Meeting Report-February 13, 2017

Charlie Travis, a resident of Blowing Rock and owner of a jewelry store in downtown Boone gave an interesting talk about the history of some of the locations in Blowing Rock that has now evolved into Village Jewelers. Old World Galleries was originally founded in 1979 to provide clients with quality products that last a lifetime. The name has changed to Village Jewelers to better reflect their passion for creating fine jewelry, but their mission remains the same; to provide quality products that last a lifetime. Today you will find a complete selection of Fine Jewelry, Custom Jewelry Design, Repair Services, Vintage and Estate Jewelry, and Paintings by Local Artists in a relaxed, friendly setting. Their focus is on building relationships based on integrity and trust by providing complete services to their valued clients.

Charlie shown here with longtime friend, club member J.B. Lawrence, mayor of the Town of Blowing Rock.  Their friendship evolves from their service on town council, where they both served and from their business and Rotary fellowships.

Village Jewelry has consistently contributed to our annual action.  Charlie and wife Joy, put together bags of “goodies” and they were handed out to all the ladies present. Shown here is Elizabeth young receiving her bag, while Lynn Hill and Cullie Tarleton look on .

Valentine’s Day Celebration-2017



Left to Right-Ed Tauche, Robert Whatley & wife Kathy, Karen Clabough wife of Jim Clabough



Lynn Hill, Cullie Tarleton and wife Sylvia

Betty Howe and husband Richard

Elizabeth Young, Lyn Hill and Cullie Tarleton

Katherine Holliday’s raffle ticket number was called and she is trying (unsuccessfully) pick the joker for a pile of cash.

Left to right- Charles Hardin (barely shown), Jan Scurlock, Kathy Canady wife of Charles Canady, Sabine Miller (not shown is Robert Miller her husband) and barely visible, Virginia Vanstory

Student of the Month-2017

Jayme Greene, shown here with President Ray Pickett and her mother Mair receiving her award certificate and a $25 gift certificate from Staples, is an eighth grader at Blowing Rock School. She said her favorite subject is English. That will bode well with her ambition as a Foreign Correspondent. She plans to attend a school of journalism in London, England after high school. She and her parents, Mair and Roy, were in attendance when she accepted the award. Congratulations Jayme and good luck in your future quest.


ski weekend-2

Group Picture at the Clabough’s

Are we having fun yet?

January 28th and 29th
Twenty Seven Rotary Youth Exchange Students and several Chaperones from all over the world gathered together at Appalachian Ski Resort in Blowing Rock, North Carolina, USA for a weekend of skiing, food and frolicking in the snow as guests of the Blowing Rock Rotary Club.
About two inches of fresh snow was added to the artificial snow made by the snow making machines that added to the atmosphere of the special experience, organized by Fred Reidinger, Brevard, North Carolina, as an annual event, these young men and women thoroughly enjoyed the festivities of this weekend. Eleven countries were represented. Many of these exchange students had not been reunited with their fellow countrymen until this weekend.

Girls                                Boys
Bea – Italy                        Andres – FranceIMG_1075.JPG
Wan – Thailand                Matheus – Brazil
Yseult – France                Hendrik – Germany
Mizuki – Japan                 Name – Thailand
Eleanora – Italy                Felix – Germany
Daniela _ Finland             Gabriel – Brazil
Camille – France              Francesco – Italy
Catarina – Brazil              Amadou – France
Line – Germany                Gianfranco – Chile
Franny – Taiwan                Davi – Brazil
Charlotte – Belgium           Carlos – Peru
Sofi – Chile                       Vinicius – BrazilIMG_1109.JPG
Yuki – Japan
Plaifun – Thailand
Mafer – Peru

Fatma & Zehra (10) – Turkey
McKinley Tabor – Tennessee
John Lubke – Charlotte, NC
James Glass – Kentucky
Fred Reidinger – Brevard, NC
The Porter family – Karen Steffens, Todd Porter, Addie (12), Charlotte (10), & Liza (5).

Bill Leahey-Chairman
Vernon Dunn and his wife Drew*
Wayne Holiday and his wife Kathy
Jim Clabough and his wife Karen

*The Dunn’s spent their 55 wedding anniversary (January 28th) assisting the activities in many different ways. Congratulations Drew & Vern and thanks!


Vern & Drew


Drew & Vern Dunn Kathy & Wayne Holliday


Are we having fun yet? These students obviously were. They had gathered at the home of Karen & Rotarian Jim Clabough to enjoy North Carolina BBQ from Woodland’s BBQ


Meeting Report: December 5, 2016

New Member Talk:  David Kline


David G. Kline gave his new member talk this past Monday. We already knew that David was a Neurosurgeon, but how he got there and the roads he traveled unraveled as he wound his way through his past.


Growing up in the rough neighborhood of Upper Darby, a suburb of Philadelphia,  he learned quickly his scrawny body was no match for the toughies prevalent in that area. They plotted to catch him while ice skating and took his pen knife from him.


This infuriated David, but being physically incapable (much of his childhood was spent in the hospital due to illnesses) of retaliation, he decided to join the Jr. High School wrestling team. He continued his pursuit of wrestling in high school and was named co-captain of the wrestling team.


About his same time his father received a promotion and his parents could now afford a larger home in a nicer neighborhood. Instead of being joyous about the move, David became infuriated and in his words threw a “hissy fit” because it meant that he would have to attend Haverford High School, a rival of Upper Darby. Around that time, David received news of a full scholarship to Penn. Not wanting to wrestle at  Upper Darby’s competitor, Haverford, David continued to go to Upper Darby. His excitement about the scholarship was short lived, however, when the school principal called him into his office. There in front of his parents, who had already been informed, he learned that his scholarship was being revoked because it was against the law to attend and participate in one school district while living in another. Eventually, however, he would receive a partial wrestling scholarship from the University of Pennsylvania. To defray the cost of attending college David took a variety of jobs working in the library and waiting tables at the Kappa Sigma fraternity. Then, unexpectedly, his father passed away that following March, putting an even harder burden on his family to provide funds for his college education. One of the members of that fraternity, Charles Assif a senior at Kappa, remembering David as a waiter, and after learning of David’s father’s passing, went to Dean Peters and insisted that Kline be given a full scholarship.

After medical school at Penn and as a resident in surgery at Michigan, he was drafted into the Army medical corps in 1962. David went to Washington, D.C. by train to see someone in the Surgeon General’s office to add surgical experience to his assignment in a Kansas field unit. He told his story to the Surgeon General, who was impressed by his fortitude and said he would dictate a letter of recommendation to the hospital where David wanted to work as part of his service to our country. As the S.G dictated this wonderful letter while David stood by, David noticed, much to his chagrin, the Dictaphone was never turned on.


Discouraged, but not defeated, he proceeded to walk from there to Walter Reed Hospital -a four hour jaunt- to seek an audience with the Head of Neurosurgery, Colonel Hayes. Upon being called into Hayes’ office, he saw a Dachshund on a gurney table and instead of hearing the normal questions one might expect, David was asked: “Do you know anything about dogs?” at which David replied he knew little about dogs but when asked if he knew what kind of dog this one is, David said he thought it to be a dachshund. The Doctor then asked David what he thought might be wrong with this dog. Many questions and answers went back and forth and David actually provided a correct analysis of the dog’s condition, which was partial paralysis in his rear legs, rendering the dog unable to walk. The doctor then asked David to pick up the dog and follow him. Upon arriving at the operating room David was told to place the dog on this particular operating table.


Much to David’s amazement, he looked down at a brass plate installed on the table. Inscribed were the words: “1949, General Dwight David Eisenhower was operated on this table.” As we know Eisenhower, became the 34th President of the United States, 1953 to 1961. The dachshund belonged to General Meroney who was in charge of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and that is where David served for two years.I’m sure David could have talked for another hour and I’m sure we would have enjoyed listening, but time was at hand to close the meeting. Very interesting story David!

Meeting Report: November 21, 2016

Habitat for Humanity


Allison Jennings, Director of Development for Habitat for Humanity was the featured speaker at Monday’s meeting of Blowing Rock Rotary Club.

Habitat for Humanity is an organization that supports the community in a variety of ways. One way is building homes. There is a shortage of affordable housing in the Boone-Blowing Rock area, according to Allison, and that is where Habitat for Humanity comes into play. Allison said they just finished building a home for the Shook family in Foscoe and ground breaking is scheduled for a home in the Greenwood community for the Love family.

When a family applies for a home from Habitat for Humanity they must meet certain requirements, according to Allison. There are some income requirements, as well as, a decent credit history. They must pass a background check and agree to provide “sweat equity” as part of these requirements. Once they have met these criteria, Habitat for Humanity is ready to start building. All homes are built by volunteers and the family gets a zero interest loan. According to Allison, they have had one family pay off the entire mortgage.
“Plans are underway to build a barn where people can gather, hold events, and “just plain use” the new facility”, said Allison.
Allison stated, “We appreciate all the support we receive from our community. We are always looking for donations as well as boots on the ground in our building efforts”


Importance of Being a Rotarian

In many ways, there has never been a better time to be alive. Violence plagues some corners of the world. And too many still live under the grip of tyrannical regimes. And although all the world’s major faiths teach love, compassion and tolerance, unthinkable violence is being perpetrated in the name of religion.

And yet, fewer among us are poor, fewer are hungry, fewer children are dying, and more men and women can read than ever before. In many countries, recognition of women’s and minority rights is now the norm. How strange, then, to see such anger and great discontent in some of the world’s richest nations. In the United States, Britain and across the European Continent, people are convulsed with political frustration and anxiety about the future. Refugees and migrants clamor for the chance to live in these safe, prosperous countries, but those who already live in those promised lands report great uneasiness about their own futures that seem to border on hopelessness. Why?

A small hint comes from interesting research about how people thrive. In on shocking experiment, researchers found that senior citizens who didn’t feel useful to others were nearly three times as likely to die prematurely as those who feel useful. This speaks to a broader human truth: we all need to be needed.

Being “needed” does not entail selfish pride or unhealthy attachment to the worldly esteem of others. Rather, it consists of a natural human hunger to serve our fellow men and women.

Virtually all the world’ major religions teach that diligent work in the service of others is our highest nature and thus lies at the center of a happy life. Scientific surveys and studies confirm shared tenets of our faiths. Americans who prioritize doing good for others are almost twice as likely to say they are very happy about their lives. In Germany, people who seek to serve society are five times likelier to say they are very happy than those who do not view service as important. Selflessness and joy are intertwined. The more we are one with the rest of humanity, the better we feel

What can we do to help? The first answer is not systematic. It is personal. Everyone has something valuable to share. We should start each day by consciously asking ourselves. “What can I do today to appreciate the gifts that others offer me?”

Editor note: The above is excerpted from an article written by Dalai Lama and provided by Virginia Vanstory.