Rotary Club of Peachtree City

July 2015
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Newsletter

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Welcome to The Rotary Club of Peachtree City

Peachtree City

Service Above Self

We meet Thursdays at 12:00 PM
Wyndham Peachtree Conference Center
2443 Highway 54 West
Peachtree City, GA  30269-1428
United States
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Rotary is committed to improving the world in which we live.   Rotary's main objective is service - in the community, in the workplace, and around the globe.  The 1.2 million Rotarians who make up more than 34,000 Rotary clubs in nearly every country in the world share a dedication to the ideal of Service Above Self.
 
Rotary clubs are open to people of all cultures and ethnicities and are not affiliated with any political or religious organizations. 
 
 

Home Page Stories

 

[John Lynch of the Fayette County Historical Society]

Recently, Mr. John Lynch, of the Fayette County Historical Society, spoke to the Peachtree City Rotary Club. He talked about Civil War events in and around the Fayette County area. He entertained the audience with stories about how the Fayette County courthouse was spared from being burned by Union forces, and the major cavalry skirmish at Shakerag by the retreating Federal Army.

The Fayette County Historical Society was chartered in 1971 as a non-profit corporation to discover, collect, preserve and make accessible to the public, materials which establish and illustrate the history of the county, its towns and villages.


 

 
 

[Peachtree City Rotary President Ed Outlaw & Jenny Stanley of Kidsandcars.org]

At a recent meeting of the Peachtree City Rotary Club, Jenny Stanley of Kidsandcars.org, a national organization, spoke about the dangers of leaving children in hot cars. Tragically, Ms Stanley speaks from experience about the loss of her daughter. Telling her mother that she was going next door to a neighbor's house, six-year old Sydney Marie instead climbed inside their unlocked car and could not get out. She died of heat stroke.

A very attentive audience heard Ms Stanley state that Georgia is among 16 states that has passed a Good Samaritan Law regarding people who break into a car to save a child. Kidsandcars.org is dedicated to spreading awareness, and educating the public about how to keep our children safe in and around motor vehicles. They also lobby for improved vehicle safety measures. She advised those in attendance to always lock their car when they park it, even at home. Also, be sure to "Look again" inside your car before you leave it.

See the website for: KidsandCars.org »


 

 
 

[Pictured L-R: BOE Chairman Marion Key, Duffy Weldon, Josh Hamlin, Camille Faraldi,
Judge Jason Thompson, and Rotary President Ed Outlaw]

Recently, the Rotary Club of Peachtree City conducted its annual Laws of Life Essay contest among the Fayette County schools. What’s a Law of Life? It’s a saying or maxim that summarizes an ideal, a character value, or a principle about life. If followed by everyone, the Law of Life would make the world a better place.

The Georgia Laws of Life contest invites students to select a Law of Life and to use it as a prompt to write about a core character value such as honesty, generosity, courage, compassion, or perseverance. As a program of Rotary clubs in Georgia, the contest reflects Rotary’s emphasis on values, high ethical standards, and service to others.

The winners this year from McIntosh High School are James "Duffy" Weldon, Josh Hamlin, Camille Faraldi.

Duffy Weldon won 2nd Runner-up at the State-level contest, making his essay third out of 45,000 essays written. Read his essay about being “Jere Good”, and the other statewide winning essays by going to:

Georgia Laws of Life Essay Contest 2015 »

 

 

The Peachtree City RCC held its Induction Ceremony on March 9, 2015 at Mimi’s Restaurant. As each
RCC Charter Member came forwar to receive his/her recognition, the sense of pride grew
throughout the room. They talked about their individual duties and the plans for future projects.
And as their Charter President rang the closing bell, it was obvious this corps was on a mission
- one they will no doubt accomplish.
 
The Rotary Club of Peachtree City has formed a local Rotary Community Corps (RCC) under the leadership of member Joel Norris.  RCCs are teams of men and women who work in partnership with Rotary Clubs worldwide to improve their communities.  There are more than 7,500 corps in over 80 countries working in conjunction with their local clubs.
 
The idea behind the Peachtree City RCC is unique. It is a team of adults with developmental disabilities from the surrounding areas. The local club wanted to engage these young men and women in their community who hold an undeniable love for one another and a passion for helping others. They face challenges head-on, and have an innate desire to work together as a team to succeed at any task presented to them. This group appreciates their community and each other, and has an unlimited willingness to do good work in the world.
 
 

 
 

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[L-R: Ed Outlaw, Rotary President; Kathy Tulley; Cathy Berggren, Director of Real Life Center]

The Rotary Club of Peachtree City recently presented a $1,000 check to Real Life Center. Rotary is a sponsor of the Real Life Center, which was established in 1998 to help people who are facing life’s unexpected challenges by offering them hope, guidance, and encouragement.

The Real Life Center has become one of the most highly respected and recognized non-profits in the South Atlanta Metro area. Their mission is to walk with those who are hurting in Fayette and Coweta counties by providing a safe environment in which to receive encouragement, access needed assistance, and obtain referrals to additional county resources.

The primary goal of the Real Life Center is to keep families stable in their home. Stability leads to healthier families and communities.  This program has a 90% success rate of stability in the home, and 75% success rate of families meeting goals.

The Real Life Center thrift stores provide provides a place for the community to donate their gently-used items to help families in need.  All of the money the stores raise, after expenses, goes back to the Real Life Center to help the local families they serve.

Real Life Stores are located in Tyrone, Peachtree City and Fayetteville, and are open Tuesday – Friday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Saturday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Real Life Center »

 

 
 

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[Pictured L-R; Secretary of State Brian Kemp & Chris Thompson, Rotary Vice President]

Hon. Brian Kemp, the Secretary of State of the State of Georgia, spoke to the Peachtree City Rotary Club recently. His talk centered on the role of the Secretary of State’s office and its duties, including the administration of voter registration, and the process of registering business entities in the State. Secretary Kemp served in the Georgia State Senate from 2003-2006, and has been Secretary of State since January 2010.

Among his accomplishments, Kemp established a national model for election security. The My Voter Page (MVP) voter education website allows voters to view a sample ballot, find early voting locations and times, find their Election Day polling location, and verify registration status. Georgia’s military and overseas voters can use MVP to electronically receive ballots.

He reminded all business owners to renew their corporation registration with the State not later than March 31st!

My Voter Page (MVP) »

 

 
 

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[Pictured L-R: Raymond Ray, Ass't. District Governor; Ed Outlaw, Rotary President;
Pota Coston, Linda Banks, & Diana Roman]

The Rotary Club of Peachtree City recently inducted three new members: Ms Pota Coston, Ms Linda Banks, and Ms Diana Roman. Assistant District Governor Raymond Ray administered the ceremony. These three new members brings to eleven the number of new members inducted within the last two weeks. The Peachtree CITY Rotary Club meets every Thursday at the Wyndham Conference Center.

 

 
 

[Piper Hill of Healing 4 Heroes]

Healing 4 Heroes founder, Piper Hill, spoke at a recent meeting of the Peachtree City Rotary Club. Piper told Rotary members about her personal story dealing with PTSD and traumatic brain injury after returning from several tours in Iraq and Afghanistan.

As a result of the help that a dog provided her, Hill founded Healing 4 Heroes, a non-profit organization, to train rescue dogs to work as service dogs to help veterans heal and lead more productive lives. H4H has a dual purpose as it connects unwanted dogs with physically and/or mentally wounded military veterans in a way to provide a way for both to help each other enjoy happy and healthy lives together.

Healing 4 Heroes »

 

 
 

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Pictured [L-R]: Charlie Nelson, Raymond Ray (AG), Krystal Thompson, Allen Arant,
Brandon McCuin, Mary Chapman, Lacy Curry, Jim Davis, Bob Carty, Jonathan Fralick
and Amy Leuenberger (Immediate Past-President)

The Rotary Club of Peachtree City recently inducted eight (8) new members into Rotary International. The names of the new inductees are Krystal Thompson, Allen Arant, Brandon McCuin, Morgan Hay, Mary Watts, Lacy Curry, Jim Davis and Jonathan Fralick. RI Assistant Governor Raymond Ray installed the new members. Cyndi Plunkett is the local Membership Chairman for 2014-15.

 

 
 

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[Pictured lL-R; PTC Mayor Vanessa Fleisch, Speaker, and Ed Outlaw, Club President]

Recently, Peachtree City Mayor Vanessa Fleisch spoke to the Peachtree City Rotary Club. Mayor Fleisch did an outstanding job updating us on the activities of the City, including the dam at Lake Peachtree, new retail developments, the City landscaping crews, and road construction. Having the Mayor of Peachtree City speak at our club near the beginning of each year is a long-standing tradition of our club.

 

 
 

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[Pictured lL-R; Ken Koons, Speaker, and Ed Outlaw, Club President]

Recently, Kenneth Koon, founder of Armed Forces Mission, spoke to the Peachtree City Rotary Club. Headquartered in Tyrone, AFM was established in 2012 with the primary focus of developing the Office of Suicide Intervention and Training to address the high rate of suicide within the active military of all branches, including the Reserves and National Guard, and our veteran community.

Koon’s personal story, and the stories he told about others, gave us insight as to how common suicide is, particularly with war veterans. He also told us about a two-day suicide awareness workshop he conducts to train people how to recognize and intervene to prevent suicide. The emphasis is on teaching suicide first-aid to help an at-risk person stay safe, and seek further help as needed. If you are interested in attending one of their two-day training sessions in Tyrone, please call 678-283-4293.

Armed Forces Mission »

 

 
 

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[Pictured L-R: Club President Ed Outlaw & John Belizaire]

This past weekend, over 25 members of the Peachtree City Rotary Club helped with the Christmas Tree Recycling project at Home Depot and Kroger. Most of the trees were ground up into mulch; some were taken to area lakes to provide nesting for fish. While it was a free service to the community, $970 was raised for the Real Life Center through donations. The Real Life Center is a local non-profit organization that provides food and other resources to the needy. 

In addition, we handed out White Pine seedlings provided by the Southern Conservation Trust.

 

 
 

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Recently the Peachtree City Rotary Club met at the Midwest Food Bank to help package food for distribution to food banks across the country. The Midwest Food Bank is a faith-based organization whose mission is to alleviate hunger and poverty by gathering and distributing food donations to non-profits and disaster sites without costs to the recipients. During this event Rotary Club members bagged 2,000 pounds of black beans into over 700 individual bags.

Midwest Food Bank »

 

 
 

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[Judge Jason Thompson (Rotarian) is pictured recently with 3rd Graders
at Sara Harp Minter Elementary School]

Last month, Rotarians of Peachtree City spread out to the fourteen Fayette County elementary schools to distribute dictionaries to about 1,300 3rd Graders. Each Rotarian was asked to address the class where they explained the importance of literacy, and showed them how to use their dictionaries. In many cases this becomes the first book that these children have ever owned, and it is exciting to watch the expressions on their faces. This is an annual activity for the Peachtree City Rotary Club.

 

 
 
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[L-R: Joel Norris (Dragon Boat Race Director), Janet Beebe, Frances Meaders, Club Member]

At its October 16th meeting, the Peachtree City Rotary Club presented an $11,100 check to the Breast Cancer Survivors’ Network. The BCSN provides support to people impacted by breast cancer. These funds were donated from the net earnings of the Rotary Club's 11th Annual Dragon Boat Race that was held on Saturday, September 27th. Janet Beebe received the check on behalf of the BCSN organization.

 

 
 
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[L-R: Brent Randolph, Jim Pace (CEO of Group VI), Ed Outlaw (PTC Rotary President)]

Jim Pace, CEO of the Group VI Companies, spoke to the Peachtree City Rotary Club recently.  Pace was very instrumental in bringing Pinewood Studios to Fayette County, and he outlined the brief history of how Pinewood decided to select Fayette as their Atlanta home.

Jim talked about the economic benefits that Pinewood is bringing to Fayette County, and future prospects for growth. Group VI built the initial studio and sound stages in record time, and they have been tasked with constructing additional stages during the next six months as Pinewood continues to expand their presence here.  In addition to being one of the largest employers in the county, they are also good neighbors, and invite citizen groups to tour the facilities.

Mr. Pace was introduced by Brent Randolph, President of Group VI Real Estate.

 

 
 
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[L-R: Mary Frances Bowley & Ed Outlaw, Rotary President]

Mary Frances Bowley, founder of Wellspring Living, spoke at a recent meeting of the Peachtree City Rotary Club.  Wellspring Living is a non-profit organization dedicated to confronting the issue of childhood sexual abuse and exploitation through awareness, training, and treatment programs for women and girls.   Bowley has been acknowledged as a leading voice in America on the fight against domestic sex-trafficking, which is one of the missions of Rotary International.

Mary Frances found herself working with marginalized women.  As a result of this work and the massive need it represented, she founded Wellspring Living in 2001.  She and volunteers began working with women who had been sexually abused or exploited as children. Today, Wellspring Living provides survivors with a recovery home and safe house, an education program and counseling for survivors, ages 12-25, of trafficking and those at risk both residentially and in a community-based program.

 

 
 
ImageFrom L-R: Helene Prokesh (Lekotek), Stephanie Lamb (Lekotek), Jim Watkins (Past President) Ed Outlaw (President)

Helene Prokesch from the National Lekotek Center spoke recently at the Rotary Club of Peachtree City. Lekotek is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides an array of services to improve the lives of children with special needs through the utilization of toys and play. Lekotek Centers offer therapeutic PLAY-based family sessions for families of children with disabilities structured to help children learn, develop and thrive in a world that presents them with many unique and complex challenges.

TOYS and PLAY are the vehicles used to provide children with an understanding of and an ability to relate to the world around them. PLAY is also utilized to increase interactions within the family, especially between siblings, and the community as a whole.

The Peachtree City Rotary Club presented Ms Prokesch with a check for $500 in support of the Lekotek programs.

Lekotek of Georgia »

 

 
 

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[Pictured L-R: Ed Outlaw, (PTC Rotary President), Mark Williams, Rep. Matt Ramsey, Joel Cowen]

The speaker at the October 2, 2014 Peachtree City Rotary Club luncheon was Mark Williams, Commissioner of Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for the State of Georgia.

Commissioner Williams explained to the Rotarians in attendance exactly what role DNR plays.  With 2,300 employees, DNR has statewide responsibilities for the management and conservation of Georgia’s natural, historic and cultural resources.  DNR protects and conserves Georgia’s diverse wildlife populations, and provides quality outdoor recreation through its management of more than one million acres of public lands in state parks, natural areas, public fishing areas and wildlife management areas.

From 2006-2010 Mr. Williams represented the 178th district in the State House of Representatives; and is a former high school teacher and football coach.  A veteran of the Army National Guard, he now owns Harris Real Estate in Jesup, GA.

Born in Valdosta, Commissioner Williams received a bachelor’s degree in Biology from Georgia College & State University.  Mr. Williams, his wife Pam, and their two daughters reside in Jesup in Wayne County.

 

 
 

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The 2014-15 Rotary Phone book is now available. If you do not receive your free copy, you may pick one up at many local businesses, including Fitness 54 and Executive Suites at Aberdeen Corners.

 

 
 
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The Club recently held a party to welcome Christoffer. Pictured L-R: Casper Tolstrup (Chris’ brother and former GRSP student), Becky Butler, Christoffer, Steve Butler, and Ed Outlaw (Club President).

Every year each Rotary Club in Georgia sponsors a foreign student to study for a year in the United States through its Georgia Rotary Student Program (GRSP).  This year the Rotary Club of Peachtree City is sponsoring Christoffer Tolstrup from Denmark.  Chris is studying pre-law at Georgia State University.  His host family is Steve & Becky Butler.

Recently, Christoffer gave a talk to the Peachtree City Rotary Club showing photographs of Denmark, and explaining what his country is like.  The crowd was entertained with his factual, yet humorous, presentation. For example, we learned that Danishes (the pastry) were not invented in Denmark!  And that Danes are regularly ranked the “happiest” people in the world.  His explanation for this: “We have such low expectations.”

 

 
 

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Left to Right: Ed Outlaw (Club President) and Jonathan Fralick

The speaker at a recent weekly luncheon of the Peachtree City Rotary Club was Jonathan Fralick, the new General Manager at the Peachtree City Tennis Center. Jonathan has spent over 20 years guiding tennis players and facilities, developing their skills and business strategies needed to reach their maximum potential.

Fralick kept the audience’s attention as he outlined his plans to turn the tennis center into a world-class facility, bringing world champion tennis players into this area. His plans include adjusting fees and schedules such that a wider range of players can participate; conducting coaching clinics; and sponsoring regional and national tennis tournaments. The tennis center is a magnet that benefits the local economy and hospitality industry, including hotels and restaurants.

The Peachtree City Rotary Club meets at the Wyndham Conference Center every Thursday at Noon.

 

 
 

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Ralph Boston speaking before the Peachtree City Rotary Club on August 21, 2014

Peachtree City is home to a lot of famous people. Ralph Boston is one such celebrity. In 1961, Ralph broke the long-jump world record that had been held by Jesse Owens for 25 years. He was the first human to jump over 27 feet (27 ft 1/2"). He won the gold metal at the Summer Olympics in Rome. He followed up with Silver and Bronze metals in the 1964 and 1968 Olympics respectively before retiring.

After his "first" retirement, Boston worked for the University of Tennessee, and then CBS Sports Spectacular. He was inducted into the USA Track & Field Hall of Fame in 1974, and the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame in 1985.

Last week, Ralph spoke to the Peachtree City Rotary Club. He shared his trials and adventures, and the lessons he learned during his athletic career. He speaks at many schools to encourage youngsters to stay in school and be responsible.

 

 
 

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Recently, Tony DellaTorre, Director of Business Operations of the Great Georgia Air Show (GGAS), spoke to the Peachtree City Rotary Club. He talked about the 16th Annual GGAS that will take place at Atlanta Regional Airport - Falcon Field, in Peachtree City on October 11th and 12th. There will be helicopter rides, static displays, and aerobatic flights. It is fun for the entire family. DellaTorre said there will be a Saturday night show, which will include fireworks, and a dazzling display of pyrotechnics-in-flight.

 

 
 

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Recently, the PTC Rotary Club met at the Midwest Food Bank to help package food for distribution to food banks across the country. The Midwest Food Bank is a faith-based organization whose mission is to alleviate hunger and poverty by gathering and distributing food donations to non-profits and disaster sites without costs to the recipients.