Six Rotary Clubs with 218 members have served the communities of Apache Junction, Chandler, Gilbert, Gold Canyon and Sun Lakes collectively for more than 250 years.  Four Past District Governors of District 5510 are members of these clubs. The clubs support student attendance at RYLA and participate in the Dictionary Project. This year, they delivered over 5,000 dictionaries to schools in their respective school districts. They also held a multi-club dinner for the District Governor’s visit to Area 8 on October 25.
Chandler Rotary Club
Founded in 1934, the Chandler club is one of four clubs in Area 8 that are involved with the community of Chandler. Their signature projects are the Golf Classic (the 8th Annual event was held in November) and the Chandler Rotary Track Meet. These projects support scholarships for graduating seniors and their other projects with Chandler nonprofits. To the left, Club Members Scott Taylor, Troy Norris, and President Catrina Boppart are pictured with Miss Arizona and the flag of Futbol Club de Arizona at a recent meeting. To the right are club members Ron Capernash, Gabrielle Schwartz, Ed Corbett, Past President Joe Wallace, James Shank and Past President Bob Rice taking a brief break during a service project to assemble Friday Food Boxes for the Chandler Christian Community Center. On January 13, they dedicated a Peace Pole at the Chandler Downtown Library (see separate article).
Chandler Horizon Rotary Club
Founded in 1987, this is the only “singing” club in Area 8 and they do so enthusiastically and with great gusto. Their 25th Annual Hole-In-One Contest will be held February 17 to March 3, and the finals will be on March 4. Their list of Community and Vocational Service projects focusing on families and children is lengthy. International Service has included projects in Ecuador, Guatemala, India, Mexico and Nigeria. Six club members—James Caskey, Bruce Dransfeldt, Doug Gardner, Tim Gibson, Roger Morsch and Jerry Turner—returned from Houston near the end of January where they participated with Houston Rotarians to help a resident, Terrie, remodel her house following the flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey. Terrie’s house is about 30 years old in a well-maintained neighborhood. To the left are Doug Gardner, Jerry Turner, and the trailer they used to haul their tools to Houston. Terrie received some funds from FEMA to repair the structural damage and replace the roof. Funds from Rotarian donations will replace the drywall, doors, trim, cabinet tops, flooring and repainting. Other funds will replace the appliances. The Chandler-Horizon Rotarians on the ladder are James Caskey and Roger Morsch. The Rotarians who participated said, “Most of us never have nor ever will experience this type of loss.”
Gilbert Rotary Club
Founded in 1984, the Gilbert club is uniquely Gilbert. As the only Rotary Club in the Town of Gilbert, it reflects the character of a small town that has undergone very rapid, but deliberate, growth. Like Rotary itself, the Gilbert Rotary Club is active in local service, yet international in scope; and provincial in its history. It is rich in new members from all over the country whose fresh perspectives enrich the club. Gilbert’s growth is its strength and the Gilbert Rotary club’s vision is to make that growth friendly and inviting. They sponsor two Interact clubs at Gilbert and Perry high schools. Service projects include a Senior Holiday Breakfast, Gilbert High School scholarships, meals for the homeless at Paz de Cristo, the Midwest Food Bank and the Gilbert Boys & Girls Club. Their Navajo Water Global Grant Project for $74,250 was approved in December. This project will provide 15 self-contained home water systems on the Navajo Reservation in north western New Mexico. Their international partner is the San Andrés Cholulu Rotary Club in Mexico.
San Tan Crown Rotary Club
Founded in 2001, one of the San Tan Crown club’s primary areas of interest is support for veterans. They will be holding their 3rd Annual Hooked on Healing Veterans Motorcycle Ride on February 24. They also support Healing Waters Fly Fishing for veterans. They provide scholarships at Basha High School and St. Peters and vocational scholarships at Sunshine Angels Residential Home. Working with the ASU Rotaract Club, they distribute Source Books in the Sunbird area.
Sun Lakes Rotary Club
Founded in 1986, Sun Lakes is the largest club in Area 8 with membership of more than 85 active Rotarians. They held their 21st annual Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser in November. They provide scholarships for deserving students in the Boys and Girls Club of the East Valley and the Chandler and Hamilton High Schools. In July, they held a Child Shopping Spree to help children obtain needed supplies to return for the new school year. They use the Choices Program to demonstrate to ninth graders that the students do have choices in what they do. They also conduct a program called AWIM (A World in Motion) that brings science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) to life in the classroom for students in kindergarten through Grade 12. In recent years they have conducted Rotary Friendship Exchanges with Australia and Sweden. They also distribute Source Books throughout Sun Lakes. Their 25th annual golf tournament will be held on March 11. The club will host a Four-Way Test Speech Contest on April 3.
Superstition Mountain Rotary Club
Founded in 1961, the Superstition Mountain Rotary Club covers Apache Junction and Gold Canyon. Their fundraising and service projects include the annual Lost Dutchman Days Marathon and Rodeo and an annual golf tournament. The club partnered with The Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona and interviewed three candidates for scholarships. Club President Ed Shockley is shown supporting the Mesa West Rotary Club’s bell ringing for the Salvation Army. Their annual golf tournament was held in January. Their fundraising efforts result in support for the Apache Junction Boys and Girls Club, Apache Junction Food Bank and Apache Junction High School scholarships. The Lost Dutchman Marathon will be held on February 18 followed by the three-day rodeo February 23-25. District Governor-Elect Jim Erickson is a member of this club.