Just when you think the Woodbridge Rotary Club has hit a comfortable cruising groove, they kick it up a few notches. The Club ran a ‘major league’ Wine Tasting event this Thursday evening at the Woodbridge Club in Woodbridge Connecticut. The 200+ attendees enjoyed great homemake wines from area competing winemakers, fabulous food from area restaurants and deli’s, music and a large silent auction with a nice diversity of top notch items.
The event was attended and supported by Rotarians from Orange Rotary, Blackrock Rotary, North Haven Rotary, New Haven Rotary as well as from members of the Greater New Haven Rotaract Club.
The Woodbridge Club members did a tremendous job of planning and executing this first class event and have a lot to be proud of.
This is a Rotary Club that anyone could easily identify as vibrant. Just a few years ago this Club was virtually on life support with dwindling membership, poor attendance at meetings and finding it difficult to do meaningful service projects and fundraisers. All that has changed as the membership has been steadily growing with younger, dedicated, caring, engaged and fun Rotarians; which has made all of the difference.
The Woodbridge Rotary Club is the only club in our district with 2 Presidents (Carol Yingling and Buddy DeGennaro); actually co-presidents. Carol and Buddy are doing a great job as co-presidents as they have figured out how to split the duties in a way that is easy for everyone to understand.
Since the club has 2 Presidents they required 2 Official Visits; hence 1/2 for this visit and a 1/2 for the previous day. Our district has 61 clubs and it was fortuitous that this 30.5th visit put Woodbridge directly in the center of all of the Official DG Visits and the 61st visit put them at the end. (Of course they are great sports with this fuzzy math).
I’ve been visiting the Woodbridge Rotary Club for a good number of years, since I was an AG. This Club is an absolute success story how things can be turned around in relatively short order by keeping an open mind and by brining in several new dynamic members.
Over the past several years this Club has morphed into a group that gets amazing things done, has fun doing so, participates in District events and now has no trouble attracting quality new members. There is a level of energy and momentum that the community and its’ members want to be part of. It’s always a pleasure visiting the Woodbridge Rotary Club.
Donald “Bud” Priest from the Woodbridge Rotary passed away last Tuesday. Bud came into Rotary in 1971 when the Woodbridge Rotary Club was chartered; he was a charter member, their first president and a Paul Harris Fellow.
At 83 years young, Bud was still an active and participating member of the Club despite being slowed down by illness this past year.
Bud was a kind, giving man that cared greatly about Rotary, his community and young people. He was the driving force behind getting Ring One Boxing in New Haven established, which was one of his many passions.
His wife, children and grandchildren all commented on how important Rotary was to Bud. He would always have his kids and grandkids on the lookout for ‘Rotary Meets Here’ signs when traveling and did his best to be a visiting Rotarian wherever he went.
Bud was an ‘Old School Rotarian’ in that he flew under the radar doing a tremendous amount of good in his community without ever seeking attention or credit for it. He lived the motto Service Above Self everyday of his life.
Getting to know Bud over the past 5 years was one of the many positive life experiences that being a Rotarian has afforded me. The last time that I saw Bud was in May when we inducted two new Rotarians into the Woodbridge Rotary Club. He was very happy and excited about the membership growth in his Club and about the positive direction that the Club was heading in.
Memorial donations in Bud’s honor may be made to the Woodbridge Rotary Club, P.O. Box 4096, Woodbridge, CT 06525, or the Rocky Mountain MS Center, 8845 Wagner St., Westminster, CO, 80031 (specify ” For Research”)
On Tuesday Oct 2, 2013 The Ridgefield Rotary Club inducted Tamra Evans as their newest member. Tarma is an attorney who practices in Fairfield and lives in Weston. She comes to the Ridgefield Rotary Club with a strong recommendation from iPDG Brian Amey as she was a member of the Newtown and the Norwalk Clubs previously. Tamra was sponsored by Bill Iannuccelli.
On Friday Oct 4, 2013 The Woodbridge Rotary Club inducted Anthony “Tony” Anastasio as the newest member of the Club. Tony has attended several breakfast and lunch meetings and volunteered with his family to work on the Amber Alert project at the BIG E. Tony lives in Woodbridge with his wife and 2 sons. He is on the Board of Selectmen in Woodbridge and is self-employed as a retailer of sporting memorabilia. His classification is Sporting Goods – Retailing. Tony was sponsored by Immediate Past President Anna Dickerson.
Buddy DeGennaro, Rick Bassett, Carol Yingling and Ron Osach
Woodbridge Rotary Club at Installation
Robyn Reilly working the Orange Lobsterfest
IPDG Brian Amey inducts Christine Lovejoy
Andy Skolnick, Anna Dickerson and new Rotarian Matthew Cummings
Woodbridge 2 New Members
The Woodbridge Rotary Club of Connecticut is the only club in our district with 2 Presidents (Carol Yingling and Buddy DeGennaro); actually co-presidents. To quote Carol: “Carol does the bossy parts and Buddy does the nice parts”. The co-presidency seems to be a perfect working arrangement for this club at this juncture as Carol and Buddy, who are the nicest people anyone would every want to meet, complement each other’s strengths perfectly.
Since the club has 2 Presidents they will require 2 Official Visits; hence 1/2 for this visit and a 1/2 for another day. Our district has 61 clubs and it was fortuitous that this 30.5th visit put Woodbridge directly in the center of all of the Official DG Visits. (Of course they are good sports with this fuzzy math).
The Club has been in the process of rebuilding over the past several years and got a tremendous boost last year by the boundless energy of Immediate Past President Anna Dickerson. Anna was able to add 6 new quality members to the club’s roster under her tenure which has totally changed the dynamics of the club.
The Woodbridge Rotary Club just launched their Facebook page and would really appreciate it if people would please visit it and LIKE IT to help get it off the ground. (Say hi while you are there).
The club is made up of friendly energetic Rotarians that truly like each other. They recently held a picnic fellowship which was a blast and they are still talking about it.
Their Assistant Governor is everyone’s favorite AG in Area 7; Ron Osach. Ron is gelling with this club, and all of his clubs, it is easy to see and feel the bond of friendship that he has with the club when he walks in.
Woodbridge Rotary meets on Fridays with a hybrid schedule that has them meeting for breakfast twice a month (1st & 3rd Friday – Country Corner Diner 756 Amity Road, Bethany) and for lunch twice a month (2nd & 4th Friday at Carmine’s Tuscan Grille 1500 Whalley Avenue, New Haven).