THE ROTARY CLUB OF CANTON, OHIO                                
                           VOLUME 45                                May 22, 2020
Did you know? Each year on Memorial Day a national moment of remembrance takes place at 3:00 p.m. local time.
Friends pick us up when we fall down, and if they can’t pick us up, they lie down and
listen for a while.“       -Author Unknown
Hello Rotarians! One of the most rewarding things about being a Rotarian is the friendships that we make.   During these unusual times, it’s a challenge to stay connected with co-workers, friends, our extended families, our places of worship, and our broader community… and with your friends at Rotary.
So far, we’ve done our best to provide opportunities to stay connected.  Here’s a brief update on what’s been happening.
Our Second Virtual Meeting…With Keynote Speakers Tom Bernabei and Donn Angus.   Last Friday marked our second full club virtual meeting.  We had about 37 members who attended this meeting, using the Zoom video software app. We were able to bring in Mayor Tom Bernabei and Chief City Planner Donn Angus from the City of Canton, who spoke from the mayor’s conference room.  These two leaders provided an update on the amazing Centennial Plaza Project, currently under construction in downtown Canton.
Construction on this important project has continued on during the pandemic and is expected to be completed by August. The presentation showed us a time-lapse video of how work has progressed and highlighted several of the amazing features of this park, including: two performance stages, a giant LED screen, a pavilion, a food and drink court, a children’s area, a large LED screen, and kiosks featuring all NFL players during the league’s first 100 years.  The total cost of construction of this transformative project will be approximately $12.3 million!
You might remember that this project was “kick-started” by a $100,000 grant to the city by the Rotary Club of Canton, to commemorate our 100th anniversary.  This donation will be acknowledged by having our Rotary Club Logo prominently displayed on the Donor Wall, located at the southwest corner of the plaza. It will look much like this: 
This performance area originated from a gift of the Rotary Club
of Canton in celebration of its more than 100 years of active
leadership in the community.  It is presented to the City of
Canton, its citizens and visitors as a demonstration of the Club's 
mission of "Service Above Self".
There have been several Rotarians who have worked to ensure that our club’s donation was not forgotten during this project.  I’d like to personally thank Rotarians Kurt Goodenberger, Tom Clevenger, Paul White, and Jim Blake who have worked productively with the Mayor’s office to help keep our club’s connection strong, as the scope of the project has expanded. And the Mayor deserves a great amount of credit for seeing this project through, while remembering and acknowledging the early efforts of our club.
Helping our Club Stay Strong during Rough Times.  I think many of our members know that your Board has been working hard to keep our organization moving forward in these extraordinary times.  Addressing the financial stability of our club now and in the future is a large part of this process.  But the forced cancellation of weekly meetings and major fundraising events has caused a significant revenue shortfall that will impact the operation of our organization. 
I recently sent letters to all Rotarians asking for their support in the form of a financial donation to the club, to help us cover the deficit caused by COVID-19.   Essentially, I have asked all of you to consider a donation of the cost of meals missed, approximately $175, to help us reduce our expected shortfall. Some of you have already made that commitment.   If we are able to do this with all our membership, we can enter our next fiscal year on much firmer financial footing and set the stage for a great 2020-2021.
To help make this easy, we have now established a link on our website called “Make a Donation”.  Please visit our website at and take the initiative to help out in this tough time.  Your generosity will keep our club strong and able to advance our mission of Service Above Self
Have a wonderful Memorial Day!
At our Zoom meeting on May 15, 2020, President Mark Rojek opened the meeting by welcoming the 37 Rotarians in attendance, the playing of the National Anthem (for President Mark's ears only) and the members recited the Pledge of Allegiance .
Club Secretary Julia Dick received "Happy Bucks" from the following Rotarians: Michelle Charles, Bob Matthews, Dan Matthews, Suzette Matthews, John Werren, Drew Pelger, and Denny Fulmer,. 
President Mark updated our members on the following items: 
  • The status on our incoming new members;
  • An update on this year's golf outing;
  • The option to donate to our club via our website;
  • A short summary on on our club's donation for the Centennial Plaza Project;
  • Plans for our future Rotary meetings.
  • Bill Liber, Golf Outing Committee Chairperson, announced that he will be setting up a Zoom meeting for the golf committee next week.  
  • PP Dan Matthews thanked President Mark for his service throughout this Rotary year.
  • President Mark announced that the next formal Rotary meeting will be scheduled for June 5th.
President Mark welcomed our speakers, Mayor Thomas Bernabei and the City of Canton's Planning Director, Donn Angus.
In order to make contributing to the club easy during this time of social separation, we have recently added a “Make a Donation” link to our club website at  By clicking this link, you will be able to quickly and easily make a contribution to the club, via credit or debit card. 
Integrated with our Clubrunner system, this is a safe and secure link.  Please consider a donation today!
The ClubRunner Mobile App is your key to connect to your club and district on the go!
Completely free to download and use, this app will let you access the key info you need while you're on the go. Password protected just like your website, the ClubRunner Mobile app allows you to to view your member directory, contact your members and executives, read the latest articles posted to your website, learn more about your upcoming events and speakers, view your meeting details and track your attendance statistics, right from your smartphone or tablet!
Click on this LINK to view information on this app.
Canton Rotarians!
Help us stay in touch with each other by sharing your photos, happy bucks and stories of what you have been doing during this time of social distancing.  Please forward any pictures, cartoons, happy bucks or stories into the office at: and we will post these items in our weekly Rotogram and our website.
   -  May 29, 2020 - Rotary Meet-Up via Zoom
   -  June 5, 2020 - Next Planned Full Rotary Meeting
   -  June 26, 2020 - Golf Committee is planning a golf event for our members. 
             More details to come soon.
   -  September 24, 2020 - Oktoberfest -
Russell Hampton
ClubRunner Mobile