by Danny Maerten
Niagara-Wheatfield Kiwanis President-elect
The Niagara-Wheatfield Kiwanis Club continues to give and assist within our community to achieve area needs and goals.
As the month of December began, so did the club's Christmas/holiday season of serving. Dec. 1 brought the club together to sort, organize and wrap purchased and donated items to be delivered to the Family and Children's Service of Niagara's Passage Program. These items helped support women and children living in the shelter for domestic violence victims.
Dec. 3 saw the members in front of Kmart, bell ringing for the Salvation Army's Red Kettle annual campaign. They were "trying" to sing Christmas carols and handing out candy canes and sharing smiles for this worthy cause.
On Dec. 8, Kiwanians were at the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station in support of Building Bridges for Veteran Traffic Safety, a program to aid returning veterans acclimate to the traffic and driving regulations. Gift wrapping for Opportunities Unlimited at the Fashion Outlet Mall took the place of a weekly meeting on Dec. 8.
As 2012 commenced, Niagara-Wheatfield Kiwanis added two new members, Julianna Zippirola, sponsored by Jane Cushman, and Greg Ford, sponsored by Gary Hauck.
On Jan. 28, the club supplied, cooked and served "Breakfast with Bach." The mouth watering aroma filled the church hall with patrons awaiting a delicious breakfast consisting of veggie and egg strata, potato pancakes, ham, sausage and fruit cup. This breakfast was a benefit to the Gliding Stars Adaptive Ice Skating Program. The Gliding Stars provides individuals with disabilities the opportunity to increase their personal potential through development of ice skating skills.
A K-Kids club is being established and sponsored by the Niagara-Wheatfield Kiwanis at West Street Elementary. Lenore Palmeri, a counselor at West Street, will be the new club's advisor. K-Kids clubs are part of Kiwanis International, and are worldwide with more than 36,000 children learning leadership through service. The West Street club, with 15 students already signed up, will be chartered soon with the initial meeting scheduled in the upcoming weeks. The young members will take on the responsibility of running the K-Kids club as they plan and participate in community service projects.
This year, the Niagara-Wheatfield Kiwanis has heard from various guest speakers, including: Liz Bignell representing Summit Life Outreach, Molly Chamberlin, who was instrumental in making the Lewiston Dog Park a reality; and Sharon Green, co-founder of Global African Village organization.
The Niagara-Wheatfield Kiwanis will be hosting its annual Pancake Breakfast, featuring real New York state maple syrup, with a basket raffle added this year, on Sunday, March 25, at the American Legion Post 1451.
The Niagara-Wheatfield Kiwanis meets every Thursday at the Jetport Family Restaurant at 6:30 p.m. For further information on attending a meeting, supporting programs or any interest in the Niagara-Wheatfield Kiwanis please stop in at one of the meetings or contact this writer at 731-3636 or [email protected].