Wednesday, April 30, 2014

 Future Dates   

5/7 Wed. Splash Pad / Erin Porter

5/14 Wed. Sheriff’s Office / Aaron Rovenstine

5/18 Sun. City of Lakes Cruise-In

5/21 Wed. Optimist Singers / Memorial Day

5/28 Wed. Warsaw Community Schools / Dr. Craig Hintz

6/4 Wed. FWA Airport Authority – Jessica Miller

6/11 Wed. Mudlove Kyle Garberson

6/16 Mon. Boomerang Backpack Golf Outing

6/18 Wed. Guy Fisher / Goodwill Career Center

6/19 Thur. Optimist Golf Outing

6/25 Wed. Registration Packets for Triathlon

6/28 Sat. Triathlon

7/2 Wed. Rebecca Bazzoni / Jacobs Ladder

7/9 Wed. Christon Clark / Habitat for Humanity

7/16 Wed. Mayor Dr. Joe Thallemer / State of the City

7/23 Wed. Warsaw Area Career Center / Ronna Kawsky

7/23 Wed. Cheerleaders

7/30 Wed. Paragon

8/1 Fri. Penguin Point and Optimist Big Wheel Race

8/6 Wed. Boys Soccer

8/8 Fri. Indiana North District Golf Outing

8/8 & 9 Fri. & Sat. Indiana North District Convention at Warsaw

8/13 Wed. Boys Cross Country

8/20 Wed. Boys Tennis

9/3 Wed. Girls Soccer

9/10 Wed. Girls Golf

9/10 Wed. WCHS Athletics / Dave Anson

9/17 Wed. Crystal Heckaman / Rachel’s Challenge – Friends of Rachel


Wednesday, April 30, 2014

President Everett Nifong led our meeting.


97 Optimists & 7 guests attended our meeting.  Doug Baumgardner was the guest of John Elliott; Julia Yestrebsky was the guest of Jeff Owens; Susan Donkers was the guest of Past Gov. Ron & Patty Donkers; Josh Finch & Drew Scholl were the guests of Chad Zaucha; Bob Conley was the guest of Chris Wiggins; & Sariah Morgan was the guest of Bruce Hansen.   

Door Greeters:  David Cates & Mark Caruso were timely greeters since they are running in next Tuesday’s Primary for Superior Court 1 & Superior Court 2.  They beat out Dave Wolkins, who was present, for the greeter spots today.

Prayer:  Bob Jackson led us in prayer.

Pledge was given to the American flag. 

Promise yourself was said in unison. 

Martin Becker led us in singing Hail to Optimism.

Birthday Honorees:  David Benning and George Paton.  Martin Becker led us in the birthday song with our usual results. 

            >>>> INFORMATION

Prayer Requests:

Coach Jim Kessler’s granddaughter, Claudia’s eye surgery tomorrow.  She will have follow-up surgeries around early June and early July.  Pray for comfort and patience for Claudia this spring and summer.

Membership:  Membership Chair Kellie Malcom read Doug Baumgardner’s & Julia Yestrembsky’s applications.  Doug are sponsored by John Elliott & Jeff Owens


Past President Tracy Furnivall is heading our nominating committee.  Please contact him, if you would like to run for a leadership position in our club.  We need 4 new Board Members and a new President Elect.


President Everett Nifong reported that over and above providing a great breakfast, Golden Corral is donating 100 meals for our students we invite to our meetings. Thanks to Golden Corral for their generosity!


Board Member Bruce Hansen gave Sariah Morgan $1000 for Kosciusko Education Development’s for graduation coaches.  Our graduation rate is up 16%!


TriStar chair Chris Wiggins  reported on our kids’ great showing at the TriStar State competition at New Castle:  Olivia Elliott placed 4th among the 8 year old girls,Kensington Ryman placed 2nd among the 11 year old girls, Kiera Hatfield placed 4th among the 12 year old girls, Jeremiah Dawson placed 1st among the 8 year old boys, Jeremy Ryman, placed 2nd among the 10 year old boys, Caden Graham placed 3rd among the 11 year boys, Emmanuel Alexis placed 3rd among the 12 year old boys, and Brian Elliott Jr. placed 1st among the 13 year old boys.


Past Gov. Ron Donkers & Lt. Gov. John Sullivan reminded us of Optimist International Foundation’s Dime-A-Day fundraising program.  Some of the overhead for things like the Oratorical and Essay contests at the district and higher levels are in need of funding.  The higher level Oratorical Contest winner receives $2,500 and the higher level Essay Contest winner receives $500.  As a larger club, we need to cover a large part of these costs.  The Dime-A Day program is a great way to do this.  Please send your $36.50 to Optimist International Foundation, Dime-A-Day Campaign, P.O. Box 952126, St. Louis, MO 63195.  Make sure you put “club # 04555” in the memo section of your check. An even better way to do this is to use a form Ron has to have your card charged $3.05 per month on an ongoing basis.  The forms are by the badge box.


Craig Nayrocker is looking for someone to take over writing our Optibullette newsletter.  See Craig to find out more.  You can sit in the R Wayne Snider chairnext to Steady Eddy Don Kenipe.  From this spot, you and Don will have an unparalleled view of the goings on of our meetings.


Bart Templeton is passing around a sign-up sheet for greeters.


Trina Hoy reported our Suggestion Box needs suggestions.  It is a great way to get ideas to our leadership. 


Trace Hansen is looking applicants for his Eastlake Skate – Octagon scholarships.  The Scholarship is for a minimum of two (2) $1000 scholarships to an Octagon member, who is a graduating Senior from WCHS.  The application deadline is May 23rd, and can be picked up at the Scholarship office at WCHS.  If you have a family member in the Octagon Club, an email request can be sent to and he will mail out to the address you provide.



Jason Zaugg gave Art Gakstatter, John Elliott, Alan Lucht, & Dr. Jenny Lucht $500 from KCH – Med Stat for a Gold Sponsorship for our Cruise-In.

Co-Chair Past President John Elliott started sign-up sheets for our May 18th City of Lakes Cruise-In to Downtown Warsaw.  We need more people to work our registration and our escorted cruise in particular.  You can specify the couple hours you can work on registration.  The escorted cruise starts around 6 p.m. and goes to Winona Lake and back. Remember to give your sponsorship money to John Teevan, the guy with the money tie.  Our event runs from around noon to around 6 p.m.

As a Club member, we are asking you to commit to three things to help make this event successful:

  1. Clear May 18 on your schedule so you can help with the event

  2. Be a $25 Trophy Sponsor or upgrade to the Bronze, Silver or Gold level.

  3. Secure one additional sponsor of the event at the $500 … $200 … $100 level.



President Everett Nifong reminded us of our Golf Outing that will be Thursday, June 19 at Stonehenge.  Registration begins at 11 a.m., lunch is at 11:30 a.m., and the Shotgun start is at 1 p.m.  Cost is $440 per foursome including golf, cart, lunch, and driving range use.  Please consider golfing, becoming a Tee Sponsor, donating a door prize or goody bag items.  Gold Sponsorship of $1,000 includes golf for a foursome, putting green sponsor sign, opportunity to select sponsorship of longest drive, proximity shot, closest to line, second team entry for $300.  Silver Sponsorship of $500 includes golf for a foursome, tee sponsor sign, second team entry for $350.  Bronze Sponsorship of $100 includes tee sponsor sign.  Brochures are here.  Drew Scholl donated some Sportulas to be used as our door prizes. 


Past Gov. and Triathlon Chairman Ron Donkers paid $0.25 for everyone who wore shorts today.  Since winter lasted so long, Ron sponsored our activity to “bring summer on.”  If anyone is interested in donating to our Goody Bags see Ron about the logistics.  He may be able to find a way to help cover some of the cost of providing 600 items.  He also reminded us we all need to work our Triathlon.  Our new members and our long term members all need to block off the last Saturday in June.  We need to keep that open every year.  This year it is June 28.  Luke Becknell as our manpower chairman can connect anyone with a function that needs help.  This year we will have youth races (11 & 12 year olds and 13 & 14 year olds, 15 year olds are with the adults) in addition to our usual event.  This year Akash Jain is working with Jim Hayes on the database.  Wow, we now have 2 “get-er-done” kind of guys doing this mountain of behind the scenes work!  Jim Hayesreports we have 80 registrants.      


Past Lt. Gov. Dr. David Haines provided our first post to our Year in Review series.  It is featured on the front page of our website.  Here is a direct link .


President Everett Nifong asked us to keep an eye out for our 3rd quarter dues statements. 


Dave Meier announced our 34th Annual Big Wheel Race is Friday, August 1 at Center Lake Park.  Registration starts at 5:45 p.m.  Race is at 7 p.m.  Thanks to Penguin Point for sponsoring the bicycles, trophies, and gift certificates.


Past Treasurer Jennifer Dorman presented many awards to our club from the Indiana North District Conference.  Included were awards to Past Lt. Gov. Ot Schroeder for our Octagon Club, Lt. Gov. John Sullivan, our NOW Meeting, several quarterly A & A Awards for our activities, our club and Past President Tracy Furnivall for being a Honor Club.  Past Lt. Gov. Jerry Titus reported that Jennifer was elected District Secretary – Treasurer.    


Past Gov. Ron Donkers reported our Indiana North District Convention will be in Warsaw Friday & Saturday, August 8th and 9th.  There will be a fun Golf Outingon Friday the 8th.


Past Gov. Ron Donkers thanked Akash Jain for stepping up to help Jim Hayes with our database.


Troy Akers invited us to the 2nd Annual Boomerang Backpacks Golf OutingMonday, June 16 at Tippecanoe Lake Country Club.  It will help feed students from Warsaw, Wawasee, & Tippy Valley on the weekends.  Cost is $400 for a foursome.  Sponsorship opportunities are available.  See Tracey Akers .



Sergeants-at-Arms:  Luke Becknell & Trace Hansen entertained us.


The sergeants noted that Jennifer Dorman did not nominate them for an award at the District Conference.


Chris Wiggins was recognized for bringing a politician just before the primary.


Past Lt. Gov. Denny Andrews was recognized for his prize winning legs.  Millie paid his fine.


Bruce Hansen said it was not his alligator that got caught.  (His must still be in the bathtub.)  However Beckie did co-author a book called Seaside Quilts: Quilting, Sewing & Craft Projects for Beach – Inspired Decor. 


We have some very educated people.  Luke thought he would be able to get some fines from people who would have some trouble with his “Talk like Shakespeare” day questions.  Art Gakstatter, Dr. Jenny Lucht, & Jason Zaugg blew the task out of the water.


We were reminded to were our lapel pins on our clothes.


Laurie Schotz invited us to the Battle of the Bands Fundraiser for families of cancer patients.  It is this Saturday, May 3rd at the Warsaw Community High School Performing Arts Center PAC.


Legendary Storyteller Fred Nieter’s table won the dance contest.


Josh Gordon reported the conversion to Old National Bank went smooth.   


We know that Jerry Clevenger is able to supplement his living on the golf course.  A while ago, he had done pretty well on a round of golf.  His friend dropped him off by his cart that was by the clubhouse.  He threw his bag on the passenger side of his cart, and inadvertently the bottom of the bag hit the accelerator and held it all the way down.  The cart took off like a scalded cat.  It took a turn and headed for the pond.  Jerry ran full speed and caught the cart,… sort of.  The cart dragged him for a while.  He was able to stop it before it went into the water.  He then, as nonchalantly as possible drove up to the clubhouse to collect his money from his friends.  Luckily they had not seen anything.  We are waiting for one of the ladies, who were on the deck, to post what they captured on their phones onto the internet.



Drew Scholl brought us up to date on Wildman Business Group.  Rex Wildman bought a dry cleaner in Nappanee in 1953.  In 1963 he moved it to Warsaw.  In 1977 Brent Wildman joined the firm and they started a commercial laundry service.  In 1999 the third generation joined the firm.  Steve Bryant was hired to lead the transition.  In 2010 Josh Wildman was promoted to CEO.  The company has grown 253% since 2010.  The company has doubled in size three times in the last 15 years.  They plan to add another 75 employees in the next 5 years.

Wildman is a marketing company that happens to be in the laundry business.    

Business is a vessel to impact the world for the Gospel.  Wildman is very involved with 2nd Mile Missions that was founded by Brent and Rod Wildman.  Wildman Business Group supports their employees in works of service.  Many serve others around the world.