Rotary Club of Kitchener


January 25, 2021

Meeting Recording

A recording of Today’s Meeting can be found by clicking here

President's Comments

President Louise welcomed everyone to our Robbie Burns meeting.

Visiting Rotarians

Elena Shpinel, RC of Moscow International
Graham Gardiner, RC of Kitchener Westmount


Sue Parker, Guest of Gary Parker

Happy Jar

Martin Jones was very happy to have had the opportunity to speak at Cheryl’s “new” club in Halifax and to inform them about our Rotary African Women’s Education Fund.
Madu was delighted to report that his two year old son is back home after his two-and-a-half week stay in the hospital and that he is doing well.
President Louise is happy that when she did a porch drop puzzle exchange with Susanne Zbindedin (fellow Rotarian from Orangeville) there was also a box of Lindt chocolates in her package.
Past President Paul was happy to announce that the Catch the Ace Jackpot is now over $10,000 and sales are picking up. The net proceeds will go to KidsAbility, the Grand River Hospital Foundation and St. Mary's General Hospital Foundation. 

Club Announcements

President Louise reminded members of our project to support for the upcoming Coldest Night of The Year fundraiser.
The Rotary Road Scholars are ready for action!  Ray of Hope normally holds its annual walk on the evening of February 20th - this year it is an individual walk event that allows us to walk any time up to that date.  We will be entering a team this year and all those interested in being on it can register or donate online.  This is yet another great opportunity to take the savings from our non-lunch zoom meetings and turn them into a fundraiser and support for another great local organization that needs our help during these pandemic times.  Registration and donations must be done online with the coldest night organization in order to get your tax receipt
Here is the link.
President Louise also reminded members to please complete a very very short survey (5 minutes) to keep us informed on your meeting expectations for the next 6 months as we continue to stay home and stay safe during these pandemic times.
Click here to complete this confidential questionnaire:

Program Highlights

First off on our program today was the Final Report from our 2020 Online Auction, presented by committee chair, Neil Swayze.
Here is some data re the items and bidders this year compared to last:
Number of Auction Items Sold      151          224
Return on Market Value                  74%        39%
Number of Kitchener Bidders         171         137
Number of Kitchener Sponsors      11+4       6+4
Our profits were up again this year:
Total Revenue          $26,264
Expenses                       5,206
Profit                          $21,058
In the six years we have been operating the auction our accumulated profit is $71,689.
Member participation was strong again this year.
What worked particularly well this year. . .
  • Improved look of website and new logo
  •  Improved marketing on social media (Facebook & Instagram)
  •  Digital “fillable” Request Letter and Donor & Sponsor Forms
  •  Sign distribution from single location and date
  •  Data entry forms shared among 6 committee members
  •  Central spread sheet to track items as entered
  •  Kitchener exchange of items (2 trips)
  • Many bidders paid the credit card fee
  •  Ability to identify email audiences by tags and location
  •  Use of two storage lockers for distribution
  •  Bidder able to select location and time for pick up
  •  “Curbside” pick-up of items at warehouse on distribution day (Friday 2 to 5 / Saturday 9 to 4)
What are our Challenges / Improvements for next year . . .
  • Show multiples of same item only once
  •  More stringent criteria for “vintage” items
  •  Review proxy bidding – pros and cons
  •  Allow bidders to request mailing of gift certificates for a small fee
  •  Minimum expiry date of 6 months
  •  Ensure descriptions are complete and accurate (e.g. size, condition, etc.)
  •  Change bid increments for items $25 and less
  •  Need more time to prepare for pick-up
Next up was a little bit of fun and information to recognize Robbie Burns day, today
In her best Scottish accent (which is actually quite good) President Louise read an official Address to a Haggis by Robert Burns:
Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face,
Great Chieftain o’ the Puddin-race!
Aboon them a’ ye tak your place,
Painch, tripe, or thairm:
Weel are ye wordy of a grace
As lang ‘s my arm.
The groaning trencher there ye fill,
Your hurdies like a distant hill,
Your pin wad help to mend a mill
In time o’ need,
While thro’ your pores the dews distil
Like amber bead.
His knife see Rustic-labour dight,
An’ cut ye up wi’ ready slight,
Trenching your gushing entrails bright,
Like onie ditch;
And then, O what a glorious sight,
Warm-reekin, rich!
Then, horn for horn, they stretch an’ strive:
Deil tak the hindmost, on they drive,
Till a’ their weel-swall’d kytes belyve
Are bent like drums;
Then auld Guidman, maist like to rive,
Bethankit hums.
Is there that owre his French ragout,
Or olio that wad staw a sow,
Or fricassee wad mak her spew
Wi’ perfect sconner,
Looks down wi’ sneering, scornfu’ view
On sic a dinner?
Poor devil! see him owre his trash,
As feckless as a wither’d rash,
His spindle shank a guid whip-lash,
His nieve a nit;
Thro’ bluidy flood or field to dash,
O how unfit!
But mark the Rustic, haggis-fed,
The trembling earth resounds his tread,
Clap in his walie nieve a blade,
He’ll make it whissle;
An’ legs, an’ arms, an’ heads will sned,
Like taps o’ thrissle.
Ye Pow’rs wha mak mankind your care,
And dish them out their bill o’ fare,
Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware
That jaups in luggies;
But, if ye wish her gratefu’ prayer,
Gie her a Haggis!
President Louise has a “bit” of a Scottish background (albeit a vicarious one) and shared some personal information:
  • My dad Gaston Brazeau was known as Gus McBrazzeau
  • Born 1927 in Montreal, he played for the Black Watch Pipe band there then The Clan MacFarlane Pipe Band from St Catherines ON
  • The band won the World Championship in Edinburgh Scotland in 1974 - both my dad Gus (tenor drummer) and my brother Rob (side drummer) played in the band - my brother was 16 years old
  • I spent many summers at Highland games all over Ontario. 
  • I learned to do the Highland Fling and the Sword Dance but never competed.
  • Quite the Scottish history for a French Canadian girl!

Closing Remarks & Reminders

Upcoming Meetings:
Feb. 1 - Sharon Gilroy-Dreher - Toastytoes
Feb. 8 - Ross Newkirk - Kitchener Rotary Club Charitable Foundation
Feb. 20 - Ray of Hope walk - Coldest Night of the Year
Feb. 22 - Evening Club Workshop/Strategic Plan led by Adrian DeCoo - members only
Mar. 3 - Peter Gray - Not for Profit work around water (joint mtg on Wednesday with Kitchener Westmount
Mar. 8 - Tara Bedard - Immigration Partnership
Feb 01, 2021 12:00 PM
Feb 08, 2021 12:00 PM
Kitchener Rotary Charitable Foundation Update
Feb 15, 2021
Committee Meetings to be Scheduled by Committee Chairs
Feb 22, 2021 7:00 PM
Members only - RCK Strategic Plan Review Workshop led by Adrian DeCoo
View entire list
Birthdays & Membership Anniversaries
Member Birthdays
Robert Bullas
January 2
Karen Redman
January 8
Paul Rostrup
January 8
Bill Proctor
January 9
Erin Way
January 20
John English
January 26
Kelly Miller
January 26
Join Date
Al Way
January 1, 1991
30 years
Cameron Yule
January 1, 1992
29 years
Carl Zehr
January 1, 1975
46 years
Carol Wiebe
January 1, 1995
26 years
Dave Smith
January 1, 1977
44 years
Ed Fowler
January 1, 1996
25 years
Jack Ball
January 1, 1962
59 years
John O'Brien
January 1, 1971
50 years
Karen Redman
January 1, 1999
22 years
Pete Gray
January 1, 1997
24 years
Ross Newkirk
January 1, 1990
31 years
Shawky Fahel
January 1, 1987
34 years
Wayne Boehler
January 1, 1993
28 years
John English
January 31, 2002
19 years