Rotary During the Holidays!

“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.”
~ Buddha

During the holiday season, we hear from individuals, communities, and Rotary club members … who want to show and share with others. Embracing The Spirit of the Holiday Season with Your Rotary Family is uplifting and has been a real fun part of being the President for this Rotary year. The Rotary Club of Palm Springs is having many holiday activities this year to showcase and share with our members and the community.

At our last meeting we collected over $600 in food for the Well In Desert which helps to feed the homeless in our community. Year to date, our club has collected over $1,000 in food from club members for this important commmunity service.

The Sunday before Thanksgiving was the Thanksgiving social for members which is a pot luck style dinner. After the dinner was the exciting ‘White Elephant Gift Exchange’ game. The fellowship and fun with members, family and friends is a great way to begin the holiday season.

On December 2, our members, together with the Interact Club that we sponsor at the High School, put the lights on three Christmas trees in downtown Palm Springs. The following day, December 3, “Light Up Rotary” Day was held with the lighting of three Christmas trees in the middle of downtown to showcase Rotary to our community. A banner with the Light Up Rotary Logo and Rotary Club of Palm Springs is on display through out the holiday season. The Men’s Chorus performed songs for the holiday season. Following the event, the NBC news station reported, “The Palm Springs Rotary Club and PS Resorts partnered to bring a little holiday cheer to Village Green in Downtown Palm Springs. The tree lighting honors the charitable spirit of the Rotary Club, who has given more than $1 million dollars to charitable causes in the community.”

The Christmas trees are inspired by Rotary International’s theme “Light Up Rotary” and is being held as our club’s Rotary Day for our community. Rotary is an organization of business and professional leaders united worldwide who provide humanitarian service, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and help build goodwill and peace in the world. The Rotary Club of Palm Springs, which was chartered in 1941, is comprised of leaders in the community who have joined together to perform many hours of community service to support local projects that favorably impact our community. These include projects such as a “Prom” for residents of Angel View Crippled Children Foundation, Elementary Christmas Book Giveaway, urgent care medical assistance for students with financial need, and leadership training and programs for elementary and high school students to name a few of their local charitable activities.

At our meeting on December 3, we had a Holiday Giving Tree for the clients of the local senior center. So many of our seniors rely on the Meals on Wheels program which we support, and so many of our seniors are alone and would like to have some Christmas cheer. We have the “Giving Tree” at our meeting with little wish notes from 25 seniors who could use a little cheer. Many will ask for sweaters, robes, socks and other necessities. We ask members to pick up a note from the tree, buy the gift requested, gift wrap it and return it to our next meeting with the senior’s name on it. The gifts are taken to the Senior Center for distribution. Being a Holiday Angel, helps to bring some holiday cheer into the seniors’ lives. Rotarians feel really good buying and wrapping a little gift and having a senior who they may never meet, enjoy the holidays.

On December 10 is the Christmas Book Giveaway. Two new books will be given to each student at one of the elementary schools. Over $15,000 in books for every student!

Also, on December 10 is the Holiday Auction. The goal is to raise $6,000 to help support the club’s community service projects. This is the primary club fundraiser for the year.

And the Holiday activities conclude on December 17. The lunch meeting will have a performance of holiday music from the High School choir.

The fast pace of modern life can make it hard to find the time to really appreciate the holidays. That’s why it is so important to get your holiday just right; the Rotary Club of Palm Springs will “Light Up Rotary”!