Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Future Dates  

10/03 Wed. Ben Barkey – STEM Program

10/10 Wed. Jim Kessler – History of Basketball

10/12 & 13 Fri. & Sat. Taste and Trade

10/17 Wed. Trace Hansen – U.S. Olympic Committee

10/24 Wed. Joe Bryan – WCHS Advanced Transportation

6/29/13 Sat. Triathlon


Wednesday, September 26, 2012 


104 Optimists & 8 guests attended our meeting.  Matt Deeds was the guest of Jon Lippe; Julie Runnells was the guest of Jeff Owens; Matt Boren was the guest of Jane Wear; Ed Van Osdol was the guest of Lyle Enyeart; Attorney Adam Turner was the guest of Dave Turner; Dr. Craig Hintz was the guest of John Elliott; Elaine Kramer was the guest of Roland Kramer; and Keegan Tom was the guest of Angie Tom.      

Door Greeters:  Gina Voelz and Everett Nifong.

Prayer was offered by Coach Doug Ogle. 

Pledge was given to the American flag. 

Promise yourself was said in unison.

Martin Becker led us as we sang “Hail to Optimism.” 

Birthday Honorees:  Dave Turner, Mitch Goon, and Noel Hoke.  Martin Becker led us in the birthday song with “Larry, Curly and Moe” results.


            >>>> INFORMATION

Prayer Requests: 

Joe Wilkey’s recovery from quadruple bypass surgery.


Membership:  Lt. Gov. Sam Whitaker read Matt Deeds’ application.  Matt is sponsored by Jon Lippe.


Sheriff of Attendance:  Sheriff Bill Landrigan and Deputy Harry Gigous have 104 of us present today!  They greeted Craig Snow.


Past Gov. Ron Donkers made a major announcement about our Triathlon.  The date has been changed to the Saturday JUST BEFORE the 4th of July.  It will be June 29, 2013.  Also this year in addition to a short swim after the traditional participants, there will be kid’s races for kid’s who are 11 to 12 or 13 to 14.


Dave Meier reported 63 kids raced in the 32nd Annual Big Wheel Race.  He thanked those who volunteered.   The winners were:  4-5 year olds 1) Samantha Dixon, 2)Wylan Ewart, 3) Jazlynne Owens and 6-7 year olds 1) Nathan Hurper, 2) Kimberly Williams, 3) Jeremiah Jimenez.     


Bart Templeton is looking for greeters.


Chaplains Fred Nieter and Past Pres. Ron Henry are looking for people to do the invocation this coming year. 


Past Lt. Gov. Ot Schroeder reported 80 kids attended the 1st Octagon meeting.  He asked us to invite kids we know to join them this Friday morning at the High School.


Past Lt. Gov. Ot Schroeder invited us to participate in the Rochester Club’s Pumpkin Project.  For $75 they will deliver and set up pumpkins, gourds, 2 straw bales and corn stalks.  Cost includes removal.  They will give us $25 of each sale.  They set these up at businesses and homes.


Pres. Elect Tracy Furnivall reported Baker Youth Clubs have averaged 320 kids per night.  More volunteers are needed to help kids with homework and work with them.


Trina Hoy invited us to the Warsaw – Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce’s Taste & Trade Expo on October 12 and 13 at the Orthopaedic Capital Center.  Exhibitors are needed.


Thanks to Trina Hoy for her hard work on the Warsaw – Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce’s Meet Your Candidates event last night.


Please pray for our Troops and Families:   LCpl Chris Foreman – Marines


Sergeants-at-Arms:  Jim NesbittLuke Becknell, and Bob Jackson entertained us for the last time.  It has been a great year!


Pres. John Sullivan reports that Henry Church arrived safely in Iraq.


Those who have failed to wear their Optimist pins were fined.


Dr. Craig Hintz was recognized as a Rotarian.  He reported the great news that Warsaw Community Schools is now a straight A school corporation.  Every school got an A.


Attorney Jim Walmer stood up for us older C students.  (We are proud our kids are doing better than we did.)


Rich Haddad from the K21 Health Foundation and Mayor Joe Thallemer were recognized for the new bike lanes and routes in town.


Bruce Hansen is celebrating the Seattle Seahawks “catching” ability.  The NFL has contacted Judge Joe Sutton and Band Director Martin Becker to start as referees this Sunday.  Joe has judicial experience and Marty has led marching bands on football fields.


Past Lt. Gov. Denny Andrews reported for Sheriff Bill Landrigan, who had to leave early to get ready for 40 Days for Life.  The Right to Life banquet had a record number in attendance and raised a record amount of money.


Past Lt. Gov. Denny Andrews is proud of his granddaughter who graduated from the National Guard’s basic training.


Mike Gavin is celebrating his daughter and son-in-law’s 1st anniversary.


Judge Joe Sutton led us in a well deserved standing ovation for President John Sullivan.



President John Sullivan held our Awards meeting.  We gave over $23,000 to help local youth this year.  This is possible because of our three big fundraisers:  Triathlon, Car Show, and Golf Outing.  Also thanks go to our new Financial Committee of Past Pres. Joel Wihebrink and Board Member Andy Swihart.  They are doing a good job of reminding us if we forgot money we owe the club. 

Pres. Sullivan recognized our Board of Directors: Chris WigginsLyle EnyeartTrina HoyEverett NifongBruce HansenJay TateJim Kessler, Past Pres. Bob Jackson.  He also presented our retiring board members with plaques:  Art Gakstatter, Past Lt. Gov. Jim ReeveAndrew Swihart, and Tracy Horrell.  

Pres. Sullivan presented the following with plaques:

Fundraiser chairmen:  Past Gov. Ron Donkers, Board Member Art Gakstatter, Past Pres. John Elliott, Board Member Everett Nifong.  The chairmen recognized Doug JonesLuke BecknellJim Hayes, Jerry ClevengerJosh Gordon, Board Member Andy Swihart, and Fred Neiter.

Sergeants-at-Arms:  Past Pres. Bob JacksonLuke Becknell, and Past Pres. Jim Nesbitt

Optimist Singers and our Song Leader:  Martin Becker.

Optibullette newsletter:  Craig Nayrocker.  Thanks go to Past Lt. Gov. Mary Ellen Jordan and Past President Jeff Owens.

Board Member, Marketing, Photographer, Club Logo artist, and major New Member Sponsor:  Trina Hoy.

Program Chairman, Club Calendar founder, and Volunteer for Everything:  Rick Kerlin.

Video Editor, Directory, Power Point and Sound, and Doer of Everything Necessary Behind the Scenes:  Jim Hayes.

Treasurer and Long Term Transition Coach for new presidents:  Jennifer Dorman.


President John Sullivan announced our major award winners:

Rookie of the Year:  Kellie Malcolm

Optimist of the Year:  Lt. Gov. Sam Whitaker

We gave them a well deserved standing ovation.


President John Sullivan recognized those with perfect attendance for the following number of years:


            47 years:        Ron Chambers

            40 years:        Dr. David Haines

38 years:        Dr. Charles Hollar, John Elliott     

34 years:        Larry Tucker, Juergen Voss

            32 years:        Dave Turner

            31 years:        Don Kenipe

            30 years:        Don Reinholt, Jerry Titus, Dennis Andrews

24 years:        Ron Donkers, George Paton

            22 years:        Ken Anderson

            21 years:        Martin Becker

            19 years:        Fred Nieter

18 years:        Art Gakstatter, Jeff Owens, Dr.Steve Hollar, Jim Nesbitt

            17 years:        Robert Jackson

16 years:        John Burtoft, Merl Heckaman, Bill Landrigan

15 years:        Luke Becknell

            14 years:        Harry Gigous

            13 years:        Ot Schroeder

12 years:        Jim Hayes, Millie Andrews

            11 years:        George Brennan, Mary Ellen Jordan

            10 years:        Jennifer Dorman, Kevin Weaver, Ed Nordstrom

9 years:          Marvin Miller, Craig Nayrocker

            8 years:          Jerry Clevenger, Sam Whitaker

            7 years:          Angie Tom, Jim Reeve, Pat Donkers, Steve McGlothin, John Teevan

            6 years:          Everett Nifong

            5 years:          Peter Gano, Trina Hoy, Bob Ibach, Mitch Goon

4 years:          Henry Church, Trace Hansen, Tracy Horrell, Gary Tanner, Bart Templeton

3 years:          Bruce Hansen, Mary Ann Gradeless, Andy Swihart, Joe Thallemer, Joel Wihebrink

2 years:          John Kirkpatrick, Rick Kerlin, John Sullivan, Ann Sweet, Jay Tate

1 year:            Mike Cusick, William Bartol, Lisa Cassel, Roland Kramer, Gina Voelz, Al Grossnickle, Doug Jones, Ken Zortman