Category Archives: Weekly Programs

PROGRAM for June 23, 2017 by ASmith

Rotarian Play titled, “Demotion Time!”

Tony Parrille played the part of Rosie.

We had a visit from the Ghost of Rotary Past-Mike Real- who wanted to show actor Rosie how Rotary began. We had visits from Rotary Moses-Frank Hall who shared the 4-Way Test; Greeks-Jim Rider, Imy Dulake and Dick Martinez who explained the rules of Rotary; Romans-Dick Martinez, Jim Rider, Ernie Jensen and Frank Hall who told stories of the past presidents and member duties. Extras for the scenes include: Matt Weaver, Brad Miller, Mimi Hennessey and Mike Ojeda. Thank you for all your funny commentary and rotary wisdom.

Thank You President Rosie for your time, and many contributions you make to Rotary and Welcome to the Past President’s Club!

Thank you Mimi Hennessey for putting the skit together for our President and fellow Rotarians.




June 16, 2017 Program Report
by Waste Management Student Intern Keanny Jimenez

The 2017 RYLA students did the honors of running our club meeting for the day. RYLA is a camp for teenagers to learn leadership skills and grow as a person. The camp provided activities and guest speakers that help with leadership skills. Some activities included using fake money to purchase supplies to devise a way for an egg dropped from a two-story building and not crack when it hit the concrete floor. Another example was building a firetruck from Lego’s with one person looking at the firetruck and then describing it to the other camper so they could build it sight unseen. This activity helped them keep calm under stress and frustration.
However, they didn’t only have activities they also had guest speakers and comedians. Kathy was one of the comedians who was also deaf but kept everyone rolling around in laughter. Her jokes soon turned into a motivational speech. Kathy oozed with confidence and wanted the rest of the teenagers to radiate from that. Another speaker was “Bruce Almighty” whose theme was the decisions we make affect us. He had lost his daughter in a car accident and described how the decisions we make can affect not only us but our families.
The students from Arcadia High School had strong feelings about the camp. Many were nervous on the first day, not knowing what to expect of this camp. They soon realized the camp was filled with charismatic and welcoming people. They made friends from different places and created strong bonds with them. The camp challenged them into breaking out of their comfort zone by talking about stereotypes, race unfairness, and other kinds of problems. They were surrounded by mature and understanding young adults which helped them open emotionally and mentally. RYLA helped empower and accept their vulnerabilities and view that as an advantage instead of an obstacle.

Craft Talks

Larry Callaham grew up in the San Gabriel Valley. After graduating from San Gabriel High School he attended Cal State L.A. majoring in Music Education with a minor in English. The summer after finishing college, he went on a cultural exchange trip to Japan. That was an eye opening, life changing adventure. He knew he wanted to teach and spent a final year getting his credential.

Larry went to work at Rosemead High School in 1970 as a music teacher. Music is different from other subjects as there is no set curriculum. Instead, skills are taught and appreciation is learned through performances such as concerts, festivals, chorus tours and Broadway Shows. All this means extra practice, and it is not unusual for a Music Teacher to put in 14-hour days. As a husband and a father of three young children, Larry decided to step aside from the performing arts and teach English full time so he could devote more time to his family.

In the early 90’s Larry had the opportunity to open a new school: South El Monte High School. It was created as a Career Path School connecting what students learn to what they will do for the rest of their lives. Five years later he was back at Rosemead High as a Guidance Counselor. He eventually became Principal at Rosemead and is very proud of his accomplishments in that position. Larry retired in 1990 and now devotes his time to hiking, gardening, music and travel. He works with the School Accreditation Commission, is a docent at the Huntington Library, and is the new Vocational Service Coordinator for the Arcadia Rotary Club.

Swati Puri began her craft talk informing us that she will be moving shortly to Seattle, Washington, to be with her new husband of 6 months. She is sorry to be leaving, but has enjoyed her time with the club. Swati is the Senior Director and Regional Consultant for Business Network International. She used the talk to tell us about her Indian Wedding. They had a wedding at a temple in Walnut but returned to India for the traditional 10-day ceremony. Initially her arms and legs were decorated with very ornate patterns using henna paste, which could be removed later. This process took 4 hours. On the third day of festival there were performances and singing and dancing. The dancing went on until two A.M. On the fourth day a yellow paste was applied to her body. This is an old tradition, used many years before current lotions and creams were available, to make the skin and body beautiful. Next was the bangle ceremony. Bangles are put on the wrist by aunts and uncles and are worn for 6 months to show you are a newly wed. On her wedding day Swati wore a traditional outfit with a long shirt and pants. At the ceremony they were blessed by the “Teachings of God” and took four vows to serve God. Swati wore another outfit at the reception and again they danced until dawn. It was quite an event.

Our Very Own Magicians

It all began in May 2016 when Rosie asked Frank Hall to be program chair. Frank said only if Ken Chan will do a magic show. Ken Chan said only if Gina Post-Franco will join him and then the dynamic duo of Ken and Gina was created for us to enjoy one year later when they both performed magic tricks at our club meeting.

Gina was introduced to magic when she was 5 and has been a member of the Magic Castle for more than 20 years. She enlisted the help of her two adorable sons Dylan and Reese who helped her with a rope trick, which even though it was verified to be an authentic rope by Larry Callaham, Gina was able to cut it into many pieces only to put it back together again. Rosie Mares was stumped to learn the card she picked from a deck of cards with a hole in them and handcuffed shut, magically appeared in a sealed envelope on the podium. Glen O’Young unknowingly became the object of the funniest trick ever. Gina used a balloon to draw Glen’s face on then stick a skewer thru it to prove there was nothing between Glen’s ears!

Ken warmed up the crowd by asking Patricia Hall to be his assistant, which she did beautifully. Ken asked her to pick a card from one deck of cards and Ken then picked the same card from another deck of cards! We learned that Ken has been a member of the Magic Castle for more than 20 years and is quite the performer. His jokes mixed with magic created just a moment of panic when he asked Teri Muse and Imy Dulake to remove their wedding rings and place them on two shoestrings and a pencil. Wondering if he was going to make them disappear, much to the ladies relief, he tied the strings into a knot and somehow was able to slide the rings off like there was not knot at all. His showmanship and sense of humor was highlighted when he had Ernie Jensen be the toilet paper holder and Jim Rider, Mike Ojeda, Mike Hoey, Bob Hoffman and Brad Miller do a Rockette’s high kicking dance, wiggle their booty’s, and chew toilet paper while Ken was able to pull a string of colored paper out of his mouth. The real trick was Ken got all those guys to chew toilet paper!

Building Men In Uganda


Image result for laine wagenseller uganda

The program today was presented by Laine Wagenseller, a LA 5 Rotary Member.  Laine was invited to hear about an Orphanage for young boys in Uganda and while he initially was not terribly interested, when he visited and saw the needs he quickly found a way to encourage teenage boys.  Uganda is in the middle of Africa and has been left with thousands of orphaned children the result of brutal dictatorship and AIDS.

Laine’s first visit to the orphanage left him searching for how he could best contribute.  He is a lawyer, not a nurse, dentist or doctor and as he said, spends most of his time arguing with others.  He did not want to teach Ugandan’s how to sue each other.  So far he has made 8 trips to the orphanage in Uganda.

Laine found his niche in working with the teenagers, knowing that most of them did not have the benefit of having a father during their critical developmental years.  Laine told of listening to the story of one young Ugandan (Robert) telling that in the 4th grade his dad died, in the 6th grade his mother died and soon after his caretaker died, leaving him an orphan.  Laine quoted from the book Wild at Heart by John Eldredge.  The paraphrase is that it is very important for a young man to have a father to observe and ideally for the father to approve of and validate his beloved son.  Without a fathers influence, many young men search for meaning and significance in life thru work, money, sex and lots of other harmful ways.

Laine has helped many of the young Ugandans by listening to their stories, bringing in other men to talk about growing up.  Laine tells of one boy he took to the farm school, David, who when asked to pack his belongings came to Laine with just 1 shoe box with some sugar, a cup and a tooth brush, nothing else.

Laine’s final story was of Adolf, who was severely burned by his Aunt for taking food, resulting in his being unable to straighten his legs and essentially walking on his hands and feet.  The Rotary Club in conjunction with the L.A. Burn Center worked together to allow Adolf to come to the US to have several surgeries to restore use of his legs.  This was a tremendous gift to Adolf and a wonderful effort by LA 5 Rotary and the Burn Center.  During recovery, Adolf stayed with Wagenseller’s brother and sister-in-law in Thousand Oaks, playing with their four children and going to school at Westlake Hills Elementary School.

When Adolf was asked what he was going to do, now that he could walk, he said he was going to Thank God.

Frank Perini – A Tribute

“Thank you God for this time” offered Frank, eyes lifted upward, arms outstretched. That was his response to the program of reflections and admiration from family and Rotarians as he closes in on his 93rd birthday and recently retired from 63 years of hairdressing.

We were reminded of his 58 years of perfect attendance in Rotary –  it used to be that standard for Rotarians years ago.  Unfortunately we were also reminded of prejudice (and overcoming it) – that Frank had to change his name from Perez to the Italian sounding Perini to be able to buy a house and to be accepted into Arcadia Rotary.   President Rosie Mares as a Mexican American appreciated Frank’s tenacity that opened the door for her and others to follow more easily.

Repeatedly those at the lectern spoke of Frank’s contributions to his family, his community and his inherent kindness at a personal level.  We heard how he made memories with his children, taking them to new release movies in Hollywood and a meal at Clifton’s Cafeteria, how he helped with numerous Rotary projects, and even made housecalls for infirmed clients.  We heard how he arranged for a flat bed truck with lights, sound, Santa and plenty of Crackerjack to meander the streets at Christmas time and raise the spirits of the community.

Some may not have known that his hard-of-hearing was from his  WWII Army artillery contribution.

Numbers are big describing Frank: 50+ years as photographer for the Rotary Club – he was still taking pictures at the meeting honoring him! 47 Presidential scrap books, sponsored Little League for 40 years, was an athlete that stopped pitching at 84, a 30 year marriage and a current 20 year marriage… and on and on.

He sets the bar very high for Rotarians and admirably demonstrates the Rotary motto: “Service Above Self.”  A tribute well-deserved.