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


March 20 Program: "Gardens of Scotland" by Melanie Sze and Betty Anne Keat

Melanie Sze (left) presented “Gardens of Scotland” with Betty Anne Keat

Melanie and Betty Anne along with 25 other members of the Friends of the Frelinghuysen Arboretum went on a tour of gardens in Scotland in May, 2011. This was a custom tour organized with CIE Tours International to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Friends. They visited many private and public gardens, starting with the Glasgow Botanic Gardens and ending with the “frog lady” garden (Fountainhall Garden). Melanie described other locations which were on the tour including Dawyck Botanic Garden, Geilston Garden, Benmore Botanic Garden, Gargunnock House Gardens (featuring “the Doocot tower”) and the Gardening Scotland Flower Show. Melanie took the photos, presented the show and Betty Anne described some of the events on the trip. Everyone in the audience thought the photos were beautiful and applauded enthusiastically at the end of the presentation.

Announcements: Kiwanis March 20 Meeting

Mary Anne asked members to donate to Pennies for Patients, the CHS Key Club fund raiser. The ECLC art show last week was great. Looking ahead to April, the Madison Little League (which we support) opens on the 21st and the Drew Circle K ELIMINATE walk is on the 22nd. Nancy, Joan and Mary Anne will attend the International Convention in June. May Day in Madison is May 5. The Board meeting is Wednesday night, 8pm 3/21 at the Chatham United Methodist Church.  There is also a CHS Key Club 3/21 at 7pm in the cafeteria. Sharon submitted the “monthly report”. Karen handed out ballots so members could vote for the winner of the Annual Kiwanis Community Aid Award. Everyone voted and gave their ballot to Karen. Four fine organizations were nominated and a notice emailed to all members. Bob mentioned that the Drew Circle-K NJ District Convention is this weekend at the Crowne Plaza Somerset-Bridgewater.


March 13 Luncheon Program: "Big Brother and Big Sister Mentoring" by Patty Henry, Director of Development - Special Events for Big Brother and Big Sister.

March 13 Program: Patty Henry, Director of Development presented an inspiring talk on Big Brothers Big Sisters of Morris, Bergan, Passaic & Sussex, INC. She was introduced by Doug Bryant.

The organization is a national one-on-one mentoring program which started over 100 years ago.  In North Jersey, they have been in operation for 45 years. They establish lasting relationships between adult volunteers and children of single parents. This process makes a meaningful improvement in the lives of the children (and the volunteers). Their mission is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-on-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.

The process of developing a volunteer (who is called a “Big”) includes analysis of applications, interviewing candidates and doing background and reference checks. Bigs are asked to commit for at least one year of meeting in the community with their brother or sister (who is called a “Little”) at least once a week for 3-5 hours.

Children (ages 7 through 13) also go through an application and interview process.  All are from single parent homes, which is why they need an older brother or sister. When accepted, they are put on a waiting list to be matched with a same sex Big in the same local area.

After a year of being matched, Little Brothers and Sisters are more confident in their school work, get along better with their families, are less likely to use illegal drugs or alcohol and less likely to skip school.

Patty showed a video of children in the local organization talking about their Bigs. The video was very touching. The audience applauded the fine work of the program.

She went on to invite people in the audience to become a Big. She left information sheets for people to read. In some areas Key Club members in high schools can volunteer to mentor nearby elementary school children.

The organization serves over 500 children in the four counties. Staff members keep track of the mentoring process, which lasts an average of two years. Waiting lists are long. Big Brothers & Big Sisters wants to raise more funds in order to meet the needs of children who are applying. Check out their website for more information.

Announcements: Kiwanis March 13 meeting

March 13 Announcements: Betty Anne Keat brought a box from the CHS Key Club to collect “Pennies for Patients”.  Boxes are being placed in classrooms. The ECLC art show is Thursday, March 15 from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm at the school.  Monty is collecting payments for Fish and Chips tickets sold by members. He reported that the placemat ads are all sold. Gary reported that the Chatham cleanup will be on Bowers Lane on April 18.  Drew Circle K will sponsor a “Walk for Eliminate” on Sunday, April 22 at the campus – more details will follow. On April 15 (NEW DATE) the NJ District is holding an 11:00 am brunch celebrating 25 years of Women in Kiwanis at McLoone’s Pier House Restaurant in Long Branch - please RSVP to NJ District office by April 9. May Day in Madison is on May 5 – we clean up Cole Park. The International Convention is in New Orleans June 28 to July 1. Kiwanis will sponsor a Madison Little League team again this year. A new leader is needed for the Holiday Nut Sale. Karen Swartz reminded members to submit candidates for the special Community Award. The organization will be selected at the March 20 breakfast meeting. Also, the Chatham Community Band will present a “Children’s Concert” on Sunday, March 18, in the gymnasium of the Chatham Middle School.


Doug Simon gave a talk to Kiwanis on "Presidential Elections and American Foreign Policy" at the March 7 luncheon meeting. He is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Drew University.

Doug started out with two quotes: “All politics is local” and “It’s the economy, stupid”. These quotes reinforce the notion that “Foreign Affairs” do not play a significant role in American Presidential elections.  However, war influenced the outcome of some elections.

He went on to give an enlightening and entertaining talk filled with many interesting stories. His analysis of current and past election campaigns rang true. The audience heartily applauded this wonderful presentation about the history surrounding American elections. 

Announcements: Kiwanis March 6 Meeting

Monty Montague passed out Fish and Chips tickets for members to sell. He also passed around the Fish and Chips work assignments for members. He also distributed posters which had been printed by ECLC to members.

 Mary Anne announced that the Kiwanis International Convention will be in New Orleans from June 28 through July 1. Also, she announced that the May Day in Madison clean-up of Cole Park is May 5. She also read NJ Governor Christie’s proclamation letter declaring that the third week in January is New Jersey Kiwanis Week.

Tom Mullin reported that the Library Picnic will be held August 23rd, the 4th Thursday in the month. Heather Alonge sent around a sign-up sheet for doing invocations at meetings.  She also thanked Simon Mandal for giving a show to ECLC kids. It was just fabulous and the kids loved it! ECLC is holding a student’s art show on March 15, 6:30pm to 8:30pm at the ECLC School on Lum Ave. and she invited everyone to come. March is National Disabilities Awareness Month. Karen Swartz reminded members to nominate the special benevolence award recipient. Also, there will be a CHS Key Club meeting at 7:00pm on March 7.


February 28 Program: Rose Twombly spoke about the United Way of Millburn – Short Hills.

Rose Twombly, Executive Director of United Way of Millburn – Short Hills, was introduced at the February 28 Kiwanis meeting by Karen Swartz (left). Rose spoke about the mission and activities of the Millburn – Short Hills United Way which is one of the few remaining single town United Ways in New Jersey. Rose said that her father was President of the Kiwanis Club of Milburn - Springfield.

Most United Way organizations have merged into larger organizations. For example, the United Way of Northern New Jersey has merged with Morris County and four other United Ways.

Rose said her organization has a volunteer Board and their sole purpose is to raise funds to support human and health care projects and programs that are community-based.  They also support programs in surrounding towns. They help the elderly, they disabled, victims of abuse, children with Cancer, and families in financial distress. The client’s problems are real and made more difficult by the current economic conditions.

Organizations supported include the ECLC Community Personnel Services and the Opportunity Project. They provide scholarships for children who attend Nursery School. They support Sage Meals on Wheels the adult day-care center.  They also support programs to give relief to people who are care-givers for others.

High School students are helping to raise funds by, for example, running exercise programs where people donate money. United Way volunteers of all ages go to Short Hills Mall to sort and count coins that are thrown into the large fountain in the mail. Everyone is urged to throw their pocket change into the fountain to support the United Way. All in the audience applauded the good work of the United Way.


Announcements: Kiwanis February 28 Meeting

Mary Anne Maloney announced that Gianna Strand, President of CHS Key Club received the President’s Volunteer Service Award (see Chatham Patch article). Also, the CHS Theater Dept. is putting on “The Drowsy Chaperone” this week (see Chatham Patch video). Monty asked for volunteers to put up Fish and Chips Dinner posters. John Eyre will hold a brief meeting to brain storm fundraising ideas. Pat Davidson announced that the St. Paul’s Episcopal Church Shrove Tuesday Pancake Dinner donated money to the Kiwanis ELIMINATE Project, enough to save 112 babies from a horrible death by Tetanus (click here to learn more).