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Saturday, May 8, 2021

Villages Rotarians offer thanks for support with neighborhood gathering

A Villages Rotarian and her husband hosted a special bash in their neighborhood Monday as a way to say thanks for continued support of various projects this past year despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Close to 70 neighbors came to Julie and John Schmied’s house in the Village of La Reynalda for an evening of fun and fellowship.

Villages Rotary 1
Close to 70 people in the Village of La Reynalda enjoyed a thank-you party hosted by Rotarian Julie Schmied and her husband, John, this past Monday night.

“Nearly all our neighbors are vaccinated and so ready to socialize again that a driveway pizza party seemed a good way to thank our neighbors,” said Julie Schmied, of the Rotary Club of The Villages – Evening.

Throughout the past year, various neighbors have saved coupons for the Rotary Rebaters, donated food to every food drive and supported school supply drives, as well as donating funds for the club’s efforts to help people in need.

Villages Rotary 2
Members of the Rotary Club of The Villages – Evening gathered Monday night to thank members of the community for supporting various projects over the past year despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Neighbor Debbie Durham said, “It was so nice of your club to do this for us.” And various neighbors commented on “how nice it was to see generosity recognized,” according to Past President Tim Treat.

Club President Gay Ratcliff Seamens said she heard over and over “how happy we are to be with each other and your club provided us with this nice opportunity.”

Business partner Debra Cullen, owner of Hungry Howie’s Pizza, was happy to help with the menu.

“We also see how this club’s projects serve those in need,” she said.

Villages Rotary 3
Debra Cullen, owner of Hungry Howie’s Pizza, showed her support for the Rotary Club of The Villages – Evening by taking care of the menu for Monday night’s thank-you gathering.

Rotary District Governor-Elect Barry Gainer came from Lake Mary to attend the party.

“Rotary International’s motto is Service Above Self and this event honors these neighbors who demonstrated that same spirit throughout the past year,” Gainer said. “Our theme this year is Rotary Opens Opportunities, and this was a great opportunity to connect with all these people who have done so much for their community. What a pleasure to be here!”

To learn more about Rotary Club of The Villages – Evening, call Ratcliff Seamens at (863) 660-4933 or attend a weekly meeting and program any Wednesday, from 5-6:30 p.m., at Lake Miona Recreational Center. You also can visit www.rotaryvillagesevening.com.

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