Thursday, October 13, 2016

Belle Fourche Lions celebrate 80 years of service!

Let them eat cake!  And so we did!

Nearly three dozen members and guests celebrated the 80th anniversary of the Belle Fourche Lions Club Tuesday night (10/11/16) at Grap's Burgers and Brews.  Lion President Joyce Drabek spearheaded the event, which included an excellent display of historical Lion artifacts, including our original 1936 charter.

The spacious meeting room behind Grap's accommodated the nice turnout of regular attendees -- and even lured a Lion or two we haven't seen for a while.  We were also graced by the presence of Lions members from the Evening Star and Downtown Rapid City Lions clubs, including Past District Governor Ken Gifford and Vice District Governor Bea Gifford.

Long-time club member Lion Chuck Livingston won the 50-50 drawing and true to form after 50 years membership in Lions -- with perfect attendance, we might add -- he donated his winnings back to the club.  Thank you, Lion Livingston!  Also recognized for their long service to Lions were members Robert Drabek (50 years) and Lion Swede Wennberg (40 years).

President Joyce Drabek then recounted highlights of the 80 years of service provided to our community by the Belle Fourche Lions Club.

Following the 80th anniversary celebration, Lions Teresa Schanzenbach and and Lion President
Joyce Drabek posed with our guest speakers Cherry and Gordon Bieber, standing at right.

Guests Cherry and Gordon Bieber gave a short program regarding their daughter, Tin Entz, who is in late stage Neurological Lyme disease.  She was bitten in 2004 and has struggled with bouts of severe and sometimes life-threatening illness ever since.  She and her family have gone through years of exasperation.  She showed symptoms of various things, and the doctors were "baffled."  Treatments were sporadic, and she has accumulated more than $200,000 in doctors' bills. Tina is now seeing a Lyme disease specialist, who himself had Lyme disease and was misdiagnosed with ALS.

The Biebers noted that Lyme disease can manifest itself in a variety of ways and can easily be misdiagnosed.  Last month, the Bieber's organized a "garage sale" benefit and raffle in an effort to help raise money for Tina's continuing treatments.  Following their presentation, the Biebers answered several questions about Lyme disease and the many frustrations surrounding its diagnosis and cost of treatment.

Dessert followed the program.  The next Lions Club meeting is set for Tuesday, October 25.

Take a tour of our Lions Gallery for an array of these and other photographs taken during our celebration of October 11th.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Lots of leaders...lots of information....lots of Lions fellowship!

It was a full agenda, with installation of officers, some decisions on key Lion projects, and a program presenter with a candid assessment of the Belle Fourche business climate.

District Secretary Neil Vollmer, accompanied by a contingent of other Lions from the Newell Lions Club, was on hand to lead the installation of officers for the coming year.  Leading the slate of new club leaders is Lion Joyce Drabek, who becomes the first woman to lead the Belle Fourche Lions Club.  Members of the Northern Lights Lions Club of Belle Fourche, comprised of Lady Lions, merged with the previously all-male club a couple of years ago.

Lion President Joyce leads an array of talented members from the Northern Lights club who have infused renewed vigor into the Belle Fourche Lions.  Their impact can be seen in the leadership positions of our club, as well as in the committee assignments.

Club leaders for the coming year include: Lion Joyce Drabek, president; Lion Willert, First VP; Lion Kline, Second VP; Lion Zupan, Third VP and Lion Tamer; Lion Rich Drabek, Treasurer; Lion Del Neumesiter, Secretary; Lion Sue Neumeister, Board Member; and Lion Cooper, Tail Twister.  To get a closer look at these club leaders, along with a few other snapshots from the evening, visit our Lions Gallery.

New Belle Fourche Chamber of Commerce director Gary Wood (shown at left) gave an assessment of the business climate in Belle Fourche, with some positive information about our community that is often overlooked -- such as the hefty number of manufacturing plants that call Belle Fourche home.

A full slate of business followed installation.  You can read all about it in the timely and comprehensive Minutes compiled by club secretary Lion Del Neumeister.  Click the "Minutes" tab at the top of this page.

Also lots of upcoming Lions events.  Check 'em out on the "Calendar" tab above or in the right-hand column.


Thursday, September 15, 2016

A pride of Lions tackle a busy, busy, business session

Despite a last-minute change of location, and the fact that it was the first meeting for a new season, it was a good turnout last night (9/14/16) for the Belle Fourche Lions Club at Grap's Burgers and Brews. The agenda was full with lots of updates and reports, and Lion President Joyce Drabek had to keep the session moving right along in order to take care of all items.

An updated membership list was passed around for corrections and updates, and a new listing of committee assignments was distributed to members.  We'll have those assignments posted online in the next day or two.

Lots of upcoming activities, ranging from installation of officers -- now set for Tuesday, September 27 -- to student eye exams and a slough of other items. Click on our Lions club CALENDAR OF EVENTS tab in the right-hand column for a listing.  Oh, yes, one note worthy of mention about this meeting was the fine form of Tail Twister Lion Rick Walton, whose prowess and cunning ways generated some healthy revenue for the club.  

Well, we could recount everything for you here, but that's why we're blessed with a crack club secretary, Lion Del Neumeister.  Check out his minutes of the session by simply clicking on the MINUTES tab at the top of the page.

And don't forget to mark your calendars for our September 27th meeting.  We'll have our installation of officers at The Stadium.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Vinyard and Drabek tapped as Lions Scholarship recipients

Emily Vinyard (left) and Ayden Drabek, seniors at Belle Fourche High School, have been selected as Lions Scholarship recipients for 2016.  Emily is the daughter of Dave and Karrie Vinyard.  Ayden is the son of Scott and Annie Drabek.  Emily and Ayden were selected for their outstanding records of service to their school and the community.  Each was awarded  a $500 scholarship to continue educational pursuits.  Lions Scholarship Chairman Del Neumeister noted, "Every year it gets more difficult to narrow it down to just two recipients.  I am so proud to live in a community where the students are most certainly going to bring up the GPA at whatever college they attend."  

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Lion Harry Haivala takes his Lions work on the road

Lion Haivala with his collection box
at Apache Wells Resort in Mesa, Arizona
When long-time Lion Harry Haivala took on the duties of chairing the Eyeglass Drop-Box Committee two years ago, he didn't waste any time.  Despite escaping the frigid climes of South Dakota for a few months of warmth in Arizona, he took his work with him!

Harry and his wife, Irene, have been going south for 18 winters.  But when he took on the task of coordinating the collecting of used eyeglasses for the Belle Fourche Lions Club, he decided to "expand" the collection area.

While at his park model home in north Mesa, Arizona, he decided to set up a "South Dakota" collection point for used eyeglasses in the office of their park, Apache Wells RV Resort.

"I knew that in a 55+ resort, there would be quite a few new glasses, and no place to go with the old ones, except Walmart."  Last season, he collected about 30 pairs of glasses.

A retired Game Warden with the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks department, Harry Haivala was based in Belle Fourche for 27 years.  During those years, he appeared as a guest speaker at Belle Fourche Lions.

"I decided after I retired to join one civic organization and determined that Lions was the best," Haivala said.  Since 1994, Lion Haivala has been an active member of the Belle Fourche Lions Club. He is also chairman of the Christmas Family Committee and continues to provide leadership for the Adopt-A-Highway Clean-Up.  Thanks for your good work, Lion Harry Haivala! 

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Lion Neumeister honored for "opening door" for new members

Lion Del Neumeister (left), Belle Fourche Lions Club Secretary, received a Membership Pin for "successfully opening the door of Lionism to at least two individuals."  The pin was presented during the May 24, 2016 meeting of the club at The Stadium by president Leo Orme.  Congratulations and "Well Done, Lion Neumeister!"