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September 7, 2020 (Happy Labor Day)
Greetings and I hope you are enjoying a beautiful and relaxing Labor Day holiday. Great weather to fire up the grill, enjoy family, and prepare for a busy September. Last month was Membership Month and we did add two new members.  Stay tuned for more coming aboard! Don't forget, please invite friends and associates interested in Rotary to attend a Zoom meeting.  Just have them click the yellow "Membership Inquiry" at the top of and fill out some basic information for an invite!
September's theme is Education and Literacy. We hope to bring pertinent information during this unusual month in which we see our children returning to school-some in person, some virtually. And rest assured, September marks the return of our BAVTS Artisan of the Month and shadow students thanks to the efforts of Nikki Gingrich-our Vocational Committee Chair. I look forward to hearing from these outstanding students about their vocational training and future plans.
Announced at the last meeting. we received the official charter certificate for the new Interact Club of Liberty High School that Bethlehem Rotary is sponsoring. Congratulations to the students, Diane Donaher, Maria Dietrich and the committee for investing in our future leaders.
Last week we heard from Cal Virgilio who manages The Granola Factory in downtown Bethlehem with his parents Sue and Bob. Cal presented a timeline from when his mother prepared her own granola for guests who stayed at their B&B-The Bethlehem Inn to present. In 2006, after pitching the product to Wegmans, they were able to find placement in the chain and start growing the company that we know and love today. While initially made in the basement of the B&B, 2007 saw the purchase of the old Deschler's Fish Market off Broad St. and opening of the new manufacturing facility.
By 2011, Cal quit his job and joined the family business full time. And he has guided their steady expansion from the East Coast to the Midwest. You can find the delicious products at Wegmans, Giant, and Whole Foods or order from their website: AND, Cal is graciously providing several cartons of Bethlehem Bars to be auctioned off in our upcoming Taste & Tunes Dessert Edition on-line auction. It's just not for breakfast!
Speaking of Taste & Tunes, the committee has been very busy preparing for the October 4-18 on-line auction. We can ALWAYS use more sponsors-please consider one our sponsorship levels or recruit another business that believes in helping Northeast Community Center and our own Foundation. The need is greater than ever and we can make a difference.  And we still need a few more Desserts to feature on the auction. If your favorite bakery or restaurant is hurting due to the pandemic, please -- BUY A DESSERT from them and they will get exposure to new customers. We sent an email last week on how easy it is, for more details contact Deb Geiger at This win-win event will keep the pantry stocked at NECC, allow our Foundation to give meaningful grants to organizations reeling from COVID-19, and keep our bakeries and restaurants aware that we support them.
This week we will hear from our District Governor Janet Kolepp. Janet is a good friend of our club and a member of Bethlehem Morning Star Rotary. Janet will share her vision for the next year, as well as what Rotary International sees as a big opportunity to us to move forward, grow, and help the world more than ever despite the pandemic.
See you Wednesday!
Yours in Rotary service,
President Pete Mickolay