Monday, April 27, 2015

MD49 Convention

Another convention over and done with.  Another year of catching up with old friends and making new ones.  Another year of challenges, hopes, and dreams.

Our Icebreaker was held at the Antique Car Museum.  Wow... talk about some vintage vehicles.  And I did not find a speck of dust on any of them!  I liked this green car as it had a place to hang your top hat on the roof.

And look at the period clothing.  Wow.  So much bead work.  Wouldn't it be fun to go out on the town in one of these?
Okay, enough of the fashion show!  As at any convention, there was a lot of business to take care of.  Here's some of what we learned:
  • We are now 1.4 million plus Lions around the world!  We are STILL the largest volunteer service organization in the world!  Hear us ROAR!
  • But even though we have grown, our U.S. organization is on the decline....  We must figure out how to retain our members.  
  • MD 49 Convention 2016 will take place at the Coast International Inn in Anchorage next year. The theme will be "When you wish upon a star" and will encompass anything "Disney."  
  • Past International President Lion Barry Palmer has appealed members to step forward and donate to LCIF.  Where there is a need, there is a Lion.  Our Club donates $20 per member every year but is it possible we could donate more...?  Or donate from our own pocket book?  We will talk about this more in the near future.  
  • It's not too late to sign up for Forum.  It will be held in Grand Rapids, Michigan, on September 17-19.  We were told it is a beautiful time of year to visit.  For you Lions who want to learn more, do more, step up, and be a leader, this is where you need to go.  Forum is all about intense training.  
  • Lion Esther West, the Multiple District's Chair for the Centennial Celebration announced that Lion Cory Bellows (from "B") and Lion Nancy Norton (from "A") will be their respective district's Centennial Celebration Chair.  
  • The Blood Bank's grant application was approved by LCI but they still need about $16,000 in the next six months.
  • Lion Mike Norton was nominated and elected as a member of the 49A Foundation.  
  • 1st VDG Mike Brown shared some of his plans as governor and stated that if clubs can achieve half of his goals by next November, he will take a pie in the face!  Ready, Set, Go!!  His theme will be "opening doors."  Click HERE for Josh's story.  
  • Our district is ahead by 52 members this year BUT just learned at convention that a brand new University of Alaska Anchorage Campus Club was approved by LCI, bringing in another 22 new members.  These kids will be our new leaders!  
  • To date, our district has screened 12,236 children with 2,357 referrals!  The Mendenhall Flying Lions portion of that is 1,089 children screened this year.  Awesome!  
We had limited training at this convention, but Lion Mike Norton was asked by the District Governor to do training for incoming Zone Chairs.  He gave a great presentation on how to be an awesome Zone Chair for incoming district governor, 1st Vice District Governor Mike Brown.    

If you want a good prime rib in Fairbanks, where would you go?  The Turtle Club, of course!  That is, if you want a 2" prime rib cooked to perfection....
Lions Donna and Bob Hurley, Neil Atkinson
You'll notice Lion Mike Norton isn't in many photos....  That's because as Zone Chair, you get to sit at a "special" table.  I'm looking forward to next year when he will be sitting with the rest of us.  We had three clubs from Southeast represented at convention this year!
Lions Cherie Klein (Ketchikan), Donna Hurley (MFLC), Janet and Ted Burke (Juneau Lions Club), Neil Atkinson (MFLC)
Lions Chere Klein (Ketchikan Lions) and Neil Atkinson (MFLC)
Lions Bob and Donna Hurley (Mendenhall Flying Lions)
Lions Janet and Ted Burke (Juneau Lions Club)
And, last, but certainly not least.... the Awards Banquet.  The Mendenhall Flying Lions received a patch in recognition of our completion of the four International  global campaigns as part of the Centennial Service Challenge!  Thank you for your participation in Engaging our Youth campaign where we included youth in litter pick up and involving our Boy Scout troop.  For Sharing the Vision, we have screened 1,089 children this Lion year!  And our participation in eyeglass recycling and the joint sight committee.  Thank you to everyone who has participated in one way or another!  The third global campaign is Relieving the Hunger and we participated in the Hoonah food drive, donated to the food bank and Helping Hands as well as participated in other food drives at the food bank.  The fourth campaign is Protecting our Environment. Our litter pick up qualified us for this patch.  

Our club also received the Secretary 100% award for getting all our reporting submitted and on time. 

Juneau brought home multiple awards.  Lion President Mike, once again, received Zone Chair of the Year for 49A!  As Zone Chair, he's the link between the four clubs in southeast and the district cabinet. In the last three years Lion Mike has received two Zone Chair of the Year and one Lion of the Year awards!  The Juneau Lions Club brought home Club of the Year for their hard work, dedication, and teamwork with Gold Medal Basketball Tournament!   And I brought home the trophy for Secretary of the Year for Multiple District 49A.
Zone Chair of the Year Lion Mike Norton, Secretary of the Year Lion Nancy Norton, and representing the Club of the Year, Lions Ted and Janet Burke
And one GOOD LOOKING GROUP OF LIONS!  Our final banquet.
Lions Bob Hurley, Neil Atkinson, and Donna Hurley (MFLC) and Lions Janet and Ted Burke (Juneau Lions) and Lions Nancy and Mike Norton in back (MFLC)
This convention had a little more down time than I would have liked, but it was all good.  Gave us more time to just sit and visit with other Lions we don't see often enough.

So, until next year.... ROAR!

We serve!
Lion Nancy Norton

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