West Flint Optimist Newsletter –  8/24/17

Costa Papista (President) and Dominic Guiterrez (Marketing and Business Development) from the Flint Firebirds spoke to the Club this morning after being presented by “Lt. Gov.” Jeff Dennings. In their 3rd season here, the Firebirds OHL team continues to impress and build its team, reputation, and following. They signed 9 of their top 10 draft picks of 16- to 20-year-old players, who will play 68 games in 26 weeks to earn a chance to play in the NHL. (17 of the League’s players went to the NHL as 1st-round picks this year!) Matched and billeted with local families, many of which live in Grand Blanc, these young players continue their schooling in local public schools, participate in community service include reading programs, food bank work, and hospital visitation), generate charitable donations ($200K last year), and receive a $500-900 stipend while playing, with all other expenses paid by the League. Options for fund-raising and events sponsored by the Club were discussed and will be explored further as the season gets underway.


Patrick Naswell arrived early this morning, resulting in total disorientation of the other Club members, but President Peter Venos rallied the troops by ringing the bell and asking Mic Goulet to lead in the Pledge of Allegiance, and Ken Cullen prayed for the Club’s meal and mission. Jeff Dennings and Bill Hentgen contested for the rights to the Crown, and Jeff won with a borrowed dime. Jeff immediately fined Bill for being late to bid up the sale and for hassling the King. Bill displaced his displeasure with fines against those not wearing ties and those not wearing Club apparel. Pat was charged a fine for confusing everyone with his early arrival, but in his temporary TailTwister role made everyone pay. Crys Reed was glad that he saved on the fine charged against anyone not attending the Lansing Lugnuts game (this past weekend with the Whaley Optimist House kids and staff), especially since he was charged one by the local constabulary while driving home from the game. Crys and Jeff collaborated to fine others who did not attend the recent Optimist District Convention, where Jeff was officially designated Lieutenant Governor. In keeping with Jeff’s desire to pursue something bigger and better, he traded his morning’s “50/50” ticket with Mic Goulet, and Mic added the winnings to the Club coffers. Bill Reeves, guest of Phil Holmblade, was not intimidated by the Club chaos and has submitted an application for membership: Congrats, Bill and Phil!

Other things to keep in mind:

Jim Reigle needs all of us to help in selling $5K Raffle tickets (former member Bob Hale has already committed to his first order of 20!).

Walt Widder Golf Classic is coming upon Sept. 30 (4 teams booked to date, sponsorships still available).

Bob Hentgen is recovering in Genesys/Ascension from a splenectomy.

Consider Optimist International “Dime-A-Day” program for additional Foundation support (and a pin).

Until next time, “Promise Yourself…”