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Jeff Markarian
Upcoming Events
Regular Meeting September 25 - Program TBD
Jovi's
Sep 25, 2017
12:15 PM – 1:30 PM
 
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Stories
The Ken April 17
The Ken April 17
Attendance: Dick Hanaburgh
Split Club: Brian Ahern
Invocation: Chuck Patterson      
Fine Master: Jim Austin
The Ken: Jeff Markarian
Mike began our meeting with the Pledge. Barb led us in “God Bless America” and Chuck gave our invocation. Guests today were the lovely Jennifer Prichard, Naomi Sakwowitz and our State Assemblyman Robin Schimminger.
Scott gave the first announcement that Shred-It is all set for Saturday. Please come down and help us with this event. Barb asked if someone could return the cones back to the Highway department. Dick H assured her that he would do it.
Rick Graham announced that our Wine Event is going well. We need more baskets and ticket sales.
Tom Lang asked, rather abruptly, that Jim Logan and Mike Ford were to stay after for a meeting after we adjourned. And finally, Brian described todays bread will be 2 loaves of sour dough, banana bread.
Jim Austin took the floor and asked for confessions. Jim Prichard confessed to turning 40 April 7. Joe Arcara gave happy dollars for being in FLA for the last several weeks. Dick H confessed to taking a day off and missing his post at attendance last week. With no further confessions, Jim quizzed us on Dingus Day knowledge.
Jim A. won the split club and Jim Prichard missed the Ace of spades. Joe and Art won the bread.
In Gary’s absence, Mike decided to start the Armenian Raffle. We have 50 chances for $10 each. We sold about half of them and will peddle the remainder next week. We are selling these for a chance to win a 42” TV. The funds raised will help us purchase the main Wine Event auction item. A wine cooler stuffed with a variety of wines. However, the procedure, accounting and collection was more Turkish than Armenian.
Paul Chisolm introduced our State Assemblyman, Robin Schimminger. Robin represents District 140 in the NY state Assembly, which comprises all of the Town of Tonawanda, the City of Tonawanda in Erie County, and most of the City of North Tonawanda in Niagara County. After telling us a story of his ancestral background and how upon reaching Ellis Island, someone in his family was named Turk. So he wondered if he had any Turkish blood. However we all determined he was too good looking for that. He thought our Armenian raffle reminded him of the NY state budget. All kidding aside, Robin feels his best presentations are responding to questions from the floor. Needless to say we asked many questions that Robin had great response to. We all came out with a little better understanding of current events.
Another great meeting. Meeting adjourned
The Ken April 10

The Ken April 10

Attendance: Dick Hanaburgh

Split Club: Brian Ahern

Invocation: Gary Roberts

Fine Master: Jim Austin

The Ken: Jeff Markarian

Mike began our meeting with the Pledge. Barb led us in “America” and Gary gave our invocation. Gary asked that we remember Pat Hoffman, past President Ed Hoffman’s wife who passed away. She was a lovely person. Guests today were Julia Fink and Patty Notara.

Rick announced we are looking good with the Wine Event. They are pleased with sponsorships but would like more baskets and attendance. Gary will do the Armenian raffle the next 2 weeks. You can buy $10 chances (# of chances are usually 50) for a chance to win a 42” TV. The money we raise helps us purchase the main auction item. This year it is a professional wine cooler filled with all kinds of wines.

Scott also is on track with Shred-It. He still can use volunteers. Remember, the spring shred-It brings out many more people so he can use the help. Brian is working the signup sheets. The date is April 22. Larry, announced as he walked in the door at 12:45, that he has lawn signs.

John Coogan received his check for drawing the Ace last week. John confessed to winning the NCAA basketball pool this week that made our check insurmountable. Nevertheless, congrats John. John always buys lots of tickets so I’m sure we are still ahead of him. Larry got real good exposure in the Town for the “Purple Pinky” program he put on. More to educated the public what it is all about. Thank you Mike Ford for participating. Also a director of youth somewhere asked Larry to speak about our RYLA program somewhere. I’m sure he did and did a great job doing it. Brian would like to host a bread making class to show us how he makes this mouthwatering bread.

Mike introduced his dad, Jim Austin as today’s Finemaster. Rick Graham confessed to his niece being on TV and his grandson was selected for the Ontario Hockey League out of 1200. They choose 300. Great accomplishment. Tim Glor announced that he and Jacquie had a wonderful time as Shari’s guest at the Boys and Girls Club event at Klienhans. Don’t we all miss Shari? Audrey and our accountants Joe, Ed and Ted? Mike was also there with Gary as his date. Mike arranged for a ride in case the evening didn’t go well. I guess it did and there was something mentioned about breakfast??? Paul confessed to a wonderful dinner at Ahearn’s with the Patterson’s. Jim proceeded to quiz us about April Fools history. We went around the room and whoever told a funny prank was exempt from fines. There were many funny pranks, but Rene’s was the best when her manager took clients out for lunch and she called the restaurant in advance and asked them to decline his card. Rene, you are so naughty.

Gary won the split club and Art missed the Ace of Spades on a new deck. Bob Blatz and Ron won the fig, anis bread.

At this time, Mike introduced our speaker Julia Fink. Julia is the owner of Welcome Buffalo magazine. This magazine is rarely read by WNY’ers because it is in Hotels. 93 to be exact. She started the magazine 31 years ago with 39 Hotels. Tourism is very important to our community. Over twelve million people vacation here a year. We offer world class restaurants, boutiques, events, theaters, and professional sports. Julia was kind enough to present us all with a hard copy of the magazine. Let me tell you, it’s no rag.

Larry closed the meeting by reminding us he and Brian desperately need volunteers for the Big Picture Mentoring Program. They would like 6 and would like to test the waters for the rest of the year. It hibernates through the summer. Then we will be ready to go for the ’17 – ’18 school year. 1 hour on Wednesdays at noon. You will meet with the same high school student every week. How can you not develop a relationship with an individual you otherwise would never have had a chance to?

Another great meeting. Meeting adjourned
The Ken April 3
The Ken April 3
Attendance: Dick Hanaburgh
Split Club: Brian Ahern
Invocation: Larry Coon
Fine Master: Jim Prichard
The Ken: Jeff Markarian
Mike began our meeting with the Pledge. Barb led us in “God Bless America” and Larry gave our invocation. Funny thing, there were a lot of customers at my store when I got back after Rotary thanks to Larry’s kind words. There were many visitors today that included Christine Koch – Principal of Kenmore West and Big Picture, Anne Blenk – Big Picture coordinator, Chris Watson, Big Picture Internship coordinator, Melinda Roth Sanderson, NYS mentors with Lynn Marinelli and Nancy Mueller White, Harold’s daughter in law.
Rick Graham has us all real excited about perhaps beating the record of 2013 Wine Event‘s revenues. There are many sponsorships sold. We still need more baskets and seats sold. Please drop the baskets off with a brief description to Elmlawn. Scott is also on track with Shred-It. Please help Scot and volunteer for an hour. There is a signup sheet or contact Scott at smason@realtyusa.com. Pat brought in lawn signs. MandT bank has a large electronic sign advertising this event. Thank you Rene. Mike thanked me and Gretchen for hosting the gift gathering party. We love having this group at the house.
Jim Prichard was fine master today. Paul was pleasantly pleased that we had several varieties of pies at the gift gathering party that he matched dollar for dollar to anyone who admitted to having a piece of pie at the party. Jim fined Rick for interrupting.  Appropriately with all this giving back to the community that has been going on and with the Variety Club telethon just ending, Jim quizzed us on fun facts relating to Variety Club. We learned some neat trivia and raised some money.
Ron Levea won the split club and, yes, John Coogan picked the Ace, with many cards still in the deck I might add. Chuck Patterson won the first loaf of Brian’s bread and Jim Prichard won the second. FYI, half of my family prefers this bread thinly sliced and toasted the others like it thicker. Either way it sure makes mornings exciting.
At this time Larry introduced half of our program. As I am sorting this all out, it appears Brian’s wife Pat introduced Melinda Sanderson of NY mentoring (more on this later) to Brian. That got us thinking about the Big Picture Program. Big Picture is a very specialized High School in the Ken-Ton district. They are in their 5th year. There are 15 kids per grade 9-12 in the program.  All though these kids are self-motivated, they don’t feel comfortable in a large school setting. The students participate in core content classes 3 days per week and also learn in a real-world setting through internships 2 days per week. The internships provide valuable learning experiences for the students and help to identify avenues for students to pursue as a long term career.
This sequad into Brian introducing Melinda Sanderson who is with NYS mentoring. Children today spend on average 7 minutes alone time with an adult per week. In 1984 Mario Cuomo started this program and put his wife Matilda in charge. It ended in 1995. In January of 2015, Andrew Cuomo, in honor of his father, started this program back up. Mentees are 46% less likely to start using illegal drugs. Mentees are 52% less likely to skip classes. Mentees are more trusting of their parents or guardians, and less likely to lie to them and feel more supported and less criticized by peers. Brian and Larry are aggressively trying to get 6 club members so that we can be mentors. They are shooting for Wednesday’s at noon. Let’s try it out soon and get familiar with it before summer recess. Any referrals. You do not need to be a Rotarian. Please contact Larry at 870-9721 or Brian Ahern at 847-372-3633.
Another great meeting. Meeting adjourned
The Ken March 27
The Ken March 27
Attendance: Ron Levea
Split Club: Holly Nowak
Invocation: Tim Glor
Fine Master: Holly Nowak
The Ken: Jeff Markarian
Mike began our meeting with the Pledge. Chuck led us in “America” and Tim gave a warm invocation. Today’s guests were our speaker Meg Lauerman and Kevin Robinson visiting us from Key Bank.
Mike began our announcements by congratulating Mark Tremont on the birth of his granddaughter. Also, student recognition is May 1 and May 8 at Paddock Dome. I look forward to this because I get to see Tom Schwob who presents the awards to outstanding middle school and high school achievers. Rick Graham announced that sponsorships for the Wine / Beer Event are up slightly. 2013 we netted $13K, last year $11K. Keep selling tickets. We need a final count by May 5 for Branccetis. Saturday will be the basket gathering party at my house. 6:00 at 109 Henning Drive, Orchard Park, NY. We have food and beverage and yes Paul, pies. For those that cannot bring the baskets to my house, Mike will accept them at his office. Please write a brief description what the basket is. That helps the committee set up. The special auction item will be a wine cooler filled with a montage of nice wines. Scott said Shred - It is on track. April 22, 10:00 – 2:00.  Please volunteer to man (or woman… Holly)  the event. 9:30 set up. Brian will have a signup sheet to assure we have enough people. Spring Shred-It has a larger turnout due to tax season. Art teased Scott how much money Shred-It will make and Scott replied how awkward it was that the house accountant didn’t know. Lawn signs are on order and some other signs are already out. Brian begged Mike to please get the %!@% stocks out of his house. Brian, I admit, I feel the pain. I would not like that grueling looking appliance adorning my house.
Fine person, Holly took her inaugural task of fining us for accomplishments and or brags. Mike Ford confessed to brining his 5 year old son to Splash Lagoon and had to play interference so Mike’s wife wouldn’t hold him back from the rides. Mike trust me, feed her some cold medicine and take your son off. They usually don’t get hurt too bad. Mike A took Madison to Beauty and The Beast and reported it was a great performance. I confessed to being rushed to the ER for a shrimp reaction. No Shrimp Saturday. Holly waived fines for all the woman in the room in honor of National woman’s month. She proceeded to quiz us on women’s progress over the years and it’s real creepy how not so long ago, women had many challenges. Great first time fine mastering and it appear Holly raised a lot of money.
Split club was won by new member George Allen, WTG George. Dick H. missed the Ace and Paul C, Jerry G, Dick H, and Tom L won the 4 loaves of bread Brian made earlier in the day. Paul introduced our speaker Meg Lauerman. Meg is with Continental 1. This is a real small organization very actively lobbying local and National politicians on the essentials of tying Route 219 together. We need a North South Interstate. There appears to be great momentum with the current administration. Meg made so much sense on the validity of this argument. Please learn more at www.continental1.org.
Meeting adjourned.
The Ken March 20

The Ken March 20

Attendance: Ron Levea

Split Club: Holly Nowak

Invocation: Tim Glor

Fine Master: Ed Markarian

The Ken: Jeff Markarian

President Elect Tom stepped up to the plate for Mike and began our meeting promptly with the Pledge followed with a fine rendition of “God Bless America” started off by Chuck Patterson. Tim gave our invocation.

Tom asked for announcements. I started off by reminding everyone that the gift gathering party is approaching quickly. It is at my house, Saturday April 1 at 6:00. Please email me, jeffmarkar@aol.com, or register on line so we have enough food. We are planning on sausages from around the world with all kinds of goodies. Scott announced Shred –It is well under way. All he needs are volunteers the day of the event. Larry announced that Greg Eminger from Amherst East is having a golf outing May 8. They are looking for sponsors and / or golfers. Yeah, like every other organization in WNY is. Glad we’re out of that arena. Larry is also asking if anyone can think of a student 15-18 years old that want to participate in slap shot, they can contact Larry. It is the last weekend in April. Larry and Char are so active in this wonderful event that can really shape a young person. Also, Larry has a mentoring program that he needs adult mentors for young people that do not have many competent adults in their lives. Please contact Larry for the details.

With no further announcements, fine master Ed Markarian proceeded to hear confessions. First of all, Ed will be missing next week so Holly will have her inaugural fine master duties. She assured us she will raise money. Ed was happy to confess that his daughter Kristen, who started her college career working to be a kindergarten teaches has just applied to law school. Best wishes Kristen, pops would be very proud. Art was fined for agitating Scott to boast about Shred-It. Ron confessed to being on his annual baseball training camp visit to Florida. Paul confessed to a great birthday dinner at Park and was presented a large pie. I’m not following this Paul and pie deal but I better make sure there will be pie at the party April 1. John Coogan confessed to missing our meeting last week because he forgot to adjust his clock. Bread aficionado, Brian announced that Pat is taking the Hospice job in Boston. We wish Pat all the best but are saddened to have a great Rotarian moving on. Susan jabbed Tom, for Audrey’s sake, about the re-signing of Tyrod Taylor. Mike Ford was also bummed out but not so much with the negotiated contract. And finally Pat confessed that Larry won a clock as a door prize at an event he attended. How appropriate. Eddie questioned us on interesting trivia on Lincoln Continentals seeing that President elect Tom just purchased one.

John Coogan won the split club and Pat Griffin missed the Ace and I won the sourdough, rye bread. Still warm I might ad.

Tom took back the meeting and introduced our speaker. Pasquale Maggiore pinched hit for Karen Sorrentino of UNYTS. UNYTS is western NY’s only organ, eye, tissue and community blood center. What they get stays in WNY. Pasquale’s message today concentrated on giving blood. They can always use more blood. Area hospitals use 60,000 units of blood per year. In addition to emergencies and lifesaving transplants, blood is needed on a regular basis for people with cancer, heart disease and leukemia. Premature babies and children needing surgery also require blood transfusions. To find a blood drive near you, please visit www.unyts.org and click GIVE BLOOD. Very eye opening program that inspired many questions.

Meeting adjourned

The Ken March 13
The Ken March 13
Attendance: Michalene Bernat
Split Club: Jeff Markarian
Invocation: Tim Glor
Fine Master: Ed Markarian
The Ken: Jeff Markarian
We began our meeting with the Pledge followed by a much nicer rendition of “God Bless America” in the key of Chuck Patterson. Tim gave our invocation. Our only guest today was our speaker John Bradley of Alcott HR.
Mike announced that 5/1 and 5/8 will be student recognition Days. This is where we honor Junior High and High school students and present them with scholarship money. Most likely at the Paddock Dome. I announced that I will host the Gift gathering party this year at my house. April 1 at 6:00. Rick Graham reminded us not to wait too long to get us the gifts because there is a lot of logistics that go into putting them together.
Ed Markarian was the fine master and took confessions from Tom Lang. Tom received an outstanding service award for his work he does with the Riviera Theater. Tom was not fined but confessed to purchasing a fully loaded Lincoln. That was a finable offense. Brian confessed to not having bread today. His power was off. Scott was fined for a quote Art said he made, hacking on the wine event. Mike A. blew Art in for swearing. There was no fine, but was kind of creepy, that a room full of men except for Michalene, who had no part of the commotion, had a conversation about Gary Roberts’s lower lumbar. To wrap up, Eddie fined everyone without a pin on.
Michalene won the split club and Mike A. lost on the Ace. However no bread today.
Paul Chisolm introduced our speaker, John Bradley of Alcott HS. There was a caveat in having him speak to us today. We had to get permission from Holly. Holly had no problem and as it turns out, John said Holly is the best in her field and they would employ her on certain challenges. It was interesting again, figuring out all the regulations that is required from us. But he stressed as did Holly when she presented, you better. They will assume you are not in compliance and you have to prove you are. One regulation is the new hourly rate implemented this year for salaried employees. It’s a tangled web and you cannot do it yourself.  Alcott HS is a Professional Employer Organization (PEO) in where they co hire the employees. You benefit with the purchasing power you gain in the numbers you bring.
John’s second part of his program dealt with Rotary Youth Exchange. He is very involved with that for our District. There is a misconception that we have to host the students wherein Rotary just mediates in putting the families together. This could be another form of community service for our club to think about.
Meeting adjourned
The Ken - March 6
The Ken March 6
Attendance: Holly Nowak
Split Club: Tim Glor
Invocation: Tim Glor
Fine Master: Ed Markarian
The Ken: Jeff Markarian
Mike started out this large boisterous group on time with the Pledge and Chuck Patterson led us in “God Bless America”. We had 2 guests. Our speaker Mark Mistretta, Capital Facilities Manager of the New York State Parks and Bill Mikolowski from who knows where.
Mike announced the board was meeting Wednesday at Platka’s at 8:15 am. Rick Graham reminded us we need baskets for the Wine Event. Please remember to describe them so we can make placards. I am hosting a basket gathering party April 1 at 6:00. If you cannot attend, you can get the baskets to Elmlawn. Sue J. announced that Shari will attend the event??? Gary Roberts will be doing the Armenian Raffle soon. This is where we raise money to buy a gift to raffle off at the Event. You buy chances, usually 1-50 for a set price. Gary will draw a number and you will when a prize. This usually takes place over 2 weekly meetings. Art announced that Scot called him and asked that he wishes us luck on the 2nd biggest fund raiser we have. Of course this was met with some debate. Tom Lang thanked the 15 people who attended the Wine Tour Sunday. They were even greeted at one of the wineries by a former RYLARIAN who know Larry and Char.
Eddie was the fine master for the week. The first fine was from Dr. Werner. Doc’s first meeting was February 7, 1957. This February 7, 2017 Venice Sunrise Club was honored to have him share his 60th year of perfect attendance. He mentioned he has a wager going on with a Rotarian at his new but 2nd favorite club who has 61 years of perfect attendance. Doc gave 60 happy dollars for 60 years of perfect attendance.  Ed took many other confessions. But started by fining himself for poor attendance. Rick was fined for tatteltaling. George Allen was fined just so his sponsor Ed could give him his first fine. Tom paid it. Jim P has been getting many spots on the Entecom stations suggesting Entecom for advertising. Gary was fined for being an Armenian wanna be. Art confessed to being on a 2 week cruise. Mike Ford had to miss the wine tour due to a fund raiser for Susan’s cousin. He was moved by the large donation Chuckie Basil contributed. Pat Griffin paid for doing junior achievements. Brian Ahern attended Amherst rotary meeting and the Rotarian that visited our club and made us aware of her Tanzanian trip asked why he didn’t bring his infamous bread. Eddie wrapped up by fining everyone that missed the Wine Tour $1.00.
Chuck Patterson won the split club and I picked a card for Joe Starck but missed the Ace. John Coogan won the first loaf of Bri-bread and Gary won the 2nd loaf.
At this time Paul introduced Mark Mistretta. Mark is the Capital Facilities Manager of the NY state parks. Marks program was about the Niagara Falls parks and the outer harbor Parks. NY State has invested $82 million already in turning the Parks around. It was impressive how the Parks commission is concentrating on organic trails, bridges, dams and walk paths. So much has been done to make this a destination, you must come down and stroll around. They are leaving the large hotels for the city of Niagara Falls. The Whirlpool steps are complete. Next year Devils Hole stairs will be completed. That will complete a 4 mile hike down one set of stairs, a hike along the river where there are class 5 rapids, a walk up the other set of stairs and back to your car. Very inspiring presentation.
 
Meeting adjourned