By Chad Ingram
Published July 21 2016
Each new Minden Rotary Club president is asked for three goals.
“My first goal was to have fun my second goal was to have fun and my third goal was to have fun with new members” says new president Lynda Litwin seated in the picnic shelter at Rotary Park a leafy peninsula along the Gull River.
With a few members departing the Minden club has fewer than 20 individuals and Litwin would like to get that number back up.
“I respect what Rotary does in the community and internationally” she says of why she joined the club.
Locally the Minden Rotary Club raises funds for various projects from playground equipment to accessible picnic tables.
It also supports a number of programs including those dedicated to seniors’ mobility and entertainment and youth leadership though the high school’s Interact Club as well as programming through agencies such as Point in Time YWCA and local food banks.
Rotary exchange programs “open doors for Haliburton County youth to explore the world under the supervision of Rotary” Litwin says.
The club raises money through a series of fundraisers the largest of which is its annual dinner and auction.
“We have over 400 items contributed to that auction” Litwin says noting that each year more than 200 people show up to bid on those 400 items. “In a small community that’s pretty amazing.”
The club is also responsible for the Minden Hills Bluegrass Festival with its sixth annual manifestation taking place last week. The club collaborates with the Minden Kin Club the Minden Legion the Haliburton County fair board and Minden Hills township on the festival.
Litwin says there were at least 500 attendees at last weekend’s festival.
“A lot of those people were first-time to the community” she adds.
The club also conducts a yearly charity road toll which will take place the Saturday of the Labour Day weekend.
Rotary offers members the opportunity to travel abroad through participation in international programs. Earlier this year members Bill Obee and Kay Godden travelled to Cambodia to deliver bicycles the club had raised money for. Not only do the bikes help children get to school in many cases they become the family form of transportation. In February Obee also helped build a school in Cambodia.
The Minden Rotary Club meets weekly for a dinner meeting starting at 6 p.m.
“For sure it’s less than a two-hour commitment a week” Litwin says. Speakers range from medical and financial professionals to local business owners. The club also takes field trips to local businesses and other destinations and Litwin says there is talk about travelling to Toronto to take in a Blue Jays game.
“I encourage anybody to come out and give it a try” Litwin says.
Anyone interested in joining the Minden Rotary Club or seeking more information can contact her at 705-457-8511.