Eugene Southtowne Rotary is a service club of committed members partnering with Rotary International to provide support in service to local and worldwide communities through truth, fairness, goodwill, and better friendships, beneficial to us all.
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Join us for the Wine and Salmon Festival on March 14th for your chance at these and many other oral auction items:
Pizza making experience with Gianni at LaPerla
A homemade pizza making experience at LaPerla Pizzeria Napoletana. Learn to make your own true Neopolitan pizza pies from the bottom up and have a personalized chance to bake them in the wood-fired ovens of LaPerla. For one person. Followed by a pizza party for 10. Donated by LaPerla Pizzeria Napoletana
Reflections pendant from Beaudet Jewelry
A beautiful .71 Chrome Diopside and Diamond (.10cttw) Reflections Pendant in 14kt white gold on an 18” 14kt white gold chain. A gorgeous piece to add to your collection. Donated by Charles Beaudet and Beaudet Jewelry
Japanese Kaiseki Dinner
A six-course dinner in the Japanese Kaiseki-style. Be prepared for seasonal sashimi, seasonal main course (most likely white fish), five to seven side dishes, miso soup, and rice. This dinner includes beverages including wine, sake, and beer. Date negotiable. Donated by Sheila & David Bong
Sip and Soar Trip to Napa Valley for two
A hot air balloon ride, winery tours and tastings, chauffeur all with air fare and three nights at the Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa Valley. Spend two hours gliding over the valley with a champagne breakfast on board. Take a private tour with wine tasting at Fontanella Family Winery, have a cave tour and barrel tasting at Del Dotto Estate Winery, and take those tours over 6 hours with a chauffeured luxury sedan. Package includes coach airfare to San Francisco and 3-nights at the Meritage Resort and Spa complete with concierge service.
presentation by John Rowell and Kaarin Knudson, Rowell Brokaw Architects
John and Kaarin provided us with an update and "sneak peek" on the developing plans for the rebuilding of the Eugene City Hall. Final plans will be presented in April.
Click here for a recent article in the Register Guard including a bigger image of the Architect's sketch
Think Big, Smart Small, Make It Happen
- Past processes resulted in much too big of projects that the city could not afford
- Starting small with plans to grow
- Two track process includes a design options and a public process
- There is a block to occupy and think about
- First phase will be about 1/4 of the block (25,000 square feed)
- Block framework
- First phase will include council and mayor offices, meeting rooms, city manager, and support space
- Construction will start next year with a goal of completing this phase in early 2016
- Values of the project include stewardship, identity, participation, simplicity & future Eugene
- Architects are working hard to ensure that the new buildings connect to the community and our history.
- Thinking about goals related to being a green city, connecting to the river, creating a civic heart and a place that people visit and are proud of.
- City Council is adding focus on the public art, parking, and a council chamber
- Considering the use of old growth cedar that was used in the previous building as a material in the new project. NOTE: It will be a new building that looks at re-use of some materials
- Considering sustainability and utilizing existing resources
- Considering energy usage and long term savings annually (as much as $250k)
- Possibly will be able to generate energy on site and eventually use only as much as is generated
- Goal is to create a "living city" that extends the current vitality of the Broadway block throughout downtown
- Planning includes consideration of the surrounding blocks and extending the energies of those areas. Each street on the block is being considered as it relates to the surrounding area.
- Phase 1 is planned for 8th and Pearl & includes an open space
- A feeling of transparency is present in the design
- They are conscious of "building value" for the city with this project
- It could take many years to complete the block (as much as 20)
- Other spaces on the block will be used for parking until further buildings are built. That is the short term plan.
- What to do with the remaining space over time is up in the air. Some feel a central area for all services is necessary and others feel that scattering them around the city is important and a good thing.
Southtowne Rotary and Rotarians have been doing good work in our world for over 20 years. This is a program that reminds us that international trips with Rotary can be very rewarding and create memories (and sustainable projects!) that last a lifetime.
Twenty years ago this month 5 Southtowne Rotarians set out for Oaxaca Mexico to help build a water system for a remote village with no electricity, roads or running water. El Tambor was the destination.
The trip was truly an adventure in a very remote third world area, from getting there to constructing the “system” and the dedication. Hundreds of villagers previously had to take their water from an open, unprotected seep which was adversely affected by unrestricted access by livestock and wildlife.
Club members John Brown and Lauren Alexander were two members of this trip and told the story today. Watch the attached video to hear their amazing and funny tale including memories of "Basketball with the Gringos". Short story: the team with the machetes and guns won.
Another highlight: John brought a polaroid camera and took pictures of every kid and this was the first time they'd ever seen an image of themselves.
Long time Southtowne member, Larry Gruman, passed away on February 19th and a memorial service will be held in May.
Larry was a charter member of our club in 1975 and served as our second president in 1977-78. A long-time minister, he often wrote poems and different words for well known songs which he then led us in singing.
Larry turned 88 on January 24th and was living with his wife Elly at Sheldon Park. Dick Briggs went by there to visit with Larry recently and Larry shared his Valentines’ poem with Dick. Click here to read the poem and others Larry wrote. It’s never too late for love!
At 8 years of age, George started making remote switches utilizing old parts and friction tape, insulated with S&M and green stamps. He was playing with 120 volts.
Nowadays, his home has a level of automation unseen in most Eugene (or any) residences. It's George's hobby (slash obsession). He hasn't kept track of how much he spends on it. He has over 3000 feet of Cat 5 wiring throughout the house and you cannot see a single inch of it in the main house as it is in the walls. The basement is a maze of wire.
George loves home automation (which stems from a passion for problem solving). Here are some examples of what is automated in his house:
- Mood lighting which is controlled by motion detectors, time of day, or switches
- Automated toilets that lift seats for you and bleaches the bowel in anticipation
- At dusk, LED candles come on
- Any time you come in the room, LED rope lighting kicks in
- Bathroom floor heat comes on according to temperature and time of day
- George can turn off/on some things like his fireplace & lights from anywhere in the world & can monitor motion (and therefore where people in the house are) from his phone
- Watering of his landscaping is controlled by a very advanced system that monitors rainfall, evaporation, temperature, etc.
Some of these automation is controlled by a more dated system, some by more modern.
When the system fails, George's problem solving skills come in to play. One time, it took over 6-7 hours over a month to figure out what was wrong the last time it failed. He finally figured out that a signal was being blocked by solar powered lights in his yard.
presented by Herb Chereck
Herb was diagnosed with this disease about five years ago, although he had symptoms that went back about ten years. He bravely discussed the disease, what it has been like the last five plus years, and his expected outcomes for the future. Herb is a courageous man.
- Prior to diagnosis, Herb didn't feel well and his back was bothering him. His left side became less mobile (which only others noticed) and he had uncontrolled movements. His daughter bought him walking canes to help with it and one day, someone noticed the symptoms and mentioned to his wife that she thought he might have a problem (her mother in law had Parkinson's).
- Early signs for Herb: he lost some of his sense of smell and taste.
- Diagnosis came through a neuro-surgeon at OHSU. Parkinson's is diagnosed through observation of movements.
- Herb is treated with medications and exercise/diet. (see below)
- Herb talks about his wife being his biggest advocate and support.
- Herb continued to work for two more years.
- Herb had a really hard time emotionally dealing with it until he read a book by Michael J. Fox, which changed his perspective. He decided that he wouldn't let the disease overcome him.
- No one dies from Parkinson's, they die WITH Parkinson's.
- Exercise has been essential for Herb. He exercises at least 5 days per week, always changing his routine. It has allowed him to not only lose weight, which he believes has helped, but live actively with this disease and not let it overcome him.
- Ping pong helps his hand/eye coordination (but not his golf game)!
- Herb says he is a very blessed person. He has overwhelming support from family and friends and feels very special.
Winnie the Pooh:
What day is it?
It's my favorite day.
Life is knowing how to live.
presented by Ron Tyree, President of Tyree Oil Inc
Ron discussed how our energy independence picture is changing due to North Dakota crude.
Highlights of Ron's presentation:
- Each region of the US has varying degrees of supply and demand. On the west coast, supply and demand are pretty balanced vs the gulf coast where supply is much higher than demand and on the east coast where demand is much higher than supply.
- There are major pipelines all over the US with the exception of Oregon, Nevada, and Utah. Most of the lines come up from Texas.
- There are refineries for Oregon up in Washington and in California that is piped to terminals in major metro areas. There is a terminal in Eugene where stations from all over southern and central Oregon come for their fuel.
- The Eugene terminal is in West Eugene off Highway 99 (the big white circular buildings.)
- We have to have 10% ethanol in all our gasoline which comes in by train and stored at the same terminal.
- Crude oil production in the US has declined since 1990 because of Alaska. Foreign import has gone up since the 80s. 70% of our oil was coming from foreign countries. Some would argue that it's not a good plan to have oil coming from other countries.
- Exports have declined since 2005 and domestic production is up and last month only 50% of crude is coming from foreign countries. This is because US has had an increase in production due to fracking. Production in other countries is all down.
- Canada (by far), Saudi Arabia, and Mexico are the top countries we get foreign oil from.
- Getting more oil domestically helps stabilize pricing.
- California, Oklahoma, Texas, North Dakota, and Alaska are where we get oil from. North Dakota has really taken off to where they are now the #2 area of domestic oil production.
- Fracking is happening in almost every area of the country.
- Click here to read a recent article on Tyree in the Register Guard
- Sometimes gas is cheaper on the coast because of taxes and also price wars.
- Americans use somewhere around 11 billion barrels of oil a year (around a million a month).
Martin Revoal is owner and senior producer of PBP Insurance and a new commissioner for OLCC. He discussed the Good, the Bad and the Ugly about the ACA. He discussed how it will impact businesses, families and individuals.
- We can keep children on our insurance through age 26
- Anyone can get insurance no matter what has happened to you
- There's no maximum benefit
- If you are on medicare, you don't have to do anything. Nothing.
- If you are on Oregon Health Plan or Healthy Kids, you don't have to do anything but sign a form that should have been sent to you.
- The rest of us need to buy insurance for ourselves. Don't go to the exchange...it won't work. Fill out the paperwork and fax it in. In two weeks you will get a notification if you get a tax subsidy. If you don't qualify for a subsidy, you still need to work with an agent and buy insurance. We have ten companies in Oregon to choose from. Other states have only 2, 3, or 4 to choose from.
- Out of pocket deductibles now include co-pays, insurance, prescriptions, etc.
- Penalties for companies have been waived until next year
- Large companies have to have benefits for their full time employees (30+ hours) or pay penalties
- Small companies are not required to provide benefits but can get awesome tax benefits if they do
- The IRS is running the rules and regulations
- Most people despise the implementation of the program but there are some really good benefits for individuals and companies.
- Nobody ever said this was going to be free, though it is for some. If you want a free lunch, you go see who they want you to see where the want you to see them. If you don't like that, you can pay for better coverage.
- If you have a group plan and you cover at least 50% of their coverage, your employees have to sign up.
- Large employers of 50 or more employees must offer insurance for employees and their kids.
Our last meeting of 2013 was held on Thursday, December 19. The South Eugene High School Choir came to perform for their annual holiday show. Rotarians brought their holiday spirit and were wonderfully entertained! Gifts to the choir at this meeting helped support the SEHS choir program. The video attached to this blog provides a great snippit of their performance (thanks, George Rode!)
Today, December 20, many Southtowners were out delivering food boxes and goodies to needy families in Eugene and Springfield. We do this in coordination with Head Start.
We will have our next meeting on January 9 and our speaker will be Martin Revoal who will speak on The Affordable Care Act. Martin is owner and senior producer of PBP Insurance. He will be discussing the Good, the Bad and the Ugly about the ACA. He will discuss how it will impact businesses, families and individuals.
In January, we will also hit the ground running in preparation and promotion for our Wine and Salmon Festival, coming up on March 14, 2014! We will be raising money for all of our awesome efforts and especially the building of a home for a deserving family through Habitat for Humanity!
Meanwhile, Merry Christmas from all of us at Southtowne Rotary!
Susie Hanner, Ted Stevens, Elly Grogan, and Nancy Hughes provided some general information about StoveTeam for our newer members, plus some tales from recent trips.
StoveTeam International is a non profit organization which was initially supported by Southtowne Rotary and championed by our own Nancy Hughes.
- One of the major causes of death of children under 5 is smoke inhalation.
- 70% of the world is still cooking over an open fire.
- There are 7 indigenous factories in Latin America
- The factories collectively produce and sold almost 45,000 Ecocina stoves in six years, positively impacting the lives of over 300,000 people.
- Families would burn a "burrow load" of wood every week, which was really expensive.
- A new factory is in development in southern Mexico. Most of the population lives on .50 cents a day.
- StoveTeam is developing ongoing programs to support additional projects that support the manufacturers through Kiva microloan programs. The first program is a distribution center.
- StoveTeam is beginning to partner through a collaboration agreement with an indigenous supply company to keep costs lower.
- A trip is scheduled for late October/early November that rotarians are welcome to sign up for!
- You can donate a stove to a family in Latin America.
- Rotary International is beginning to promote StoveTeam worldwide and StoveTeam and Nancy has received many awards and interest including a CNN Hero award and the Purpose Prize.
- There is opportunity for a Southtowne only StoveTeam trip.