December 2022

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Date: Wednesday May 11
Time: 5:30pm Eat at 6pm
Location: Jim Dietrich Park (Pavillion #2)
Cost: $18
Menu: Texas Beef BBQ, Turkey BBQ, mac & cheese, tossed salad, Coleslaw, Pickle Tray, Ice Tea & Lemonade
Clubs are to bring desserts & are encouraged to bring picnic games. 
Deadline for final count Monday May 2. Clubs will bring a check for their amount on the day of the event.
A note to all visitors to our site:  Blind Hartman’s, our meeting place for many years has become yet another victim of the COVID-19 crisis.  The owners felt they couldn’t make a go of their business under the government restrictions and have closed their doors for good.  Our club has been meeting on ZOOM on Tuesday at 6:00.  If you wish to meet with us this way, please send your email address to and you will be invited. 
We would like to send a big thank you to Blind Hartman's and the staff for all the years we had our meeting there.
Tim and John shared a meal with Garland this past Thursday.  They report he is in good spirits and is receiving lots of help getting around.  Give Garland a call or visit him.  He's sure to enjoy your visit and attention.
Upcoming Events
 Next week, January 22, we will be taking part in the Muhlenberg Library Fund Raiser at Margherita’s Restaurant.  Bring your spouses, as each meal purchased supports the library.
The following Wednesday, January 30, we will be making what has become our annual trip to the Double Tree Hotel/Santander Arena to watch the Reading Royals battle the Maine Mariners.   Please plan to arrive at the Double Tree Parking Garage from Penn Street at 5:45.  There will be attendants taking money for Event Parking.  Please tell them you are going into the Double Tree, and get a ticket for parking.  This ticket can be validated by our wait staff.  After a meal at the Double Tree, we will cross Penn Street and spend the evening as the guests of the hotel in their suite right above center ice.  Hopefully the home team can be victorious over the Maine Mariners.  By the way, their General Manager is former Philadelphia Flyer stalwart, Danny Briere.  He has occasionally traveled to Reading with the team, and might be seen in the hallway on the suite level.
Come out for Berks Heim Bingo! Tuesday February 26 @ 6:30 PM.  Rotarian Partners are Welcome, Appreciated and NEEDED 
Tom hopes to collect Prize Bag contributions at our meetings.  If you can’t connect at a meeting, give him a call at (610)375-6255 and arrange another connection.  Sharon and Tom will be assembling the prize bags the prior weekend. See the downloadable pages Bingo Prize Donations Guidelines.
See you on Tuesday, February 26 at the Heim.
The Fishing Rodeo date has been set for April 27th.  See John Alshefski to find out how you can be of help.
The date(s) have been set for Wine and Dine.  The event will be held with the Muhlenberg Lions at Jim Deitrich Park on August 17th, with a rain date of August 18th.  See Mike, Sean or Tim for details. Get your tickets now, before they’re all gone!
DG Visit
This Tuesday evening we had our official visit by the new District Governor, Cindy Hornaman.  Cindy has been a Rotarian with the Emmaus Club for the past 14 years, and has been active in her club and at the District level, primarily in the Foundation and Group Study Exchange type areas.  As a business person, including owning her own business, Cindy brings lots of organization to her position.  And the cherry on top is that she is a Nittany Lion!
I believe the tone was set early when our board was ready at the Club business pre-meeting.  We had answers ready for most areas of inquiry and from a business/administration perspective, we are doing OK.  The areas of membership and leadership succession are our areas of greatest need and will deserve and must receive our greatest attention this year.
Working around the room engaging with the members, she delivered a dynamic DG speech.          The major theme of her presentation was that we have to change to get youth involved.  Our general template of long meeting surrounding dinner just doesn’t appeal to young people.  We must endeavor   to channel them to service projects, which they are eager to join in on.  But time and expense are issues to be addressed.  Overall, change is what is needed to “Be the inspiration!”    
We also gave out our first 2018-2019 insert for Garland Bear’s EREY Rotary wheel.  We hope to bestow this measure on all our members this year.  So feed the pig, win the drawing, donate through your workplace or just give your donation outright.  But earn that insert!!!
On Tuesday the 21st we will finalize plans for RiverFest.  While it is important to be part of the planning, it is most important to be part of the operation.  We will need as much of an effort as members can make to be a vendor for the entire two days.  If we all chip in we will make it.

National Night Out was proceeding as a real success for Rotary and all the other attendees until…. The rains came!

Tim, Allen, Terri, John and Lin had set up shop along with other service groups and vendors.  We were well on our way to pulling in a bunch of names and email addresses for our December fruit sale.  There was no shortage of people unfamiliar with what Rotary does to listen to our story. 

But Mother Nature had other plans.  Only 20 minutes into the event, the police came around to all the participants and warned every one of the impending thunderstorm.  By the time we packed up and carried everything to our vehicles, big drops were beginning to fall.  Then things opened up and a serious downpour was upon us.  With all that rain and lightning, too, the police made the right call. There was no need to have public risk, even though this was a grand opportunity for Rotary.

The lesson learned here, though, is that there are rewards from attending this type of public gathering.  We should seriously plan to attend any kind of public event in our area, to educate the public on what we do.  If you have ideas for other venues, please bring them to Lin Seyler or Terri Pfennig. 

Our next event is the joint effort, with the Muhlenberg Lions, at Wine and Dine on Saturday.  Help is needed for the set-up on Saturday morning at 7:30 and, of course, at 4:00 to closing (8:00?) for controlling admission and tearing down.

Another most important event is our visit at Blind Hartman’s by the new District Governor, Cindy Hornaman from the Emmaus Club.  There will be a business meeting with Cindy, ADG Bob Hobaugh, Officers, directors and Chairs at 5:00 on Tuesday, August 14 prior to our regular meeting.  Please plan on attending.  You will find Cindy has a lot in mind for Rotary, and having fun while we do it.

Last evening we had a club assembly, conducting some business to set our club up for the coming year.  We held a short meeting of the Rotary Club of Muhlenberg Charitable Foundation, electing the President (Lin Seyler) Treasurer (Steve Adams) and Secretary (Terri Pfennig) for the upcoming year.  Often we have little business to conduct for the foundation, but on occasion we’ve had to take action on our free standing clock on Kutztown Road.  Always best to be prepared. 

We received a n email from District advising us not to participate in the Philadelphia Phillies Strike Out for Hunger due to unresolved accounting concerns.  This is troubling.

We also received a very nice card from our Reading-Muhlenberg Vo-Tech scholarship recipient, Stephanie Hemmings.  Always gratifying to hear back from those we try to help.

We had our first EREY Piggleman drawing of the year, won by John Alshefski.  I checked and John was our first winner last year as well.  I guess we’ll have to call him Mr. Lucky from now on.

We celebrated Tim Bitting’s anniversary of joining Rotary on June 30th.  Also, it will be Tom Kisling’s birthday on July 27th.  I heard him say something about providing an ice cream cake for dessert at the July 31st meeting.

Speaking of upcoming meetings, we will not be at Blind Hartman’s next week.  Instead we will gather on the 28th for 6:00 breakfast at Crossroads Restaurant followed by highway cleanup at 7:00.  As this is an outdoor event, watch your email if there is any chance of bad weather.  The following Tuesday, July 31st we’ll have the preparatory meeting for Wine and Dine, with details finished off by Sean Fitzgerald, Tim Bitting and Mike Lepera.  All hands will be needed for our effort scheduled for August 11th at Jim Deitrich Park.

One person’s trash is another person’s rewarding community service?

Sound’s silly to say it like that, but Muhlenberg Rotary does find a certain sense of fulfillment and service by meeting several Saturdays each year to patrol and clean up our own little stretch of highway.

Meeting earlier (6:00 AM) to have breakfast at the nearby Crossroads Restaurant doesn’t hurt.  Good food and better conversation lend themselves to a great start to the day.  Saturday it was project leader Sean, President Terri, Allen and Lin to start.  After breakfast, with the usual impromptu discussions of other Rotary efforts, we met more Rotarians outside at 7:00.  Steve, Tim and Jack were ready to join the cleanup.  Also joining us was Terri’s son-in-law’s mom, Sue Skelly.  She’s joined us at a number of events; can we get her to take the step of officially joining us?

Eight is enough, as the old TV title says.  And it’s true for our efforts.  With four quadrants to our cloverleaf for picking up, small groups are busy doing pick-up, while employing the “Buddy System” to stay safe.  This is always a good idea when playing in high speed traffic! 

Shortly after we began, some guy in a new red Colorado calls out to us, “Hey where are the bags?”  This is Tom Kisling showing up to help.  We directed him to where leader Sean is providing bags and safety vests, so Tom can join the pick-up party.

All in all, it was a most pleasant morning to be out.  Nice temperature and low humidity made the morning walk and stoop a good experience.  We’re tentatively scheduling the next effort for July 28th, when we’ll find more trash has appeared.  Hope to see you then!

Monday is Camp Neidig commencement.  It’s always a treat to see a gathering of future leaders. We have no meeting scheduled for this Tuesday, as we have both the highway cleanup and Neidig event instead.  The meeting on June 26th at Blind Hartman’s will center on a discussion by Sean, Tim and Mike on the up-coming Wine & Dine event.


Next Event/Meeting will start at 6:30 at Crossroads this Saturday, April 7, as we will be having breakfast before doing our first highway cleanup of the year. 
Another opportunity for Rotarians to glean some membership tips is through the Rotary Member Webinar on April 9th.  See this link for details: 
Also coming up is the joint Lions/Rotarians meeting on May 22nd at Blind Hartman’s.   There are 3 entrée choices: Southern Fried Catfish with two sides and cup of soup, Chicken Parm with side salad and Ma’s Meatloaf with two sides and cup of soup. All meals will include non alcoholic drinks. Price will be $20 per person.  Please respond to Tim by May17 at
We had a discussion regarding the need to renew our domain name through Clubrunner.  The options were:
 8 years at $24.95 per year or
5       years at $29.95/year or 
3 years at $34.95/year. 
After discussion, the club opted, by acclaim, for the 5 years option. 
In the continuing saga of the snow, the Collins’ desires to just avert weather disaster, their neighbors Mike Lepera and Jim Miller, we added yet another chapter at our last meeting.  It seems in the untimely and unusually heavy snowstorm recently past (who ever thinks we could get a foot of snow in late March?) Marge and Ed lost their mailbox post to the snow moving efforts of the road crew.  Obviously Mrs. Collins was interested in getting their mail and is adamant about having a new mail post installed by Ed asap.  Dutiful Ed began the project to correct the situation on a Saturday.  He was unable to finish, but assured Marge the project would be completed the following day. The next day he was just finishing cementing in the post when neighbor Mike came over to help.  It seemed Ed wasn’t using the right cement, Mike had much better hydraulic cement.  So they dug it out and replaced the pole foundation, trued up the pole and all is finished.  Mrs. Collins is impressed.  Ed wanted to take full credit for the install, but had to admit to Marge that Mike helped him.  But all in all, everything is good on Elm Avenue until the next weather calamity.  One last word to Ed; think about how things would have turned out had you had the assistance of neighbor Jim Miller.    
William F. “Bill” Borda
On Monday, March 26th a good Rotarian from the Muhlenberg Rotary, Bill Borda, at 94 years of age, was taken from us to be with the Lord.  He was with his family, daughter Terry and son Ray at the end.  Bill was a good man, a proud veteran, and a staunch Rotarian.
Bill was born on November 14, 1923.  He lived in Berks County most of his life; as long as I know him on Marion St in Laureldale.  He went to war for his country with the 82nd Airborne in World War II.  He was justifiably proud of his service and used to joke that he made 21 take-offs in an airplane before he had a single landing.  All the other times before he had to jump!
On September 29th, 1951, he married Betty.  They celebrated 66 years together this past fall.  He spent a career working in the knitting business, working for Dolphin Sportswear as their VP of sales.  Bill was always admiring young people’s sports accomplishments, having followed many of them in his work. 
But to many of us, Bill will be most remembered as a mainstay of Muhlenberg Rotary.  We list him as entering Muhlenberg Rotary on Jan 1, 1962.  This is just the earliest date shown by Rotary International’s records for all older Rotarians.  Bill joined the Reading Rotary back in the 1950’s and transferred to Muhlenberg some time later.  His dates of service didn’t seem to matter to Bill, just what could he do now.  Bill served the club in many offices, as President, as a Director, and Chairing committees.  He was always a helping hand at the fruit sale, the fishing rodeo, and other events.  But nowhere did he serve better than as the scribe for the club.  For decades Bill put out our weekly bulletin, the “Rotamuhl”, with great recounts of our efforts, our speakers and our coming events.  And Bill accomplished this without a computer or even a typewriter up until he became an Honorary Rotarian just a few years ago.  The club was given the District Award for best publication several years ago; both the club and Bill were proud of this recognition.
I have often said that Rotary is like an extended family.  We meet so frequently that we become familiar with each other, tease each other, sometimes get on one another’s nerves, but, hopefully always respect each other.  Bill was a big part of our Rotary family, a big brother to some, a fatherly figure to others, a friend to everyone, including the families of Rotarians.    We all miss him already.
Club Information
Welcome to our Club!

Celebrating over 60 years of humanitarian service to our community and the world!

We meet In Person
Tuesdays at 6:00 PM
Applebee's Grill & Bar
Please join us at:
350 N 5th Steet Hwy
Reading, PA 19605
United States of America
District Membership Moment
                     Bring Your Best Friend

Is your best friend a Rotarian?  Why not?

Hold a “Bring Your Best Friend Day” in your club.  Set aside a special meeting date each year, maybe twice a year, when your members are asked to bring their best friend to a club meeting.

 From your  Rotary District 7430 Membership Development Team February 12, 2018