Presidents Report 
Presidents Report  
Well it was great to once again have some visitors at the last meeting Jessica James from St Phillips, Michael Pearce and Harma Hill returned as well as our regular   visitor Maggie Johnston. Of course , Ossi was in attendance and informed us of his acceptance into National Service when he returns home and completes his schooling Following the meeting your Board met to deal with a number of issues and topics The highlight of the  week was our Annual District Conference at the beautiful Port Stephens Wonderful Conference with amazing speakers, excellent catering. Congratulations to District  Governor Helen Ryan and her team.
President Graham
Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
Club Service/Fundraising
Rotary Foundation
Vice President
Rotary Education
Public Relations
Club Administration
Sergeant At Arms
Clubrunner administrator
Dinner Meeting Program
Apr 12, 2018
Rotary Education
Apr 26, 2018
Should be an ANZAC Theme
May 10, 2018
Rotary Education
May 24, 2018
Bunnings BBQ Commitments
The following are the dates our club has committed to, for the operation of the Bunnings community fund-raising BBQ
Fri  13 Oct 17 (RotaryHat Day)
Sun 12 Nov 17
Sat 2 Dec 17
Sat 13 Jan 18
Sat 10 Feb 18
Sat 10 Mar 18
Sat 14 Apr 18
Sat 12 May 18
Sat 9 Jun 18
Please keep as many of these dates free as possible as there will be a requirement for at least 3  and preferably 5 personnel on each of two shifts on each day.
Supporting our community for 80 years
The Rotary Club of Cessnock formally began in 1937. There have been many changes in membership
and the Rules under which we operate in that time, however our reasons for being are basically unchanged.
We are here to enhance the well-being of our local and international communities. Cessnock club is local, Rotary is international.
News from Cessnock & District 9670
It is with deep regret that we record the passing of our esteemed member, David Clark. David passed away unexpectedly on the 23rd February 2018. Our deepest sympathy is extended to his wife Judy and his family. David's funeral will be held at the Cessnock Performing Arts Centre, Cnr Vincent Street and Aberdare Road, Cessnock, at 11am on Monday 5th March 2018. David was a long serving member of the Cessnock Rotary Club and his wise counsel and boundless enthusiasm for the Rotary cause was an inspiration. David was passionate about Rotary projects that supported and enhanced the local Cessnock Community and his guidance and determination in that area will be sorely missed. Rest in Peace David.
On the 14th January 2018, Janette and I travelled to Dubbo to pick up our clubs exchange student who we will be hosting for the next 5 to 6 Months. His name is Ossi Lehtihuhta, he is 17 years old and he comes from Finland. Whilst in Dubbo Ossi was hosted by the South Dubbo Rotary Club and had some fabulous adventures both with the Club and with the various host families that he stayed with.
He is now with our club and is enrolled at Cessnock High School and I am sure, with what is planned for him during his stay here, he will experience some extraordinary and fulfilling adventures and take home with him some lifetime memories. He has already assisted at one of our Bunnings BBQs and has experienced the HVG Christmas lights and this coming weekend will be assisting in our roadside cleanup. During April he will going on the Capricorn Ramble so with that and his stays in Dubbo and Cessnock he will see and experience a great deal of this wonderful country of ours.
Ossi will be a regular attendee at our meetings and will be keeping the club updated on his adventures.
To all our members, friends and our local community, have a merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous new year.
The Cessnock RSL Sub-Branch does a great job looking after the welfare of Returned, serving and ex-service personnel and their families in our local community. However, currently, because of circumstances beyond their control, their normal funding sources are not available to them. Our Rotary club decided that the work that the local RSL club does in our community is so essential that we should assist them with a donation to help carry them through this current period.
Accordingly the President of the local Sub-Branch, Mr Max Lewis, was a guest at our club on 30th November and was presented with a donation cheque and a Certificate of Appreciation by President Graham in recognition of the very valuable work they do.
Yesterday, 12th November,  The Cessnock Rotary Club conducted a fundraising BBQ supported by Bunnings Cessnock. The Board of the Rotary Club had decided that the proceeds from this particular BBQ would be donated to the Cessnock RSL Sub-Branch who are currently prevented from fundraising on their own behalf which is having a serious negative affect on their ability to assist the veteran and ex-service community in the Cessnock Area. It turned out to be a very successful day with assistance provided by club members Graham Farish, Mark Simpson, Greg and Lorraine Bevan, Bev Hannay, David Clark, Val Calvey and the very welcome addition of Raylene Jackson from the Ladies Auxiliary of the RSL.. It was a fine example of Rotary doing good in the local community by helping another community group who, through no fault of their own, are currently unable to carry out their normal community support activities.
On a cool and rainy 5th November Cessnock Rotary Club once again braved the elements to operate the Sausage Sizzle at the Annual Postie Bike Racing Carnival  held in the grounds of Cessnock TAFE and the surrounding public streets. On the front line were Club members John Rosee, Vicki Steep, David Clark, Steve Jackson and one of our valued volunteers, Raylene Jackson, whilst in the background under the shelter shed wrapping the sandwiches was our erstwhile PP Ross Lidbury. Crowds were down slightly on previous years because of the inclement weather but in the periods when the rain stopped the crowds came and we were all kept quite busy. Meanwhile President Graham Farish and Bev Hannay with assistance from members of the Rotary Club of Kurri Kurri and the Girl Guides were doing a marvellous job running the VIP tent within compound adjacent to the pit area.
3rd November 2017 saw the first night of the Hunter Valley Gardens Christmas Lights Spectacular and the first night that our club volunteers assisted with helping visitors to the Gardens find their way around. There was a bigger crowd this year than last year, but the night was very relaxed and everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves especially the children. The changes this year particularly in the event area up the top appear to be working very well and the fireworks at the back of the Event area were well received. All in all a very good start to this years premier event.
Lift the Lid on Mental Health
On Friday the 13th October, Cessnock Rotary Club conducted a Bunnings BBQ in support of Australian Rotary Health Crazy Hat Day.
Presentation of Interact Charter
On Thursday evening, 12th October, we were joined by special guest District Governor Helen Ryan and partner Mike accompanied by Assistant Governor Kerry Hayes. Also present were  3 representatives from the newly formed Cessnock High School Interact Club, Kyle, Michael and Catelyn, pictured here receiving their Charter and badges from DG Helen. Also present were Kyle's father Phillip and Michael Weatherall Interact Chair from the Rutherford Telarah Rotary Club..
Our Club’s annual drive to help women who are homeless.  Refuges are always looking for items for women, and their children, when they are in dire needs.  And Christmas time is often the time when things are needed most. We can help!  Please bring a few items which we can collect and deliver to our friends at Jodie’s Place.  These can be soaps, deodorants, skin care items, toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoos, hair conditioners, sanitary items, dish washing items, clothes washing items, towels.  And to help cater for the children – tooth brushes, toothpaste, children’s shampoo, talcum powder, disposable nappies, baby needs, tins of food, small toys, children’s books. Do not include anything which will not have a long(ish) shelf life – no foods, or other perishables. Please bring these things in as you can, and leave with Janette, who will arrange for them to go Jodie’s Place.
The club meeting venue was turned into an Italian Ristorante for the fellowship meeting of the 31 August. The balloons in the Red, Green and White colours of the Italian flag and the red and white chequered tablecloth inserts emphasised the Italian ambience. Many thanks to Jo Rosee for the idea, Jo and Bev Hannay for the decorations , Jo and John Rosee for the setup and Leisa Craig the club Events Manager for the finishing touches. The buffet style meal of a number of Italian dishes in quantities reminiscent of Italian feasts was beautifully prepared and of exceptional quality. Many thanks to the Club Catering Staff for a great job. Club members were joined by guests Kay Carver,  Val Calvey and past member Louise Selmes and granddaughter Chloe. It was a great night of fun and fellowship with Sergeant John Rosee extracting many fines, deserved and undeserved, from all members.
At the end of the evening prior to the National Anthem members and guest were treated to a stirring rendition of the Italian Classic O Sole Mio in Neapolitan by our club resident Tenor Peter Carver.
O sole mio is a globally known Neapolitan song written in 1898. Its lyrics were written by Giovanni Capurro and the music was composed by Eduardo di Capua 
On the 29th June 2017 The Cessnock Rotary Club held its 80th Annual Changeover Dinner at the Potters Hotel and Brewery. District Governor and club member Stephen Jackson performed admirably in the role of MC for the proceedings.  An evening of fun and fellowship was also the setting for the presentation of a number of awards and donations to Rotary Members, Community organisations and outstanding members of the community. The prestigious Community Innovation and Excellence Award was made by Past President Vicki Steep to Helen Scott for her tireless work in the Branxton Community. Club donations to the community were made to the Girl Guides, Cessnock Volunteer Rescue Association, Wheeling and Able and Jacaranda Lodge. PP Vicki Steep also accepted a contribution to the Umoja Orphanage in Kenya and the club made a donation to Past District Governor Janette Jackson for the District Governors Partners Project, End Polio Now.
President Ross in one of his last official duties presented Peter Carver and John Jowett with a well deserved Sapphire Pin to their Paul Harris Fellow award. President Ross was surprised by being made a very deserving Paul Harris Fellow.
As the culmination of the evening President Ross presented the Chain of Office to incoming President Graham Farish who outlined his vision and plans for the club for the ensuing year. President Graham was then able to induct our newest member into the club, Bev Hannay.
Special mention must be made of the 2017 Changeover cake which was a masterly creation by Claudia Koncz.
A very Special evening finished with a rousing rendition of the National Anthem.
Cessnock Rotary Club - President’s Report 2016-2017
From the first night, that being the change over (combined District and Cessnock club) on the 2nd July 2016 it has been a hectic pace during my year as president.
During the 12 months, the club had the following guest speakers:
A big thanks to David and Val for the organisation of guest speakers
Vic Lair (retired journalist)
John Cormick (University of 3rd age (U3A))
DG’s Wife Janette Jackson – district challenge
Sara Fenton (Mobile Travel Agent)
4 Mt View students presenting their experiences with MUNA
Rachael Pullicino (Potter Tavern Events Manager)
Tracey Frost (Ingenia – lifestyle development)
Michael Brendton – Little boats
Marine Bullen – Endeavor Sailing Ship
Brian Oakely NGSE
Damien Alley – Mayoral award 2016
Events that the club took part in 2016 - 2017:
A big thanks to Vickie, David Clarke and Graham Farish for the organisation of these events.
Branxton Markets (Book Stall)
Vintage Car Rally (B-B-Que)
Bunnings – (B-B-Que)
Postie Bike race (B-B-Que)
Hunter Valley Lights (Nov – Jan) Guides
Fire in the Park – Guides
Cessnock Council Christmas function – Guides
Special needs Christmas party (Santa and helpers)
Stomp Festival
Mayoral Awards
Effie O’Neil Debate
Cessnock Art Gallery Dinners
Some of the events that shaped the Rotary Year 2016-2017
  • The club embraced the start of a new 5 Year strategic plan steered by Wilma and Pam from District.
  • 18th August 2016 Peter Carver was award 50 Year service
  • 25th August 2016 Ben Yates was awarded the James Johnson award.
  • The AGM was held on the 8th December 2016 and a new constitution was presented for discussion and later approved in March 2017.
  • Christmas party was held on 15th December 2016 and a fun time was had by all who attended.
  • 9th March 2017 Club runner starts up – David Owens
  • 2nd May 2017 Mayorial Awards
  • 8th June 2017 Effie O’Neil Debate Between Mt View High School and Cessnock High School.
  • 15th June 2017 Meeting at Cessnock Art Gallery.
  • 29th June Change Over Dinner
During the Rotary year the Cessnock Rotary club has seen the passing of past president, Brad Dewhirst, John Jowett’s wife Meg and past member Ian Marshell.
The last twelve months has whizzed past and the club is already starting to organise its 80th Birthday in November 2017.
Thanks, must go to the Club’s media crew, George Koncz – “Spoke” club newsletter,
David Owens – Club runner, a job well done.
I wish to thank all the board members for their support during the year, for without their dedication this rotary year would not have been the success it was.
Cessnock Rotary President
Dr. Ross Lidbury
On Thursday 8th June 2017 the annual Effie O'Neill Debate between student teams from Cessnock High School and Mount View High School took place at the Cessnock Rotary Club. The debating teams were given a choice of three topics for debate and chose "School tuck-shop menus should be chosen by the students/Teachers and parents". Cessnock High School took the affirmative position and Mount View the negative. Each team consisted of 3 speakers and a researcher with the first speaker from each team speaking twice to present the opening and closing arguments. Each speaker was allowed 3minutes with the timekeeper indicating the 2minute mark with a green light, the 2minute 30second mark with an amber light and the 3 minute mark with a red light at which point the speaker had 30 seconds to conclude before point penalties could be applied. The moderator was David Clark, the timekeeper was David Owens and the Adjudicators were; Judy Clark, George Koncz and Nicole Craft who, incidentally, had been a team member during the first Effie O'Neill debate.
Both teams conducted a well prepared and vigorous debate but in the final analysis Mount View High School were adjudged the winner and were presented with the shield and first prize.  
Cessnock Rotary Club, ever ready to grab a fundraising opportunity, were contacted by Bunnings Cessnock and asked to fill a community BBQ fundraising slot that had become vacant at very short notice. A scratch crew were immediately organised by IPP Vicki Steep and our club decided that all profits generated would be dedicated to the Rotary District Bushfire Appeal which is explained in the following extract from the District 9670 website:
Following the extensive bushfires which have occurred in central western NSW recently, the Rotary Club of Mudgee and Mudgee Sunrise have jointly sponsored and established a fund to assist individuals and families suffering significant loss and distress caused by the fires. The fund has been established through the Rotary Australia Benevolent Society – an arm of Rotary Australia World Community Service - and has been listed as a charitable fund. This means it has Deductible Gift Recipient status so that donations made to it are tax deductible. “Moneys donated to the fund will be used to assist those who have exhausted any assistance available from Government and Insurance resources following the Sir Ivan, Kains Flat and other fires in the Mid-Western Regional, Upper Hunter and Warrumbungle regions” the Project Manager, Margaret Barnes of the Rotary Club of Mudgee Sunrise, said today. “At last count 31 houses had been lost, as had 104 outbuildings and an unknown but significant number of livestock. The village of Uarbry, decimated by the Sir Ivan fire, lost 9 of its 12 houses and its church” she added.
The morning shift consisted of PE Graham Farish, Mark Simpson, David Owens, Vicki Steep with all the essential equipment delivered on time by David Clark. There followed a morning of fellowship punctuated by some periods of hard work with substantial sales being made and with some generous donations to the Bushfire appeal by Bunnings patrons. The afternoon shift of Greg and Lorraine Bevan, President Ross and Vicki continued on the good work culminating in a successful day with the profit of $857.20 donated to the bushfire appeal..
I should also mention one of our morning shift members who suffered a heavy fall whilst setting up but showed great dedication to the cause by completing his shift.
On Thursday 23rd November the Rotary Club of Cessnock substituted its normal club meeting with a very important community event to raise funds for the Rotary International Foundation campaign to end polio in the world. Club members, Immediate Past President Vicki Steep and John Harvey (Royal Oak Hotel) organised the dinner which was held in the Hotel’s 5 star 221 Restaurant and Bar. A superb dinner was prepared consisting of an entrée of pan seared Canadian sea scallops accompanied by a Domaine de Binet Pinot Grigio 2015 followed by a main of Sous Vide Duck Breast accompanied by Audrey Wilkinson Tempranillo 2016.
The dinner was attended by 32 members and guests who enjoyed a great evening of fine food and fellowship. Guest speaker was Past District Governor Peter Raynor who spoke of the history of the Rotary Foundation and its links to the campaign to eradicate Polio in the world which at this stage has managed to isolate this deadly virus to only two countries in the world, a mighty achievement of which Rotary can be justly proud.
Successful fundraising on the night gained significantly from a very generous donation by John Harvey of $800.00 from the night’s takings at the Hotel. A useful amount was also raised by the clubs usual fun game of “Heads or Tails”.
A vote of thanks must go to the organisers, particularly Vicki and John, for what was a very enjoyable and successful evening. The evening was finally rounded off by a hearty rendition of the National Anthem.

Les Elvin posthumous award

The Rotary Club of Cessnock presented two Paul Harris Fellowships last Thursday night. The late Les Elvin was represented by his family to receive the highest award that Rotary can bestow. The award can be to a member of Rotary or someone that the club holds in high regard. 
The Paul Harris Fellow is named for the founder of Rotary. He and three business associates had the first meeting in Chicago in 1905. The Paul Harris Fellows was established in his honour in 1957 to express appreciation for the contribution to the humanitarian and educational programmes of The Rotary Foundation. These programmes include an array of projects that save and invigorate the lives of people around the world and enhance international friendship and understanding.
Foundation programmes provide educational opportunities, food, potable water, health care, immunisations and shelter for millions of persons. These activities are funded, implemented and managed by Rotarians and Rotary Clubs around the globe.
Rotarians award a Paul Harris Fellow to recognise a person whose life demonstrates a shared purpose with the objectives and mission of The Rotary Foundation to build world understanding and peace.
Uncle Les Elvin (as he was known to many), who passed away unexpectedly 16thAugust 2015, aged 77, not long after his seventy-seventh birthday. Uncle Les was an Aboriginal elder, an Wonnarua man, the first elder of the Aboriginal peoples recognized broadly and warmly in our community. He worked hard to bring people together and close the divide that unfortunately still exists between our Indigenous first Australians and those who came here later. Les was a Wonnarua man who was proud of his Indigenous heritage and was always willing to share his culture and heritage with everyone. Les is survived by his wife, Jan, his three children and his seven grandchildren. Les was a well-respected Aboriginal elder, artist and teacher. In 2008 he won the Australian NAIDOC Aboriginal Artist of the Year award and has since designed a number of the Newcastle Knights Indigenous jerseys. In 2011 he became the fourth person and the first non-former mayor of Muswellbrook to receive the keys to the city. In 2012 he was named Cessnock city’s Citizen of the Year.
We meet at Cessnock Leagues Club, 1 Darwin Street, Cessnock 2325 at 6.00PM for 6.33PM
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March 2018
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