Service Above Self
Covington, LA Rotary Club


Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Club Web Site
Editor:   Paxton Fellers
If you have any comments or questions, email the editor.

Future Speakers
Apr 22 2014
Jan Robert
"Family Promise of St. Tammany"
Apr 29 2014
Board and Business Meeting
May 6 2014
6PM - Fellowship at Colonna's Pizza
"Group Study Exchange Serbia-Montenegro team"
May 9 2014
Friday Night Food Fest
"in Biloxi; precursor to District Conference"
May 10 2014
District Conference
"details on District website"
May 13 2014
Scholarship Winners
"Rotary 101 -- Covington Rotary Club's commitment to Youth"
May 20 2014
"Installation banquet -- details TBA"
May 27 2014
Board and Business Meeting


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Spring with Covington Rotary (there's a lot to get excited about)
by Van Sant, Elizabeth

April 15: Meet one of our RYLA winners, Gabrielle, of Lakeshore High.  She and her family will be coming to lunch to meet our members and receive her Certificate of Achievement.

Our speaker is Public Service Commissioner Eric Skrmetta.

Thursday April 17: Rockin the Rails -- we will be serving beer, soft drinks, and water to the thirsty crowd at the Covington Trailhead and listen to the Creole String Beans (click here for their site).  This is a great fellowship event and epitomizes the FUN in FUNdraiser.  We hope you'll join us and buy a beer and leave a tip!

April 22: Another of our RYLA winners, Taylor, of Covington High, will join us with her parents.  Our members will get a chance to meet her and learn of her plans for the future.

Our speaker is Jan Roberts who will bring us up-to-date on the reality of homeless teenagers in St. Tammany Parish, the many challenges they face, and what we can do individually within the community to help.

April 29: We won't call this a Business Meeting...this is an in-depth conversation about why we are here, the Object of Rotary and the Five Avenues of Service.  How is our club and how are our individual members fulfilling the purpose of Rotary.  It's not a lunch club, it's the world's oldest and most successful service organization.  We represent business ethics and philanthropy and have daily opportunities to demonstrate the significance of Rotary and membership in Rotary.

May 6: NO LUNCH MEETING.  Instead, we will host the Group Study Exchange team from Serbia-Montenegro.  We have teamed up with the Northlake Mandeville Club to host the team and match them with local professionals in their vocations to exchange ideas and further international goodwill.  Join us from 6-8pm at COLONNA's PIZZA at 843 N. Collins in Covington to meet the team and engage in fellowship.  Families are encouraged to come along.  Non-Covington or Mandeville Rotarians are asked to pay $10 at the door.

[Earlier in the day, we will take the GSE team to InstaGator Ranch to meet some alligators and then have a private tour of Covington Brewhouse.  On Wednesday, we match them with local professionals for a Vocational Day.  The team consists of a pharmacist, a radiologist, a lawyer, an events manager, and the leader is an aviation engineer.]

Thursday, May 8: Northlake Mandeville will host the GSE Team for their presentation on Serbia-Montenegro.  Lunch cost at Beau Chene is $17.  We hope to have a good number of Covington Rotarians there to meet the Mandeville club and to support our new friends from Serbia.  Fellowship begins at 11:45; the meeting begins at noon.  We will see the GSE team again just once more, at District Conference.

Friday, May 9: District Conference begins in Biloxi with the FOOD FEST.  This is free to Rotarians and their families.  Everyone is invited and encouraged to attend.  See the District Website for specifics on the food, the band, and directions.  Covington Rotarians are needed to help man the beer booth -- Covington Brewhouse has donated and we all are experts at pouring beer.  Meet the current Youth Exchange Students, Andrea from Ecuador, and David from Belgium, and hear about their year with us in Louisiana.  Our own Ethan from Covington who is going to Taiwan next year as our first Rotary Youth Exchange student in over a decade, will also be there to meet district Rotarians. 

Saturday, May 10: District Conference continues with a morning breakfast provided by the RC of Ocean Springs.  There is just one plenary session this year, so you can have the afternoon at the beach.  Our own Elizabeth will graduate from the Rotary Leadership Institute with a handful of others who completed the course this year.  Our own Brian will almost-officially begin his year as District Governor.  Come participate in and celebrate the achievements of our club members and learn how you can step up your Rotary game.

May 13: Guest speaker TBA

May 20: We will meet our third RYLA winner, Dominick, and his parents.  Also attending are our two Covington High Scholarship award winners, Alex and Lindsey.  This is our biggest year of scholarships on record and these kids are all fantastic and appreciative of the club's support.

May 27: We will also not call this a business meeting, but we will need to vote on the budget for 2014-2015.




March and April Planning
by Van Sant, Elizabeth

On Tuesday, March 4, we did not hold a meeting due to Mardi Gras!

Tuesday, March 11, we had the great fortune to hear from representatives of the Boys' and Girls' Club of Covington.  Pictures are posted on our facebook page.

Tuesday, March 18, we continue our Rotary 101 Series with Jason Sanchez, President-Nominee and charter member of the Rotary Club of New Orleans Riverbend.  The theme this month is Literacy, and Jason will talk about the many projects his club is involved in and specifically about the Little Library Project begun by a Rotarian (see this month's issue of the Rotarian Magazine) and now all over the country, including right here in Covington.  Our clubs worked together to place a Little Library in our community.  More on Jason under his speaker bio.

Tuesday, March 25 will be a Business Meeting.  Please come prepared to discuss all aspects of Club business and to vote on some prospective members!  Remember that we always encourage membership growth, so speak loudly and proudly about your involvement in our club, our many projects, and the incredible achievements of Rotarians and Rotary Clubs around the world.  Don't keep Covington Rotary and our projects a secret!!

Coming up in April, we have 2 fun service projects in conjunction with 2 New Orleans Clubs.

Saturday, April 5 is the Freret Street Festival.  The RC of New Orleans Riverbend is responsible for staffing all of the beer and drinks booth at this great free street festival with food, vendors, and lots of music.  Please volunteer and have some fun!

Saturday, April 12 is District Assembly.  It will be held in Poplarville, just a short drive away.  Next year's Board and all interested Rotarians are invited to attend to learn more about what more there is to Rotary besides eating a meal.  There is also a Rotary Youth Exchange Information and Training Session.  Covington Rotary is hosting a student next year and our Youth Exchange Officer and Rotary Counselor will be trained.  Everyone with an interest in getting ahead of the game on this incredible program is encouraged to attend.  This means potential host families, school administrators and all club members from across the district. Details on the meeting and meeting place are on the District website.

The Rotary Youth Exchange Students will be volunteering over at the Festivale Internationale in Lafayette during the weekend of April 25.  If you haven't been, please make plans to attend; all drink booths there are staffed and subbed-out by the RC of Lafayette.  This festival is also free!

The second weekend of Jazz Fest, we are also supplying a crew to work the Carrollton Rotary Club's beer booth Thursday, May 1.  That festival is NOT those who volunteer are the lucky ones who attend for free in exchange for a few hours of icing down and selling beer.

February news
by Van Sant, Elizabeth

February 23rd is the 109th anniversary of Rotary!

Tuesday February 4: to celebrate the founding of Rotary, we have Jamie Haueser as our speaker.  She will entertain us with some personal history of Paul Harris and his legacy that not many Rotarians know.  We will even hear his voice with some recordings from the archives.  Bring a guest and get excited about Paul Harris' vision and international impact of this wonderful organization that you are a part of.

Sunday February 9: a fellowship event that is also a fundraiser for NOLA loves the Philippines at Rock N Bowl in New Orleans.  $25 at the door; $12.50 for students with ID; free for children 12 and under.  The proceeds go to replace fishing boats to enable people to resume their livelihoods.  Find out more via the link on our club's fb page.

Tuesday February 11: we will not hold a meeting but instead have partnered with Dunavant Wealth Strategies and our member Eric for a day of service at The Covington Food Bank.  Everyone over the age of 12 is invited to participate.  The Covington Food Bank will put us to work wherever they need us.  Check your e-mail inbox for the invitation and to RSVP.

Tuesday February 18: our speaker is Mack Daloney from SCORE on the Northshore.

Saturday February 22: Covington Rotary will participate in the World's Greatest Meal to End Polio, celebrate Rotary's anniversary, and enjoy fellowship at the Olympia Parade...all in one event!  Details are in your inbox.  $25 per individual or $50 per family.  Profits go to Rotary's Polio Plus program...we are THIS CLOSE to eradicating polio from the planet.  All Covington Rotarians will receive matching points from the club's Foundation Committee.  It's a win-win-win-win.  We hope you will bring the whole family -- we have prime parade-watching real estate!

Tuesday February 25: Business Meeting...come and find out what you've been missing!  Our Club is very active locally and we have some international projects as well.  At this meeting you will find out what's been going on and what is about to happen.  And we may have some new members to add to our roster.  What better way to celebrate Rotary than to increase our membership and the amount of service we can provide?

January News
by Van Sant, Elizabeth

THANK YOU to everyone who helped to make 2013 Feeding the Needy such a success.  We had over 200 volunteers between Dec 23rd and 25th to do all of the work of preparing the boxes, recycling all of the packaging, creating the maps, and delivering the Christmas packages.  Donations to the Covington Rotary Foundation are still being accepted on this site.

January Calendar:

See our speakers list on this page; please check the duty roster, Rotarians, to see if you are scheduled as the Greeter or Raffle ticket seller...the 50-50 raffle pot is over $200, so selling tickets is easy and the odds of winning are increasing as there are fewer cards left in the deck each week.

January 11 is the Mid-Year Check-Up.  President Sean Bourgois and President-Elect Lauren Coudrain are practicing the Covington Rotary Rap -- a 2-minute recap of all we have done this year.  Register via this link to get your front-row seats: MID-YEAR REGISTRATION  Also at the Jan 11 meeting at Pearl River Community College in Poplarville, MS, is the first ever District 6840 Rotary Youth Exchange Training and Information Session.  Our students, the RYE committee, and host families will be there.  This is likely to be your only opportunity to hear the BIG PICTURE of Rotary Youth Exchange -- one of the flagship programs of Rotary on a global scale.  Covington will host our own student in the 2014-2015 school year, and we are sponsoring D6840's first outbound student in over 10 years.  (That's a big deal.)  You can register for this via the link above.

January 14 we are not having a club meeting -- instead, we are holding our first in a series of 4 Membership Orientation sessions at the offices of The Coudrain Group.  Please register via the link you receive by e-mail so we know who is coming.  If you cannot attend that meeting at 6:30pm, please attend the meeting of another Rotary Club in our district.  Strengthening ties with members of other clubs is good for us all and you'd be surprised what you can learn about Rotary and its possibilities just by going 20 minutes outside of Covington.  Bogalusa, Slidell, Mandeville, Hammond, Franklinton, Ponchatoula...they all have clubs.

The January District 6840 Newsletter is available HERE

February dates to keep in mind:

February 11 -- SERVICE PROJECT at Covington Food Bank.  No lunch meeting this day.  Eric Dunavant will circulate details.  Our club will also present this year's donation to the Covington Food Bank on this occasion.  We hope you can make it.

February 22 -- FELLOWSHIP EVENT to watch the Covington evening Olympia Parade.  This will be a family-friendly event.  Details will be circulated once they are confirmed.

District 6840 Newsletter
by Van Sant, Elizabeth

D6840 Dec 2013 Newsletter
Nomination Period for 2014-2015 Officers Open
by Van Sant, Elizabeth

 As called for in the Club By-Laws: 

Article 5 Meetings

Section 1 – Annual Meeting. An annual meeting of this club shall be held on the last Tuesday of

November in each year, at which time the election of officers and directors to serve for the

ensuing year shall take place. 

If you would like to serve as a Club Officer, or would like to nominate a fellow Rotarian to a leadership position, please alert Immediate Past President Chuck Rich.  A Quorum of the membership is equal to one-third of the total membership on the date of this meeting.  Nominations should be received by November 5th.  Currently, Lauren Coudrain is serving as President-Elect and will become Club President in 2014-2015 upon the membership's confirmation.  Every member of the Covington Rotary Club in good standing is eligible and encouraged to stand for office.

Note that, in order to ensure Club Leadership acts in accordance with District and RI guidelines, and as a demonstration of commitment to the leadership role, President-Elect and Secretary-Elect are required to participate in the PETS training seminar in March, 2014 and are HIGHLY ENCOURAGED to participate in the District's Rotary Leadership Institute.  The first session of the RLI will be held in Slidell on November 9.  The Covington Rotary Club has included in its current budget (approved by the membership) the cost of 2 club members to attend RLI and PETS.

October and November Calendar
by Van Sant, Elizabeth

Welcome to Covington Rotary!!

Members, please check your calendars and sign up for one of our upcoming events.  These are scheduled to allow for greater fellowship and service (and fun) than a regular lunch meeting with a guest speaker allow.  Participation in any of these events counts toward attendance and also replaces the 5th Tuesday this month for which we will not hold a lunch meeting.

Potential members and guests, we would love to have you join us at any of these events; please use the links above or e-mail for complete information.

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 17 -- Fellowship and Fundraising at the Covington Trailhead

Covington Rotary is responsible for pouring the beer and taking money.  We need a team of 4 from 5-7:30 with another couple of people who can arrive at 4:30 or stay until 8.  Sign up using the link above.

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26 -- Fellowship and Fun with Mandeville Rotary

We are entering the Chili-Cook Off at the Madisonville Ball Fields.  This is a family-friendly event. $5 for a bottomless bowl of chili.  We could use some help cooking and serving (be there by 9am), but mainly we'd like a crowd there to support our team and Northlake-Mandeville's efforts.  Sign up using the link above.  Details on the Northlake-Mandeville website and fb pages.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 28 -- Fellowship and Fun with Friends Forever

We are one of the few clubs who will have the chance to host the Friends Forever teens from Northern Ireland.  Please sign up using the link above and bring your whole family.  D6840 exchange students will also be there.  Rotarians from other clubs are hoping to receive an invitation, but first we need to know how many are coming from Covington.  Covington Rotarians will be asked to contribute a dish, desserts, or drinks to the family picnic.

FEEDING THE NEEDY service opportunities November and December

Please clear your calendars to help at the Covington Food Bank on a Monday, Tuesday, or Thursday morning from 8:45 in the 2 weeks prior to Thanksgiving and the 2 weeks after Thanksgiving.  If every member can do one shift and bring along a friend and/or a potential new member, we will have this covered.  John Baldwin will coordinate this effort until we reactivate the volunteer sign-up on this site.  This is an important phase of the Christmas dinner project, as this is when we identify the families in need of assistance.  (Looking ahead, we will also need some help at the call center and of course on December 23, 24, and 25.) 

Our final meetings in October will take place at Dakota.  We have a speaker with the Parkview Pipeline project on October 15, and an importantbusiness meeting on October 22.  Please find the e-mail from Sam and send your thoughts if you won't be able to come to the Business Meeting.  We always hope for 100% attendance and participation in the discussions.  Business meetings are your opportunity as members to get current on the plans and projects (and any changes) of the current Board; in the words of Mike Rotary in you or are you in Rotary?  Your active participation in all aspects of this Club are important.

Feeding the Needy 2013

Each year, the Covington Rotary Club, with the assistance of hundreds of community volunteers and donors, leads FEEDING THE NEEDY, a project designed to address the closure of school cafeterias during the long Winter Break and other individuals and families who are in need.

Donate Now     Volunteer Now


 Each year, the Covington Rotary Club, with the assistance of hundreds of community volunteers and donors, leads FEEDING THE NEEDY, a project designed to address the closure of school cafeterias during the long Winter Break and other individuals and families who are in need.

 Feeding the Needy provides a complete Christmas meal for families in the Covington area and throughout ST Tammany Parish who are in need. Volunteers from all over the area come together on December 23rd and 24th to prepare Christmas meal boxes to feed a family of four that include: a 12-14 pound cooked turkey with 6 side dishes and dessert. The families need only to heat the food and it is ready to serve as a substantial Christmas Day meal with plenty of extra to help on the days between Christmas and the New Year.

 The program began in 2002 in close cooperation with the Covington Food Bank, and that year helped to feed over 300 people. Since then the program has grown in scope and reach and in 2011, Feeding the Needy provided 1300 boxes to families in Covington and across St. Tammany and Washington Parishes. In 2005, given the ravages of Hurricane Katrina, Feeding the Needy also responded to the demand for single meals to individuals displaced by the storm.

 Feeding the Needy relies heavily on donations from local individuals, business, and foundations and the volunteer efforts of individuals, congregations and service organizations in addition to members of the Covington Rotary Club. Because of this wonderful support and strong partnerships, Feeding the Needy is able to operate with ZERO administrative costs.

 Donations are accepted year round and checks can be made out to The Covington Rotary Foundation, a 501(c)3 foundation with the corresponding tax status or Click Here to Donate Online. Click Here to Volunteer Online.  Please mail checks to PO Box 541 Covington, LA 70433