2017-08-09, Rosie Goodson & Mel Godby, Sister Cities Visit to Nienburg

President Lya Jordan called the meeting to order at 12:07 and Mary Ellen McKay welcomed everyone with a reading of the Prayer of St. Francis for Unity in these troubling times.  Lya led us in the Pledge of Allegiance and Daniel Payne led us in singing America (My Country ‘Tis of Thee).  We then sang Happy Birthday to all those Rotarians with birthdays in August!  Lya recognized all our guests and we mingled to say hello to each other.  Kristi Granados was the mystery greeter. 

Happy Dollars:  Wow, we had lots of Happy Dollars – Lya Jordan donated 5 Happy Dollars in honor of her granddaughter’s 16th birthday and new car; Gary Aschbacher had Happy Dollars for Theresa’s new doctor and diagnosis; Mel Parish is happy his knees are working again and Blaine Goss is happy he is still alive after all the teasing he received the previous week; Patty Groth is happy to be working with fellow Rotarian Wendy Clarke at WDG Architects; Lorenzo Alba is happy to see Goerge; Lyn Ames is sooooo happy that the Indians beat those “damn” Yankees; Fran Boldt happily played a selection of Glen Campbell songs in memoriam.  Lastly, Barry Fisher was called out about having his picture in the paper.  He wasn’t sure what the event was but it was good enough to donate some happy bucks!

Announcements:  Remember that the Bi-District Conference is August 11 and 12 at the NM Farm and Ranch Museum.  Mark Santiago is our representative.  Don’t forget the Club Potluck on August 24 from 6-9 at the Boulders on the Green Clubhouse at 2323 Sedona Hills Parkway.  Rotarians and guests are all invited.  The Las Cruces Sun-News is sponsoring  $10,000 in grants – more news to come.  The next Board Meeting is August 10, 2017, at The Game on Espina.  All are welcome. 

Lya Jordan recognized Sara Armijo and Lorenzo Alba from Casa de Peregrinos.  The Taste of Las Cruces event and some personal donations from the club raised $16,000 for Casa de Peregrinos.  This amount combined with a match from the Anderson Foundation in Austin Texas resulted in $32,000 for their organization.  

The Program

Our program presenters were Rosie Goodson and Mel Godby, along with ten other Arrowhead Park High School students and two teachers, spent three weeks with host families in Nienburg on the Weser River and attended Albert-Schweitzer-Schule, Nienburg is Las Cruces’ German sister city.  This youth exchange program is in its 30th year.

Rosie and Mel stayed with different host families and during their presentation compared and contrasted their experience.  Rosie had lived overseas with her family in the past but Mel had never been overseas.  Rosie’s host family spoke English but Mel’s host family did not.  Each student came home having learned more about a very different culture.

Not only did the students live with host families in Nienburg, they traveled to Berlin.  The most impressive sight was the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe (also known as the Holocaust Memorial.  This memorial, designed by architect Peter Eisenman consists of a 4.7 acre sit covered with 2,711 concrete slabs arranged in a grid pattern.  Each slab is the same length and width but vary in height.  An underground place of information holds the names of approximately 3 million Jewish Holocaust victims.

In addition to the many memorials in Berlin, the student found the country to be very green, something we are not accustomed to in southern New Mexico.

Rosie Goodson thanked the club for contributing to offset her costs of traveling to Germany.

After the Program

Barry Fisher held the winning ticket but picked the 2 of Spades.  The can money of $71 went back into the pot and we raised another $71 for the middle school Dress-A-Child project.

President Lya concluded the meeting by leading us in the 4-Way Test.

<prior week   following week>

Guests of Rotarians



Sara Armijo, Casa de Peregrinos


Visiting Rotarians


Home Club

Gary Brockway

La Grande, Oregon

Charlotte Brockway

La Grande, Oregon

Phil Benson

Rio Grande

Lorenzo Alba

Mesilla Valley

Student Guests



Rosie Goodson

Arrowhead Park

Melody Godby

Arrowhead Park



Date Club

Richelle Ponder


Rio Grande

Submitted by Kristi GranadosKristi Granados