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The Jungle Jargon

A Monthly Broadcast to and from

The Lions Club of Cranbury, New Jersey

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Ideals in Government
Civic Betterment

Mutual Helpfulness

Social Progress

President:  Christine Thompson
1st Vice President:  Neal Wagman
2nd Vice President:  Andre Mento
3rd Vice President:  Pat Meehan
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:  Joe Carroll

Directors - 1 Year:  Dave Cook
                                 Mike Kaiser
                                 Frank Vesci
Directors - 2 Years:  Phyllis Johnson
                                  Fay Kobland
                                  John Kobland
Lion Tamer:  Frank Marlowe
Publicity Chairman:  Neile Wright
Jargon Editor:  Bob Virgadamo

January, 2012

January 3 - Board of Directors Meeting - 7:30PM, Boy Scout Room (Town Hall)

January 4 - Wine Meeting - 7PM, The Grape Escape; Dinner: provided by Fiddleheads Restaurant.

Program: This is the "Racking" phase of this project.

January 18 - Girl Scout Meeting & Spouse Night - 7PM, Station Bar & Grill; Dinner: Beef Stroganoff

Program: Susan Mavoides will talk about what the different Cranbury Troops have been and are doing; this is the GSA Meeting which is normally held in October, but had to be postponed due to our winemaking event.

February, 2012

January 31 - Board of Directors Meeting - 7:30PM, Boy Scout Room (Town Hall)

February 1 - Boy Scout Meeting - 7PM, Station Bar & Grill; Dinner: Broiled Pork Chops

Program: Local resident Ms. Kathy Easton is an avid Birdwatcher and will discuss Birding in and around Cranbury.

February 15 - Regular Meeting - 7PM, Station Bar & Grill; Dinner: Chicken Portobello

Program: Mr. Harry Fini, from Life Saver Living Solutions, will discuss how his company helps Seniors live independently in their own homes for as long as possible.

Things To Know

We have just been informed that Lion Ed Lawson has been receiving radiation treatments for cancer; due to a fall at home, he is currently at the Cranbury Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 292 Applegarth Rd, Monroe Twp., NJ 08831, and the phone there is 609-860-2500. Margaret advises that he would be happy to have visitors, but we are advised to call first as he commutes daily to RWJ for his radiation treatments.

A gathering of Lions, Family, and Friends attended as we installed the Teddy Nikitiades Memorial Bench at a dedication ceremony, in front of Teddy's Restaurant, on Tuesday, December 13th. It was good to see that 17 Cranbury Lions were able to attend. The Club wishes to thank Lions Andre Mento, Bob Virgadamo and Mike Kaiser for their efforts on this project; but we especially would like to thank Rosemarie Mento for the concept idea.

This year's Annual Toys For Tots Collection was among one of the best collections we have done in years; we collected over 1000 toys - at the pick-up, the Marines advised ours was one of the largest "individual" (non-corporate funded) collections this season. PDG Bob would like to thank Lions Mike Kaiser and Neal Wagman who assisted him in the collection process, but special thanks go to the branches of 1st Constitution Bank, the NJ Community Bank, the Cranbury Post Office, Arcadis, and Norland Products for acting as our collection points.

In addition to our donation boxes for our Annual Winter Coat Collection at the Library and at Teddy's, we collected coats at our Pancake Breakfast, and on December 19, 2011, Lion Dave Shaffer delivered 97 coats to TASK. The collection box remained at Teddy's, and at this writing we have collected a total of 151 coats; these additional donations will be delivered to TASK shortly. We would like to thank everyone who made a donation this year; because of you, 151 people will be warmer than they were yesterday. We would especially like to thank Dave Shaffer for his humanitarian efforts in organizing, collecting, and distributing these coats.

On December 16 we learned that the Crisis Ministry of Trenton & Princeton building, in Trenton, had a severe fire, destroying all the food and staples that were destined for the disenfranchised over the holidays. An emergency Board meeting was held, at which a recommendation, motion, and affirmative vote occurred to provide a donation to the Crisis Ministry, in the amount of $300, from our Disaster Relief Fund. For the information of those that may be unaware, there is no Lions Club in either Princeton or Trenton. PDG Bob delivered a check in the approved amount to the Nassau Presbyterian Church on December 17.

We will hold our next Wine Meeting at the Grape Escape on January 4, 2012, when we will be in "The Racking" phase of the project; "Racking" is when we transfer the fermenting wine from the Oak Barrel into a Stainless Steel tub, clean the barrel and replace the wine for an additional 6 months when we will bottle it. We are seeking Barrel Sponsors, with the intent of perhaps creating a small fundraising opportunity, here. However, we are hoping that not only Members, but our sponsors, friends and neighbors will be interested in hand-crafting this wine with us; at this writing we have only 1 case available for sale. Members are encouraged to enroll others in our winemaking project. Anyone interested should contact PDG Bob.

We have begun to move forward on International President Tam's Tree Planting Program for Lion Year 2011-2012. IP Tam's goal was to plant One Million Trees, worldwide; at last count the Lions of the world had planted over 2.5 million trees! This month, we will order a selection of 80 trees in varying sizes. Meanwhile the Troop 52 Eagle Scout candidate will begin his project, and will start a campaign to let Cranbury Homeowners that "free" trees will be available. There are no plans, at this time, to plant trees on Township property. Any Lion that wishes to have one of these trees planted should contact PDG Bob or Lions Mike Kaiser or Dean Koehler.

Lion Andre Mento and a cadre of volunteers drove around Cranbury Township on Thursday, December 15, and selected the winners in this year's Annual Holiday Decoration Contest. Each winning family has received a Poinsettia from the Lions Club. This year's winners were:
    1. The Callahan Family        45 Washington Pl.
    2. The Beamer Family         4 Evans Dr.
    3. The Rak Family              46 North Main St.
    4. The Santamaria Family    46 Cranbury Neck Road.
Congratulations to all our winners, and thanks to Andre and his crew.

Our Holiday Meeting and Party was held at the Immediate Past President Dave & Brenda Shaffer's home on December 16. In addition to saving money on our Administrative Budget, everyone who attended had a fabulous time - especially with the fun surrounding the Secret Santa gifts! The success of this Meeting/Party over the last three years has prompted the Board of Directors to tentatively approve having it at the Past President's home again next year.

Event Chair Lion Neile Wright has arranged for us to continue our Valentine's Day Roses fundraiser with Kathy of the Cutting Garden, on North Main Street. Roses will sell for $60 per dozen; Kathy will donate 50% of the net profit on roses ordered and purchased through the Cutting Garden for Valentine's Day pick-up.

The New Jersey Devils will host New Jersey Lions Night at the Devils Game on Saturday, January 21, 2012, when they play the Philadelphia Flyers. We hope you ordered your tickets on time, because tickets to this game are officially sold out! If you have NOT purchased your tickets, but were "hoping to", you may be able to get tickets by calling the Group Sales Department at the Arena, to inquire if there are any reservation cancellations.

This serves as a reminder that, even though, as always, we will hold our Annual Thunder Game in August, we have a limited amount of seating in the Yankee Club SkyBox. In addition to those Members who have already signed-up, quite a few Members have mentioned that they plan to attend this game; there are only 18 tickets left for this game - please don't get "shut out" of the game by waiting until "the last minute" to reserve your ticket. The Thunder will only play one weekend at home in August, and we have arranged our game date to be Sunday afternoon (5PM), August 19, 2012, when the Thunder plays the Bowie Baysox (Baltimore Orioles). Yankee Club SkyBox tickets are $38 per ticket, and include upscale dining and non-alcoholic beverages for 90 minutes; additional tickets may be available, but only on a first come first served basis, so if you plan on going to this game, reserve your tickets early!

The Jamesburg Leo Club made over $700 from a Home-Baked Cookie Sale, and was able to donate over $500 to a fund for two sisters, both of whom have Multiple Dystrophy. In time for the holidays, the Boys of the Club will be collecting food to donate to the Freehold Food Bank. Lion Fay Kobland reports that the boys would like to meet more often with our Club, but, she has explained to them that our schedule doesn't allow for too many meetings to be held at the Jamesburg Training School. The boys would like some interaction on our part when possible, and a "Game Day" is being discussed. Any members who are able to, and would like to donate 2-3 hours of time to play board games with the boys on a Sunday (date to be determined) should contact Lion Fay or PDG Bob.

PDG Bob was not only able to obtain a Saturday game for our Trenton Thunder 50/50, but it's the (NY Yankees) Thunder v. the Binghamton Mets; this rivalry game is almost always a capacity game! Our 50/50 game day will be June 9, 2012. More about that in a few months.

Mark Your Calendars: We will be celebrating our 80th Anniversary on June 30, 2012. The Committee is looking for suggestions as to where and what type of party should be held; we are looking to attract most, if not all, of our 60 Members; if any Member has a suggestion, please advise Event Co-Chairs Lions Neal Wagman or Neile Wright. By the way, the Co-Chairs are looking for about 6-8 volunteers to help with decorations, publicity and "day of" help. Any Member who can volunteer for this committee should contact one of the Co-Chairs or sign-up on the sheet which will soon begin circulating at meetings. Details on venue and activities will follow. This is a celebration of 80 years of service to Cranbury; we hope that every member will consider attending this auspicious occasion.

Help Support the Century of Service Commemorative Coin. Lions Clubs International is leading efforts to mint 400,000 U.S. silver dollars in recognition of Lions Clubs International's 100th Anniversary in 2017. And, this coin is the first step to commemorate our Association's centennial - while raising millions to support our projects for the visually impaired, youth and those affected by disaster. Find out how you can get involved in this campaign at

A quick word about the 2012 Multiple District 16 State Convention… It will be held this year on May 17-20 at the Bridgewater Marriot. Our own VDG John Kobland will be inducted as Governor of District 16-D; a strong showing of support from our Club throughout the convention, but especially at the Saturday night event is encouraged. The format for the Saturday evening formal is being changed; after the procession of elected incoming Governors, and other necessary protocols, the room will be changed into a night club setting. Topping the bill will be "Uncle Floyd".

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.

Through the years, some of our members have said that the reason it took so long to become a Lion was that no one asked! 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. If each of our 60 members asked just one person to join and only 25% of those people joined this year, we would increase our membership by 15 people! 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 Jargon 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 $45 (XL, 2X); larger size vests (to 6X) are available as a special order; hats are $12. Ladies Cut for vests are available, same pricing. We also have a couple of "T-Shirts" left (large), $10 each.

Members can access the Club Directory on-line with the required logon and password. 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); Lion George Smith has volunteered to be the "permanent" pick-up driver for Lion Ed Lawson (Lion Frank Marlowe is the back-up driver). If a Member needs a ride, please contact President Christine or Secretary PDG Bob to arrange for a pick-up. Drivers: if you cannot make your pick-up, please notify President Christine as soon as possible. Riders: please notify the assigned driver if you cannot make a meeting.