At a special club meeting held on the evening of Friday, May 27th, the Rotary Club of Bracebridge celebrated the upcoming 25th year of operation for the Rotary Centre for Youth.
Special guests at the event included Mayor Graydon Smith, Honourary Members Ken Black and Ken Cumming as well as retired Rotarian and former Town Treasurer Andy Nelan.
The Rotary Centre for Youth is located at 131 Wellington Street and is used 4 nights a week by the local Girl Guides and 1st Bracebridge Scout Canada groups and was officially opened in early June 1991. In addition to thanking the special guests, all who played roles in helping the club make the RCY a reality, the Club honoured one of the members, Bob Jones who played a key role in the development of the facility as well as its operations over the past 25 years.
Mr. Jones was honoured as a Paul Harris Fellow plus 3 (+3). According to Cheryl Kelley, President of the Rotary Club of Bracebridge, “Bob was a member of the Steering Committee for the Building Committee; overseen the construction using his professional expertise as a contractor and has served on the Operating Committee for the Rotary Centre for Youth for the past 25 years. His commitment to our Club and the youth of our community exemplifies the humanitarian objectives of Rotary International. Members of our Club were proud to present him with this recognition”.
The construction of the RCY 25 years ago was funded by a “Wintario Grant” from the Province of Ontario as well as through Club fundraising. The Rotary Club held two annual “house draws” as well as a “cash elimination draw” to pay off the cost of construction within three years of construction. The RCY is situated on land leased from the Town of Bracebridge for a nominal amount. The Club operates the RCY and some of the costs are offset by rentals such as weddings, engagement parties, Christmas parties, business and organizational meetings.
The RCY is used for various functions hosted by the Rotary Club of Bracebridge including the Club’s weekly Friday lunch meetings. Kelley said, “The Club is looking forward to supporting the youth of the community by making the centre available to the community’s youth for the next 25 years”.