Welcome to the Kiwanis Club of Lakeland

Serving the Children of the World

We meet Fridays at 12:00 PM

First United Methodist Church

72 Lake Morton Drive
Lakeland, FL 33801
United States

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Posted by Joy Davis

Our club will partner with Two Men and a Truck in donating items to women's shelters before Mothers' Day. Jonathan Crain will have a box at the noon club meetings to collect: shampoo, conditioner, soaps, and other toiletries as well as slippers, blankets, and basic clothing items. Consider bringing items to care for women in need.  Image
Posted by David McSween

Chief Brewmaster, Dr. Paul Farnsworth, spoke about beer from the middle ages until now at our Kiwanis Club on March 21st.  Our jovial speaker is from England and has started over 100 breweries all over the world. Dr. Farnsworth said this new $15 million craft beer brewery plant plans to open near I-4 in Lakeland this May.  Plant tours and sampling will be available!


Posted by Joy Davis

Thank you to all that made the Pancake Festival a success! Ileana Kniss did an outstanding job as chairperson leading the club to serve thousands pancakes and sausage on Saturday, February 8, 2014.


Posted by Joy Davis

Raymond Norman and a team of skilled Kiwanians constructed a wheelchair ramp for a disabled boy at the beginning of January. Lowe's donated supplies for the build. Ten Kiwanians changed the life of a child by enabling him to have access to his home.

Monti Sommer and son, Randy Andersen, John Read, Ray Norman, Gary Ballard, and Ben Mundy are pictured at the "pre-build".


Posted by Joy Davis



Robbin Joachim, a member of Kiwanis since 2011, has a tremendous passion for fine art photography, which she has developed over the past 25 years as a photographer. She has captured images from around the world, as well as the beauty of people.  Her travel photography ranges from locations in Sedona, Cape Cod, the top of Mount Vesuvius in  Italy, Rome, Venice, Greece, the French Rivera, Croatia, Finland, Denmark to St. Petersburg, Russia, just to name a few. Of all those fabulous and beautiful places in the world, Robbin's  greatest joy is taking photographs of life events, capturing the moment, and having others feel an emotional connection to the photography.

Camera Coaching Series offers half day photography seminars and hands-on workshops for all skill levels, that will provide quality courses to improve photography skills.  Visit http://www.CameraCoachingSeries.com for more information.

Fellow Kiwanians, if you wish to share your hobby, passion, or interesting fact about yourself during an upcoming meeting, please look for the "fishbowl" at the entrance, and drop your card.  (Please, no shameless infomercials.)

Posted by Dennis Harrison

It is hard to believe we are already into December and two months of our administrative year are over.  My hope is that we spend time with our families and reflect on the many blessings that we have during this time of year.

Our main eliminate goal is to stop the decline in our membership.  I am asking each club to work on a net 5% growth.  We will select one member from each club who brings in the most members, and I will take them and their guest out to a great restaurant.  The cost of the dinner will be on me and will take place in September 2014.  I would love for you to be my guest!

 Hopefully we are looking at all of our projects and those that are not working we eliminate.  Also, be working on eliminating the inactivity of our SLP’s, the hunger in our communities, and the (MNT) Maternal Neonatal Tetanus. 

 We have an exciting Division Council Meeting for next month, so please make plans to attend.   The next DCM will be held on January 31st at Victory Church with a social at 6:00 pm and dinner to follow at 7:00 pm at a cost of $30.00 per person.  We will combine this with the scheduled February 1st Leadership Fforum which will be at Victory Church. See the "Events" section of the website for more information.  We hope to see many of you there for the meetings.

 Keep up the great work to serve those not as fortunate as we. And I appreciate all you do working together in your clubs.  I know that you will be a blessing to many through all your efforts.

Posted by Joy Davis

It's time for our club to fulfill its commitment to Kiwanis International and our District. Please pay your Kiwanis membership dues  for October 2013 through September 2014 in the amount of $200 if you have not done so. If you are not sure if you are current on your membership dues, contact Joy Davis at joybethdavis@Hotmail.com.

You can mail a check to: Kiwanis Club of Lakeland at Post Office Box 5146, Lakeland, FL 33807. Or, you can pay online at the links below.

Pay for dues, $200 at:  https://secure.qgiv.com/for/kcol/event/3725/

Pay for dues and 2014 Pancake Festival tickets: https://secure.qgiv.com/for/kcol/event/3898

Posted by Joy Davis

Kiwanians rang the Salvation Army bell on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at two locations: Publix at Highland City and the Publix on 540A. The appreciates the work of Lana Swartzwelder in organizing this effort as well as the many Kiwanians that participated.

Mike Woodhouse and kids along with Frank O'Reilly ring the bell.


Posted by Joy Davis

ImageGeorge Stansbury and Nome partner with John White and a Salvation Army musician to spread holiday cheer while ringing the Salvation Army bell.

Monti and Emily Sommer involve the kids in helping needy families.


Posted by Joy Davis

Kiwanians spent Saturday morning, December 14, shopping for children in need. Thanks goes to Tri Thornhill, the Rudolph Round-Up chairperson, and the Kiwanis shoppers and their families: Mark Codd, Lisa Milam, Ben and Robbie Mundy, Scott Gardner, Ramona Blankinship, Karen Creighton and Karen Kovach(not pictured). Image
Posted by Joe Mawhinney

Sorry if you weren't with us last Friday because we had a great meeting We celebrated the 12th anniversary of this program and gave special recognition to Principal Gwen Kessell, who has seen the program through with Dennis Harrison since its inception and is now retiring.  Thank you, Dr. Kessell, for your service to our kids and for working with us through the years!

With Veterans Day coming up, we also gave recognition to those who have served our country.  Bob English gave a very heartfelt tribute to our veterans in his invocation.  (Did anyone notice that Bob got a haircut?  For a while there, he was looking like he had an Edgar Winter thing going on.)  Oh, and you should have heard Don Bosko singing the national anthem; great restrain was the only thing that kept many from yelling out, "PLAY BALL!!"

We also got a new member--Justin Callaham, a tax lawyer with Clark Campbell Lancaster & Munson.  Justin went to FSU, Alabama and Florida - 2 out of 3 ain't bad!  He was sponsored by Greg Mugg, but we still expect great things out of him.  Get to know him; nice/sharp guy.

Our program was presented by our own Gary Ballard, Fire Chief for the City of Lakeland, who brought a cast of characters with him for a show and tell about the various functions of LFD and the corresponding uniforms and equipment used by the Department in fulfilling their mission.  Did you know that only 2% of their call outs are for fires and 72% are for medical (half of the Department's firefighters are paramedics; remember that if this Obamacare thing doesn't work out for you and you need some medical care--and they make house-calls!).  Great program, Gary, and our thanks to you and your crew for always being there.

O.K., you've read this far; ready for the spin outs?  You know how President Scott has been on a big push with his "See You at Kiwanis!" campaign?  Well, he tried to get the kids from Blake Academy to sign Kiwanis letters of intent and some Rotarian-looking dude (you know the type-the nerd who still can't make it even though nerds are now in vogue) came busting into the meeting, saying he was a compliance officer with SCI (Service Clubs International) and we were flirting with sanctions and jeopardizing the kids' amateur status.  The situation was brought under control when he was offered a free dessert; not another word from him other than, "Me like cake!"

Then there was the singing of our go-to song, "Smile".  John White did his best to lead us but was rewarded with a pretty wobbly response.  Afterwards, one of the kids was overheard whispering to her friend, "A 'B'!  All we have to do is make one 'B' and we never have to listen to that again!  How hard can that be?!"

Posted by William L. "Billy" Townsend III

This past week, we were treated with Dennis Harrison talking turkey about the future of our club.  If you missed it, you missed some news -- and some frank talk from our own lieutenant governor.
Bottom line:  We all have an opportunity to be better Kiwanians. 
Without seeming to take a breath, Dennis challenged our club to:
•               Recommit to attending meetings.
•               Do away with service projects and activities whose time has come and gone.
•               Reinvigorate relationships with our school and community-based clubs, such as Aktion and Key Club.  
•               Grow our membership
•               And continue to support the Eliminate program with our money and energy.
Oh, and by the way, this is the last year of the Pancake Festival. To be frank, said Dennis, the membership hasn't been supporting it (from a labor standpoint), and it does not provide a significant return financially to support our service projects.
But fear not!  New, innovative events are coming as part of the overall reinvigoration of our club. Stay tuned and bring visitors!
Posted by Scott Gardner

ImageFellow Kiwanians,
Our year is off to a great start, and I appreciate all you do for the Club.  One of my goals for the year is increased attendance at our weekly meetings, and I have chosen “See You at Kiwanis” as my theme for the year.  Check out this 60-second “trailer” …
Posted by Dennis Harrison

Letter from 2013-2014 Lt. Governor, Dennis Harrison

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Eric Hines for a job well done. His many visits and leadership has left the 2012-2013 administrative Kiwanis year better than when started. This is a new year and I am excited to be your lieutenant governor. The visits have shown me that you are making a huge difference in your communities and young children around the world.

Please join me, and all other clubs in our division, at our Division Council Meeting, November 7, at Eaglebrooke Golf and Country Club. The social is scheduled between 6:00-7:00p with dinner at 7:00p. Yes-our official governor will visit that night and Mulberry will host this important event. President Rick Stradtman has done an excellent job in preparation for this event so let's all come to show support for Governor Matthew Cantrall. Cost is $30.00 per person.

Let's all work together on our steps to excellence:

  • Eliminate declining membership
  • Eliminate old projects whose time has come & gone
  • Eliminate hunger in our communities
  • Eliminate (MNT) maternal neonatal tetanus
  • Eliminate inactivity in our Service Leadership Programs

Let's also work on our first ladies project-Diapers for Babies.

Next September, there will be a dinner banquet for the member from each club that brings in the most new members and I will also be paying for their guest. Our goal is to bring in a net 5% in membership and we can accomplish this by simply asking.

Please forward me what your club is doing monthly since I want to be involved and be your greatest supporter. Thank you for all you have done for your communities and Kiwanis.


Dennis Harrison

Posted by Joy Davis

Please see the 2012-13 Lt. Governor's last newsletter below. We are thankful for Eric's leadership and service this past year!

Greetings to Division 15 Presidents and Secretaries
12 months down and It is Finished.
I am so very humbled and thankful for having the opportunity to serve Division 15 as Lt Gov for 2012-2013. As far as I am
concerned all 12 Division Clubs are Clubs of the year and all 12 Presidents and Secretaries are Distinguished. I regret that
making that distinction is not up to me, but that is my vote.

Thanks to 32 Kiwanians, Guests, and Key Clubbers for attending Kiwanis Day at the Rays on Sunday September 22nd. Five Kiwanis clubs and two Key Clubs were represented from Division 15.

Thanks to the Lakeland, Citrus Center, Wauchula, and Lake Wales Clubs for hosting the four Division Council Meetings this Year.
All of the DCM's were super nice and well attended by most of  the Division clubs.

As I have sent you these monthly letters and visited each of your clubs at least three times, I have only really pushed hard for one
goal for the Division. An increase in membership of 10% was our objective. As a Division we did not make a 10% increase. Four
clubs in the Division met or exceeded the 10% goal.  Three other clubs had a positive growth for the year. The other five clubs
were close to breaking even for the year. The report I pulled up today from Kiwanis International shows Division 15 at minus two
for the year.  However, I know at least 8 of our clubs took in and inducted members in the last few weeks totaling 14 members.
 Bottom line is that we are plus for the year.  Thank you one and all of your members for a great membership year.

If I have said it once, I have said it at least 25 or more times, DO NOT FIND A ROCKING CHAIR AND PLAN ON
RETIRING FROM KIWANIS. It is a new year and we must continue to  grow and serve our communities and the Children
of the World. Governor Matt and Lt Gov Dennis need your help, your support, and your dedication to make 2013-2014 an
even bigger and better Kiwanis year.

God Bless all of you and Thanks you so much for helping me make this a great Kiwanis Year.

Eric Hines, Division 15 Lt Gov Retired

Posted by Joy Davis

Friday, September 27, President Kathy Wallen passed the gavel to Incoming President, Scott Gardner. Sunny Zimmermann did a great job in highlighting each incoming and retiring officer's contributions. Kathy walked us through the past year's successes. Kiwanians made Lakeland better through: providing five Bus Shelters for the community, raising $26,000 at the Pancake Festival, stuffing the bus and delivering over $50,000 in school supplies, donating $8,000, and raising $25,000 at the Kiwanis Cares for Kids Auction to provide Parker Street Ministries with youth fitness equipment, just to name a few. John White received the "Spirit of Kiwanis" award for his weekly work in providing and leading us in music. Gene Parnell was honored for his 37 years of service and dedication.

Scott Gardner shared his goals for the new year which include: increasing meeting attendance, internal communications and external awareness, Eliminate, and focusing on the Sponsored Leadership Programs (Key Club, Builders Club, K Kids, CKI, and Aktion Club). Kiwanians will continue to serve the children and our community. Consider how you can be a part of changing the world, one child and one community at a time.

President: Scott Gardner

Immediate Past President: Kathy Wallen

President-Elect: Matthew Cantrall

Vice President: Jonathan Crain

Treasurer: Ben Fairchild

Secretary: Joy Davis

Retiring directors: David Grisham and Michael Micallef

Incoming directors: Liz Antaya, Ileana Kniss, and John Read

Directors that will continue to serve: Bruce Abels, Mike LaPan, Chas Smith, Shirley Balogh, Brian Dockery, and Danita Frier.

Retiring officer: Mark Codd (immediate past-president)




Posted by Joy Davis

Check out Stuff the Bus 2013 thanks to Ray Kriegbaum.

Posted by Kathleen D. Wallen

On Tuesday, August 20th our third covered transit shelter was officially put in service with a special ribbon cutting ceremony.  Our friends from Community Southern Bank and Citrus Connection made the day special.  Special thanks to Mayor Gow Fields, and Commissioners Merritt, Selvage and Wiggs for joining in the celebration. Image
Posted by Dale Gordon

Follow these directions to get started.
Posted by Joy Davis

Please extend birthday wishes: Jim Verplanck, Jay Merkel, Adam Ogg, Ben Earnest, Barney Barnett, Karen Kovach, Stephen Watson, Ana Wood, and John White.
Apr 18, 2014
The Bakery Industry
Apr 25, 2014
Honor Blake Academy Students
May 02, 2014
May 09, 2014
Serving Lakeland
May 16, 2014
Scholarship Program
May 23, 2014
March of Dimes
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