Fluvanna County Ruritan Club News

L-R Florence and Roman Bakke

L-R Florence and Roman Bakke (photo provided by Fluvanna Ruritan Club)

Florence Bakke, Roman Bakke, Dick Eaton, and Jim Tew of the Fluvanna County Ruritan Club have been busy fund-raising this summer at the Fridays after Five series at the Sprint Pavillion in Charlottesville by selling soft drinks.

Earlier in the year, the Fluvanna County Ruritan Club awarded two scholarships to college-bound graduating seniors from Fluvanna County High School. The Howard Cook Award for Citizenship in the amount of $250 was awarded to Eleanor Sechler, and the Fluvanna Ruritan Scholarship in the amount of $1,000 was awarded to Elisha Nicholas. The scholarships were awarded in May.


Annual Youth Recognition Night at Salem Ruritan Club Being Held

Recognition Award (free clip art)Salem Ruritan Club is having their annual Youth Recognition Awards Night at 6:30pm April 12, 2016 at the New Salem Baptist Church. Elementary school students have been chosen by their school administration for personal as well as academic achievement this year.

The New Salem Baptist Baptist Church is located at8233 Sperryville Pike, Culpeper, VA.

For more information, contact Patrick Kennedy at 540-738-2692540-738-2692.


Reaching Out To Today’s Teenagers

teenagers (free clip art)

teenagers (free clip art)

By Linda Bradshaw, Past District Governor (Rapidan District, 2015):

As I traveled to the various local Ruritan Clubs in the Rapidan District, to Leadership Conferences, AVR fellowship meetings, and National Conventions and talked with members of other community service organizations, I’ve found myself discussing the needs of all Community Service Clubs to become attractive to a younger demographic. Whether we like it or not, if our clubs are going to survive much longer, all of our clubs are going to need to find ways to recruit and retain younger members.

Most of the people I’ve listened to tell me that they are convinced that the younger generation, the teenagers, and the young adults in college are too self-absorbed, are too deeply engrossed in their iphones, ipads, and other electronic devices to be interested in performing community service.

My reply, to this statement, has been “I understand what you are saying, and why you are saying it, but I disagree.” I firmly believe that today’s youth are extremely interested in performing community service. We just need to find a way to reach these younger people, become attractive to them, recruit and retain them.

Doing this is a multi-step process.

First step is “reaching” the younger people. One of the best ways to do this, using today’s resources, is through Social Media. Smart, efficient use of the Internet, by creating a blog-style website, (using the right formats and Search Optimization practices) that will cross-post to a Facebook page is a cheap (as in free, or almost free) way to make ourselves easily found by anyone who is looking for our clubs.

In the recent past I found myself discussing that situation with my 28-year-old son. He has always been interested in, and involved in, community service projects through his schools, and his life. I asked him for some insights and suggestions on the subject, and he gave me a lot to think about, which I have shared with the Ruritan organization in various ways during the past several years.

Shortly after the discussion, he sent me an email, suggesting that I read this blog post about 5 ways to inspire teenagers to take an interest in community service. I just finished reading it, and felt that the article certainly has enough good points and value that it is worth sharing here. Please click on this link to read the article: 5 Ways To Take An Interest in Community Service.

Reading the article may be helpful as you consider ways to appeal to the younger generations that our clubs would be wise to include in our membership.

In the near future I hope to provide a post that discusses ways to make our Ruritan Clubs attractive to another demographic group – the empty nesters. In the mean-time, please consider the fact that almost every one of your friends, family, and neighbors is someone who can provide some type of value to a community service club. Please don’t just dismiss them because their skill set is different from your own.

The world, and our clubs, need a variety of people to survive. Creating and running a community takes a lot of different people.

We need to find ways to embrace the differences, include the variety, welcome the unique individuals, not exclude them, scorn them, shun, or curse them!


Thanks To All Who Worked to Put On the Rapidan District Convention

Rapidan District Convention Sign for Website

Rapidan District Convention Sign for Website


From the Desk of the 2015 District Governor of Rapidan District:

Words cannot describe how anxious and excited I was to be “in charge” of the Rapidan District’s convention. Truth be told, I was as nervous as a squirrel in a room full of dogs! People kept reassuring me that so many people would chip in and help, and let me tell you, to my great delight, people actually DID chip in and help – a lot! Seems as if every time I turned around, someone was asking how they could help! A lot of seasoned Ruritan members just “knew” what needed to be done, and did it without being asked.

It would be impossible for me to list off the names of everyone that helped, because I am sure that many people just did what they saw needed to be done, and did it, silently, in the background. Parts of the day are a blur to me, with so many people coming up and helping, I know that I will forget some names, (especially who all helped me prepare the table centerpieces!) and I am sorry for that. If I remember more names, I will add them as I remember them.

L-R Greg Payne, Irene Luck, Sarah Kelly, Linda Burton, Bobby Burton, Linda Bradshaw, Shirley Houck (photo by Jefferson VA Ruritan Club)

L-R Greg Payne, Irene Luck, Sarah Kelly, Linda Burton, Bobby Burton, Linda Bradshaw, Shirley Houck (photo by Jefferson VA Ruritan Club)

Here is a partial list of names, and thanks, to people, for all they did this past year, to help me perform my tasks and duties:

Michael Urbanek, my hubby, for being supportive of my Ruritan activities, and helping when he can.
Hank Smith, my friend, and frequent driver.
Donna Smith, Hank’s wife, for lending her hubby to me when I needed a driver!
Bobby Burton, our National President, for being our featured speaker.
Linda Burton, Bobby’s wife, for her support of all things Ruritan, and for her support of her hubby.
Fred Creasy, mentor, and original Zone 1 Governor, and original Convention Committee Chairperson. You will be forever missed.
Perry Marshman, mentor, final Convention Chairperson, sounding board, and the reason I agreed to get involved in the District Cabinet.
Al MacDonald, mentor, sounding board, final Zone 1 Governor, and the 2014 District Governor. And for all the physical help at the Convention.
Bob Houck, my frequent driver to Cabinet meetings, mentor, sounding board, and the MC of the Awards Banquet and Installation Ceremony last night.
Emily & Fulton Payne, for their massive amounts of hours dedicated to the Cabinet and the Convention. And for listening to me vent, and for their frequent reassurances that things will come together.
Sarah Kelly, for helping me to adjust my perspective from time to time, helping to hand out the door prizes, and for her never-ending enthusiasm.
Irene Luck, for being my Lt. Governor this year, and for the exceptional amount of help at the convention with the set-up and break-down at the Convention.
Coral Losinski, for helping with the set-up and break-down at the Convention, and for overseeing the Christmas Cards for Vets at the Convention.
Greg Payne – great job being our chaplain, and great job doing our candlelight ceremony for the memorial service!
Culpeper’s Boy Scout troop 196, for doing our color guard presentation for the opening flag ceremony at the Convention.
Forrest Whorton, and his horse Zeke, for your service as an inspirational tribute to our veterans at the Convention. Inspirational!
John Jewell, of Jewell Tone Music, and his students Melody and Jeremiah, for their musical entertainment at the Convention. Awesome!
Lori Horton, for help at the convention doing whatever I asked her to do to help out, and helping to keep me laughing so I could get through it all. 😉
The Lignum Ruritan Club, for providing the snacks and beverages for the convention prior to the banquet.
The Monticello Ruritan Club for making our Convention an important part of their fund-raising efforts, and for providing the youth for our closing Pledge of Allegiance to the American Flag.
Susan Greitz, Glen Broadwater, and Pat Davis, for coming to our Convention as guests.
Andy Anderson, for helping with the Silent Auction and Ham Raffle.
Special thanks to the clubs that created exhibit tables!

Hundreds of photos have been taken of the convention, and hopefully, in the near future, those photos will be shared on this website on a special page dedicated to those photos. It will take weeks to sort through them, crop, and resize them to be able to be put on the site. Thanks to all who have submitted photos! A few of them can be seen below (details of the photos can be viewed by hovering your mouse over the photo):