The 95th annual Georgia State Lions Convention took place from 3 to 5 June at Callaway Gardens in western Georgia. The convention was booked at Callaway Gardens’ Mountain Creek Inn. Lions from across the state and dignitaries from elsewhere were in attendance. The locale provided a beautiful backdrop to three days of business, education, food and fun.
The opening ceremony started at 7:00 pm on 3 June with the presentation of flags, followed by the National Anthem and the Pledge of Allegiance. Several awards were then presented and the evening ended with entertainment by singers Eddie Davenport, who is a blind supporter of Lions Clubs International, and Elyse Barnett.
The next morning, Lions divided up by district and had buffet breakfasts in their respective ballrooms. Georgia has four districts, 18-L, 18-I, 18-O and 18-N, and Jekyll Island is in 18-N. While we ate, officials from the convention and District 18-N introduced themselves, discussed issues of importance, and gave out door prizes.
After breakfast, Lions got down to business with committee reports, voting on constitutional changes, and electing a nominee to run for third Vice President of Lions Clubs International. Jekyll Island was allowed two voting delegates based on the size of the club. The session ended with the presentation of many state awards. During the Melvin Jones Fellows luncheon that followed, the Melvin Jones Fellows were introduced to the convention attendees.
In the afternoon, several group-specific meetings and training sessions took place. The Jekyll Island Lions attended the following training sessions: 1) Your Club’s Image: Relevance; 2) Making Your Club Young Again; and 3) Club Project Workshop: New Ideas. The District Governors Banquet completed the evening with an address by past International President Jimmy Ross from the Quitaque Lions Club in Texas, the presentation of more state awards, Erwin-Crumbly awards, and international awards.
The Sunday morning breakfast was similar to Saturday’s. While eating, certificates were presented to many of the clubs in District 18-N and Jekyll Island received one from Learning Ally, an organization that produces audio publications for the blind.
The final sessions included a necrology service to remember Lions who had died during the past year; reports from the Council Secretary, Council Treasurer, Lions Clubs International Foundation; and bids on future state conventions.
Aside from the business agenda, vendors and non-profit Lion organizations attended the convention plus a silent auction was held to benefit the Georgia Lions Camp.
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