Noon luncheon meetings are held on the first two Tuesdays of each month, at Charlie Brown's Steakhouse in Chatham Township. Breakfast meetings are held at 8:00 AM on the last two or three Tuesdays of each month. Breakfast meetings are held at Charlie Brown’s Steakhouse in Chatham Township. Guests are always welcomed to attend our Tuesday meetings. COME JOIN US


Kiwanis Pasta Dinner Excitement – Thanks for the Support

Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen enjoys Kiwanis Pasta Dinner with Isabelle Cunningham
Kiwanis wants to thank the people of Chatham, Madison and the surrounding towns who attended our annual Pasta Dinner at the Chatham High School. Income from this event supports our scholarships and contributions to youth-oriented charities.

Everyone had a great time, even though we had a fire alarm which cleared the Cafeteria for a while.

The fire alarms were triggered, we believe, by artificial smoke in the Haunted House event taking place in another part of the school.

It was also nice of Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen to stop by and have his dinner with us. Mr. Frelinghuysen maintains excellent communications with our community.

Kiwanis will have it’s annual Fish/Chicken and Chips Dinner next March. Please mark your calendars: March 30, 2011.

Kiwanis Holiday Nuts Delivered – Place Orders Quickly

On October 28, 2010 a shipment of Kiwanis Holiday Nuts were delivered to Stu Shippey, Chair of the Chatham-Madison Kiwanis Holiday Nut sales project. Photo shows a pallet holding Deluxe Mixed Nuts, Cashews, Chocolate Tuttles, and many more. Click on this link to view and print an order. Please place your orders now.


Joan Thuebel spoke on her "Amazon River Trip" with Earthwatch

Joan Thuebel, who has attended twenty-seven Earthwatch missions since 1980 reported on her recent trip to the Amazon River. She was introduced by Nancy Holt (on the left in the photo). Earthwatch volunteers work with scientists to solve environmental problems.

She has been to the Amazon 3 times, the most recent visit in August-September this year. A previous visit was 12 years ago. She flies from Lima into Iquitos, Peru. She was surprised to find that the Amazon River depth is the lowest level in recorded history. The boat her goup lived on, built in 1906, has a draft of only 8 feet. They had to travel 2 hours upriver to board the boat. After boarding, they were unable to travel all the way to the Samiria Park Preserve where they hoped to do most of their work.

Things were quite different from past trips but they still had much work to do. They counted (by estimation) wading birds, macaws, and fish .They went into the rainforest, which was quite strenuous, and counted monkeys and other mammals. Trees had a lot of thorns and there was lots of mud, no rocks. The group caught fish in a net, identified them, counted them and weighed them. They counted the number of river dolphins seen jumping out of the water.

There was an 8:30 pm night boat ride to count Caiman, small crocodiles. She was able to see stars clearly because there were no lights along the river. After traveling in a small outboard boat for a long time without lights, the leader turned on a search light so they could see the Caiman.

Joan showed slides of the river, forest, animals and cities. Iquitos was a rubber baron’s city. The town has been spruced up since she saw it 12 years ago. The group had a chance to tour the local market, which is quite large. On the boat, the researchers stayed in nice refurbished double rooms with private bathrooms. Rooms were air conditioned. Washed clothing hung out in open air would not dry in the high humidity.

She showed photos of macaws and insects taken during her earlier trip to the Amazon. Also, there was a photo of a red arrow poison frog. The natives do hunt and they are learning about sustainability, to not overhunt wild game. Natives along the river in the area migrate with their houses when required.

Click on this link to visit the Earthwatch website and learn more.

Kiwanis October 26 Meeting Announcements

Club members are asked to arrive 15 minutes before their Pasta Dinner work assignment is scheduled to begin. Setup people are asked to arrive about 3:30pm. Youth volunteers usually arrive early. Builders Club is having a Halloween party at the Middle School on 10/26 after class at 2:35pm. We are looking for a volunteer to be Santa for the breakfast with Santa. Next Wednesday, 11/3 at 9:00am, members will meet at Atlanta Bread Co. to assemble hand-outs for the Christmas Parade.  Reminder: the visitation for Cory Fuller is at Bradley Funeral on Friday (2-4 and 7-9). The funeral is at St. Pat’s at 11 on Saturday. There will be a reception at Fish and Game after the funeral. Articles on Cory are available in local and state newspapers.


Chatham High School Key Club Officers Meet October 22

CHS Key Club officers met on October 22 to make plans for the 2010-2011 school year. Photo shows officers in attendance. Recording secretary is holding the new Key Club long sleeved t-shirt, on sale for $20. Proceeds benefit Children's Specialized Hospital  and other Key Club sponsored Charities.


From train whistle to doorbell: The story of Sears kit homes

Marilyn Wittlinger presented an entertaining and informative illustrated talk on Sears kit homes.  The PowerPoint show given at the Kiwanis October 19th Charlie Brown’s breakfast meeting was enjoyed by a packed house. The photo above shows Marilyn on the left with her friend Debbie Behling. She started her research into Sears homes in 2004 while doing a report for her Vernacular Architecture class at Drew University. She was given the Drew certificate in Historic Preservation in 2005. Later that year she set up a tour of five nearby Sears homes for a group of visiting professors from Virginia when Drew held a special one-day class on kit homes. Marilyn and her husband Hal found twelve Sears homes in towns near Chatham, NJ.

Downers Grove, IL and Hopewell, VA have very large numbers of Sears homes, although kit homes are also found in many other places. Early in the 20th century, kits of parts to build these homes were shipped by railroad so homes are found in towns along railroad lines. Sears had a good reputation and over 100,000 “pattern” homes were purchased from a 146-page catalog. Long after construction, many were expanded and altered. Identification is difficult (Sears records are very incomplete) and only about 6,000 have been publicly identified. More recently, people have discovered the historical significance of these homes, which were once regarded as low cost bungalows.

Sears homes were sold and built between 1908 and 1940. Other companies also sold mail-order homes. Sears opened 48 sales offices devoted to homes and the first was opened in Akron, OH in 1919. Plants produced and shipped the homes from Cairo, IL and Port Newark, NJ. Sears even provided mortgages. Kit prices ranged from $191 to $5,140. Number of rooms could be from two to ten. There were many styles and Sears would customize them for the customer. Options like screen windows could be added. Builders who purchased and assembled the kits for customers saved about 40 percent in labor cost. Kits were shipped with drawings and specifications and even paint colors were recommended.


Hundreds of home photos were shown in the presentation, including a large, nearby “Alhambra”. These homes were built in prosperous times when everyone wanted a home of their own. They were reasonable, functional, high quality and popular – modern homes for their time. Marilyn asked that she be told the location of houses that could be Sears Kit homes. To learn more, she recommended reading the book “Houses by Mail: A Guide to Houses from Sears Roebuck and Company” by Katherine Cole Stevenson and H. Ward Jandl.

Kiwanis October 19 Meeting Announcements

If errors are found in the membership directory, send an email to Rich Behling and he will correct the database. Holiday Nut final order has been placed with the vendor. Pasta Dinner tickets should be sold by members. Builders Club and CHS Key Club meetings are on 10/20.  The Board meeting will be held on 10/19 after breakfast. Amos Chalif will have duplicate membership (Hunterdon and Chatham-Madison)


Cory Fuller, Past President of Chatham-Madison Kiwanis

On Sunday, October 17, 2010 our dear friend and Past President of Chatham-Madison Kiwanis passed away.  This photo shows her receiving an award from Dick Plambeck at the club's 80th Anniversary celebration on September 22, 2010. Arrangements for viewing and service are available on the Bradley website.  Club President Dick Plambeck provided a very nice tribute to Cory:

Cory Fuller - a life of service to Chatham

Cory Fuller lived to serve the Chatham community and Morris County. She was a great example to me and to so many others of service above self. I was privileged to follow in the path she prepared – joining the Borough Council the year after she did, serving as Council President the year after she did and now serving as President of the Kiwanis Club of the Chathams and Madison three years after she did.

Cory loved Chatham and was a life-long resident here. Among other things, she Co-chaired the Fishawack Festival before she was on Council and Chaired the Streetscape Committee after being on Council. She was thrilled to throw the switch when we completed the new lighting along Main Street. She served on the Planning Board and the Historic Preservation Commission and was outspoken at keeping the best features of Chatham intact while modernizing our infrastructure.

Cory was never afraid to speak her mind, and offered her own humanitarian perspective when we had to make tough decisions on budgets and funding. She loved working with the employees of the Public Works Department and regularly participated in and won the women’s heavy equipment driving contests amongst the neighboring towns. She also served on committees for the Morris County League of Municipalities and the New Jersey League of Municipalities and on the Executive Board of Morris Tomorrow. She will be sorely missed.


Local Sustainability Programs: Green Initiatives in the Chathams and Madison

Mary Anne Maloney (left) with speaker Cindy Steffens

Cindy Steffens spoke on “Green Initiatives” in local New Jersey areas. She was introduced by John Eyre. Cindy is a native of Chatham, has extensive academic and government experience and now leads the Chatham Borough Sustainability Program.

She described in detail the Sustainability Jersey (SJ) Certification Program for Municipalities. Green Team leaders and members are in place for all three local towns. Chatham Township was one of 34 municipalities certified at the “Bronze” level in 2009. Chatham and Madison Boroughs are seeking Bronze certification. Of the 566 towns in NJ, 309 are involved in SJ Certification. Many individuals and organizations are planning and implementing the program. It seems that the best SJ managed towns may get the most NJ state aid for their Green projects. Sponsors include Wal-Mart, Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, PSE&G and NJ Natural Gas.

Chatham Township received a $25,000 Wal-Mart Grant to be used for recycling waste materials by the School District of the Chathams. Reuse of materials is a primary focus. Also, reducing energy consumption is emphasized. For example, Cindy mentioned the “Turn the Key – Be Idle Free” program. By NJ law it is illegal to idle a vehicle more than 3 minutes.

Paper copies of a PowerPoint presentation which documents the topic may be obtained from her. Also, please visit the Sustainable Jersey website. Click here for a ChathamPatch article.

Kiwanis October 12 Meeting Announcements and Reminders

“Holiday Nut Sales at the Supermarkets” needs three more sign-ups, per chairman Stu Shippey. Tom Mullin reminded members to send in their dues and pick up their new member directories. Betty Anne Keat has Entertainment Books sold by Builders Club for review and purchase. Next Builders Club meeting is October 19. The next CHS Key Club meeting is October 20. Pasta Dinner Tickets are available for sale. Board meeting is next Tuesday following the breakfast. Marge Ahrens circulated three cards for signature by members.


John Reardon of Betteridge Jewelers presented "Time, Clocks and Patek Philippe Watches"

John Reardon, speaker at October 5 Kiwanis Meeting in Chatham
Antique watch and clock expert John Reardon led the audience in an entertaining “who owned this watch?” contest. He mentioned his new book “Patek Philippe in America Reference Guide Volume 1” which is getting favorable reviews in the press. During a brief introduction to the history of watches, he took the audience back to the late 16th century when wealthy people showed them off as trophies.

He then held a contest where he described watches, gave a few clues and asked the audience to shout out the name of the owner of the watch. The first watch, owned by Marie Antoinette, took so long to make that she passed away before it was completed. A Swiss Patek Philippe watch was purchased by Queen Victoria in the 19th century at the Crystal Palace Exhibition.

Mr. Reardon gave interesting historical anecdotes surrounding the owners and their watches. Watches had a variety of features and capabilities matching needs of their owners. One owned by a blind man played chimes signaling hours. General McArthur had a watch showing the time in major cities around the world. The most expensive watch was sold at auction for $11,000,000.

The Dalai Llama, a self-trained watchmaker, was given a perpetual calendar Patek Philippe watch by President FDR and recently was given paperwork for his watch by President Obama. He still wears the watch. Howard Hughes owned and secretly gave away Patek Philippe watches to people on his staff.

A Patek Philippe clock was given to JFK following his “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech. Jackie Onassis donated it to the Presidential Library in Boston. Warren Buffett owned the last watch described by Mr. Reardon, who was given a huge round of applause by the audience for putting on such a delightful, fun program.

Announcements at Kiwanis October 5 Meeting

The meeting was called to order by Kiwanis Vice President Joan May. Stu Shippey asked members to send him Holiday Nut order forms so that he can know how to place future orders from the vendors. Click here for forms. He needed two volunteers for Saturday at 5:00pm to take down the sales display at ShopRite and load nuts back into his car. He passed around the sign-up sheets so members could volunteer.  Betty Anne Keat has 30 Pasta Dinner posters and will give them to people who are willing to put them up in public places. Nancy Boucher asked members to give her or Dick Ligertwood their money and returned tickets for the Pasta Dinner ticket sales. He has a few extra tickets to give members to sell.  Builders Club at CMS will hold a meeting Tuesday 10/5 at about 2:40pm.  Builders Club will sell Entertainment Coupon Books again this year – get your orders to Betty Anne. The sign-up sheet for the Madison Christmas Parade was passed around by Joan May. Dick Plambeck gave a Kiwanis pen to Swedish visitor Goran Svensson, who attended as the guest of Ron Whalin.