El Cajon Valley Host Lions Club
Holiday Bulletin 2012
The holidays officially began for our Lions Club on December 3rd when we started dedicating the tail twister pot to our annual Christmas Food Baskets. We added the “Jolly Dollars” collected on December 10th to help fund with the delivery of 46 baskets this year. My rough accounting shows we should have about $2800 to $3000 collected through fines or donations to the Baskets. Chairman Rocco Collura was able to get some food donated or sold to us at a discount which will help a lot. We also committed to supplying 15 baskets to the Salvation Army that will be picked up at our distribution point, PP Hoban’s office.
The old saying about the Mailman makes his deliveries no matter what the weather is, holds true for our Lions Club. The weather on December 14th was cold, windy with sheets of rain coming down. The dedicated Lions who signed up to the ring the Salvation Army Bell in front of Wall Mart on that day braved the weather to perform their volunteer task. The elements were kinder to them on the 15th but it was still wet and cold. To my knowledge there were no, no shows. My complements to all of you.
The annual Christmas Dinner/Party was held on the December 17th at the Community Center starting at 6 pm with a hosted social hour. The adults were entertained with Christmas music throughout the night and the kids by a Balloon Clown. At 7 pm we had a delicious Holiday Buffet followed by Santa at 8pm. We had 100 adults sign up but only 82 showed up! Too bad ,they missed a great party. The room was decorated in Holiday colors and was very festive with poinsettia center pieces.. The bartenders, Black and PP Sims were kept busy all night with the help of some volunteers. PP Gary Robinson preformed his usual check in duties.
PP Jerry Hollingsworth started the evening off by leading us in singing “Jingle Bells” , PP Hackworth was chosen to lead us in the pledge followed by PP and Party Chairman Phil Smith’s inspiring and all-encompassing Invocation. President Sturgeon then picked a table to start the food line and away we went eating ham, turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, green salad, rolls, and misc. veggies. Later the deserts came out with a fruit tray.
At about 8 pm Santa made his appearance much to the delight of the 10 kids getting presents. There was one adult by the name Blottin (not Len) who had to set on Santa’s knee and get his present. There’s a long story behind this gift. When all gifts were gone Ron pulled up his britches and headed out the front door to his sleigh.
Part of the Lions, who came without children, left as soon as Santa arrived, this is normal but after Santa left this year the rest stayed and listened to the music watched the Balloon clown do his magic with multi colored balloons and have one last cocktail. Like I said before, it was a great party from every standpoint.
The Poinsettia Bowl is an annual Holiday Tradition in San Diego and may become part of the Lions Club Tradition as well. PP Anthony put together a group of Lions to have a tail gate party and attend the game . Most of us followed the Aztecs during the football season so were only too happy for the opportunity to get together. PP Hoban was sick and could not attend, Rocco also was absent as was PP Anthony whose wife was in the hospital for back surgery. Lion Van Willsey took over for Don and picked up Rocco’s Tri Tip which was delicious. Also participating in the festivities were PP Hackworth, PP Normandie, PP Theim, PP Stebleton, PP Rogers, PP Sims and Gail, PP Cirello and his son, Lion (I didn’t bring the bratwurst) Nasif, and Misc guests. You almost had to be a past president to get invited. The food and comrade were terrific but the not the final score of the game.
Our last official club function was to get 46 baskets (boxes) of food to the right recipients and have fun doing it. Lion Paul Walters was given the job of assembling boxes for everyone to use and he did a wonderful job. The first thing the volunteers had to do was pack 2 boxes for each stop using the numbering system on the tables. We had Leos everywhere, packing , carrying the boxes outside and later riding with the Lions when they started making deliveries. Their help is so much appreciated. Lion Carleton and Raney took all of them to I-Hop for breakfast. In addition to the 46 families we had committed to earlier, the Salvation Army asked us to do 15 more but they would pick up their boxes at PP Hoban’s office, our distribution point. Some left pushing a full shopping cart because they had no transportation. If that wasn’t a big enough challenge, West Hills High School contacted Chairman Rocco Collura Saturday morning to ask if we could provide for 6 more families. After consulting with PP Hoban and PP Anthony it was decided we could handle it and we did. They also picked the boxes up in exchange for a blue certificate.
The deliveries are always interesting. Most of them were is El Cajon, but we had one in La Mesa and 4 in Spring Valley. Not all the address were correct and in one case, the recipients’ had moved, so we went to the new address to make our delivery. For the most part everywhere we went the families really appreciated the food and in some cases told us that what we brought was all the food they would have over the holidays.
Any boxes that were not picked up were taken to the crisis house. All our scheduled delivery stops were completed thanks to our dedicated Lions. We did not have the large group of drivers this year that we have had in the past. Usually you only have to make to 2 trips, but this year most made 3 and several did 4. We were missing packers too, but we got is done. PP Krause created some delicious refreshments that we all enjoyed when our work was finally done. We missed you Trent!!
Merry Christmas and Happy new Year – – – – – PP Dick Rogers