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Marilyn Hagerty: Service clubs enrich their community

Along with Kiwanis, there’s Rotary, Sertoma, Lions, Optimists. Many more. And Grand Forks would certainly be a smaller and sadder city without them.

Marilyn Hagerty
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GRAND FORKS — September has been “Let’s Get Organized” month with many groups crawling out of the coronavirus times. Some clubs and organizations are looking around and seeking direction. Thursday Music Club members didn’t miss a beat with starting their season in September.

When visiting with Gerry Joyce, retired J.C. Penney manager, we talked about the Sertoma and Lions service clubs. They seem to have survived and serve during the coronavirus plague. His Kiwanis Club that once had 90 members seems to have faded and died — after the death of President Paul Fladland.

Kiwanians have been challenged by their district governor to give birth to a new club in Grand Forks. And among those saying okay are Joyce, Byron Bender and Cindy Braseth.

Early recruiting brought in 20 new members, Joyce said. “We need 35 more to reach our goal of 60 for October.”

He said the club could then resume fellowship and the leadership of Kiwanis. Meetings will be Zoomed so members can attend wherever they are.

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Hope. Wonder

With service clubs, you hope and you wonder how they can survive the test of these times. Along with Kiwanis, there’s Rotary, Sertoma, Lions, Optimists. Many more. And Grand Forks would certainly be a smaller and sadder city without them.

Sertoma is noted for leading the way in the Grand Forks celebration of the Fourth of July. The Lions Club arranges for Christmas in the park with decorations that make Lincoln Park the place to drive through. Over the years, Kiwanis has enriched the chances for students to gain scholarships.

For the oldest city Kiwanis club the September song goes into October now. The long time members who have drifted are saying, “Let’s get together. Let’s make some plans. Let’s keep on providing scholarships, building parks.’’

Kiwanis Club leaders want women and younger members to join with business men and women in the revival of the Grand Forks Kiwanians. The club that served the Grand Forks community for almost a century. And it served the surrounding area with projects such as Camp Sioux, the summer camp for children with diabetes. It touched the lives of high school students, college students and adults with special needs.

Caitlin and Griffin

Cheerful people of the week: Caitlin Olson and Griffin Gillespie.

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