Sunday, March 30, 2008

Bicycle Ride To Raise Funds For Rotary Foundation

Ralph Hammond, PDG, District 7910 is the driving force behind an upcoming Pan District Challenge designed to raise funds for the Rotary Foundation.

The first part of this semiannual event will take place in Eastern Massachusetts on May 17, 2008.

Ralph recently told the Merrimack Valley Rotary Club that the bicycle riding event will have two starting points. One is in Sturbridge and the other is in Gardner. Both bike routes will cover all the towns where there are Rotary Clubs in District 7910 and will finish off in Needham. Clubs can sponsor riders (both Rotarian and nonrotarian) to take part in this event by contributing $100 per rider to the Rotary Foundation.
In addition, to Rotary Clubs sponsoring riders, there are a number of opportunities for corporate sponsor. For more information:

Any riders that would like to be sponsored should contact the Merrimack Valley Rotary at

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Former RI President Frank Talk's Words Of Wisdom: Recruitment


"The biggest reason why good people don't join Rotary is that we Rotarians don't ask them to. Oh sure, we ask our sons and daughters, our close business associates and friends to join sometimes, but we so often don't even think of our duty as (Rotary) advocates with most people we run across in our daily lives. That doctor I met who had brought his club president into the world has, in 49 years of Rotary membership only introduced one new member into his club. He told me he had delivered about 1,000 babies in his career. I think at least 10 percent of them would have been excited, related and deeply honored just as his club president was, if the doctor who brought them into this world had invited them many years later to join Rotary.

What a missed opportunity.”

Frank Talk, Former Rotary International President and Author

Rotarian Creates New Site For Centre For Chidren With Special Needs In Bangladesh

Merrimack Valley Rotarian Carl Good has created a new web page for the Centre For Children with Special Needs, which is located in Bangladesh. Carl recently returned from a Rotary trip to the area to imunize children against polio. The Centre caught Carl's interest and the Merrimack Valley Rotary and others will be raising funds to help this organization.

The Centre is a project of the Rotary club of Banani Dhaka Bangladesh and the Merrimack Valley Rotary will team up with them to help the children.

The Centre's Objectives are:

To provide Community based rehabilitation
To train parents to take care of their physically challenged children
To impart a socially compatible living to physically challenged children
To change the attitude of community towards

Please visit the site

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Merrimack Valley Club exceeds annual giving goal

The Merrimack Valley Club has been noted as one of the clubs exceeding its annual Foundation giving goals. The Foundation represents the financial backbone of the organization, fueling many of the international programs such as polio erradication worldwide, clean water programs as well as literacy.

This is a major milestone and shows that the Merrimack Valley Club is a leader in the support of Rotary International programs. Congratulations on a Job well done.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Rotary Members Encouraged To Volunteer For Hospice

Amy Cirigliano told the Merrimack Valley Rotary Club that volunteering for a Hospice organization is a very rewarding experience. Amy, who is the volunteer coordinator for Allegiance Hospice, told the MV Rotary the her organization is in needs volunteers.

She said that volunteering provides:
  • Life changing experiences
  • New relationships
  • Feelings of accomplishments
  • Partnership with professionals on a team
  • Enrichment to personal spiritual end of life approach
  • and Eduction on hospice care

She told the group that prior to joining the hospice team, volunteers go through a screening process. This provides Alliance with a way to maintain safety for both their volunteers and the patients.

Responsibilities of volunteers include:

  • Visiting and offering companionship, emotional support , and friendship
  • Assisting in daily activities such as reading, writing letters, playing games, etc.
  • Listen attentively to patients and family members
  • Provide relief for the caregivers when appropriate
  • Provide assistance with daily living such as errands and reading

Allegiance Hospice, serves communities in Massachusetts. Hospice is a service focusing on improving the quality of life fore individuals and their families living with an advanced illness by easing the emotional, spiritual and physical pain often associated with such illness.

Interested individuals can contact Amy at 877-255-4623 or at

Sunday, March 9, 2008

When Did Women First Become Members Of Rotary?

Was it?
A) 1992
B) 1965
C) 1989
D) 1998

Watch the Club Reunion Movie Below To Get The Answer!

The Dash Poem Was A Hit At Rotary Club Reunion

A poem was read by Debi Farnsword at the Rotary Club Reunion that was very moving for a number of the people there. We would we would share a link so that you can experience it yourself.

Rotary Club Reunions Are Full Of Fun, Fellowship and Memories

You have heard of high school reunions, but have your heard of Rotary Reunions? The Merrimack Valley Rotary held its second annual Club Reunion on March 5 at Skip's Restaurant in Chelmsford.

It was full of
  • Fun!
  • Fellowship!
  • Old Memories
  • And New Memories!

It was a celebration of the Club's 22nd anniversary. The Club was founded by a group of business people in 1986 to serve the 7 towns in the Merrimack Area of Massachusetts.

And we were honored to have four of the founding members at the reunion in addition to many other familiar faces from the past and present.

One past member even brought his accordion to serenade the group. If your Club has never considered holding a reunion. we recommend it. It is a lot of fun, fellowship and memories! It was successful because existing members to the effort to invite past members; some even drove past members to the meeting.

Take a look at this video and remember, there people are doing this at 7:15 AM!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

MV Rotarian Carl Good Leans A New Skill During His Rotary Trip To Bangladesh

MV Rotary To Host Very Popular Antiques Appraisal Night

Attention Antiques lovers! The Merrimack Valley Rotary has announced that it will once again sponsor the Antiques Appraisal Night.

This very popular show will be held on June 11 at a location yet to be announced! As before, Skinner Appraiser Stuart Whitehurst will host the show. Stuart is one of the host of PBS's Antiques Roadshow. Watch this Blog for more details!
For more information contact the Merrimack Vally Rotary at

Sunday, March 2, 2008

What Do Aliens, The Boston Celtics, Stephen King And Rotary Have In Common?

In 1986, Aliens was the top movie, the Boston Celtics were the world champions and Stephen King's It was the top novel. Also, 1986 was the year that the Merrimack Valley Rotary Club was chartered.

At the time, all the towns in the area had a club so MVRC was formed as a regional breakfast Club. Today, 22 years later, several of the Club's charter member are still faithful attendees.

On March 5, present and past Club members will gather for breakfast and fellowship to celebration the Club's anniversary.

Paul Harris would be proud!!!

And who knows, maybe some Aliens, or Boston Celtics or Stephen King will drop by the Anniversary party!

What were the top TV shows in 1986?
1. The Cosby Show (NBC)
2. Family Ties (NBC)
3. Cheers (NBC)
4. Murder She Wrote (NBC)
5. The Golden Girls (NBC)
6. 60 Minutes (CBS)
7. Night Court (NBC)
8. Growing Pains (ABC)
9. Moonlighting (ABC)
10. Who's the Boss? ( ABC)

Rotary Video Of The Week

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Is Your Rotary Club Running A Fund Raiser? Learn A Lesson From The Presidental Campaigns!

Rotary Clubs who want to run a fund raiser should take a lesson from Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John McCain. All three know that they cannot raise funds without good media coverage.

Raising fund is critical to the success of any nonprofit organization. Unfortunately, more effort is put into organizing the event, then marketing the event. And one key marketing tool is media coverage. That includes newspapers, radio, TV and don't forget the web.

It Takes Effort
It take some luck but mostly it takes strategy. Remember: there are many other organizations competing for the same media attention. When it comes to media coverage, the other nonprofits are the competition. So, Clubs need to work at it.

How To Get Media Attention?
It starts with a good press release. And a good press release is not the most creatively written release. It is the most effectively written release. Why? Releases are meant to catch the attention of the reporter.. And the editor or reporter who is determining whether to use your release is making that decision in just seconds. Seconds!

Keep It Simple
Therefore, it is critical that the key information in a press release is right up top, and easy to find. start by putting the most important information in the first paragraph and the least important information in the last paragraph.

What Is Most important?
The information that answers the question: who, what, where, when, and why? Just the facts: "Your club is holding an event at this location on this date and time to raise money for this cause." Then in the paragraphs that follow, you can give more details, quote your club president, tell how to get more information, etc.

Concentrate On The Headline.
Give your press release a headline. Keep it short (no more than 5-8 words). Make it interesting. Think about what makes your story newsworthy...remember the old adage: "If a dog bites a man, that is not news. But if a man bites a dog, that is news." Finally, make it local. Local media likes local stories.
The next key step to press releases, which 99% of people fail to do, is follow the release up with a phone calls. Call the reporter within a week after you sent it. Call the reporter and tell the reporter that you are just calling to make sure he or she received it and you want to know if he or she wants any further information. That phone call gives you a reason to plug the event in person.

RI Article
Rotary International has put together an article that will give you more information on writing press releases:

There are many ways to market an event, but if you can get the media to work with you, your event will be that much more easier to market!

NEXT: What should the press release look like and how should you send it to the media. Watch for the next edition of this column in this blog.

Ken Masson is president of the Merrimack Valley Rotary and has been a marketing professional for more that 25 years. For more information write to