After years of keen anticipation and planning, the Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) has finally started its Centennial year celebrations. The January 8th Kick-Off luncheon was a truly momentous occasion, and with close to 300 people in attendance, the feeling of excitement in the room was undeniable.
The event focused on the many projects Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) has undertaken in the past as well as what they have in store for the future. We were reminded of local Rotary initiatives such as Easter Seals, the John McGiveny Centre, Maryvale Adolescent Treatment Centre, Art in the Park and $200,000 in grants raised for community groups since 2013. The Club has also been very active in developing countries, building infrastructures to help with delivering clean water to those who would otherwise have gone without and helping to eradicate polio worldwide.
In terms of what the club has planned for 2018, Maureen Lucas, chair of the Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) Centennial Committee, explained that we’re all “really excited about what the next year will bring". The committee wanted to focus on contributing towards legacy projects that would not only help both local and international communities, but that would have a lasting impact. "It’s our hope that the Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) Centennial Park, located on the riverfront, will attract visitors from near and far, and that they're not just going to see a wonderful community project" says Lucas "but they're going to see Rotary as a partner with the city".
The audience was advised to mark May 12th in their calendars: In addition to the grand opening of the Centennial Plaza, also planned for that day is the dedication of the Centennial Hub (connecting trails across the county), as well as the Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) Centennial Gala. Rotary International President Ian Riseley and his wife, Past District Governor Juliette, will be guests of honour at the event, which will be held at the Caesars Augustus Ballroom. Past Rotary International Vice President Jennifer Jones will be emceeing the event.
Other initiatives planned for the upcoming year include scholarships, international projects, a speaker series and a museum exhibit to open in July as part of the club’s centennial legacy projects.
Extra highlights of the afternoon included the patriotic performance of “This Is My Home” sung by the Windsor Symphony Orchestra Choir and a powerful video screening of the club’s history over the years.