Jekyll Island Lions Gain New Member

The Jekyll Island Lions Club gained a new member at its dinner meeting on 7 November.  Joan Mirasola was sponsored by her father, Lion Frank, and will be a welcome addition to the Club.  Bob Sowinski was a guest at the meeting and expressed his interest in joining the Club, too.


Flags in the Historic District

Lion Jim organized the display of American Flags in the Beach Village and Historic District on Veterans Day, 11 November.  The flag displays are sponsored by the Jekyll Business Association and fly from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.

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Lion Cathy has been promoting diabetes awareness through the Jekyll Island Residents Facebook group.  Lions Clubs International has adopted diabetes as a new focus and the Jekyll Island Lions will follow up the awareness campaign in November with a public presentation on the topic in February.


The Club will be selling Guggisberg Baby Swiss Cheese on Saturday, 18 November, in the Beach Village.  There will be 4-pound and 2-pound wheels for sale as well as 1-pound wedges.  Cheese sales are one of the Clubs biggest fund raising activities.


Jekyll Island Lions Attend District Cabinet Meeting


Jekyll Island Lions C. J. (Club President) and Pete (Club First Vice President) attended the Multiple District (MD) 18N meeting in Richmond Hill, Georgia, on 28 October.  There was a workshop on service projects and fundraising, lunch, the business portion with committee reports, and some fun by the Tail Twister.  The leadership had a mummy-wrapping contest to see who could wrap their mummy the fastest with toilet paper!  Lion C. J. won the door prize.

The Richmond Hill Lions Club has a new clubhouse, the Burnard Exley Building, with plenty of space for meetings and other gatherings.  It has a full service kitchen, too.  The club served subway-style sandwiches with muffins and brownies for dessert.


As a District fundraiser, they were selling yellow T-shirts at $15 each.  Both Lions C. J. and Pete bought one.  When working on projects or doing Lions Club activities, it is always useful to publicize that we are Lions and these shirts do just that.

Most of the MD 18N leadership attended the meeting and addressed the group.  Current District Governor Len Cutuli presented former District Governor Larry Vernadoe with an award (left picture).  Treasurer Rick Mizell gave the financial status of the District (top right).  District First Vice Governor Billy Carroll (bottom right) will be coming to Jekyll Island to address the Club on 5 December.

Towards the end, the District leadership team divided into two groups and then had a contest to see which team could wrap a mummy the fastest.  It was good fun and a nice interruption from the business portion of the meeting.

Jekyll Island Lions Club Events

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Before discussing upcoming events, let’s do some bragging about the Jekyll Island Lions Club Awards Banner.  The Club has been active over many years earning a variety of awards, and these achievements have been displayed on the Club banner.  Since the Club does not have a club house and has moved to different restaurants for meetings, the banner ended up being shuffled around and has fallen into disrepair.  In fact, it has not been displayed at Club meetings for over a year.  Lion Cathy is reviving the banner and it will once again be prominent at meetings (once a replacement stand is found).

The Club’s Board of Directors met on 23 October and mapped out activities for the next two months.  Fundraising will resume with Amish Baby Swiss Cheese sales and bell ringing for the Salvation Army.  There are also two American flag displays in November.  Here is the events calendar for next month:

7 November: Dinner meeting at McCormick’s Grill.  A new member will be inducted at this meeting!

11 November: Veterans’ Day American flag display in the Beach Village and Historic District.  Lion Jim is the contact.

18 November: Amish Baby Swiss Cheese sale in the Beach Village.  This year, the Club will be selling 1 pound wedges, 2 pound wheels, and 4 pound wheels.  Lion Rick is the contact.

21 November: A special Thanksgiving dinner at McCormick’s Grill.  Spouses are invited!  Glynn County Commission Chairman Bill Brunson will be the guest speaker.

23 November: Thanksgiving Day American flag display in the Beach Village and Historic District.  Lion Jim is the contact.

24-25 November: Lions will be ringing the Salvation Army bell in the Beach Village.  Lion Mike is the contact.

lions diabetes awareness logo 2017

In addition to the November events, the Club will be using social media to discuss diabetes awareness, a new focus of Lions Clubs International.  Diabetes has become an international medical epidemic and Lions are addressing it.  Lion Cathy will be leading the online charge for the Club.


The Jekyll Island Lions Club lost a treasured member this past week.  Lion Clay had been a member of the Club since 2000.  His wit and charm at meetings will be missed.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

Jekyll Island MOSAiC Project Discussed at Lions Club Meeting


22489951_932465590244364_1800788629187719480_nMr. Bruce Piatek, Jekyll Island Authority Director of Historical Resources, was the guest speaker at the Jekyll Island Lions Club dinner meeting on 17 October.  He focused on the renovation and updating of the Jekyll Island Museum, which will be known as MOSAiC.  In addition, he touched upon plans for upgrading The Wanderer memorial, the proposed colonial garden at the Horton House, and the status of the Gould Casino in the Historic District.  After answering several questions at the end of the talk, First Vice President Pete presented Mr. Piatek with a handsome Lions Clubs International coffee mug.

In other activity, Secretary Cathy created a Club email address:  The intent is to use the email address for official business.  The account can then be used as a consolidated repository for Club activity and business.  It will also provide a single contact point for people corresponding with the Club, including potential new members.

Jekyll Island Lions’ Flags, Beaches and Glasses

The Jekyll Island Lions Club displayed 12 American flags in the Beach Village and 10 American flags in the Historic District on 9 October for the Columbus Day holiday.  Lions Jim, Howard and Pete put out the flags at 8:00 am and flew them until 5:00 pm.  While the weather was threatening rain in the afternoon, it held off and the flags remained dry.  Many in the Jekyll Island community expressed appreciation for the flags display.

Beach Clean-Up

Lion Pete with Georgia Sea Turtle Center staff members Matt and Sera.

The Georgia Sea Turtle Center has been hosting a series of beach clean-up events since Tropical Storm Irma damaged Jekyll Island in mid-September.  Lion Pete joined the clean-up team on 10 October at 5:30 pm for a sweep of Driftwood Beach.  The debris collected was divided into recyclable materials and trash.  Each item collected was logged in the Marine Debris Tracker app for further analysis to understand the types and amounts of garbage in the ocean environment.  The team worked until 7:00 pm and collected a wide variety of trash blown onto the shore by Irma.

Lions Cathy and Pete volunteered with the Georgia Lions Lighthouse Foundation eye clinic on 11 October at the Coastal Medical Access Project in Brunswick.  Foundation managers Javina Belton and Kamesha Walker ran the clinic, which fitted nine patients with glasses.  When the team arrived, they discovered several donated bins, boxes, and bags of used eye glasses for recycling, which probably were left by another local Lions Club.  The next clinic in Brunswick will be in December.

Jekyll Island Lions Resume Golf Fundraiser

The Jekyll Island Lions Club met on 3 October after taking an unscheduled break thanks to Tropical Storm Irma.  There was a lot of business to discuss before having dinner together at McCormick’s Grill.  Lion Harry explained that the Club’s agreement with McCormick’s Grill requires him to submit the number of attendees several days in advance so that they know how many meals to prepare.  It is therefore important for Lions to respond promptly to his attendance requests.


Lion Cathy talked about her experience at the USA/Canada Lions Leadership Forum and the project seminar where she joined other Lions in putting together personal hygiene kits for the homeless.  She then led a discussion about service in which each member explained why they joined the Lions.  Lion Cathy is the Club Secretary and requested that her fellow Lions submit their volunteer hours to her so she can record them.

Lion Pam advised the Club that the St. Augustine (Florida) Lions put on a huge Seafood Festival every year.  The next festival is 16-18 March 2018 and volunteers from other Lions Clubs can earn money for their Clubs at the festival.  She suggested that volunteering at this festival would be a good fundraising opportunity for the Jekyll Island Lions Club.


Years ago, the Jekyll Island Lions Club was known for the annual golf tournament that it used to host as a fundraising event.  President C. J. and Lion Howard recommended bringing the tournament back but perhaps at a more modest level.  Lion Harry has experience running golf tournaments and he thinks the Club’s membership can put one on.  He suggested a 2-person scramble limited to about 90 people.  The Club approved hosting a tournament and it will be held on 8 March 2018.

2018 Golf


USA/Canada Lions Leadership Forum

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Jekyll Island Lions Cathy and Pete attended the USA/Canada Lions Leadership Forum in Portland, Oregon this year.  The Forum consists of a series of seminars related to Lions activities punctuated by luncheons and dinners featuring guest speakers.  The Forum was held in the Oregon Convention Center, which also hosted the Forum Store (LCI logo items) and the Exhibitors Hall.

This year, the special guest speakers were former astronaut Dr. LeRoy Chiao, gymnast Jen Bricker, LCI President Naresh Aggarwal, and motivational speaker Dr. Willie Jolley.  All of them were engaging and interesting.  Dr. Jolley accepted an invitation to become a Lion at the end of his presentation!



The Forum hosted 88 different seminars throughout the three days.  Lions Cathy and Peter participated in the following ones:

  1. It’s More Than “Just Ask:”Make a great first impression, share your story and welcome new Lions to your group.
  2. We Want You! We Need You!: – Engage younger people to serve. Keep your clubs vital with young energy and enthusiasm.
  3. Hands-On: Serving the Citizens of Portland:See below!
  4. Social Media – Making It Work for Service:Do you know how to build your network, enhance your social media presence and connect platforms?  Join us to learn.

Hands-On: Serving the Citizens of Portland was an actual service project.  Portland has many homeless people; they are visible in the parks and under the bridges.  Most live in small tents or have no shelter at all.  The goal of this service project was to make personal hygiene kits for them.  The Lions implementing this project saved the used eye glass cases that they found in their recycle eye glasses donation boxes.  Each case was disinfected prior to the Forum.  The seminar participants jobs were to insert into each case 3 band aids, 3 wet wipes, deodorant gel, body lotion, shampoo, tooth brush, tooth paste, emery board, comb, and ink pen.  A Lions Club label was then pasted on top and the hygiene kit was put into a plastic bag.  Teams of 13 Lions lined tables with boxes of the items and in an assembly-line fashion, they put together 2,000 kits in 90 minutes.

Lions Cathy and Pete picked up a few LCI logo items in the Forum shop.  The shop offered dozens of logo shirts in addition to all sorts of pens, decals, signs, cups, etc.  Most of the items are not available through the online LCI store.  The neighboring exhibition hall included booths for Leader Dogs for the Blind, Zenni Optical, Paws with a Cause, Diabetes Education & Camping Association, Global Initiative for Health & Wellness, Plusoptix, Eversight, Welch Allyn, the LCI Rose Parade Float group, MyLion App, and many others.

The Lions University Graduation was the final activity in the seminar spaces.  Lions Cathy and Pete were in the group who received their Bachelor’s degrees.  Others received their Master’s or Doctorate’s.  Some even obtained multiple diplomas.  LCI President Naresh Aggarwal shook each graduate’s hand while they were being photographed.  Afterwards, graduates could take their own pictures in front of the Forum back drop (see below).


On a side note, Lions Cathy and Pete stayed at the nearby DoubleTree Hotel.  They discovered a nice restaurant for breakfast called the Village Inn.  As it turned out, that’s where the local Lions hold their meetings.  The restaurant even lets them sell Lions mints to raise funds.

The next USA/Canada Leadership Forum will be held in Columbus, Ohio.  The Ohio Team was very enthusiastic and closed the Forum with a pep rally and slide show.

Jekyll Island Lions and Hurricane Irma

Irma House Damage

With the approach of Hurricane Irma, Glynn County,  including Jekyll Island, was placed under a mandatory evacuation order effective 8:00 am on Friday, 8 September.  All of the Lions and most of the residents left.  By the time Irma reached the island, she had been downgraded to a tropical storm, but she was still destructive, flooding streets, blowing down trees, and knocking out power and water.  Jekyll Island was only opened to returning evacuees on Thursday, 14 September after the storm had passed and the authorities had cleared the roads.  Upon returning, a current Lion and a “retired” Lion found trees on their homes.

Irma House Damage

In light of the need to clean up property and otherwise deal with the effects of Tropical Storm Irma, the Jekyll Island Lions Club decided to cancel its dinner meeting scheduled for 19 September.  Guest speakers Glynn County Commissioner Bill Brunson and County Executive Alan Ours will be rescheduled for a later date.

Meanwhile, the deadline for submitting changes to the residential listing in the telephone directory published by the Jekyll Island Lions Club was 15 September.  Lion Cathy arrived back on the island and electricity was restored just in time for her to add the last changes before sending it to Lion C. J., who will deliver it to the layout company along with the commercial advertisements.

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Lions Cathy and Peter will be attending the USA/Canada Lions Leadership Forum in Portland, Oregon this week.  A complete report will be included in the next blog.

Jekyll Island Lions First Meeting and a Hurricane


This blog entry is being written while Hurricane Irma crawls north.  Jekyll Island started a mandatory evacuation at 8:00 am on Friday, 8 September and no one knows to what damage everyone will return.  The Lions will consider how to help when they come back home.  For safety, the 13 September Georgia Lions Lighthouse Foundation eye clinic at the Coastal Medical Access Project (CMAP) in Brunswick was canceled.


The Jekyll Island Lions Club held its first meeting after summer break on 5 September.  President C. J.  opened the meeting and Zone Chair Charles Garthwaite, Kingsland Lions Club, was the guest speaker.  Past President Mike received the past president plaque during the meeting.  Member turnout for the first meeting was light.


The Jekyll Island Lions Club again flew American flags on Labor Day.  Lion Jim coordinated the flag displays in the Historic District and the Beach Village.









Lions Secretary/Treasurer Training Reveals Club Changes

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Lion Cathy, the new Secretary of the Jekyll Island Lions Club, attended Secretary/Treasurer training on 19 August at the Kingsland Lions Club clubhouse. During the training, she learned that the club structure had changed on 1 July.  Two new positions added to the club leadership structure were Club Service Chair and Club Marketing Communications Chair.  In addition, the number of Directors has been increased.  Lion Cathy volunteered to be the new Service Chair and Lion Pete volunteered to be the Marketing Communications Chair pending next year’s nomination and election process.


In other activity, Lion Harry has taken over dinner meeting coordination with McCormick’s Grill.  Club President C.J. and Lion Tamer Harry met with the manager of McCormick’s Grill to work out the menu for the coming year.   Dinner is served buffet-style but only enough food is cooked for the number of attendees so dinner reservations must be made in advance.  From September through May, the Club meets on the first and third Tuesday of the month.  One of the monthly meetings focuses on Club activities and the other meeting has a guest speaker.  The first speaker this season will be Mr. Bruce Piatek, Jekyll Island Authority Director of Historic Resources, who will give a presentation on 19 September.  Doors open at 6:00 pm with an open cash bar and the meeting begins at 6:30 pm.   The Club is fortunate to have McCormick’s Grill all to itself for these meetings.

During the summer, Lions Gaye and Kay resigned in good standing.  Two other Lions had their memberships revoked for non-payment of dues and non-attendance at meetings after they did not respond to queries about their situation.  There are currently 21 active members of the Jekyll Island Lions Club.