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, March 8th. In keeping with tradition, the club will award a Paul Harris Fellow to an existing club member and one community member. Please use the attached form to nominate a club member, community member or both.
Please submit your nomination to Becky Mottram at the Rotary Club office or to President Sharon Letson via email at or an upcoming meeting. Also, please have your nomination(s) submitted by the February 1st deadline in order to approve our selected awardees and process their award with Rotary International. 
Thank you, 
Rebecca Davis
Rotary International Foundation Chair

Operation Pollination

Plants often have ways to protect young seedlings from harsh environments. If perennial seeds germinated immediately in late summer or fall, their seedlings would likely not survive winter. Hard seed coats are nature’s way of protecting seeds. Before they germinate the seeds of many hardy plants must first lay dormant through a period of cold temperatures. This is known as seed (or cold) stratification. Over several weeks’ time, exposure to cold temperatures and moisture helps break down the hard seed coats so the seeds are able to sprout. Winter temperatures satisfy this dormancy requirement naturally with seeds germinating the following spring when the weather is more favorable.
If you purchase or collect seeds that require cold stratification to break their dormancy, you must supply that cold period yourself.
How to Stratify Seeds for Your Garden
When you purchase seeds, the seed packet will usually mention any stratification requirements that apply. If you collect your own seeds, do a little research to determine how long a cold period each plant will need. These may range from a few weeks to several months. Fortunately, the process is simple and can be accomplished in a couple of different ways.
The most foolproof way to stratify your seeds is to plant them in a pot of moist potting mix, sand, or vermiculite—it should be damp but well drained. Space the seeds about a half inch apart and cover them lightly with the mix. Be sure to label each pot with both the plant name and the date, which really comes in handy in determining when to remove them from the cold treatment. You can also write the date when they’ll be ready to come out of the cold on the label, so you don't have to remember that. Put the labeled pot in a plastic bag and punch a couple of breathing holes into the bag or leave a small opening in the top, then place it in the refrigerator for the recommended time. Check occasionally to see that the medium is still moist; water if needed.
If you don't want to monopolize your refrigerator for stratifying seeds, you can sow the seeds directly in the ground or in pots that you label and place outdoors, but out of direct sun. Be mindful of periods with little or no precipitation—you may need to water the pots occasionally.
Planting the Stratified Seedlings
As spring approaches and the recommended cold period has been met, remove the pots (or towels) from your fridge. If you planted the seeds in pots, you may begin to see seedlings emerging even before they come out of the fridge. Place the pots in a partly shaded area of the garden—an uncovered cold frame works well—and allow them to germinate. For the seeds you stratified on paper towels, sow them in a moist medium, spacing them about a half inch apart. Keep the pots watered and be patient, the seeds may germinate gradually over a period of a few weeks.
Once the seedlings have developed a few true leaves, transplant them into separate pots or to a protected spot in the garden where you can keep an eye on them. Once they develop into robust young plants, which may take a couple months or a full growing season, transplant them to their permanent garden location.
Common Plants That Need Cold Stratification

Two Events in One Day

RCY will be one busy club on Saturday, Feb, 4!
Rotarian John Fahnert is coordinating our club’s annual Youth Exchange Overnighter at the Downtown YMCA. Inbound and outbound exchange students come together for dinner, breakout meetings, entertainment at nearby Covelli Center, and use of the YMCA’s gyms and pool. John and his committee seek a few more late-night helpers. Contact him ASAP.
Our Fifth Annual Groundhog Beerfest will be at Stambaugh Auditorium, 1000 Fifth Ave.. Sessions will be from 1 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 9 p.m., with VIP hours from noon to 1 p.m. and 5 to 6 p.m. (for an additional fee). This major event needs a great deal of volunteer support, and not only on event day. Here’s how you can help now: 
Sell 4 or more tickets. Tickets also may be purchased through Stambaugh Auditorium, but RCY makes more money from members’ direct sales. 

Like and share Beerfest posts on social media. Past President John Fahnert has a general message on his Facebook wall that can be easily shared. Samantha Turner is posting on RCY’s Facebook page about brewers who will participate. When you share, please include your own brief, positive message to build interest in Beerfest.

Recruit or be a sponsor. The sponsorship committee expects to meet or exceed last year’s fundraising mark. Let’s exceed it, since this is our single biggest annual fundraiser that feeds our community grantmaking program.
Contact co-chairs Samantha Turner and Kevin Chiu if you have questions.


Youngstown Day Fundraiser

Youngstown Rotary Foundation is partnering with the "Youngstown Day" in Sarasota Committee to raise funds for Hurricane Ian Relief for Southwest Florida.  Youngstown Day, now in its 37th year, is a reunion event for Youngstown/Mahoning Valley natives who reside in Florida or winter in Florida each year.  The event brings together over 400 people interested in their Youngstown connections.
The event is a collaborative effort between Youngstown State University, the Mahoning Valley Historical Society and Youngstown Cityscape.
Since so many of our friends and family who spend time in Southwest Florida, particularly Ft. Myers, the Youngstown Day Committee has added a fundraising service project to this year's event.  All funds raised through the Youngstown Rotary Foundation will be donated to the Fort Myers Rotary Trust Fund for direct hurricane aid through the Rotary Club of Ft. Myers, the oldest Rotary Club in Southwest Florida.
You are invited to consider a contribution to Hurricane Ian relief through the Youngstown Rotary Foundation, using this link:
Thank you.
The Youngstown Day Committee and The Youngstown Rotary Foundation Board of Directors


Crossing the Trex finish line

Plastic film recycling is still underway, and so please bring your contributions to this week’s meeting.
RCY should easily meet or exceed its 500-lb. goal, thanks to our members, their families and friends. This will earn the club a park bench made of recycled materials by the Trex Company, Inc.. That bench can be placed at the club’s discretion – maybe to augment one of our Little Free Libraries, or in a city park, or wherever a resting spot would be welcomed. Also, plastic film recycling supports the broader goals of Operation Pollination and Rotary International’s recognition of environmental matters as an area of focus. 
Congratulations to Elayne Bozick, Elsa Higby, RaCole Taltoan and the committee for leading a successful project.

RYLA Goody Bags 2023

As we reboot the RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards) Conference for 2023, we invite all Rotarians in District 6650 to contribute to the "Goody Bags" the students attending the conference will receive.  Our Goody Bags are not unlike the "swag bags" you may have received when attending a conference or event.  Our Goody Bags, though, are made up of items from Rotarians and their businesses.
What are we looking for?  Promotional items from your business, something from your club itself for each participant - like snacks, or money to buy items for the bags.
  • These bags are for 16-17 year olds.  They like pens and mechanical pencils, highlighters, post-it notes, key chains, small toys,  playing cards, Frisbees, fast food coupons, gum, candy bars, etc.
  • Please NO political giveaways.  We will not use them.
  • Please NO CAFFEINE snacks or drinks.  We cannot distribute them for safety reasons.
  • You will need 100 of any one item so every bag gets the same items.
  • Since we assemble the bags before the students arrive, items must arrive before Tuesday, February 21, 2023.
  • Items should be delivered or mailed to:
ATTENTION:  Lori Jewell
Salem Area Chamber of Commerce
Lori’s business phone is 330.337.3473
Please make sure “RYLA” is on all correspondence and mailings!
Thank you!
Barbara Loudon, Gina Dermotta - RYLA Conference Coordinators


January 19, 1968; Youngstown Rotarians approved funding for a Classroom on Wheels in the amount of $13,000.
Edna Edmonds - Jan 16
Bob Lenga - 49 Years
Dionne Dowdy - 2 Years
Justin Froelich - 2 Years
The Four-Way Test
1. Is it the truth?
2. Is it fair to all concerned?
3. Will it build goodwill and better friendships?
4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?
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Club Information

Welcome to Youngstown Rotary

Service Above Self

Wednesdays at 12:00 PM
Wick Park Pavilion
260 Park Avenue
Youngstown, OH 44504
United States of America
(330) 743-8630
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102-2060 Winston Park Drive, Oakville, ON, L6H 5R7