The Rotary Club of Smith Valley recently celebrated its 75th anniversary of being chartered in 1946. That’s a lot of history for a club that typically averages 30 – 35 members at any given time.
And while it started out as a men’s club, since 1987 women have been joining Rotary in ever greater numbers. It is generally accepted that people join Rotary for fellowship and to provide service to their communities and the world. Over the years, many of the club’s projects and events have become staples of community life here in the Valley. One of the most recent events is the ever popular Fun Days on the first weekend in October. It was first held in 1968, ostensibly as a day for family’s to gather and have fun.
It is returning to the Valley at Dressler Park this year after a hiatus last year due to COVID. It is now a 2 day event with entertainment for all ages and remains, in every way, a family event. In addition to a car show, trap shoot, tractor pull, and many other activities, there are over 40 vendor booths for crafters and entrepreneurs featuring homemade and commercial items on Sunday. Each booth is 10×10, and an allowance for vendors to purchase more than one booth to share their wares. Booths are $40, but a price of $25 is offered for nonprofits. Contact information can be found in our ad in this issue.
The proceeds of Rotary’s efforts, including a raffle and silent auction, benefit a long list of youth projects including Rotary leadership camps for 8th graders and Juniors in High School and scholarships. One of the club’s special gifts is the ability to host social events as fundraisers that bring the community together and simultaneously provide funds for community and youth projects (e.g., annual Lamb Feed and Spring Steak Dinner and Dance (formerly Spring Brunch). Every year, the annual Easter Egg Hunt and annual 1st grade Christmas party entertain young people. For the past several years, the Club has leveraged matching grants with our District (5190 – 59 clubs in No. NV & CA) to support much needed community projects.
Some of these include: installing handicapped parking spaces and a ramp at the community hall, improvements at the Heyday Inn, and partnering with the historical society on a gazebo at the historical park in Wellington. On the international stage, eradicating Polio is a high priority for the 1.2 million members of Rotary worldwide and our club has contributed to the fact that there are only 2 countries in the world where Polio exists. We are very excited that soon Polio will be only a distant memory.
We meet every week, currently at 7 p.m. at the Heyday Inn on Thursdays. Membership is by invitation and every Rotary member would love to bring in new members. Rotary is a special opportunity to forge new friendships and make a difference in the world.