• This Saturday, September 14, 10am-Noon:  We will be painting the TeePee Lodge at Beaver Ranch.  After the job, we will gather ad 3 Margaritas for lunch and libation.
  • Wednesday, Sept 11, 6pm, the RYLA kids will be presenting their report on RYLA at the MRC.  There will be pizza and soft drinks.
  • The next Board meeting will be Sept 23, 6pm at Dean’s home.
  • Next week, Sarah Kinzer will be presenting an update on MRC’s future.
  • Jim Sherwood, Evergreen Clothing Company, has donated 100 t-shirts for the Back Pack Project.  
Club Assembly:  Vision and Mission
Guests:  Bambi Moss, Mindy Hansen,  Morti Longsdorf
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, September 10, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-09-10 06:00:00Z 0
  • The Rotary Conifer Foundation Grants Application for this fall is available in the Downloads section of our website, or just click HERE to download automatically.  Grant Applications are due to the Foundation by Friday September 27th.
  • Bring your own mugs for breakfast to curtail the use of throwaway cups.  Lesley will make sure they are washed and stored.
  • There is a Rotary Social and Workday at Beaver RanchSeptember 14, 10am-12noon, after which we go for----you guessed it!  Beer!!
  • Next week, the Club will have a special meeting on Wednesday evening, September 11, 6pm for RYLA kids to share of their RYLA experiences.  Pizza and soft drinks provided.
  • On Sept 8, the in-coming exchange students will be climbing Rotary Peak at 9am.  Rotarians are invited to participate.
  • Vendor registration for the Foothills Home, Garden and Lifestyle Show is open. Interested businesses and not-for-profits can sign up at or contact Janine Payton at 408-799-9724 for more information. 
  • Next week’s Tuesday morning meeting will be a Club Assembly.  We will be reviewing and discussing the Mission and Vision of the club.
  • Sarah Kinzer, new CEO of MRC, will be our presenter in two weeks, September 17, 7am at the morning meeting.
  • 6pm September 23 will be the next Board Meeting at President McCall’s home.  All members are invited to participate.
Program:  Rwanda : Yesterday and Today
Bill Graf, Littleton Rotary
Genocide in Rwanda ended 25 years ago, but as in many areas of the world, there continue to be problems.  Rwanda is just West of Lake Victoria.  It is a country of about 12 million population.  The 1994 genocide resulted it the deaths of nearly 1 million ethnic Tutsi people by the hands of the majority Hutus.  Not all Hutus were in favor of the genocide and those opposed to it were also slaughtered.  The Tutsi have governed now for 20 years.  Most of the Rwanda’s population is Catholic.
To explain why the genocide occurred it is important to understand some of their history. The Twa were the first to live there; they were farmers.  Hutus arrived in the 5th through 11th centuries and were laborers. The Tutsi came later and were considered the rulers.  Germany colonized the country in 1885. Belgium gained control after World War I by mandate of the League of Nations.  In 1926 Belgium introduced ethnic identity cards, based on appearance. Up to this time, the three groups lived together peacefully, with each having a role in the country.
After World War II, the UN continued Belgian trusteeship of Rwanda.  In 1952, a Development Plan solidified Tutsi political, economic and social domination of the Hutu majority.  Civil unrest grew; Hutus rebelled and 150,000 Tutsis fled to Burundi.  In 1960, Hutus won local elections and the Belgians withdrew in 1962.  Tutsis further fled to Burundi and other neighboring countries, such as Uganda.  Violence grew worse over the next 20 years.  The Tutsi’s in Uganda started an invasion of Rwanda, but were turned away by French and Congo Troops.
In the 1990’s a militia of Rwanda Hutu were trained to massacre Tutsis.  When a coalition government started, the Hutus arranged for the death of the presidents of the two groups.  The Hutus blamed the Tutsis, which then led to the genocide of the Tutsis.  In 1994, there were clashes all over Rwanda.  The weapons of choice were machetes and clubs with nails.  The US and UN would not use the the word “genocide”, because it would require a response by the UN.  UN troops were pulled out, even though it is thought that only 2000 troops could have stopped the genocide.  Tutsi exiles in Uganda returned to stop the genocide.
Finally in mid-1990’s accountability came through local court systems.  The current President was the leader of the Tutsi’s who returned from Uganda to stop the genocide.  He has declared his presidency to continue to 2034.
For more information, Bill recommends the film “Sometimes in April” as well as "Hotel Rwanda". 
Guests:  Roderick Macaulay, Rita Lenz, Clyde Sacks
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, September 3, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-09-03 06:00:00Z 0
  • We are helping the planet by avoiding disposable cups, bringing our own Coffee mugs for Rotary breakfasts.  Leslie will wash them and have them ready for the next meeting.
  • The Triceratops Trail Hike last weekend was a great success, nobody got lost, fun was had by all.
  • Evergreen Rotary is having their Recycle Day on September 21st at Evergreen Country Day School.
  • Next year’s summer Musicfest Foundation Fundraiser planning committee meets after our meeting today.
  • Peaches deliveries went smoothly last Friday, 550 boxes.
  • We received a check from this year’s Home and Garden Show for $9300
  • Yvonne announced that our next social will be September 14th
  • We need volunteers to sign up to make breakfasts on the off weeks
  • Wes announced that life for him is very busy now that school is back in session.  He invited us all to homecoming on October 18th
  • Wes also announced that on December 13 the Conifer High School Interact Club will show a Warren Miller film to fundraise for their Nepal trip next summer.  Wes and Diana expect to take 12 Interactors on that trip.
  • Conifer High School Interact Club had their first meeting of the school year on Monday and there were over 30 students participating.
Program: Rafting the Grand Canyon
Barry Schwartz
Our own Barry Schwartz entertained us with his talk about his summer trip down the Colorado River.  For thirteen days, he and two friends enjoyed the hospitality of a professional outfitter as 20+ adventurers floated the entire 277 mile length of the Grand Canyon.  He emphasized that this is a very doable trip for 20 somethings through 80 somethings, that the guides were very professional.  Safety was never compromised.
They traveled in a group of six rafts and one motorized dory for supplies.  Four riders plus a guide in each raft, plus the option to ride in the dory.  Along the length of the canyon, there are limited places to camp and the guides knew the best spots.  Water temperature is 46, air temperature is up to 100, which made for a nice temperature shock for those who ventured into the water.
Barry was very impressed with the quality of the food, the cooking and even the meal presentation was First Class experience.  Although the full trip takes 13 days, about half of the travelers exercised the Phantom Ranch option.  That is, they left the group at Phantom Ranch and hiked up to the rim and were replaced by adventurers who hiked down the Bright Angel Trail to Phantom Ranch to take the second half of the trip.
The group usually finished each day’s travel by 3:00 PM, plenty of time to hike some of the slot canyons along the sides of the canyon.  Barry found those side trips to be as interesting as the rapids.  There were 80 rapids up to Class 9 on the trip.  Some of them are world famous, names like Crystal, Granite, and Lava.  With 16,000 cubic feet of water per second traveling down the river, the rapids were very exciting.  For the more dangerous rapids, the guides would beach the rafts and hike ahead to scout the safest route through them.  In some cases, a mere foot off the proper line could mean big trouble.  Except for the rapids, most of the trip was floating along at a leisurely 4 mph.
Some interesting facts about the canyon:
  • 18 miles wide
  • 1 mile deep
  • Up to 3 billion years old at bottom
  • Side canyons were formed as the result of weathering and erosion
  • The layers of the rock in the canyon are formed from limestone, sandstone and then shale as you go up from the bottom
  • Human history in the canyon dates back to 1200BC
  • Documented history shows the canyon was discovered in 1540 by Spanish explorer Cardenas, part of the Coronado expedition
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, August 27, 2019 Lee Willis 2019-08-27 06:00:00Z 0
  • We have 540 boxes of peaches to deliver on Friday.  
  • Thanks to Ed for getting additional t-shirts for the backpacks---thanks to Mt. Evans Home Care and Hospice.  
  • Finn announced that there was a kazoo concert at the top of “Rotary Peak” a couple of weeks ago. Sept 8, the Rotary exchange students will hike the Peak.  
  • The Back Packs need granola bars.
  • The FaceBook fund-raiser for bicycles for Kenyan farmers met its goal of $2500.
  • For our Social event, the Club is going to Triceratops Trail, off of Fossil Trace Golf Course:  take 6thto 19thin Golden, and the first right into the parking lot.  Meet at 11 am.  
  • The planning committee for the 2020 Music event will meet after the Rotary meeting next week. Please plan to stay to help.
Program: Resilience for Life: Lean-in1220
Heather (Ning) Aberg, LCSW
Heather started Lean-In 1220 when she recognized the need that young people have for dealing with their worries and pains that are leading to suicide.  She shared statistics of youth suicide rates are much higher in our area than in the country at large.  The rates are highest among the LGBTQ students.
The name:  lean-into your emotions; the organization serves young people ages 12-20.  In Colorado, now young people can sign in for care on their own.  Lean-in offers free counseling up to 10 sessions.  There are 15 therapists who donate services.  They meet kids wherever it is comfortable and barrier-free, even taking walks or meeting in a coffee shop.  They serve kids in Evergreen, Clear Creek and are expanding to include Platte Canyon.  
Besides individual therapy, there are groups:  included are groups for the gay community, a “gifted” group who call themselves “the scream beams”—they do not want to be labeled “gifted”, a “resilience” group where they are learning how to live with stresses, and a grief group.  They are going to start a book Club: parents and kids will read the same books.  There will be a group for young boys.  The therapists also do outreach presentations with various groups where kids and families gather.  
How we can help: Sponsor the Evergreen Enchanted Fairy Festival (Sept 8 in Evergreen; Donate to  Participate in a Mental Health First aid course---October 6, at the Fire Dept in Bergen Park.  QPR training—a condensed mental health first aid.  
Guests:  Morti Longsdorf
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, August 20, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-08-20 06:00:00Z 0
  • The social event this month will be August 25, meeting at Dinosaur Ridge in Golden at 11 am, after which there will be lunch and beer.
  • Peach Sale update:  We have sold over $9000 on line, plus the orders that Angela has.
  • The date for our music festival fundraiser next year is confirmed for August 15, 2020 at Beaver Ranch.  
  • The Facebook fundraiser for bikes in Kenya ends soon.  Donations have reached almost $2000, please donate.
  • Back Pack update:  We have completed over 150 t-shirt bags for the food.  We start filling bags next week.  We need granola bars.
  • The Home and Garden Show planning is starting early this year.  The website is updated and will be ready for vendor registrations this week,
Program:  Harambee, Kenya Trip
Suzanne Barkley, Dean and Lenore McCall
Our own Suzanne Barkley, Leonore and Dean McCall provided us a behind the scene view of the successes and challenges facing the people in the Kenya region supported by Harambee.
Suzanne told us she was drawn into this summer’s trip to Kenya by her interest in serving people with disabilities, because of her family experiences with a child and grandchild with disabilities. In Kenya she learned that the services we have in our country do not exist in Kenya.  Most families do not understand what is happening when their children show signs of  a disability; diagnoses are very limited.  Less than 10% of these people have access to medical services. There are many misconceptions about the causes of disabilities in Kenya.
Mortality for children under 5 is almost 50% and Malaria is the leading cause of death for them.  Malaria also causes many neurological disabilities, including hearing, sight, speech, seizures and more.  Our visitors to Kenya observed two family focus groups and they learned the many issues that make life especially difficult for disabled people. Bathroom facilities are rarely handicapped accessible, transportation is limited, and medical clinic visits are very difficult to get to.  If they do get to a clinic, the waiting lines are usually very long.
Lenore reported on the “Small Home”.  It is a home for disabled children, from toddler to age 20, where they are housed and cared for.  The facility they visited has the playground that our Rotary Interact clubs funded and the Conifer HS Interact Club built last summer.  Lenore created a video, featuring the children and staff of the Small Home.
Carol Carper offered the positive news that Sasa Harambee has the support of the sub-county (counties are comparable in size to our States) Minister of Health.  One suggestion from Carol that the folks with disabilities be moved to the front of the line at the health care services has been enacted.  Residents are spreading information to the families of disabled people about the services that are available to them.  Carol is also raising money to improve the training of health care workers to better diagnose disabilities.  There are many health policies changing with the information that Carol is bringing to the Minister.
The Sasa Harambee farm program is growing exponentially, providing income for the families and training farmer educators so that the program is expanding to other counties.  Leadership training is part of the long-term plan to keep these programs growing.  
Guests:  Carol Carper, Morti Longsdorf, Bambi Moss
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, August 13, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-08-12 06:00:00Z 0
  • The Club Training Workshop organized by the District will be Saturday September 21st.  Click here for more information:
  • The social calendar is complete for the coming year and Yvonne will be sending it out via email soon.
  • 6 PM Wednesday, September 11, the RYLA students will make a presentation at Mountain Resource Center. 
  • Peaches are coming Friday August 23rd.  We have sold over $7000 of peaches.  The Sign Up Genius for passing out peaches will be posted soon, please sign up.  
  •  The Conifer Rotary Foundation will be presenting The Conifer Mountain Music Festival: Rock to Country on August 15, 2020 at Beaver Ranch.  Please volunteer to help with planning, contact Wes.  The next planning meeting will be August 27th at 8 AM, after the morning Club meeting.
Program:  The Youth Of Rotary: “Young Rotarians”
Cheryl O’Brien and Lee Mulberry, 
District 5450 leaders of the Youth Programs Initiatives
There are currently 51 Interact Clubs in the District with nearly a dozen more being organized.  Cheryl complimented Conifer Rotary for sponsoring four Interact Clubs, a remarkable accomplishment for our small club.  The District Interact Conference will be held November 2, 2019.  A save the date will be coming with information about the Conference.  Last year Interact students requested a means to stay connected. Cheryl created a Zoom conference so Interactors can stay in contact online.
Our District has the honor of establishing the first elementary school Interact Club in all of Rotary.  It is at an elementary school in Parker.  The students chose saving excess cafeteria food to give to a local pantry and for weekend backpack programs.   They even convinced the middle school Interact Club to join their program!
Lee Mulberry is the District Chair for Youth Programs.  He is very happy with Interact programs in our District and working to get more college students involved in Rotaract. He also described some of the magic of the RYLA programs.  Our District is very active with RYLA and we now have a RYLA Plus program for handicapped children.
The Rotary Youth Exchange of District 5450 sponsors 19 kids out and 19 kids in.  Currently there are only a dozen clubs in the District that are participating. He encouraged our club to rejoin this program.
The Conifer Rotary Foundation
Wes led the group in nominations for the three vacating members of our Conifer Rotary Foundation.  We received four nominations: Joyce Snapp, Pat Hagan, Ruth Moore and Wes Paxton.  We are having a secret online ballot which closes Sunday night, to determine which three of the four nominees will join our Rotary Foundation for this coming year.
Guest:  Morti Longsdorf
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, August 6, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-08-06 06:00:00Z 0
  • No meeting next week.  Come to our social event at CO Jones Mountain Lodge 5:00PM Wednesday July 31.
  • Dean announced that a suggestion was made at the board meeting for our members to have a CV/Resume.  Lee mentioned that there is a place on each member's ClubRunner profile to enter their biography.  Club members can review each other's biographies by viewing the respective member's profile page.
  • Dean mentioned that the budget for this coming year is in work.
  • Marlis is working on current By-Laws for the club.
  • Yvonne asked morning meeting members to please contact her to sign up to provide breakfast on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the month.  The club will reimburse expenses for breakfast setup.
  • Club members please log your Rotary volunteer hours on the meeting sign-in sheets.  The District uses that information to show how much Rotary work our clubs do.
  • Contact Joyce Snapp to help with our Rotary scholarship program, reference the email she sent to everyone.
Program:  Bill McLaughlin, Elk Creek Fire Chief
Our own Bill MCLaughlin provided a serious look at the state of the wildfire prevention and firefighting funding available for our area now and into the future.  He segmented the issues facing our fire departments into three areas, Growth Projects, Wildfire Risk, and Challenges.
Growth Projects:
There is much interest by builders and contractors to build new construction single and multi-family units in our area.  Currently, projects requested by builders would increase the local population by 20%.  The transportation infrastructure in our community is already strained by the population we have.  First responders are averaging one accident per day on US285 now, the Kings Valley intersection had four accidents in the past two weeks alone.
Wildfire Risk:
Home losses to wildfire have increased substantially in the past 20 years.  Last year, there were 450 homes lost in Colorado alone, that is the same number that were lost throughout the entire country a mere 20 years ago.  Wildfire risk has reached such a high level that fire departments must resort to procedures for evacuating residents from areas that they cannot protect.  Home construction must be improved to limit fire risk from an adjacent home.  The California fire in Paradise last year quickly became a house to house conflagration.  Photos taken after the catastrophe show all houses burned to the ground yet trees remained standing.  That fire cost $200 million to fight the fire, $1 billion in economic losses and the future economy of that community will be devastated.  Up to 90% of the Paradise residents say they will not return.  For our Colorado area, weather systems have a very large effect on wildfire risk and the ability to fight wildfires.  The Hayman Fire claimed 16 miles of territory in only 6 hours, caused by winds.  Firefighters can only hope to evacuate residents in time to save lives, there is little chance of firefighting in dry, windy conditions.
There are a few things going well: the Elk Creek Fire Department chipping program has helped over 1500 homeowners mitigate their properties.  In addition, there is a 10 man fire mitigation crew at the fire department.  Third, the slash collection program is collecting loads of slash from residents, more information about slash collection is available at
Funding challenges caused by the Tabor Amendment will cause most of the mitigation efforts to loose funding after this year.  The Gallagher Amendment is forcing a $350,000 cut from the firefighting budget.  Elk Creek has already reduced their ambulance staff and may possibly have to stop service if the funding problem is not resolved.  That will force Conifer residents to have to use ambulance service from Denver suburbs.  Medicare and Medicaid only pay ~10% of the cost to operate the ambulance, the other 90% must be funded from other sources.
The mill levy passed in 2013 will sunset (go away) at the end of 2022.  It raised the mill levy for our fire department from 4.97 to 7.47 for 10 years.  Even at that level, our Elk Creek Fire Department has the lowest funding of any department on the front range.  In some cases, it is half what other departments receive.
Other challenges are caused by changes in demographics.  The numbers of volunteers are steadily dropping, the average turnout for a structure fire this year is seven people.  That is too few to be effective.  In addition, the mill levy impact will force the department to close smaller stations and ambulance service response will be slower.  As mentioned previously, we could even lose ambulance service.
Contact Bill directly if you would like a copy of his interesting slides from the presentation.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, July 23, 2019 Lee Willis 2019-07-23 06:00:00Z 0
  • President Dean passed the sign-up for breakfast preparation.  Please help by signing up to provide breakfast every other week. 
  • We need a rep for the Imagine Library.  There is a quarterly meeting—Joyce volunteered.
  • Dean, Suzanne, Lee, and Yvonne have volunteered to pick up Back Pack food Thursday July 25, 10 AM at Pine Junction.
  • Bill McLaughlin will present next week on the state of our Elk Creek Fire Department
  • Our tents are being rented for Summer Fest by Cliff Bowron, former Rotary member.  Lee volunteered to coordinate with Cliff.
  • Marlis and Steve have an open house for their new home this Saturday.  All members were sent the invitation.
  • The Social Committee is requesting input for the year’s events.  They are also asking we consider a food drive for the Back Pack Project.  Tom and Yvonne are suggesting we morph the event planned for next summer into a music event with food for the Back Pack as entry fee. 
Club Assembly discussion notes will be sent to club members.
Guests:  Bambi Moss, Morti Longsdorf
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, July 16, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-07-16 06:00:00Z 0
  • Curt Harris, Rotary District 5450 District Governor, presented the Conifer High School Interact Club the Interact Annual District award for their outstanding accomplishments.
  • Janine completed her year as President by handing out the remaining awards to her Board members. She presented awards at the Presidential Change Over Party last Sunday.
  • Next week's meeting will be a Club Assembly to focus on our vision for the coming year.
  • We will induct Leonor McCall as a member of the Club next week.
  • Center for the Arts sent a thank you for our support of their fund-raising.
  • Lee reported that we have 64 boxes of peaches sold as of last week.  The last day to order is August 12th, with delivery August 23rd.
  • July 27, Elevation Celebration---fund-raising for Conifer High School.
  • Clear Creek Rotary:  Sept 22nd fund-raiser, Touch-a-Truck, needs volunteers.  “Climb, learn, discover GIANT trucks: first responder vehicles, cars and motorcycles!”
  • Our next Conifer Rotary Social will be August 28---walk Dinosaur Ridge!
Program:  Curt Harris, Rotary District 5450 Governor
Our friend and now District Governor Curt Harris shared his story of joining Rotary when he moved to Evergreen.  Within three years he was the Club President.  He explained that his first Rotary trip to Africa was when he truly came to know the importance of Rotary in the world.
He shared that Africaid was started from the Evergreen Rotary to support young girls in Africa in provide mentoring and education.  It has reached thousands of girls. 
Members of our District 5450 started the first “Young” RYLA in Rotary International.  
Our District in conjunction with District 5440 spend over $300,000 a year to provide these leadership camps for teens.  
Curt’s theme:  Partnerships and Interconnectedness of Rotary Clubs
Rotary’s Vision:  Together we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change across the globe in our communities and in ourselves.
The District needs to grow our membership; they have committed resources to help each club.
Up-coming District 5450 events:
  • September 21, 8 am-12:15—Club training workshop at Front Range Community College.
  • January 25, 2020—RI Presidents dinner.
  • The District Conference, April 25, 2020 in Westminster, will focus  on Club successes.
  • The RI convention will be held in Honolulu June 6-10, 2020.
Big News:  Nigeria should be the next country to be Polio Free. This will leave only  Afganistan and Pakistan with endemic polio.  There is a call for $50 million dollars to be raised through the RI Foundation Polio Plus program, which will be matched with 2:1 = $100 million from the Gates Foundation.
Guests:  Greg Pod (Evergreen Rotary), Melina Lewis (Conifer High School Interact), Morti Longsdorf
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, July 9, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-07-09 06:00:00Z 0
  • The new District Governor, Curt Harris, will be visiting the Conifer Rotary meeting July 9.  Please come to this important meeting.
  • Wes Paxton thanked for everyone who participated in Run the Ranch.  The financials are still coming in and will be reported at a future meeting.
  • Thanks to Diana for her amazing help with youth programs in the absence of Wes Paxton and Suzanne Barkley.  
  • Our Conifer High School Young Rotarian Club received the prestigious District Ron Prascher Young Rotary award this year.  It is is presented to the Interact Club that is considered to have been most successful in accomplishing meaningful service projects, developing leadership skills, and maintaining strong student participation during the school year.  More information is available on the District website by clicking HERE.
  • July 4 is the Freedom Run for the Mt. Evans Hospice and Home Care.  Ed needs parking volunteers that would need to available at 6:30AM.  He will be sending a request to club members.
  • Changing of the guard celebration will be Sunday July 7, 3-7PM at the McCall’s home.  It will be a heavy appetizer potluck, and cake counts as an appetizer.  Consider bringing chairs.
  • The Deer Creek Elementary Green House committee sent a thank you to Conifer Rotary for the donation for the green house at the school.
Conifer Rotary Foundation Annual Meeting
Our Club Foundation is the arm of Conifer Rotary that raises funds that we use to support good causes in our community.  Typically, we support other non-profits, provide college scholarships, and RYLA scholarships.  These funds are not used for any Club expenses.  In the 11 years it has existed the Foundation has given $213,549 in college scholarships, RYLA scholarships and grants.
Wes Paxton, Chair of the Foundation, presented the financial report. Our income was impacted by the limited return from the Home Show this year.  We will need to consider additional fund-raising for the coming year if we want to provide the same level of grant awards to the community.
The fund-raising  for 2019-20 will include our St. Patricks’ party, the Foothills Home, Garden and Lifestyle Show, Peaches Sales, and a new event:  Music and Beer Festival—to be held at Beaver Ranch next summer.  It will be an “All Hands on Deck” event.
There will be three open positions on the Foundation Board this year and elections will be in early August.
Guests: Mary and Hilde Moore
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting June 25, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-06-25 06:00:00Z 0
  • PEACHES:   Ordering information is on our website and emails were sent.  Orders are coming in at a quick pace.  You can order your peaches by simply clicking HERE!
  • Next week the morning meeting will be our annual Foundation meeting and there will be an evening meeting.  See our website calendar,, for changes in the meeting dates and special events.
  • Our Change of the Guard event will be July 7 at Dean and Lenore McCall’s home.  It will be an appetizer-potluck, which includes cake.
  • The Pleasant Park road clean-up last Saturday was very successful.  Thanks to Mark and Judy Rehm, Craig and Donna Kubik, Lee Willis and Cara Camping, Pat Hagan, Lesley and Tom Landon, Diana Phelps, and Barry Schwartz.
  • The next Board meeting will be July 17, 6pm at the McCall home.  All are welcome
  • Dean shared the members of his proposed 2019-20 Board; approved by the meeting members today.
  • Marlis McAllister will be our club President after Dean.
Program::  Friends of Mt. Evans and Lost Creek Wilderness (FOMELC)
Peter Vrolik
Peter Vrolik, FOMELC President, joined us today to talk about their organization.  His first topic was to thank us for supporting FOMELC at the Foothills Home, Garden and Lifestyle Show this year.  The show organizer discontinued special pricing for non-profits and our club stepped in to pay the fee for FOMELC.
The FOMELC volunteers cover a huge area.  Mt. Evans Wilderness has over 74 thousand acres and 120 miles of trails, and Lost Creek Wilderness has just under 120 thousand acres and 130 miles of trails.  Peter went on to explain that wilderness areas are protected Federal Lands by the Wilderness Act of 1964.  No mechanized items are allowed in these areas: no bicycles, chain saws, etc.  The goal is to retain the primeval character of the land without permanent effects from humans.  The Forest Service has oversight and care for the Wilderness areas because they are part of our National Forest land.
Friends of Mt. Evans and Lost Creek Wilderness is a volunteer organization with about 80 members.  Their efforts provide support to the Forest Service, providing education, trail  assessment and maintenance, invasive weed species eradication.  In 2018, they worked were 4596 volunteer hours.  All of the Mt. Evans 23 Wilderness trails and the 13 Lost Creek trails were patrolled---with identification of many issues then reported to the Forest Service.  Eradicating invasive weeds involved 1300 hours of volunteer work in 2018 alone.
Anyone with a love and appreciation for our local forest treasures is welcome to join.  check them out at
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, June 18, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-06-18 06:00:00Z 0
  • JOY International is hosting a Barefoot Mile Fundraiser Saturday June 22, 2019, 9 AM in Marshdale Park.  Register at  Walk a mile in solidarity with impoverished and trafficked children.
  • Board Meeting:
    • Planning for the Home and Garden Show has started.  Janine would like to increase the number of artisans—if you have suggestions, please let her know.
    • Dean presented his new Board.  The Club will vote on the new board at our next Club meeting.
  • The Pleasant Park road clean-up will be this Saturday, at 9AM.  Mark Rehm needs more volunteers.
  • In two weeks, we will have our annual Conifer Rotary Foundation meeting.  Mark Rehm will be fundraising chair.
  • We will be filling an additional Young RYLA position using Community Service funds that were not used this year. 
  • Bruce Ward was in the RI Rotarian Magazine again, promoting our Rotary Peak!
  • Charlotte presented an update on the 285 Back Pack Project.  They provide weekend food for about 100 children every week, plus snacks for the Boys and Girls Club of the High Rockies in Bailey.  We are currently providing Boys and Girls Club snacks for the summer; they have 40-50 kids a day!  Starting this fall, we plan to switch to reusable bags for back pack food, made from t-shirts.  If you have un-worn t-shirts that we could make into bags, please bring them to the Club meetings.  We can use any size but small size t-shirts are preferred.
Program:  Boys and Girls Club of the High Rockies Coming to Conifer
Amy Carman, CEO
Today's presenter, Amy Carman, grew up in Evergreen. She has been associated with Rotary since her childhood. as a RYLA awardee and a Rotary scholarship recipient.  She moved into the Boys and Girls Club CEO job from Human Services for Park and Teller Counties.
Boys and Girls Club of the High Rockies is a busy organization, currently serving 480 kids in Park County.  They want to continue their growth eastward to develop a presence in Conifer.  She explained that kids in Conifer and Evergreen are more isolated than the kids in Fairplay.  She sees Boys and Girls Club as a place for kids to get support, build friendships and to be supervised in a safe place.
Her organization is involved in conversations with a Conifer school regarding bringing their services to Conifer.  It would be an after school program until 6:30pm.  There will be formal meetings at the end of summer. She is hoping they can get a program started so that they can demonstrate the need and the value, in order to be able to get grants and other funding.
In Bailey the middle school will be added to their Club this fall.  Boys and Girls Club will have a permanent location in Deer Creek Elementary. All the Club students will be in the same location, which will make it easier for parents.  Bus service via the school district will also be available.
The children have tutors and help with homework; they also have a variety of activities.  Boys and Girls Club is expanding its programming to address the varied needs and interests of the children.  The staff works directly with teachers to ensure that school work is being done, plus they coordinate other support services for kids.
Funding comes from a number of sources, including Park County, the Dept of Human Services and many other grant funders.  Our Rotary Foundation is holding a grant for this program.
Tuition is a reasonable $30/month for full time club membership.
Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, June 11, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-06-11 06:00:00Z 0
  • Run the Ranch will be this Saturday, June 1, 7:30 a.m. at Beaver Ranch.  Registration is on-line at
  • Last week, Pat Hagan and Janine Payton presented the Rotary Scholarships at Conifer High School (3 scholarships) and Platte Canyon High School (six scholarships).  Our Club Foundation gave nine $1,000 scholarships.  
  • Diana Phelps reported on RYLA.  We are sending six students to RYLA and four to Young RYLA.
  • Suzanne shared her story of when she was in a Chicago Rotary Club and went to Uganda twenty-three years ago to help make micro-loans for women.  The project is continuing!  Rotary started the project, but now all the loans have been repaid and the funds are now available for more loans, including for men.  They have 800 loans out at this time.  
  • The Changing of the Guard party will be Sunday, June 7 at Dean and Leonore's house.
  • Thanks for help with the 9 Health Fair and Veterans’ Rendezvous.
  • The next Board meeting will be Wednesday, June 5, 6pm at Janine Payton’s home.  All members are welcome.  It will be a combined Board meeting, this year’s Board and the new Board.  
Program:  A Glimpse of Kenya
Dean McCall
Dean and Leonore McCall and Suzanne Barkley just returned from Kenya, visiting the projects that our former member, Carol Carper started .  They took several suitcases of medical supplies, malaria test kits (which were funded by Interact Clubs), bandages, sanitation products and 120 canes.
They found that there is a dearth of basic supplies and poor infrastructure.  A major focus for their visit was on people with disabilities.  Carol has worked to design and implement a survey to identify the numbers of disabled in that region and their needs that are not being met.
Our volunteers also checked on the protected springs that our Conifer/Bailey Interact students raised money to build.  Of the 13, twelve are working well.  The report is that water-borne illness has dropped significantly!  The springs are also a source of community gathering.
Other accomplishments included:
  • They visited the farms that are supported by Sasa Harambee for sustainable agriculture and economic development.
  • They visited the Small Home which provides care and education for children with disabilities. This is where the special playground is, that our own Wes Paxton and Conifer Interact kids built last summer.
  • A visit to a Masai village and the Masai Mara---a huge grassland that melds with the Serengeti in Tanzania.
At the end of the visit, they want on safari and had wonderful photos of the animals and landscapes.
We invited them back for more show and tell! 
Rotary Club of Conifer, Meeting, May 28, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-05-28 06:00:00Z 0
There was no meeting this morning for Rotary Conifer because of the snow.  Remember the Conifer High School Interact Club Run The Ranch Fundraiser is June 1st at 7:30AM.  Two events: a 5K cross country race and a 5K fun walk.   Come enjoy the beautiful scenery of Conifer's Beaver Ranch Park while supporting a very good cause.  For more information and registration click HERE.
No Meeting for Rotary Club of Conifer May 21st, support Run The Ranch Lee Willis 2019-05-21 06:00:00Z 0
  • A review of the June calendar:  
    • June 1, 7:30 am, is Run the Ranch at Beaver Ranch.  The money raised will go to the Interact Nepal trip summer 2020.  It is a 5K and can be run or walked.  Register on line.  Tax deductible donations can be given through our Conifer Rotary Foundation, with a notation for Conifer Interact.
    • June 4:  NO morning meeting
    • June 5:  Board meeting at Janine’s home at 6:00pm
    • June 11:  Regular morning meeting
    • June 12:  Regular evening meeting
    • June 18:  Regular morning meeting
    • June 25:  Regular morning meeting with Club Foundation presentation by Wes Paxton
    • July 2:  NO morning meeting
    • July 7:  Changing of the guard 
  • The Conifer High School graduation is this Saturday, May 18.  Wes needs more volunteers.
  • The Veterans’ Rendezvous is this Saturday, May 18, 8 a.m.-12 noon.  Rotary volunteers for tear-down:  11:30.  Thanks Lesley and Pat!  Other volunteers are needed!
  • Scholarships will be given this Thursday at Conifer HS and Monday the 20th at Platte Canyon. All 9 students will be given $1000, due to the generosity of Conifer Rotary members.  Please contact Joyce if you can help make presentations to the winners.
  • We received a thank you note from Katherine Dahlin, the recipient of a Rotary Scholarship for Bootstraps, she went to Africa last year with Conifer Interact.
Program:  Colorado Life with TABOR and Gallagher
Ed Steinbrecher
Basics of taxation:
  • We are governed by Colorado Constitution and Statues.  The Constitution can be amended by citizen initiatives or by referral by the legislature to citizens.  The State Constitution and Statues authorize taxation.
  • All taxes are determined by Rate X Value = Revenue
  • State income tax is currently 4.63% X Federal taxable income
  • Property tax rates depend on the different types of properties:  residential, agriculture, commercial, industrial, and natural resources.
  • Property taxes use mill rate.  One mill is $1 per $1000 assessed value.  40 mils would be 4%; or $40/$1000.  
Gallagher.  In 1982, legislator Dennis Gallagher proposed a Constitutional amendment to address inequalities in county assessments. County assessments were not standard and required more money from the State to cover expenses.  
Gallagher states: The amount of revenue raised by Residential real property tax shall not exceed 45% OF THE TOTAL in perpetuity.  All state revenue from other property taxes will be 55%.  To meet state income needs in 1982, residential was taxed at 21% of actual value.  With fast growth and increasing home values, the Gallagher limit forced the state to reduce the rate and it is now 7.2% of actual value.  Every special district has to use to the state set assessment rate, regardless of Residential values.  Some districts may not have had increase in new residential properties nor increase values of existing properties.  This forces a reduction in revenue for special districts (i.e. fire departments).  Next week's meeting will have Fire Chief Bill McLaughlin discuss the negative impact on our Fire Department.
Tabor.  Constitutional amendment passed in 1992, it forces a spending limit on the state to not exceed year over year growth plus inflation.  Revenue cannot increase by more than growth plus inflation of the prior year.  There is a property tax revenue limit.  This works, until there is a recession, and the years following that recession are restricted to the previous year's numbers.  This puts state revenue well below the level before the recession.  There can be no new taxes nor increase rate unless approved by voters (De-Brucing).  If there is excess revenue above the limit, that money overage must be returned to the taxpayers.
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, May 14, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-05-14 06:00:00Z 0
    The program in two weeks will focus on our fire department, including information and next week we will learn about our tax notices and what they reveal about where our money goes and how TABOR and Gallagher affect the financing of our special Districts.  Bring your JeffCo Property Tax Notice next week to learn where your tax money goes.  Chief Bill McLaughlin will talk about the issues facing the fire Department.
    The Board report from President Janine:
    • We have a new slate of officer applicants that we will vote on this month.
    • Wes agreed to be President-elect, although since he was recently President he will relinquish if another member is interested and able to step into the position.  He will continue as Chair of the Club Foundation.
    • We need a new Rotary International Foundation Chair.
    • Hugh is requesting a new person to replace him as Chair for the evening meetings.
    • Cathy Taylor: treasurer
    • Marlis McAllister: Secretary
    • Charles Harrison and Charlotte Wytias: co-chair the Membership Committee
    • Amy Baker: Youth Services Chair.
    • Leslie Landon: Community Service Chair
    • Pat : International  Service Chair
    • Suzanne will be RYLA chair
    • Mark Rehm: Fund-raising Chair
    Rotary announcements:
    • The Club Foundation will have its annual meeting and election for Board membership by June.  The Board will elect a Chair once formed.
    • Beaver Ranch will offer their site to Rotary for a music festival fundraiser.  In addition to music we plan to have vendors, food trucks and beer, which will be held August 15, 2020.  More information to come!
    • Run the Ranch will be June 1, at Beaver Ranch to support the Interact Club at Conifer HS for their Nepal trip summer 2020.
    • Lee Willis received his Paul Harris award, plus two!  Congratulations and thank you.
    Program: Dinosaur Ridge, Erin LaCount
    Erin LaCount joined us today to share her enthusiasm for the Friends of Dinosaur Ridge.  The organization works with Jefferson County Open Space to maintain this 150 million year old site.  They don't own the land, they just supervise its use as caring custodians of this paleontologic site.  Friends has been in existence for 30 years, founded by Dick Scott in April 25, 1989.
    Their mission is to educate the public about, and ensure the preservation of the natural and historic resources of Dinosaur Ridge, Triceratops Trail and surrounding areas.  There are several areas of dinosaur tracks and bones along a four-mile long ridge.
    The current history of the area began in 1877 when Mr. Arthur Lakes, a paleontologist, was engaged to find and excavate dinosaur sites.  In 1938, the Work Progress Administration was building Red Rocks Park and they discovered fossils and dinosaur tracks.  The Denver Museum of Natural History came to survey the tracks and gathered bones that are in the Museum.
    There was little activity at the site until March 1989 when Martin Lockley led tours to study and set up preservation efforts.  In 1993, money became available to start construction projects to stabilize the area and create visitor walk-ways.  They have since built stairs to give easy access to bone sites and now have an educational/viewing area.  There are 335 identified foot prints so far.  Their site is popular among tourists, partly because it is close to downtown Denver.  In the past 10 years, the annual visitor count has gone from around 25,000 to 235,173!  
    Future plans are for Rooney Road to be re-routed to allow for a formal parking area and a new visitor center, track site cover and other enhancements.  The roadway will have designated bike lanes and a dedicated walkway.  There will be picnic areas, and hiking trails as well.
    The Friends of Dinosaur Ridge has many fundraising events to raise funds for maintaining their current visitor center and to help build future resources.  They need more volunteers, with many options for helping both with the public and behind the scenes.  The Friends do adult field trips: Wild Wanderers go to many areas in our region.  More information is on the website:
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, May 7, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-05-07 06:00:00Z 0
    April 30, 2019 we will NOT have a morning meeting
    • The next Board meeting will be 6PM Wednesday, May 1, at Janine’s home.
    • Dean McCall is recruiting his Board for his President term starting in July.
    • Joyce Snapp needs help interviewing Conifer and Platte Canyon Seniors who have applied for our scholarships.  She starts interviews Wednesday April 24th at Conifer High School.  There are three interviewees at Conifer and six applicants at Platte Canyon.  Platte Canyon interviews will be next week, time to be determined.
    • Suzanne reports that three Conifer students have applied for RYLA.  Platte Canyon students are in the process of applying.  Suzanne will be setting up the interviews and she will need volunteers to help.  
    • The 9 Health Fair is this Saturday, April 27th, at Our Lady of the Pines Church.  We have enough volunteers for the 6:45AM shift, but need more volunteers for the 9:30-noon shift for Registration.  
    • There will be an Imagination Library fund-raiser, 'Beach Day' at A-Basin with a 70’s theme; May 3rd.  Join Rotarians for a day of fun!
    • The Home Show planning for next year has begun.  Vendor sign-up will start the beginning of June.  Janine needs helpers to be on the team!    This is our biggest fund-raiser.  Thanks to Lee for volunteering to be the Treasurer for the event.
    • The Fitzsimons Middle School Interactors are gathering tools and building supplies for the “Makers’ Space”, part of the STEM program.  Suzanne will be sending a list of the items that are on the “tool drive”.  There will be collection boxes at various locations that Suzanne will list, or bring them to Rotary for Bailey Rotarians to deliver to the Fitzsimons Middle School.
    • Quarterly dues are payable, watch for your invoice.  Actually, do it the easy pay with a regular Bill-Pay payment from your bank.
    • The Taste of Evergreen will be next Thursday, May 2, 5:30PM at the Evergreen Lake House.  Yvonne will be competing!   Tickets are $30 at the door. 
    • June 22nd at Crow Hill Insurance in Bailey, there will be a “Shred-a-Thon”.  It is a fund-raiser for Habitat for Humanity.  Habitat will also be accepting donations of furniture and house-hold goods.  
    Program:  Center for the Arts Evergreen—Share the Moment
    Celia Sladek
    Celia Sladek joined us today to talk about a new community engagement program at Center for the Arts Evergreen:  Share the Moment.  It is a support program for adults living with memory loss and for their caregivers.  They need Rotary support to spread the word about the program and to volunteer to help.
    Share the Moment provides an opportunity for people with memory loss and their caregivers to enjoy and discuss aspects of the current art gallery exhibit without the need for memory.  It provides a pleasant social interaction with family and friends; caregivers can share a fun outing with the person that they care for.  There is no pressure for remembering particulars—only enjoyment of the moment.
    Center for the Arts Evergreen also has a number of art activity programs for visitors.  The programs are free, but attendees are asked to register so that there will be enough support and supplies.  You can learn more about them at their website

    The Share the Moment program idea came from the Museum of Modern Art in New York.  The Denver Art Museum is also using this model.   The Evergreen Center received funding from the National Endowment for the Arts,  The program started last fall and has had 16 sessions, serving 120 attendees.  
    Program Docents are all volunteers and are not necessarily artists.  They receive training from the Alzheimer’s Association and they have an advisor from the Denver Art Museum.  To volunteer, call 303-949-9432.  Celia is coordinating volunteers and she can be reached at:
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, April 23, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-04-23 06:00:00Z 0
    • District 5450 Conference is April 27 at the Arvada Center.  Registration deadline is hours away, sign up on the District website.
    • The barrel is STILL on the ICE!
    • Scholarship applications were due last Friday.  Joyce is setting up interviews for next week.  We need more Rotarians to help with the interviews; Joyce will be sending information about the dates/times/places.
    • The 9 Health Fair will be at Our Lady of the Pines Catholic Church Saturday April 27th.  Volunteers are needed for the registration table.  Please contact Charlotte to sign up.
    Program: Joy International, Bill Graf
    Devoted to the rescue, restoration, reintegration and 
    prevention of children forced into the child sex trade.
    JOY International,, is a 501(c)3 charity based here in Conifer, CO.  “Awareness without action is apathy”, states Dr. Jeff Brodsky, founder of Joy International.  In 2010, Dr. Jeff became aware that poor, barefooted children are highly vulnerable to becoming forced into the human trafficking sex slave trade.  He took his shoes off then, and he has been barefoot ever since.
    Child sex trafficking is recruitment or abduction of a child under 18 who is forced or coerced to commit a commercial sex act.  It is estimated that 2 million children are sexually exploited each year; over half are under age 16.  In Thailand, 60-70% of sexually exploited children are HIV+.
    JOY’s vision is to prevent this from happening and to see each exploited child rescued and given a new life.  Through JOY, partnerships are formed with rescue organizations and law enforcement to find and rescue these children.  The next step is restoration, placing the children in a safe house, enabling the healing process.  Then the children are reintegrated into normal society—some into their own family, if safe, or into other helpful communities.
    Prevention is just as important: educating parents and youth, and arresting, prosecuting, convicting and imprisoning the pimps and traffickers.
    To raise funds for their amazing effort, JOY holds Barefoot Mile events around the country.  It is a mile walk (with or without shoes), either donating or getting sponsors to donate for their walk.  On June 22nd, a local Barefoot Mile event will be held at Evergreen's Marshdale Park and Fields 9:00 am to noon.  There will be food, music, face-painting and other family oriented activities.  Registration is at  Business sponsorships are needed to support the event, go to
    To learn more, there will be a local educational event Saturday April 27th, 9:30AM for adults, 12:00 noon for youth at the Evergreen United Methodist Church, 3757 S. Ponderosa Drive. For more information, go to or call 303-674-4810.
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting April 16, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-04-16 06:00:00Z 0
    • Janine reviewed the successes of the Area 8 Dinner last week at El Rancho.  All five Rotary Clubs had attendees.  Everyone present was invited to participate in Rotary Bingo: we each had a list of catagories and we had to find other Rotarians who fit the description---such as who was a founding member of their club, or who is a Colorado native, or who can recite the Rotary Areas of Focus---and more.  The Presidents of each Club presented an overview of their Club activities.  The big news was from the Rotary Club of Clear Creek which has more than doubled their membership in the past year!  Congratulations to them!
    • There is a Conifer Rotary social this Thursday, 6-8 pm at Bradford Junction.  Food and beverages will be for sale.  
    • The District 5450 Conference starts at dinner Friday, April 26 with the main conference all day Saturday, April 27 at the Arvada Center.  Registration is on the District 5450 website.
    • Volunteers are needed for the 9 Health Fair, Saturday April 27 at Our Lady of the Pines. Conifer Rotary will be at the Registration tables, 6:30am to 12 noon.  Contact Charlotte to help.
    Program:  Bill Downes, 2016-17 District 5450 Governor
    ROTARY 101
    Bill Downes's presentation is available to download or view by clicking HERE, or go to the Rotary Conifer home page, Downloads Tab.  Here are some interesting notes from Bill's presentation:
    The Guiding Principles: The theme is good will and ethics in all aspects of life
    • The Four-Way Test—there is a committee in the District to share this Test with Rotarians and out in the community
    • The Code of Conduct:  Act with integrity, deal fairly, improve peoples quality of life in our community and in the world, no behavior that reflects badly on Rotary
    • Advancing Goodwill:  A-political, A-Religious, Gender Neutral, Rotary Action Groups (Rotarians focused on specific world needs) , Rotary Fellowships (Focus on specific personal interests).  
    • Advancing Peace: Rotary was instrumental in the founding of the UN and UNESCO
    • Advance world Understanding thru Youth Exchange, Friendship Exchange, Vocational Training Teams, International Conventions
    The Structure of Rotary: Rotary is the largest service organization in the world:  36,000 clubs in the world, 529 Districts in 34 World Zones.  Our District has 61 Clubs and each belongs to one of 13 Areas---our Conifer Club is in Area 8.  
    Throughout Rotary, the organization has two aspects:  Operations and Foundation.  The Rotary Foundation has three focuses:  The Annual Programs Fund, the Permanent Fund and Polio Plus.  The Rotary Foundation is rated the number one charitable organization in the World!
    Guests:  Michele Robbins, Chris Robbins, Mountain Foothills Rotary
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, April 9, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-04-09 06:00:00Z 0
    • The 9 Health Fair will be held at Our Lady of the Pines on Saturday April 27.  Conifer Rotary will be volunteering at Registration.  Please sign up with Charlotte for the early or mid-morning shifts.
    • The Home and Garden Show had about 1000 attendees.  There was an additional expense for the webpage this year, which may reduce our income.  Dean has confirmed that Janine will coordinate the event in 2020. 
    • The District Area 8 dinner will be held at El Rancho tomorrow night at 5:30.  This will be an event that is focused on social interactions and meeting Rotarians from the other Area 8 Clubs!  Drop-ins are welcome.  The price is $25.
    • The Clear Creek Rotary has a fund-raiser Saturday May 25 11 a.m. in Downtown Georgetown:  “CALL TO DOO-TY”!!  The funds will benefit The Rotary Youth Leadership Awards. 
    • Janine has created a tri-fold representing and explaining Conifer Rotary.  She also has “business cards”/invitations for our meetings.  Pick up yours and invite new people!
    • Run The Ranch will be June 1, 201 at Beaver Ranch.  The routes will be different than other years.  The web site will be up this week.  It is a walk or run event and supports the Conifer Rotary Interact trip in 2020 to Nepal.
    • We will have a big fund-raiser at Beaver Ranch August 15, 2020.  Watch for more information!
    • A Club Social will be Saturday April 13, 2-5.  The details will be coming in an email an announcement on the web site.
    PROGRAM:  Peggy Catlin, District N, RTD Board
    Peggy was appointed to the Board of RTD last year for Jeffco.  Jeffco is the largest geographical district transportation district for RTD.  She has a 35-year experience in transportation as a civil engineer and worked for CDOT for many years.  She was elected to her position in November as a permanent position.
    The “G” Line is opening!  The “G”  line is a commuter-rail service and is an extension of the “A” line to DIA—thru Wheat Ridge/Arvada. There have been delays due to regulatory issues with several organizations with complicated issues. 
    RTD is the largest geographic transit region in the USA.
    This month is the 50th anniversary of RTD.  This anniversary year there will be extensions into the SW region of the area.  RTD is looking at broadening a comprehensive commuter system, including partnering with UBER and LYFT.  They will be looking at under-served areas.  The UBER-app will provide information about all the transport possibilities, including a way to pay for full partner trips.
    There are issues with low ridership.  RTD has “flex-ride”, green bus, and may be used for fixed rides on low rider routes in addition to the “call and ride”.  Peggy is advocating for this type of transportation for the mountain communities.  She is also talking with the Senior Resource Center to address needs of seniors. 
     RTD transportation tickets can now be purchased on your phone.
    If you want more information or have suggestions, please contact Peggy at or 720-656-0670.
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting April 2, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-04-02 06:00:00Z 0
    • The Foothills Home, Garden and Life-style Show is this weekend at Evergreen High School.  We have a Conifer Rotary Booth--Janine is creating a tri-fold with information about Rotary and Conifer Rotary--we will promote the club, peaches sale, and have a Back Pack display.  We will also have new 'business' cards to invite guests to visit the morning and the evening meetings.  Janine will send an email sign-up for Rotary table volunteers.  
    • A very special THANK YOU to Tom Landon and Don Payton for shoveling out the pantry last week…. The bomb cyclone left over 3 feet of snow on the path to the door.
    • We are re-thinking the sale of tickets for next year's St. Pat’s dinner.  We will likely have members sell tickets.   Ten Interactors volunteered at the dinner and we plan to give them money for their projects.
    • Bill Downes will take our promotional materials to his office in Conifer to help build our membership. 
    • The 9 Health Fair will be at Our Lady of the Pines on Saturday April 27.  Plan to sign up to help with registration.
    • The April 3rd Area 8 social, has well over 100 attendees from the five area Rotary Clubs.
    • The District 5450 Conference will be at the Arvada Center Saturday, April 27.  Sign up on the District web-site or just click HERE.
    Program:  Carol Carper, Sasa Harambee (Now we do it together!)
    Sasa Harambee is amazingly successful and it is only getting better, thanks to Rotary!   There are 300 farmers who are now able to feed themselves and are generating income by growing and selling hay.  Carol just received a matching grant from our District Rotary to set up a database to document the number of people who live with disabilities. The money will also be used to provide training for working with people with disabilities.  Disabled persons in Kenya face a societal bias that they have been visited by the Devil.  For that reason they stay out of sight and suffer with their disability.  Our Rotary members who are going to Kenya in May will be conducting focus groups with Kenyans who suffer with disabilities.
    The farmers that Carol works with are doing very well with clean water and sustainable agriculture.  This whole project was funded by Rotary.  The protected springs that our Interact Clubs funded are among the only springs that have not dried up in their current, extreme drought.
    Carol plans to live almost full time in Kenya, exempting the HOT months of January and February.  She plans to move her Rotary membership to a Rotary Club in Nairobi, Kenya.  It is a very active, productive club, having obtained many multi-national Rotary Global Grants.
    Carol shared a documentary that tells about the Kenya project.  View it on our homepage under the Weblinks - Rotary tab, or just click HERE.
    Guests:  Bill Downes, District 5450 District Governor 2016-17
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, March 26, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-03-26 06:00:00Z 0
    • SPECIAL AWARD: Pat Hagan received the Most Inspirational Member Award for her exceptional efforts to Make It Happen for our St. Patrick's Day Fundraiser.
    • Our three Conifer Interact guests reported on their activities for the year.  They also asked our club to sponsor their June 1st Run The Ranch fundraiser event at Beaver Ranch.  The money raised will be used for their 2020 summer trip to Nepal.  Sponsors will be acknowledged on all their swag and T-shirts.
    • Thank you to all the Rotarians who helped with the St. Patrick’s Day party…. We made $2300 on the auction.  A special thanks to Pat for all the behind the scenes work on making the party a success.  And kudos to Yvonne for all the cooking of the special meal.
    • The Foothills Home, Garden and Lifestyle Show fundraiser is coming up soon: March 29-30.  You can still volunteer to help using Sign-Up Genius by clicking HERE.
    • The District Literacy workshop from the District will be March 30.   Go to the District website to sign up or just click HERE.
    • The Area 8 dinner is April 3, 2019, 5:30 at El Rancho.  Leslie needs your reservation by Wednesday March 20.  Cost is $25 per person, please pay at a club meeting.
    • The annual District 5450 Conference is April 27 at the Arvada Center.  Sign up on the District web-site or just click HERE.
    • The Rotary International Convention will be in Hamburg, Germany June 1st - 5th.
    • August 15, 2020 will be a Rotary event at Beaver Ranch!  This will be a Conifer Rotary Foundation Fundraiser.  Wes is coordinating.
    Program: Kathryn Green, Regional US Census Bureau
    Kathryn is a recruiter for the Census.  She joined us today to talk about the 2020 Census and temporary jobs available as Census workers.
    The Census is mandated by the Constitution and has been conducted every 10 years since 1790.  The results are used to draw the boundaries of the House and Senate Districts.  For Colorado, our state's population growth in the last 10 years could mean an additional representative for us in the House of Representatives.  In addition, the Census determines the amount of federal funds distributed to each State: $685,000,000,000 (that's $685 billion) is allocated to the States.  Last time our Federal allocation was 25% of the State budget.  Obviously an accurate count is critical to our state budget, If we are under-counted, we lose nearly $2000/person.  A new feature this year: individuals can report the census online.  The Census results are to be available October 2020.
    Recruiting for census positions is extremely important.  The recruiting occurs in 2 phases:  Field positions are being recruited now.  All positions: management, supervisory, non-supervisory and enumerators and field positions are all temporary.  There are a number of hiring requirements, get information and apply online by clicking here:
    Kathryn's presentation is available for download from our home page Downloads tab, or by clicking HERE.
    Guests:  Shellie McKeown of MRC, and Micah Moffit, Milena Lewis, and Phoebe McKeown, from Conifer High School Interact
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting March 19, 2019 Charlotte Wytias 2019-03-19 06:00:00Z 0
    • The District Conference is on Saturday, Apr 27.
    • President Elect Dean McCall went to PETS over the weekend. He said it was worthwhile because he learned a lot. He thought it would be nice if the District would provide a checklist of things that need to be accomplished during the year.
    • There is a link on the website to sign up to help at the St. Patrick’s Day party. Tickets are also available on the website. Please buy tickets in advance to help determine the amount of food we need.
    • There is also a link on the website to sign up to help at the Foothills Home, Garden & Lifestyle Show. Tickets are free.
    • The District 5450 Area 8 Assembly will take place on April 3 at El Rancho. The cost is $25 per person plus beverages, which will be priced at happy hour pricing.
    • Alateen meets at Conifer High School on Thursdays at 5:00 p.m. It is a support group for those affected by drinking or drug use. It is open to anyone up to age 18.
    Program: Jeff Shrader, Jeffco Sheriff
    By nature, the Sheriff’s office is reactive because it needs something on which to take action. That notwithstanding, the Jeffco Sheriff tries to be proactive.
    After a 20 year decline, crime has been trending up and is up by 25% recently. In an attempt to be more proactive, the Sheriff’s office looks every month at what is going on in different areas and what issues are most prevalent. They have observed that increases in property crime are most prevalent. They believe the roots of the increase are threefold: (1) substance abuse is on the rise, particularly opioids; (2) mental health issues are also on the rise; and (3) homelessness.
    Also in an attempt to be proactive, the Sheriff’s office looks at the population in the county jail. There are approximately 25,000 people booked into the county jail each year. In 2015, 100 inmates per month were on opioid withdrawal protocol. In 2016, that number had increased to 200 per month and, in 2017-2018, it was up to 300 per month. 45,000 to 60,000 people die each year because of opioids. Opioid addiction has had an effect on the crime trend.
    The Sheriff noted that when Amendment 64 (recreational marijuana) passed, it was thought drug cartels would disappear, but things have shifted instead. There is now a large organization of approximately 800 in-home grows throughout the Front Range. Colorado marijuana has become valuable in other states because of the strains that are grown and the level of THC they contain. On the coast of Florida, for example, Colorado marijuana is worth about $7,500 per pound and it is a “fashion statement” in Mexico City.
    The Sheriff must react to what is going on in the communities. His office tries to predict where crimes will happen based on recent activity and using targeted data, which helps.
    On Nov 11, 2017, the Sheriff’s office opened a veterans housing unit in the county jail. Jeffco does not have a large population of veterans, but some of them have found their way into trouble, perhaps as a result of PTSD. They find themselves homeless, find themselves abusing substances, and may they have mental health issues. The veterans housing unit provides support and treatment. It has become the most well-behaved housing unit in the county jail. The inmates self-regulate because they are used to a code of conduct. They also want the privilege of staying in the unit where there are military flags on wall and the doors stay open longer. In addition, people come into the unit to teach classes. Interactions with deputies have improved and rates of recidivism have dropped by as much as 50%. The unit has resources to help identify housing for the veterans when they leave the jail.
    Following the improved behavior in the veterans housing unit, the next two units have become more well-behaved. The county jail has since opened a behavioral health unit (addiction beds). There are two 64-bed modules. The inmates receive moral recognition therapy (MRT). MRT is the program with the most hope for success. It relies on moral reasoning, teaching people to think and process what they are facing. Where it has been used in other counties, and particularly in prison, recidivism rates have dropped. The prisoners agree to participate. The Sheriff’s office believes it is a worthwhile investment because it doesn’t cost anything extra and it potentially reduces the jail population. Like the veterans housing unit, these two housing units have better behaved populations and the inmates can gain additional privileges.
    The Sheriff reported that 95% of the people booked into county jail will get out. Some of them will transfer to the Colorado Department of Corrections, but they are the rare ones. Inmates can be held in the county jail pre-trial and then for a maximum of 2 years on each charge after conviction (typically, sentencing to the county jail for multiple charges is not consecutive). The Sheriff’s office needs to transition people back into the community, especially those who have been in custody for a couple of years. 
    The Sheriff follows what is going on in the Legislature. There may be some changes, some of which may be beneficial. He believes we have a pretty thoughtful process, but he wants to weigh in on things in advance. He observed that California had several things happen at once, including a transfer of prisoners from prison to county jail, which changed the shape of things. The Colorado Legislature is currently looking at prison reform. There are questions about whether we have a sufficient number of prison beds. Prisoners may be released earlier and put on parole and a prison that was closed may be reopened. The Sheriff does not want the cost of housing prisoners in Colorado to shift from the state to local taxpayer dollars. The Legislature is also looking at bail reform.
    We are unfortunately seeing an unprecedented number of officer-involved shootings in the state. One of them was a JeffCo deputy. The driver of a car was driving it a the deputy and he shot the driver. The passenger then appeared to be reaching for a weapon and the deputy shot the passenger as well. The Sheriff wants to understand what is happening so his deputies can avoid the use of deadly force. It is his theory that most of the people involved in the officer-involved incidents have had experience in criminal justice system and have an attitude. He would like to identify the underlying problem so people can figure out what to do.
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting, March 5, 2019 Marlis McAllister 2019-03-05 07:00:00Z 0
    April 2, 2019
    PROGRAM:  Peggy Catlin, District N, RTD Board
    Peggy was appointed to the Board of RTD last year for Jeffco.  Jeffco is the largest geographical district transportation district for RTD.  She has a 35-year experience in transportation as a civil engineer and worked for CDOT for many years.  She was elected to her position in November as a permanent position.
    The “G” Line is opening! The “G”  line is a commuter-rail service and is an extension of the “A” line to DIA—thru Wheat Ridge/Arvada. There have been delays due to regulatory issues with several organizations with complicated issues.  
    RTD is the largest transit region in the USA
    This month is the 50thanniversary of RTD.  This anniversary year there will be extensions into the SW region of the area.
    RTD is looking at broadening a comprehensive commuter system, including partnering with UBER and LYFT.  They will be looking at under-served areas.  The UBER-app will provide information about all the transport possibilities, including a way to pay for full partner trips.  There is a driverless car that is being tested at the Panasonic facility off the “A” line.  
    There are issues with low ridership.  RTD has “flex-ride”, green bus, and may be used for fixed rides on low rider routes in addition to the “call and ride”.  Peggy is advocating for this type of transportation for the mountain communities.  She is also talking with the Senior Resource Center to address needs of seniors.  
    Tickets can now be purchased on your phone.  
    If you want more information or have suggestions, please contact Peggy at or 720-656-0670.
    The 9 Health Fair will be held at Our Lady of the Pines on Saturday April 27.  Conifer Rotary will be volunteering at Registration.  Please sign up with Charlotte for the early or mid-morning shifts. 
    The Home and Garden Show had about 1000 attendees.  There was an additional expense for the webpage this year, which may reduce our income. Dean has confirmed that Janine will coordinate the event in 2020.  
    The District Area 8 dinner will be held at El Rancho tomorrow night at 5:30.  This will be an event that is focused on social interactions and meeting Rotarians from the other Area 8 Clubs!  Drop-ins are welcome.  The price is $25.
    The Clear Creek Rotary has a fund-raiser Saturday May 25 11 a.m. in Downtown Georgetown:  “CALL TO DOO-TY”!!  The funds will benefit The Rotary Youth Leadership Awards.  
    Janine has created a tri-fold representing and explaining Conifer Rotary.  She also has “business cards”/invitations for our meetings. Pick up yours and invite new people!
    Run The Ranch will be June 1, 201 at Beaver Ranch.  The routes will be different than other years.  The web site will be up this week.  It is a walk or run event and supports the Conifer Rotary Interact trip in 2020 to Nepal.
    We will have a big fund-raiser at Beaver Ranch August 15, 2020.  Watch for more information!
    A Club Social will be Saturday April 13, 2-5.  The details will be coming in an email an announcement on the web site.
    Rotary Club of Conifer Meeting April 2, 2019 CHARLOTTE WYTIAS 2018-05-22 06:00:00Z 0

    The Four-Way Test of the things we think, say, or do:

    1. Is it the truth?
    2. Is it fair to all concerned?
    3. Will it build good will and better friendships?
    4. Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

    For many decades Rotary Clubs and Rotarians have used The 4-Way Test as an instrument to develop respect and understanding among peoples.

    Rotarians around the world use the 4-Way Test in business, government and schools as an effective measuring stick for conduct, a guide to right thinking. If memorized and constantly applied to relations with others, it will contribute to more effective and friendlier relationships.

    By getting into the habit of checking your thoughts, words and deeds against the 4-Way Test, experience shows that it will help you become happier and more successful.

    The Rotary Four Way Test Lee Willis 2013-02-10 07:00:00Z 0
    • January:   Rotary Awareness Month
    • February:   World Understanding Month & R.I.'s Anniversary
    • March:   Literacy Month
    • April:   Magazine Month
    • May:   Rotary Education Month
    • June:   Rotary Fellowship Month & R. I. Convention
    • July:   Transition Month * New Rotary Year Begins
    • August:   Membership and Extension Month
    • September:   New Generations Month
    • October:   Vocational Service Month
    • November:   Rotary Foundation Month
    • December:   Rotary Family Month
    Rotary Monthly Themes Lee Willis 0