Wednesday, February 27, 2013

 Future Dates    

3/6 Wed. Angie Wood – Heartline

3/8 Fri.  Baker Youth Clubs Madness fundraiser at Wagon Wheel

3/13 Wed. Chad Zaucha / YMCA

3/15 Fri. Oratorical Contest

3/19 Tues. Quiz Bowl

3/20 Wed. Oratorical Contest Winners

3/23 Sat. Bowling for Big Brothers Big Sisters

3/27 Wed. Dave Hoffert / Chief Academic Officer

4/3 Wed. Olon Dotson / Ball State

4/10 Wed. Suzie Light / Kosciusko County Community Foundation

4/17 Wed. Warsaw High School Band

4/24 Wed. Ann Zydek / Warsaw Community Public Library

5/1 Wed. Randy Polston / Grace Applied Learning

5/8 Wed. Nate Bosch / Kosciusko Lakes and Streams

5/15 Wed. Tracy Furnivall / Baker Youth Clubs

5/19 Sun. Car Show

5/22 Wed.  Optimist Singers Memorial Day

5/29 Wed. Dr. Craig Hintz

6/5 Wed. Jay Tate / Safe Assured ID demo

6/12 Wed. Beaman Home

6/19 Wed. Ashlynn Fawley / Red Cross

6/26 Wed. Assemble Triathlon bags

6/29 Sat. Triathlon

7/10 Wed. no meeting / County Fair

7/24 Ronna Kawsky / Warsaw Area Career Center

8/2 Fri. Big Wheel Race

8/14 Wed. Rich Haddad / K21 Health Foundation

8/21 Wed. Lorinda Kline / Professional Learning Community Coach


Wednesday, February 27, 2013 


69 Optimists & 11 guests attended our meeting.  Amanda Zambrano was the guest of Kelsi Griffith; Derek Finch was the guest of Max Mock; Mike Cox was the guest of Rick Kerlin; Kim Nance was the guest of Trina Hoy; Rob Edling was the guest of Jason Matthews; Matthew Voss was the guest of Juergen Voss; Kristine Paton was the guest of George Paton; Barb Smolen was the guest of George Brennan; and Erin Porter, Mary Pat Wallen, and Holly Hummitch were the guests of Mary Ellen Jordan.

Door Greeters:  Fred Nieter and Max Mock. 

Prayer:  Fred Nieter led us in prayer.

Pledge was given to the American flag. 

Promise yourself was said in unison. 

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

Birthday Honoree:  William Bartol.  Martin Becker led us in the birthday song with Merl results.


           >>>> INFORMATION

Prayer Requests:  Marv Miller’s continued recovery.

Ron Henry’s recovery from surgery.

Praise:  Camille Kerlin is back from Indy.


Membership:  Past President Jeff Owens’ assistant Larry Bishop read Derek Finch’s and Rob Edling’s applications.  Past President Max Mock is sponsoring Derek and Jason Matthews is sponsoring Rob.     


Sheriff of Attendance Bill Landrigan and Deputy Harry Gigous were happy to see over 80 of us at each of our recent meetings.


Board Member Harry Gigous presented Warsaw Education FoundationExecutive Director Barb Smolen with a $1000 check.  We are sponsoring 2 teams at the March 19th Quiz Bowl.  Barb reported Warsaw Schools had 10 Chess Clubs go to State.  Also this year’s Red Apple Grants of $11,000 pushed the cumulative total over $250,000!


Past President Jeff Owens announced our Oratorical Contest will be at Zimmer Corporate Headquarters on March 15.  The topic is “Why my voice is important.”    Major prizes are being provided by the Esther Pfleiderer Charitable TrustLake City Bank and Orthopediatrics.  For more info go .


President Tracy Furnivall invited us to Baker Youth Club’s Madness fundraiser at the Wagon Wheel on Friday, March 8th.  The tickets are $25 this week and run $30 next week.  They can be purchased at the Wagon Wheel box office.  BYC works with over 850 kids throughout the County.



Past President John Elliott announced our 4th Annual Breakfast Optimist Club Cruise In to Downtown Warsaw will be on Sunday, May 19, 2013.  ML Motorsports is displaying their car.  The Studebaker Museum and the Michiana Studebaker Car Club are bringing a car or two.  The Oscar Meyer “Hot-Dog” Mobile is invited.  Purdue President Mitch Daniels has been personally invited to ride his motorcycle and be the Grand Marshall of our escorted Cruise to The Village of Winona Lake.

Our goal is to host 250 cars, trucks, and motorcycles; have some fun; and make $15,000 to support the youth activities of our Club.

As Club members, we are being asked to commit to three things to help make this event successful:

1)    Clear the date so that we can help with the event

2)    Be a $25 Trophy Sponsor

3)    Secure one additional sponsor of the event at the $500, $200, or $100 level.

Please turn in your Trophy Sponsor Form to John Teevan along with your check.  The $25 Trophy Sponsorships are for members of our Club.  We are asking others to support at the $100, $200, or $500 levels.

For more information on how you can help, contact Co-Chairmen Art Gakstatter or John Elliott.



President Elect Everett Nifong announced our Golf Outing will be June 13, 2013. 


Past Gov. Ron Donkers announced people are signing up for our Triathlon.  The date has been changed to the Saturday JUST BEFORE the 4th of July.  It will be Saturday, 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.


Lt. Gov. John Sullivan announced the nominating committee is looking for someone to run for President, a couple of people to run for Vice President, and several to run for our Board.  President Tracy Furnivall suggested this is a good time to heed Sheriff and Deputy of Attendance Bill Landrigan andHarry Gigous’ admonitions and be at every meeting.  If you are not here the railroad will get you.  


Board Member Trina Hoy encouraged us to use our Suggestion Box.


Video Editor Jim Hayes showed us an inspiring video about Larry Eckhardt who lines the funeral rout of our fallen heros with American Flags.  The local people help him put them up.  It helps local people have a way to share in an expression of gratitude to the families of our Service-people who have made the ultimate sacrifice. 



Please pray for our Troops and Families:   Col John Schumacher – Army – Endorsing Agent


Sergeants-at-Arms:  John Elliott and Everett Nifong entertained us.

Everett Nifong was our United Way’s Volunteer of the Year.

Dr KT Kishan graciously donated over the usual amount for a trophy sponsorship. 

Fred Neiter commended our Warsaw Girls Basketball team for a great 24 – 2 season.  Fred also announced our Boys Basketball team beat Elkhart Central in the Sectional.

For President’s Day Fred told us of President’s Day in 1862, when Lincoln felt he needed a clean shave for the special day.  Fred explained how this happened.  As always, we groaned. 

Rick Kerlin took the express route to Bishop Luers by way of Bishop Dwenger. 

Those without their badges where recognized.

Dave Illingwoth was recognized for supporting KYLA.

Don Reinholt was offered a collection of pictures of fine furniture.

Bart Templeton was recognized for his Big Cash Weekend towards vehicles.

In the spirit of Past Lt. Gov. Jim ReeveTrace Hansen told of the story of a lady who followed the city’s directions and parked on the East or West side of the street during snow storms.  Her husband asked when she might start parking the car in the garage again. 

Collector of Trophy Sponsorships, John Teevan, noted Thaddeus Kosciuszko’s birthday was February 12, 1746.   



Erin PorterMary Pat Wallen, and Holly Hummitch presented the exciting benefits of Winona Lake’s coming Limitless Park which will include:  1) universally accessible Splash Pad, 2) universally accessible Limitless Playground, and 3) accessible parking lot. 

The benefits are:  1) allow accessible play for all, 2) encourages healthy lifestyles, 3) provides no-cost entertainment, and 4) promotes tourism to Kosciusko County and the surrounding areas.

The Limitless Park will be universally accessible and will engage children with disabilities in an interactive way with their peers.  It is very important that our children with disabilities have the opportunity to interact as themselves with their peers.  Traditional playgrounds do not offer these interactions once the kids are too large for a parent to carry them.  We see the improvement from having our kids integrated in our schools.  We need to see that in recreation.  One child said a playground is “Where I feel like me.”

Our own Mary Ellen Jordan is the Architect.  It looks to be very well thought out.  They even provide shade to keep the surface from getting too hot for the kids.

They are accepting donations.  The capital campaign begins next fall.  Groundbreaking is scheduled for the spring of 2014.  The goal is to raise the funds privately to avoid using taxpayers dollars.

For more information contact Craig Allebach at .  All contributions are tax exempt.