Long-standing Service

Rotary begins year-long anniversary celebration with Southmont Interact Club

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NEW MARKET — As part of Crawfordsville Rotary’s 100th anniversary celebration, set to take place throughout 2020, members invited the community and Southmont’s 60-strong Interact Club to a ceremonious luncheon Wednesday at Southmont High School.

Complete with local and district Rotarian guests, members of the community and even a violinist to create a sophisticated atmosphere, the luncheon served as a way to provide student Rotarians with a glimpse of the professional world they are likely to experience after graduation.

Opening the ceremony was Interact Club President Elizabeth Truncone, a senior at Southmont.

“This is the second year of Interact here at Southmont. Though we haven’t been around for long, I truly believe we are starting to make an impact on our community and internationally,” Truncone said. “Throughout two years we currently have 60 members and are always encouraging people who aren’t as involved in organizations at Southmont to join.”

Truncone said she and her peers enjoy the service-based group. Each year the club selects one local and one international service project to complete.

This year, our international service project took place last fall,” she explained. “We raised money to fund a Christmas dinner and to provide toys for children for a village in need (in Haiti).”

The students held a bake sale, received donations once the word spread and sold hot chocolate at the Christmas parade alongside other Rotarians.

This year’s local service project is set to benefit the Youth Service Bureau for the upcoming Child Abuse Prevention Month in April.

Also at the luncheon, which served as an official meeting for both Crawfordsville Rotary and the Interact Club, was Youth Exchange Chairman Dan Leaird. His son Declan, who spent a year in Finland as an exchange Rotarian, was present alongside 16-year-old German citizen Johanna Reinsch.

“For me, starting before the exchange, it was a rough decision to leave my country and my family for a year, but Rotary took me by the hand and walked me through it,” she said. “Now we’re all over the world in different time zones, and it’s just really cool.”

More is set to come from the Rotary Club and its active involvement with the community this year. Concerts, food festivals, auctions, classes and its biannual Wine to Water event are set between now and March of next year.

For more information about upcoming events, the Youth Exchange Program, how to donate or become involved, call the Crawfordsville Chamber of Commerce at 765-362-6800.

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