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Lions Tales

A Monthly Broadcast to and from

The Lions Club of Cranbury, New Jersey

Contact us at:

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Ideals in Government
Civic Betterment

Mutual Helpfulness

Social Progress

President:  Christine Thompson
1st Vice President:  Andre Mento
2nd Vice President:  Fay Kobland
3rd Vice President:  Frank Vesci
Secretary:  Bob Virgadamo
Treasurer:  Dean Koehler
Associate Treasurer:  Elaine Homoky
Immediate Past President:  Dave Shaffer
Membership Chairman:  Jon Goldstein
Information Technology Chairman:  Phyllis Johnson
Tail Twister:  OPEN

Directors - 1 Year:  Phyllis Johnson
                                 John Kobland
                                 Neal Wagman
Directors - 2 Years:  Mike Kaiser
                                  John Ryan
Lion Tamer:  Frank Marlowe
Publicity Chairman:  Elaine Homoky
Lions Tales Editor:  Bob Virgadamo

August, 2012

August 14 - Board of Directors Meeting - 7:30PM, Boy Scout Room (Town Hall)

August 15 - Regular Meeting - 7PM, the Station Bar & Grill; Dinner: Rack of Ribs

Program: C. J. Johnson, of the Trenton Thunder will talk baseball; not bad timing, since we will be having our annual Trenton Thunder Ball game in the Yankee Skybox on August 19.

September, 2012

September 4 - Board of Directors Meeting - 7:30PM, Boy Scout Room (Town Hall)

September 5 - Regular Meeting - 7PM, the Station Bar & Grill; Dinner: Chicken and Broccoli

Program: TBA

September 19 - Regular Meeting - 7PM, the Station Bar & Grill; Dinner: Broiled Tilapia

Program: Lion Pramod Chivate will talk about how 'Social Styles' affect our relationships both in the business world and in our daily lives.

Something New

At the July Board of Directors Meeting, it was pointed out that the name of the monthly Newsletter had been "Lions Tales" from its inception in 1939 until sometime in the 1950's, when it was changed to "The Jungle Jargon". While the former name made sense and had a certain je ne sais quoi, the latter neither referred to Lions nor Cranbury, and as Club Historian, CC Bob has been unable to find "rhyme nor reason" for the change. The Board approved a change back to the original Banner Name, and the change was unanimously voted upon by the Membership at the July Meeting. Our newsletter is now officially changed to "Lions Tales".

Things To Know

Summer dress rules are in effect through July and August. Members are permitted to wear appropriate summer attire, including shorts for men or sundresses for women, to the meetings. Remember that we meet in a restaurant and a little decorum is still required. No tank tops or sleeveless shirts, please.

The 80th Anniversary Exhibit is still in the Cranbury Museum and will run through August 26, 2012. It is a very clever presentation and quite educational. We still have a great need for Sunday afternoon Docents, during the exhibit; if you would like to volunteer to help in any way, please contact Lions Fay Kobland or Neal Wagman, or use the sign-up Sheet at the meetings.

In a repeat performance from last year, the Annual Club Picnic was held on July 21, at the home of Lion Dean & Ellen Koehler. The BBQ was terrific, and a fun time was had by all who attended, including Ellen's "Garden Tour" - a visual treat if there ever was one - and the tour of the barn and animal pen which was fun for kids and adults alike! If you missed it, you missed a great time.

Once again, we would like to remind all members, supporters, and residents that, as always, we will hold our Annual Thunder Game on August 19, at 5:05PM, when the Thunder will play the Bowie Baysox (Baltimore Orioles). We have Yankee Club SkyBox tickets which include upscale dining and non-alcoholic beverages for 90 minutes; gates open at 4PM, and they will start serving food shortly thereafter. Our block of tickets is a sell-out, however a couple of our members have just learned that they cannot make it, so, at this writing, we have FOUR tickets left if anyone would like to help out their fellow Lions by taking the tickets off their hands. Tickets are $38, each; for tickets contact CC Bob.

We have begun a new fundraiser this year - The Rubber Duck Race. Chaired by Lion Jon Goldstein, this fundraiser promises to become a lucrative staple in years to come if we all chip in and help Lion Jon and his Committee sell Duck Tickets; the committee also needs a few more volunteers, especially on Cranbury Day, the day of the event; contact Lion Jon if you can help out. The actual event, as the ducks are dumped into the lake and come out into the creek with people cheering for a winner, will be FUN! By now, you have all received a book of ticket in the mail. Like ALL our fundraisers, Members are asked to sell as many tickets as possible; in the past there has been some confusion by our membership that tickets received are to be purchased by the member - not so! Of course, our Members, as individuals, are free to purchase as many tickets as they wish, but our goal is to sell to the public to raise money for our charitable budget. Please do your part to make this a successful fundraiser.

Fellow Lions, we have also begun selling our $100 Raffle Fundraiser and we are depending upon our Membership to sell all 250 tickets. Last year, we found that the (up to) $10,000 payout with 250 to 1 odds is THE major selling point, despite the $100 per ticket cost. It also worked well to mention to potential purchasers, the six additional prizes of up to $500 (2) and $375 (4). Last year, with a short "sell-season", we made over $6000! This is an opportunity for the Club to make up the Charitable Budget shortfall we have experienced in recent years. What's more, if we can successfully sell all 250 tickets, we will have a "built-in" donor pool for years to come! Please make every effort to sell these tickets - at work, to your neighbors, to all you meet - if you mention the Grand Prize and the terrific odds FIRST, the ticket practically sells itself. Winning Tickets will be drawn at this year's Pancake Breakfast on December 2. Checks should be made payable to the Cranbury Lions Club. Please contact CC Bob or Lion Phyllis Johnson for your ticket allotment, ASAP.

With all this "new stuff", let's not forget one of our staple projects - Cranbury Day is September 8, and as always, we need our membership to come out and help! Last year, between our location and the lack of member participation, we did not do well. We'd like to turn that around this year; we have been promised a better location - hopefully in front of the Methodist Church…now all we need is member assistance. Cranbury Day goes from 10AM to 4PM; we have a set-up crew and a clean-up crew in place already, but we NEED members to come out to cook and serve. If every member gave 2 hours, we'd have more than enough help. Please be generous with your time - it's why we became Lions. A sign-up sheet is at meetings or you can call Lion Pat Meehan or CC Bob directly.

Those who were at the July meeting are aware of the fact that the Board of Directors is recommending a change in our Dues Structure. It was explained that our dues first went to $300 per year in the (very) early 1990's, and as we have always done, we included meals in the dues structure. Due to spiraling inflation over these last 20+ years, and with only one increase to $360 per year, some 6 or 7 years ago, we have found that our dues structure can no longer support the many administrative increases we have experience AND our meals. Including Cranbury, there are only three clubs left in New Jersey that still include meals in their dues; the other two, in South Jersey, are in a far less expensive economic area and are still getting their meals for what amounts to 1990 prices here in Central New Jersey. The other 200+ clubs in the State pay for their meals at the time of the meeting. The Board realizes that we cannot afford an increase in dues, so the Board is recommending that we reduce our dues. Lion Dean, our Treasurer, presenting this change at the July meeting fully explained why it was necessary and how it would work, and further advised that barring any serious increases in general costs, we could survive, administratively, for quite a few years at half our current dues. Simply put, dues will be reduced to $180 per year; all members will pay for dinner at the meetings; At-Large members will no longer be charged "half dues for administrative costs" since we are now reducing our dues to half for Administrative costs only.

Membership - Membership - Membership

We always need new members who will help to raise the charitable funds which we need to complete our mission, and to help "broaden" our charitable collection base. But we are about to face a new problem…

Our Administrative Budget is becoming increasingly tight, and our Administrative "back-up fund" has become alarmingly low. Ladies and Gentlemen…Fellow Lions, WE ARE IN NEED OF NEW MEMBERSHIP, and while all are welcome, we need some "youth" so that we won't face the ever continuing possibility of becoming "an old persons' club"….but don't forget "Empty Nesters".

As we've said so often, membership is the key to our survival! New members will rejuvenate existing members and help to keep us ALL young-at-heart, active, and viable! President Christine is asking ALL members to assist Membership Chair Jon Goldstein in attracting and bringing in new members.

Ask your friends and neighbors if they can give a little of their time to serve and to give back to the community, while having a good time doing it with new friends. To get information about membership options or to obtain membership applications contact Membership Chair Jon, Secretary PDG Bob, or President Christine. In any event, we cannot complete our Mission without a Membership Pool so we MUST maintain a proactive campaign to bring in new Members and keep our Lions Club from being Cranbury's "best kept secret"…or worse.


We'd like to remind all members to PLEASE, share the Lions Tales with your Spouse, so that our events may be better scheduled on your personal or family calendars for better attendance and participation. Please note that Spouses are not only invited to attend all meetings, but to become Members under the Family Membership Initiative. In any event, Spouses are wholly encouraged to attend our quarterly "Spouse Night" meetings.

The Club requires that all Members wear a Lion Vest, Shirt or Hat when we are at a fundraiser or Service Project. If you do not have one of these items, please contact Club Secretary Bob to obtain one. These items are at "cost" to our members. Vests @$40 (S-M-L) or $50 (XL, 2X); larger size vests (to 6X) are available as a special order; hats are $12. Ladies Cut for vests are available, same pricing.

Members can access the Club Directory on-line with the required logon and password (that information can be obtained from Lion Phyllis or CCE BV). Members without internet capability may contact Lion Phyllis Johnson for a hard copy of the Directory.

One of the most difficult jobs in our Club is the Program Chair, and the ability to get speakers for our meetings. Lion Tamer Frank Marlowe is our Speaker Chair and would be most appreciative of any and all speaker leads he is given. Do you know of an interesting speaker? You may be an interesting speaker! Please contact Lion Frank with any and all suggestions for speakers.

Any member who learns of the sickness or death of another member, or in a member's family, or any other similar incident or emergency, should call or e-mail Lion Frank Marlowe (Chair, H&W) and/or President Christine ("phone tree"), and/or Secretary PDG Bob so that all members may be notified as soon as possible.

Member Pick-Up

The Club will arrange a ride for any member who is unable to drive to the meeting(s). If a Member needs a ride, please contact President Christine or Secretary PDG Bob to arrange for a pick-up.