Rotary Rays November 19, 2012

Presiding: President Melissa Pike

Location: Quality Hotel and Suites

Writer: Dave Harris

Invocation: Vanessa

Guests: Prospective Rotarians; Liam McCreery, John Werkema, and Stephen Sears. Guests From Woodstock-Oxford Club; Paul Leroy, Leigh and Alma Yates. Our New Outbound Exchange Student; Nathan Stephopolous (spelling?)


  • Fellowship night on Wed November 21st at Crabby Joes. 5pm 1/2 price appetizers., 
  • Leigh Yates is looking to see if anyone needs a Rotary shirt. The Woodstock Oxford Club is putting an order together. Approx $20 each. 
  • We donated $500 to Polio Plus last year on behalf of our speakers. Any donations between now and the end of January will get a matching grant from Federal Government and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Hazel will have a change jar here on the last meeting of November, December and January and is hoping to collect $400 in change. 
  • Rotary Hams are for sale again $25 and they are locally cured smoked hams from Mediema meats in Embro

Birthdays and Anniversaries - David Simonetti is 16 this week! Fred Fenton - did not disclose age, Francis Stevens- not there to confirm or deny age. No Anniversaries

Sergeant at Arms: Dave Harris

Fines: President Melissa for accusing the Sergeant at Arms of stealing from her when he was helping her set up the podium

Happy Bucks:Leigh Yates;enjoying Rotary fellowship as a new member, Chris Cunningham had a successful Bazzar at Southgate, Vanessa Page the Santa Clause Parade was a great success, filling their food hampers, Rick Corriea- beat John Currie's Team in League play,  John Currie and Richard Holmes - excellent Scottish Curling Fellowship weekend and thanks to Melissa and her mom who hosted them for dinner. Barb Wright - had a great fundraiser for DASO, Soupstock, held at the Quality Hotel was a great success

Speaker: James Rule, President Thames Talbot Land Trust

Jim was here to increase awareness of the Thames Talbot Land Trust (TTLT) and to let people know that they are looking for donations of money or donations of Carolinian Forest type land or land that could be restored to native habitat.  Jim is a former educator in Oxford County and recognizes that the TTLT does not have any property in our county yet.  

The TTLT is a 

community-based charitable organization that actively works to conserve land with natural, recreational, scenic, historical, or agricultural value for the benefit of future generations.

Named after the Thames River and historic Talbot Trail, the Thames Talbot Land Trust was established as a charity in 2000 to protect the natural and cultural heritage of London, Middlesex County and Elgin County in southwestern Ontario. They currently have 1100 acres in 10 properties under ownership

Our area is in the Carolinian Climate Zone and has the broadest range of native flora and fauna in Canada. Unfortunately urban sprawl and agriculture have reduced coverage to 18% of the land. There should be at least 24% coverage for proper balance. 

James showed some slides of the beautiful tracts of land that they own and manage in Southwestern Ontario. Some areas have trails and are open to the public. Other areas are  reserves for nature or will be opened at some point. For more information please go to

They have one paid part time staff member and the rest of the organization is run by volunteer stewards. For a photo of Jim and President Melissa click here 

James was also thankful to Rotary as his daughter is a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar who is studying for her Masters in the U.S. at the present time.  

James was thanked by Robin Ferro and a donation will be made to Polio Plus on James' behalf.

Next Week: Rotary Club of Woodstock Foundation Annual Meeting.