Issue 11, March 13th

We had a FANTASTIC Youth Achiever Program this past week!  The next time you see Walter Smith, Michael Gullion, Mike Russo, or Colby Caltrider, be sure to pat them on the back for a job well done.  Also we GREATLY appreciate the support of all the club members who volunteered for and/or sponsored the event.  I can’t remember the last time I saw 21 sponsors on a YAP Banner; Roy Shimp did a fantastic job again this year at printing this for us.

At last week’s meeting as usual we had the 23 Patrols from Pine Forest Elementary. Additionally Robert E Lee’s Color Guard and Armed squad joined us for presenting of the colors and a brief drill demonstration.  Being early release we flipped the program beginning with Walter giving a little program history.  Then, thanks to the generosity of the Past Presidents’ committee, we awarded Pine Forests’ teacher of the year and presented her with a check for $250.  She was completely surprised and very appreciative.

Sam Kouvaris from Channel 4 joined us and gave the patrols a short speech on the importance of hard work and leadership.  Now this was all great for all of the adults in the room, but the kids needed someone to really appeal more to them.  Thanks again to the Jacksonville Jaguars, Jaxson-De-Ville came bursting into the room lighting up a lot of 5th grade faces!  We of course had the certificate presentation, but a photo with yours truly isn’t exactly something that’s going to end up on mom’s fridge.  Thanks to Steve Bennett at Living Image Photography, every patrol had their photo taken with Sam and Jaxson and we’ll have those over to the school in a few days.  We went into Thursday already having 425 dinners sold further contributing to the program.  The weather was fantastic and we had plenty of volunteers to cover the event.  It was great to see so many new members getting to know some long-time members building relationships through volunteering.

This week City Council President Greg Anderson will speak to us on the challenges facing our city and where the council stands to date on the issues.  The mayor has made the pension issue a top priority withholding funding commitments for further development until we make significant progress.  This will be one day after the crucial Florida Primary where, regardless of for whom you vote; I hope EVERY SBMC MEMBER will show up at the polls if you haven’t voted early already.  This election is one of the most highly contested I can recall (ok, ok, I’m 33 so obviously my memory is shorter than most of yours).  As we’ve seen personally through our own members’ political efforts, EVERY vote matters so be sure to get out and vote if you haven’t already!  Visit our Supervisor of Elections’ site to find your precinct if needed; Mike Hogan will follow-up with us as our speaker next week.

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