Rotary Stocks Food Bank

La Grande Rotary received emergency COVID grant funds from Rotary District 5100 to help families with food needs in Union County.  These funds purchased 1200 pounds of fresh vegetables and fruit from our Saturday Market that were distributed last Saturday to the Food Bank. Michelle Long, past president of La Grande Rotary, wrote the grant, purchased, and delivered the food.  Now that is Rotary in Action!

Michelle and Jessy Watson’s dad, Larry.

This Week at Rotary

Mike Billman spoke to Rotarians gathered at Pioneer Park Pavilion this week. A backdrop of trees was an appropriate setting for a talk on Oregon Forestry. Billman’s thirty years experience in leading both private and State efforts to manage forests has thrust him in a pivotal position of urging the use of collaboration as a method for managing healthy forests.  By developing working relationships with teams of foresters, timber owners and mills, and environmentalists, Billman has found that collaborative resolutions can avoid litigation and acrimony and achieve the aims of having a healthy forest.


Hot dogs, hamburgers, pickle juice, mayonnaise, and sticky sodas made grimy surfaces on Pioneer Park picnic benches this summer. Craig Nightingale, pictured, scrubs down at the Rotary Pavilion in Pioneer Park, Tuesday.  Thanks to service-oriented Rotarians, it is time to have another picnic!

La Grande Rotary Donates to Fire Victims

Dave Koza delivers a care package to Jared Maxwell of Baker County Farm Bureau. Rotarians are making contributions to a trailer load of donations headed to the Oregon State Fairgrounds to be dispersed to victims of the wildfires burning around Oregon. If you’d like to donate, please take goods to Legacy Ford in La Grande by noon 9-17-2020. They are accepting gently used clothing, diapers, packaged food, wheelchairs, and other goods.

This Week at Rotary: 9-15-2020

Twenty Rotarians hopped onto the Hollywood Squares zoom meeting this week to greet District Governor Jo Crenshaw (second from right, top row).  Jo gave the club greetings from smoky Portland and congratulated the club for our work in the region and beyond.  She gave us a pep talk on how we could be helpful in the current fire/smoke/homeless situation as did Aloras Winters (Hermiston Rotary Club). The Club will determine how best to support our region with special crisis grant opportunities offered by 5100.

This Week at Rotary

La Grande Rotarians met for lunch and fellowship at the La Grande Rotary Pavilion in Pioneer Park this last week. The Pavilion was constructed by the La Grande Rotary in 2004 as a community service project. The structure seats 60 and can be rented by contacting the La Grande Parks at

This Week at Rotary: 8-1-2020

La Grande Rotarian Jessy Watson reported to the Club the status of the EOU Soccer Program. He explained that although soccer will not be played this fall, a spring season will commence in February. Even though recruiting is difficult online and through video, he has landed some great players. He will have six international students this year from the UK, Argentina, and South Africa. EOU Soccer anticipates a full season and natioanls in Georgia. Go Mountaineers!

Jeff Crews: Paul Harris Fellow, 2019-20

At La Grande Rotary’s recent annual meeting, Jeff Crews was awarded a Paul Harris Fellow. This award recognizes Rotarians in the club who have contributed consistently over many years and who showcase Rotary’s motto of Service Above Self. Jeff is past president of the club, takes care of the deep data and web machinery for Daddy Daughter dance ticket sales, helps all with technology for presenting, shows up to all the Rotary activities, and is always in the mix when there is work to be done. Jeff is a positive and joyful example of what it means to be People of Action!


La Grande Rotarian of the Year

Michelle Long was recently named Rotarian of the Year for 2019-20. When she agreed to be president of La Grande Rotary she never expected the year to be so challenging! She was able to navigate and lead the organization through the initial months of the pandemic with aplomb. Keeping the club connected and involved, Michelle convened the club through Zoom, emails, and phone calls. Working to make the activities of the club successful, she did a wonderful job. We were truly blessed to have her leadership over this past year.

Masks to the Rescue!

This week, La Grande Rotary Board Member Jason Isaacson, who is also the Manager at our local Carpet One store, delivered masks to schools in Union County. The masks will be used by the staff at each school! Rotary and Carpet One purchased the masks as a way to help the community adjust to the new restrictions brought about by the pandemic. Jason contacted every school in the county, learned what their need was, and then followed up by delivering masks to each school who asked for them.

Rotary Club is a service organization of voluntary members just like Jason who are working hard to make a positive difference in our community. If you’re interested in learning more about La Grande Rotary and know Jason or another member, reach out to them with any questions you may have!”