Rotary Club of Great Falls, Montana                

Home Page Stories
Great Falls Public Library Director Susie McIntyre brought us up to speed on one of our most beloved community assets - our public library.
Our library has more than 29,000 card-carrying patrons and over 135,000 holdings. It is more visited than  our movie theaters and prides itself on being accessible and welcoming to all.
The library is continually upgrading its collection, as well as its programs and services. In addition to the popular bookmobile program, serving isolated and underserved portions of the county and community, the library has a homebound program and an online check-out service, allowing you to browse the collection online, and check out a book to pick up at the desk at your convenience. The library also provides the public with free meeting rooms for free events and has recently arranged for free parking in the three metered spots in front of the library.
The library is 52 years old and is showing its age. Flooding in the basement and the need for a new roof will need to be addressed soon. All in all, though, a very positive update from a very upbeat library director!
Every now and then the featured presentation at our weekly meeting just kind of takes your breath away. Last week's noon meeting was one of those times.
Fellow Rotarian Kelley Aline responded to the call for a speaker after a cancellation and she addressed us on the subject of "Young Women and Fire." Beginning in 2005 after her freshman year in college, Kelley became a wildland firefighter. It is physically demanding work, traversing steep and rugged terrain, digging lines, hauling chainsaws and 40-pound packs, working a full days and many nights, sometimes only grabbing 30 minutes of sleep, and then rising at 2 a.m. to start again. As a competitive racer and former farm kid, Kelley was up to the task. 

Over the course of the next several summers, she met smoke jumpers and heli-repellers and became part of a hot shot crew, fighting fire at a higher level because of her proven experience and ability. She fought fires in over 15 states including Alaska in that role and was eventually promoted to senior leader of a crew. Unfortunately, a knee injury made it impossible for her to perform at the level she felt was necessary, so she accepted her supervisor's offer to staff a lookout in the Bob Marshall Wilderness instead for the summer of 2011.

With no running water, no electricity, and no digital access, life at a lookout is quite isolating. "You wake up and make yourself breakfast thinking, This is the greatest life there is!  By 10 a.m, though, you're down to, This is pretty good stuff. By noon, you're restless and looking for a distraction and by evening you're wondering about the meaning of life." She stayed in the Bob by herself from July 2 - October 10, visited every now and then by some hikers and running into a bear or two. Looking back, she says it was an unforgettable experience.
It was also an unforgettable presentation. To look at this demure young woman, now a financial adviser, you would never guess the strength of body, mind, and spirit beneath that charming smile and professional demeanor. You go, girl! 

The board of Rotary Club of Great Falls accepted a lovely gift from Kris Sapp.
Kris bought this quilt in the silent auction at this year's Harvest Howl. It's an amazing work of love, depicting the rotary seal, Camp Rotary, and the logos of several Harvest Howls of the past. Given its Rotary emphasis, Kris thought the quilt should go back to the club. The board decided the most appropriate place for it would be Camp Rotary. There, campers can get another glimpse into the people behind Camp Rotary, the club that brings those people together, and the remarkable annual event that provides essential funding for the upkeep and operation of the camp.

Our closing of the 2019 year was a festive one last week as we ushered in the holidays. Not only did we have a festive holiday luncheon, but under the leadership of Social Committee Chair Rebecca Bogden-Richards, we had a lovely evening social as well, where Rotarians and guests enjoyed the ambience of the country club on a wintry evening with the beautiful piano-playing of Jim Humprey in the background.
A particular joy on this occasion was seeing Ryan Miller (in background, greeting Dean Boyle) and his wife Gail after such a long absence. So good to have you in our crowd, Ryan!

In anticipation of yesterday’s Cat-Griz game, Art Taft decided to use the annual rivalry to raise some funds for Camp Rotary. He brought two pies to the noon meeting and auctioned them off by the slide, with the pie bringing in the most money for Camp Rotary indicating the true winner of the Brawl of the Wild. Griz dominated, 50.

At its November meeting, the board of Rotary Club of Great Falls bestowed an honorary membership to Ken Munski. It is a distinction well-deserved.
Ken joined Rotary in 1988 and to say he has been an active member ever since is an understatement. Highway clean-up? He's there. Centennial celebration? "How can I help?"  From Harvest Howl to Rotary socials, you could count on Ken to show up with his sleeves rolled up.
Ken was particularly active on all things Camp Rotary, from the camp clean-ups to cabin construction to equipment installation. Even after his relocation meant he had to leave the club, he has been instrumental in providing a pair of Rotary eyes on the camp and in helping us work through the bridge challenge. It is a sign of great leadership to leave your work in good hands. In selecting and preparing John Juras to take over the oversight of Camp Rotary, Ken has done just that.
For those of us who aren't engineers and consider "heavy lifting"  to be raising a 16-ounce stein instead of our usual 8-ouncer, the qualities of Ken's we'll most miss are his eternal pleasantness and his humor, especially when it came to "Rotary math." He should have been a teacher. He made learning new things fun.
But life moves on and so did Ken. Our thanks to the board for giving him the recognition he is due ... and to Ken for year after year of service beyond the call of duty.
What do you do when life throws you lemons?  You make cocktails!
We’ve got bad news and good news, folks. Harvest Howl booked two bands for the 2019 show but, with three weeks to go, we were notified that both bands had to cancel. That’s the bad news.
The good news? Event planners immediately got to work and lined up an evening we think is even more exciting. Opening the night will be World Classic Rockers, a group comprised of past members of some of the greatest bands in rock-n-roll history – Steppenwolf, Journey, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Boston, and Santana. The Great Falls Rotary Club sponsors Harvest Howl and all proceeds go to the improvement, maintenance and operation of Camp Rotary.
Tickets are available at
September's social with the noon and evening members at Boston's. 
Club Information

Welcome to Great Falls Rotary... 
Join Us for Our Next Meeting!

Great Falls

Service Above Self

We meet Tuesdays at 12:00 PM, and the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of every month at 5:30 PM.

Meadow Lark Country Club
300 Country Club Blvd
Great Falls, MT  59405
United States of America
Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
President-elect Nominee
Immediate Past President
Bulletin Editor
Club Risk Manager
Web Site Administrator
Club Historian
Community Service Chair
Rotary International Foundation Chair
Public Relations
Camp Operations Director
Camp Rotary Director
Speaker Committee Chair
Great Falls Rotary Foundation Liaison
Bill Harp
Feb 25, 2020
Eagle Scout Recognition
Trisha Gardner
Mar 03, 2020
City-County Health - Noon Meeting
Troy Hallsell
Mar 03, 2020 5:30 PM
History of Great Falls City Parks - Night Meeting
John Godwin
Mar 10, 2020
Old West Art Show
Caitlin Walter
Mar 17, 2020
Jami Wald
Mar 24, 2020
Benefis Women's and Childrens' Center
Nancy Schlepp
Mar 31, 2020
Black Butte Copper Project
Doug Haberman/John Juris
Apr 07, 2020
Making Bicylcling and Walking Safe Everyday Activities Across Montana
Evening Meeting Kristy Stroop and Thomas Risberg
Apr 07, 2020 5:30 PM
Alliance For Youth
Jill Hunt
Apr 14, 2020
Meadowlark School PTA
David Thomas
Apr 21, 2020
Evening Meeting Deb Sivumaki
Apr 21, 2020 5:30 PM
Eagle Mount
Zach Swartz
Apr 28, 2020
Leadership Workshop UM
Sherrie Arey and Chelsey Hutmacher
May 05, 2020 12:00 PM
NeighborWorks 40th Anniversary
Dr Curtis Settergreen
May 19, 2020
A Visit withe the Nomadic Herders of hte Darkhad Valley, Mongolia

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