Rogue Gateway Rotary celebrates new Rotary year

Janie Duewel took control of the gavel this week as the new president of Rogue Gateway Rotary.


Janie Duewel

July marks the start of a new Rotary year, and Duewel led the transition by thanking out-going President Laurel Merkel, who led the club to be named best medium-sized club in Rotary District 5110.

Duewel also announced the new board and outlined several projects scheduled for 2019-20.

In addition to Duewel, the Rogue Gateway Rotary Board officers are Dawn Welch, president elect; Frankie Craig, president nominee; Laurel Samson, treasurer; Steve Roe, secretary; and Laurel Merkel, past president. Other members are Lutz Kramer, Tommi Drake, Mike Bird, Win Howard, Greg Fishwick, Gina Marie Agosta, Kelly Moodie and Doug Walker.

Among the projects planned will be Porchfest 2020, a music festival that features local bands playing on front porches of homes in northwest Grants Pass. Rogue Gateway took on the popular community event for the first time this year and raised $25,000 that will benefit local programs for youth.

Rogue Gateway Rotary meets at noon Thursdays at the Wild River Pub in Grants Pass. More information is available

Porchfest a big success

Rogue Gateway Rotary’s newest project, Porchfest, was a rousing success. Held June 15 in Grants Pass, the event featured dozens of local bands playing on porches in the historic Northwest neighborhood encompassing Washington Boulevard and Lawnridg62463039_2717092408362832_8503113125191483392_oe Park.

It was a beautiful sunny day, and crowds estimated at more than 4,000 persons turned out, helping to rise funds for Rogue Gateway Rotary’s youth projects, and for CASA and Family Solutions.

Thanks to everyone who came out to enjoy the music, art, raffle and food — and a special thanks to our sponsors, Allcare Health and Southern Oregon Subaru.

Watch this site for more news about this year’s event and information about next year’s Porchfest, or visit our Facebook page at



Porchfest is coming June 15

Join Rogue Gateway Rotary for Porchfest, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. June 15 in Grants Pass.

This family-friendly event is free and will feature local bands performing on neighborhood porches in the historic Northwest ward of town, primarily on Washington Boulevard and Lawnridge Ave. Art and food also will highlight this fun-filled day.

Special thanks to our sponsors, Allcare Health and Southern Oregon Subaru who helped make this event possible.

Proceeds from the day will benefit CASA, Family Solutions, and Rogue Gateway Rotary youth programs.

For details, download our flyer: Porchfest


Harry Mackin honored for meritorious service

Harry Mackin and daughter, Diane.

Hats off to Harry! Rogue Gateway Rotary honored Harry Mackin on Jan. 31 with the club’s first Paul Harris Fellow Award for Exceptional Meritorious Service. Harry, pictured here with his daughter, Diane, has served twice as president of RGR and many years as chair of the Sgt.-at-Arms Committee. He has been president of the Chamber of Commerce, a Josephine County Unit School District board member, a Cub Scouts leader, Chair of the Boys & Girls Club Board, and much more. A U.S. Marine who served in Viet Nam, Harry retired from a long and distinguished career with Hart Insurance.



Super Bowl pool benefits Rotary Foundation

January kicks off our Every Rotarian Every Year (“EREY”) drive for full club participation in supporting The Rotary Foundation.
super bowl pool winner bela toledo and greg fishwick

Greg Fishwick points to the lucky number that Bela Toledo (right) won in last year’s Super Bowl pool. Bela was twice the winner because his pick also donated to The Rotary Foundation.

For each $25, tax-deductible donation, participants get three chances to be named a Paul Harris Fellow by winning our Super Bowl Pool and do their part to help our club earn Every Rotarian Every Year status
Make checks to The Rotary Foundation, pay cash, or even leave an IOU. The pool board and sign-up sheet will be available at all January meetings.
Contact Greg Fishwick if you’re not able to attend or have questions.

Wine Not? raffle winners announced

34538095_1971108106294603_1678324213976399872_oThank you to everyone who purchased tickets in our annual Wine Not? raffle. We’re grateful to everyone who sold and bought tickets.

The club raised approximately $3,000, which will help us do good in the community.

This year’s winners are:

  • Helen Silva, first place, 24 bottles of wine
  • Mark Flynn, second place, 18 bottles of wine
  • Kristen Plunkett, third place, 12 bottles of wine
  • Fred Borngasser, fourth place, six bottles of wine

Join the PolioPlus Society

Picture 735You have an opportunity to be part of the Rotary legacy that eradicates polio from the face of the earth. To achieve this goal, Rotary District 5110 is asking all members to make a $100 annual commitment to PolioPlus by signing up as a District 5110 PolioPlus Society member.

Simply complete a PolioPlus Society form and return it to Nelson Maler, District 5110 PolioPlus chair, at PO Box 1201, Grants Pass, OR 97528, or

Contributions also can be made directly to your club foundation chair, or online at

Why do we need to continue the fight against Polio when the number of cases is so low?

  • Until polio is eradicated, we need to vaccinate all children under age 5. Polio is just a plane flight away. Children everywhere are at risk until we wipe out this deadly disease forever.
  • As the risk of polio nears zero in an area, Rotary International will switch from using the Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) to the more expensive Injectable Polio Vaccine (IPV).
  • Rotary is increasing its surveillance efforts to track the last remaining virus. Surveillance includes examining every child with any kind of acute flaccid paralysis to determine the cause and testing sewer samples throughout the world for the presence of the Polio virus.

Once the number of polio cases are reduced to and stay at zero for 36 consecutive months, the World Health Organization will declare the world polio free. Then you can say you were part of a global movement that created a legacy – a polio free world.



Join us at Spurlock Art & Wine for Super Bowl Sunday.

The club party is on! Families and friends are invited—feel free to bring activities for kids if you like, there’s lots of room.

  • 236x230-super-bowl-party-free-clipart-super-bowl-clip-art-236_230When: Sunday, February 4, from 3 to 7 p.m. Kick-off is at 3:30, and the first door prize depends on the first commercial after kick-off.
  • Where: Spurlock Art & Wine, 202 N. Redwood Hwy., Grants Pass—plenty of parking.
  • What: Buffet provided, dinner menu and cash bar available (wine, beer, cider, soft drinks)—bring door prizes if you’d like to give any away (football-related or not).

Our annual Paul Harris Fellow Super Bowl Pool is getting the club closer to coveted EREY—Every Rotarian Every Year—status, meaning each of us has made at least the minimum $25 donation to The Rotary Foundation. Only about 10 of the 70 clubs in our district attain EREY status, and we have been one in each of the past three years.
If you haven’t yet donated and wish to get squares, there are three ways your donation could give you a chance to win a Paul Harris Fellow Award:

  1. Come to our Feb. 1 noon meeting at the Wild River Pub, and sign up before the final 39 squares are gone,
  2. Send an e-mail or text to Greg Fishwick at 541-373-3714 to reserve your squares and then a check made out to The Rotary Foundation for the number of squares you want (3/$25) to Greg Fishwick, 1216 NE Memorial Drive, Grants Pass OR 97526-1443.
  3. Come to our Super Bowl Party and hope there are still some squares left!

You need not be present to win, and you don’t have to care about the game (or donate to TRF) to attend—there’s room to mingle with members and guests, and fun door prizes.

Celebrate Super Bowl and make your annual TRF donation

Rogue Gateway is among a select-few of clubs in Rotary District 5110 to earn Every Rotarian Every Year (EREY) status. That means every member in our club has donated to The Rotary Foundation annual fund.


To make EREY achievable, the club sponsors an annual Super Bowl party and pool. This year’s party is set for Sunday afternoon, Feb. 1, at Spurlock Art & Wine, 202 N. Redwood Hwy,  Grants Pass. Fun, fellowship and contests are planned.

Prior to the event, members are invited to purchase three squares in the pool for just $25. The winner of the pool earns a Paul Harris Fellow, a prestigious award named after one of Rotary International’s three founders.

For details, contact Greg Fishwick at 51-373-3714.

Frances Dixon forges partnerships with multiple Rotary clubs

In 1991, Frances Dixon was invited to speak at a Rotary Club about Guatemala’s long-standing 36-year civil war. Dixon had just established her nonprofit organization, Adopt-a-Village in Guatemala, in the unlikely location of northwest Guatemala where the conflict was at its most intense. “The mission of the organization,” she explained to the audience, “is to provide access to education for hundreds of disadvantaged indigenous youth who have suffered the worst hardships of social inequality.”

Inspired by Dixon’s compelling message about the Mayan people of Guatemala, whose human rights had been brutally violated in the government’s genocidal war, the Bonita Springs Rotary Club of southwest Florida awarded Adopt-a-Village in Guatemala $1,000 to purchase a small area of land where it would build its first school.

This event marked the beginning of an almost three-decade partnership with Rotary Clubs to help build schools, water systems, roads, and homes for the poor during the post-war construction era.

The refugees who came flooding back from Mexico after the peace treaty was signed—many suffering from tuberculosis and other illnesses—were aided by Adopt-a-Village through a generous Rotary Global grant.

Dixon, a tireless advocate for social justice and the Mayan people of northwestern Guatemala, was mindful that while these development projects offered much-needed aid to help the Maya rebuild their lives, it would not result in long-term change. She came to believe that the only hope for real and lasting peace in this beautiful but troubled country would come through education. Her goal focused on offering a quality education to Mayan youth—they would be the ones to change their country’s future for the better.

Today, a unique educational community—Adopt-a-Village’s Mayan Center for Education and Development—stands in a remote rainforest mountain where dozens of impoverished young Maya live and thrive as a result of the transformative education they receive. Moreover, surrounding villages have benefited from the organization’s outreach programs, which include initiatives ranging from sustainable gardening and nutrition to literacy training.

Rotary Clubs have helped to fund the solar equipment that powers the middle and high schools in the Center. They have also helped to equip the schools with impressive computer and science labs—the first of their kind in the region. A state-of-the-art satellite system ensures that students can access the Internet for educational research. The Mayan Center’s buildings are architecturally designed to withstand earthquakes, and a rainwater collection system serves the entire campus and its organic gardens. Students share daily chores that include food preparation, grounds keeping, managing the small chicken farm, and tending to the campus gardens that produce nutritious vegetables for staff and students.

The Mayan Center’s curriculum includes community outreach programs designed to provide students with practical training to hone their skills, as well as aid members of their communities. An adjoining rain forest habitat offers students a rare opportunity to experience interactive learning in science and biology while studying the endangered wildlife living in the area.

Drawn to the extraordinary international efforts of Rotary, Dixon became a member in 1994 in Florida where she served as World Community Service chair at club and district levels. She is the proud recipient of a District Rotary Foundation Service Award, is a multiple Paul Harris fellow, and a Rotary alumna. When she moved to southwest Oregon five years ago, she continued her membership by joining the Rogue Gateway Rotary Club. “I am extremely grateful for the wonderful partnerships I have formed with Rotary Clubs over the years. It has been a rewarding experience to be a part of leadership efforts to build peace in the world,” she says.