Rotary Bingo

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Rotary Meeting 03/31/2014 we played Bingo, practicing up for our annual fundraising event that took place the following  Thursday. Everyone had a great time and are now much more familiar with how to play and the rules.

Tim Horton’s Camp Day Program

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Lori Weston Rotary President, Dave Rowe guest speaker of Steve Bither

Lori Weston Rotary President, Dave Rowe guest speaker of Steve Bither

Dave spoke to us today about the Tim Horton’s Camp Day program, with great passion. It is clear that this is a great program, as Dave says its not one of those programs that just say they do ….. they really do it!! There are six camps through out Canada and the United States, with camping year around.

The Tim Horton Children’s Foundation was established in 1974 by Ron Joyce, Co-Founder of the Tim Horton’s chain, to honour Tim Horton’s love for children and his desire to help those less fortunate. The Foundation is a non-profit, charitable organization committed to providing a fun-filled camp environment for children from economically disadvantaged homes.

Making a Difference in Your Community

Research shows that children growing up in an economically disadvantaged home are at an increased risk of a wide range of negative outcomes that can impact a person’s physical, emotional, and mental health. For these children, access to the types of opportunities that develop lifelong skills that help them grow into positive, contributing members of their communities are often lacking. A Foundation camp experience exposes economically disadvantaged children to new growth opportunities and challenges with the goal being each participant leaving camp a more caring, responsible and motivated person.

While at camp we ask our campers to tell us how camp has made them feel. Below are some of their responses which show how, together we are making a true difference in the lives of children in all of our communities.

” Because of camp…I am not afraid to be myself.”

- THCF Camper Mattie

“Because of camp…I am more respectful, talkative, and a better leader. I’m also more confident in myself and others. I am so glad I got the experience to go to camp.”

- THCF Camper Carolyn

“Because of camp…I’ve learned to accept people’s differences.”

- THCF Camper Nastassja

“Because of camp…I feel strong, powerful, and less scared.”

- THCF Camper Zylana

“Because of camp…I faced my fears.”

- THCF Camper Sierra

So now that we have read what it can do to make a difference, what can we do? Well the easiest thing is to go buy a cup of Coffee on Wednesday June 4th. 100% of the proceeds will be donated to send children to a camp. You may think what can one cup of coffee do (or you could get more than one -hint, hint)?

This is what One Cup of Coffee Can Do:

Thanks to the generous support of Tim Horton’s Restaurant Owners and their loyal guests, Camp Day 2013 was a huge success, raising an incredible $11.8 million for the Tim Horton Children’s Foundation. The funds raised on Camp Day will positively impact over 16,000 economically disadvantaged who attend camp with the Foundation in 2013.

All children who attend one of the Foundation’s six camps are selected from within the communities where Tim Horton’s Restaurants are located. Tim Horton’s Restaurant Owners work closely with local youth organizations and schools to select children, between the ages of nine and 12, to attend a 10-day summer camp session or seven day winter camp session. And this is where our local Dave Rowe comes into play, well besides loving Tim Herten’s coffee, he is the local coordinator that selects the two children from the Houlton area to be able to attend one these great camps. Dave says that if you are looking for him and he is not at his office he will be at his other office aka Tim Horton’s.

 

Maine Bear Hunt Referendum at Houlton Rotary

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Houlton Rotary  guest speakers for Monday March 17, 2014 Al Cowperthwathite, Northern Maine Woods Don Kleiner, Executive Director Maine Guides Association Dale & Eleanor Goodman, North County Lodge

Houlton Rotary guest speakers for Monday March 17, 2014
Al Cowperthwathite, Northern Maine Woods
Don Kleiner, Executive Director Maine Guides Association
Dale & Eleanor Goodman, North County Lodge

Don and Al both spoke on the impact that the upcoming Bear Hunt referendum would have on the wildlife, community, and the economy. Houlton Rotary Club does not take a political stand on this issue. They warned us about some of the advertising that will be used to emotionally impact voters, and to please look past the ads and do your research. They not only spoke on the financial impact to Maine’s economy but also on the potential danger to allowing the bear population to grow even more than it currently is. For more information please contact either Al Cowperthwaite at Northern Maine Woods, or Don at Maine Guides Association. Both are willing are to come and speak to anyone.

Assistant Governor Terry Thomas speaks at Rotary

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President Lori Weston with the Rotary District 7810 Assistant Governor Terry Thomas

President Lori Weston with the Rotary District 7810 Assistant Governor Terry Thomas

The Assistant Governor spoke briefly on many of the events coming up in our District and the exciting things happening on both sides of the Border. Houlton Rotary Club is fortunate to be a part of an International Rotary District. Terry spoke on Rotary Leadership Institute, and Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) is a leadership development program run by Rotary. While participants can be any age, most events focus on secondary school students, university students, or young professionals. RYLA events are typically 3–10 days long and include presentations, activities, and workshops that cover a variety of topics, including:

  • Leadership fundamentals and ethics
  • Communication skills
  • Problem solving and conflict management
  • Community and global citizenship

 

Mike Hammer Speaks about SAD29

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Mike Hammer, RSU 29 Superintendent with President Lori Weston

Mike Hammer, RSU 29 Superintendent with President Lori Weston

Superintendent Mike Hammer gave us an update on the progress of the changes happening in our school district, they are very exciting! And some are already in place. Did you know that the Houlton School has a program called Story Boost where adults from the community come in and read to students. There is also Junior Achievement which works with 8th grade students to help them identify with local community members that live, work and succeed right here in our own community, there are classes that they learn what an employee is looking for, about finances, responsibilities and more. And of course the wonderful JMG class (Jobs for Maine Grads) which has been in place for many years. I believe that this is one step in the right direction to help our local children to believe in their community along with themselves.

Mike spoke on the Strategic Educational Plan: Roadmap for Results. He started by reviewing some of the Guiding Principles that have been formed. This is what we want our children/future employees/future business owners/future politicians to be:

  • An integrative and informed thinker
  • A self-directed and lifelong learner
  • A creative and practical problem solver
  • A clear and effective communicator
  • A responsible and involved citizen

Which then turns into the core beliefs, in an ever changing world, we believe:

  • All students can learn in different ways, in different settings, at different rates, for different futures
  • Student learning requires complex thinking and problem solving skills to meet student needs.
  • We value decision-making and actions guided by the principles of integrity, empathy, responsibility, and respect for self and others.
  • Clear learning targets and continuous reflection are essential to successful teaching and learning.
  • Challenging standards of performance are expected for all members of the learning community
  • Learning flourishes in a safe and caring environment
  • Educators require ongoing professional development in order to facilitate and model innovative education.
  • Positive relationships among parents, community, and schools promote shared responsibility for providing the tools for student success

Mike then discussed the overarching goals of Innovative Education and Community Collaboration, the Curriculum, the Instruction, Assessment, Intervention, Support, and Enrichment , Culture, Engagement, Partnerships, and Communication. This is a huge project that is involving many people both locally and through out the State to determine the best way to educate for the future. The above information was taken off a hand out the Mike provided us with. There is much more information that you can and should look into at www.rsu29.org

 

Aurora Mills Farm

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Aurora Mills Farm

Pictured here are Scott Dionne, past president with our guest speakers today Sara Williams, Matthew Williams and Linda Williams.

 

Matt and Linda live on their farm in Linneus. They grow organic wheat and oats. They mill not only their own products but other farms as well. For other Maine farms they will do Custom Cleaning and Custom Milling. Matt explained that they have been growing products and selling them mostly wholesale to bakery’s, Co-ops, and through the Crown of Maine Organic Cooperative. He stated that they specialize in Maine Organic Products, they are the only mill in Maine that produces only Maine products! Sarah their daughter moved back home this past year to help with the farm. Sarah is a wonderful addition to the business, and is looking at the farm/business from a different perspective. She has made connections to Bakery’s in New York and other large markets that want Quality Maine Organic Products, and they have them. Matt showed pictures of the milling process and explained that it is pretty much the same as it was in the old days, with slight improvement variations. Matt and Sarah discussed briefly the process of growing, selecting and milling their products, which is very interesting, but too much for me to recall, you can find that on there website in great detail.  You may ask just what do they grow and most importantly where can I buy it? They grow: Hard Red Winter wheat-variety- Maxine, Hard Red Spring wheat-variety- AC Berry, Oats- variety- Alymer. You can find locations to purchase their exceptional products on their website at http://auroramillsandfarm.net and at the Houlton Community Market this spring and summer. In fact Matt made an amazing bread for our lunch and I would strongly suggest you try as soon as you can! Sarah discussed her ideas on expanding to more local and adding Bakery items to the local market and they will be introducing stone baked pizza which I am positive you will be pleased. Sarah plans on bringing some of these delicious baked goods to the Houlton Community Market and the County Coop and Farm Store when it opens. She also encouraged everyone to become  member of The County Coop and Farm Store in support of buying local. Last but not least I could not end with out talking about the Aurora Farm’s Organic Oatmeal Ale which is made by The Atlantic Brewing Company, they  have chose to use Aurora Mills  flavorful Alymer oats to create a deep ruby ale with a crisp, clean finish. True to the style, Aurora Farm’s Oatmeal Ale is moderate in alcohol with an ABV of 5%. This is currently available in Houlton at The Courtyard Café and at The Lounge Down under. The Williams are great supporters and promoter of Maine and in particular Aroostook County, so if you have a chance to try some of their products do not hesitate – You will not be disappointed!!

Let’s Talk Local

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“Let’s Talk Local” and Literacy at Rotary

At the weekly Rotary meeting on February 3rd , Rotarians were introduced to a new program for the area entitled “Let’s Talk Local”, a component of the Maine Humanities Council’s “What it Means to Be a Mainer”. This program encourages thoughtful, public conversations about our future as a community. Houlton’s public conversation is scheduled for April 9, 2014 at the Houlton Rec Center.

Rotarians were also updated on their local literacy project.  Houlton Rotary is partnering with other community organizations and schools forming a “Literacy for ME” Community Literacy Team.  Currently the team is focusing on the importance of vocabulary and number awareness from birth to school.

The “Let’s Talk Local” presentation was made by Linda Faucher of the Cary Library.  The literacy update was made by Sally Cole and Janet Murakami from RSU 29.

 

FOR THE PICTURE FROM MIKE CLARK:

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Pictured are Mike Hammer, Rotarian and RSU 29 Superintendent, Linda Faucher, Cary Library, and Otis Smith, Rotarian.  Sally Cole and Janet Murakami were unavailable for the picture.

Lori Weston Speaks to Rotary

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Lori Weston

Pictured are Lori Weston and Jane Torres, who spoke at our January 27th Rotary Meeting.

 

Our District Governor was scheduled to be our guest speaker today, however due to the weather was unable to attend. So Lori Weston stepped up to the plate and gave us information on events and what’s happening around town. She started by explaining her position as the Community Development Director for the Town of Houlton. Many of us see Lori working away at all the wonderful events that the Town and the Chamber do together, but there is a lot more to her job then that! She explained several grants she has submitted for various things around town including beautifying Market Square with new trees, snowmobile bridge, and many others that will improve our community in ways that you may never think of. Lori showed us some of the applications that needed to be completed for various grants and wow, they were vey long, some well over 100 pages. I recall a conversation that Lori and I had when she first started with this position regarding training that she was going to Central Maine on installing water lines and safe construction – it was very intense and inspirational to see just how far she is willing to go to improve our community, she was laughing as she is explaining the “field trip” with a hard hat on and learning what is the right way to do this, she is truly inspirational! Lori and Jane spoke on a meeting that they attended in Hallowell for the Farmers Market organization on learning what others are doing in the State and how we can improve or expand on our wonderful Community Market. It is still a little while before spring, but it will be here soon, and when it comes you really should spend a little time at our Community Market, it sure has grown over the years. I do not know the numbers but it was like just three years ago they had less then 10 vendors, and last year around 30-40. You can get many different items there, I will not list them here you will have to come check it out for yourself. You will want to come on a weekly basis because there are some that can not make it every week and if you are not there that week they are you just don’t know what you are missing! The greater Houlton area is a wonderful place to live with lots of things going on, if you are not sure what there is to do, check out the Pioneer Times, or stop into the Greater Houlton Chamber or even the Town Office. If you are lucky you may even get a chance to see Lori at the office. Lori spoke of Moosestompers that I sure hope you all got a chance to go and experience, and The County Coop and Farm Store that is working its way to opening maybe this fall. Lori expressed her gratitude for all the community members that give of themselves to make this a wonderful place to live, in return the Houlton Rotary Club would like to say thank you to you Lori, you are doing a great job!!

Bridge to Hope

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Pictured are Lori Weston and Amy Hocking

Amy was the speaker today. She spoke about Bridge to Hope. Which is a wonderful organization that assist people and their families that have cancer. They give out money in different forms depending on the individuals needs. Just last week they gave out $1,00.00 dollars to local community members. Amy did a demonstration that I would suggest each of us try at some meeting or gathering in the near future. She first asked for anyone in the room that has had cancer to stand, (and remain standing) there were three, then she asked for anyone that had an immediate family member that had cancer – about half of the room stood up, next was anyone with a close friend or distant relative and well most everyone in the room was standing by that point! It is a terrible disease and obviously most of us are affected by it one way or another. Bridge to Hope give most all of its money to your neighbors, family, and friends. They do give a small percentage to research, but most stays right here, and obviously there is a need all around us! This past Saturday there was a walk which is their largest fundraising, along with sales of jewelry that Amy makes and sells at home and at all of the local craft fairs. It is not too late to donate, you can contact Amy anytime, she and the recipients will be very thankful! So in advance thank you to all of you that are going to reach out to this terrific organization and help your neighbor, friend, or family member. The following was taking off the Facebook page.

Vision

Local People raising money to help individuals in our communities fighting all types of cancer!

Mission

Our mission is to not only raise money for treatment and research but also to raise awareness of the amazing number of people in our own back yard putting up a fight against the toughest foe they will ever face.

Company Overview

In October of 2005 Cathy Kennedy organized the first “Bridge To Hope Breast Cancer Awareness Walk” though down-town Houlton. That year there were approximately 50 participants who raised over $800 which was donated to the American Cancer Society. In 2006 Cathy was joined by Kim Folsom, Dee Henderson and Marie Carmichael. Each year since then the participation has grown and the benefits to our area have been amazing. Money raised has been divided between the American Cancer Society and The Maine Cancer Foundation as well as a scholarship given to a local student. They have also been able to help local people struggling with the expenses of cancer treatment by presenting them with cash raised by the walk.

To contact them feel free to log on to Facebook page or send Amy and email: Hocking, AHocking@NorthCountryAssociates.com

Houlton Community Arts Center – Kristen Wells

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Kristen Wells

pictured here are Lori Weston and Kristen Wells our guest speaker from the Houlton Community Arts Center.

Kristen gave us a history of where she comes from (right down the road) and where she has been, then how and why she came back to the area. Kristen went High School in Hodgdon, then moved to Southern Maine for College, she said USM was a great place to start her college years. While in Portland she met her husband. She moved on from there to Boston to obtain her Graduate, while actually living in New Hampshire. He was traveling for his job in Portland and she was traveling to school and a job in Boston. She made lots  of connections in the Art world, great people and learned a lot. Her and her husband started their family and while visit her family in Hodgdon the decided to see if this may just be where they would like to raise their family. Thankfully for us they decided it was a great idea! Kristen has worked for a few Agency’s that really helped her expand her experience and connections. She worked at Frannie Peabody Center in Portland, mostly doing fundraising. If you have not heard of them they assist people that have been diagnosed with HIV/AIDS, of course this interested me since where I work at CHCS we also do this but on a much smaller scale. She also worked for Catholic Charities of Maine and really helped them during a time of stillness, she gave them the idea’s and energy to get rolling again. Some of the questions they asked each other prior to making the decision to move back is – can we find work? Is there a coffee shop? Well what you know we have both! Maybe not same as where they were living but in our own Houlton/County way!

Kristen then spoke of the wonderful facility that the community has, yes I am talking about The Houlton Community Arts Center. Just this year they have had comedy shows, plays, musicals and more! If you have not experienced any of these then I say it is time to! Occasionally I will hear a person saying there is nothing to do around here…I say REALLY???? You may want to look a little closer. The Houlton Community Arts Center is located at the Houlton High School, however this NOT just for the high school, hence the name Community Arts Center. Kristen would like to know what it is that the community would like to have take place, or maybe what you think is missing or would be a good event. She will listen to any and all idea’s and greatly appreciates the community’s input and support! She mentioned the loss that we will all be feeling as Joe leaves, but is looking forward to what is coming next! Kristen mentioned that they are looking into having more free children’s programs and possibly The Nite Show  with Danny Cashman, which airs on Bangor Television station. The Center holds 600 people, 300 regular seats with 300 more available. Speaking of available, there are still Balcony seats available to purchase and get your name on, or in honor of a family, friend or even a business or pet – why not?  You can visit the website at www.houltonarts.org or like them on face book, or email her at kristen@houltonarts.org,, or give her a call at 207-619-1996. Kristen would love to hear from you so don’t be shy.

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