As I was growing up in Rochester, NY I really enjoyed seeing the Marx Brothers’ movies on TV ( I wasn’t born when the movies were first in theaters) and then the Groucho Marx TV show “You Bet Your Life.” If you have read any biographies of the Marx Brothers and especially Groucho’s autobiography you know they did have some escapades that would make a sailor blush. For me Groucho was and still is my favorite. I particularly liked to use one of his quotes when asked to join a service club. The quote is “I wouldn’t want to join an organization that would have me as a member.” It usually gets a laugh. What I found out was most of the members were just like me in many ways. The real reason I I used that excuse was that for 37 years on TV my schedule didn’t allow for time to attend meetings. I have belonged to church choirs, and still do, but when I was working I could not attend the evening rehearsals. They would record my part on tape and then I would play the tape at home and while driving my car. Today that is called distracted driving, but I felt that if I got killed in a car accident at least I might have a better chance at Heaven because I was singing a hymn when I died. Actually I’m just kidding about that, sort of.
We moved to Eugene in 1992 and rented a house for a year. In 1993 we bought a larger house because we needed to move my mother here as she was living alone in Upstate New York after my Father’s death. We needed help to find a house and my boss recommended his real estate agents, a couple, Dave and Nancy Haverstock, also known as “Mr. & Mrs. Real Estate” and who now work with John L. Scott Real Estate. They showed us some houses and we found the one that became our home. As it happened, Dave was a member of the Eugene Downtown Lions Club and he invited me to be his guest at one of their weekly Noon meetings. I had been a guest speaker countless times over the years all over the country, but this was the first time I didn’t have to eat quickly and prepare for my presentation. This time I had the opportunity to watch the members have a very lively meeting often interrupting their president with laughter and comments. Recently I was surprised when our club president passed out pins for years of service and my name was called for a 20-year-pin. I can’t believe I have been a member that long. As a service club the Eugene Downtown Lions perform so many good works it’s hard to write them all down.
The Lions motto is “We Serve.” Here are some examples: the Community Services Committee collects applications from groups or individuals in need and they decide on a case-by-case basis the ones that we can help within our budget. We have a group of members who deliver “Meals On Wheels,” we helped found and fund the Children’s Miracle Network – Lions Guest house for Sacred Heart Hospital’s patients families (a place to stay so they can be near their patient family member), we donate to the Gales Creek Camp for Children with diabetes, and we have a Sight and Hearing Committee that has a budget to help needy people get hearing aids, glasses, examinations, and even cataract surgery. Our Environmental Services Committee has work parties who clear blackberries, clean up debris, and plant trees at the Delta Ponds. These are just some of the reasons the Eugene Downtown Lions Club needs the support of the community.
The Eugene Downtown Lions Club’s annual raffle is almost over. This is week 7 of 7 weeks of selling tickets. Please help the Lions help others. Buy a ticket for just $5.00 and you could win one of these 7 great prizes:
1) a $3,000 Travel Voucher 2) a Herman Miller Aeron Office Chair (value $1,400) 3) Apple iPad (value $729) 4) Specialized Sirrus – Man’s Bicycle (value $650) 5) Specialized Vita – Women’s Bicycle (value $650) 6) & 7) Bi-Mart Gift Certificates (value $500 each). The drawing will be held at 4:00 PM Saturday June 29,2013 at Bi-Mart at 18th and Chambers. You do not have to be present to win. Winners will be notified by phone if they are not present at the drawing. A maximum of 4,000 tickets will be sold. All of the proceeds (100%) go to fund the club’s many local projects.
Tickets will be on sale at Bi-Mart at 18th Avenue and Chambers Street from 10AM until 6 PM Tuesday June 25th through Friday June 28th and then on Saturday June 29th from 10 AM until 4 PM when the drawing will take place. I am the lucky guy who gets to call the winners immediately by cell phone if they are not present at the drawing. You can’t imagine how much fun it is to tell people they have won. The truth be known, when you buy a ticket, you are already a winner in our eyes and the eyes of those receiving our services. For more information on Lionism and the Eugene Downtown Lions Club check out the Club’s website. If you are interested in attending a meeting just shoot me an email and w’ll set it up for you.
Let me know what you would like me to talk about or explain. You can email me at: [email protected].