August 2019 Optimizer The Optimizer  |  August 2019  |  Menomonee Falls Optimist Club


— In this issue —

Meeting Schedule

President’s Thoughts

2019-2020 Optimist Club Dues

Centennial Homecoming Membership Program

Upcoming Activities and Events

Packer Raffle

Optimist Club Picnic

Football Crazr

DYW to Compete at State

Installation Banquet

Fall Leaf Raking

Board Briefings

Past Events

July 3 Parade

Optimist Meetings

Patio Players Summer Camp

OI Respect for Law

Village Center BID

TriStar Baseball

Getting to Know You – Todd Paulus

Thank You Notes

This Month in Club History

Optimist Member at Zoo a la Carte

How to Publish Optimist News


— Meeting Schedule —

All meetings are at 7:15 am at the Community Center except as noted.

A 6:00 p.m. site visit and night meeting all in one! Kevin Behnke of Apple Works Winery will share how his Germantown winery came into being, their wine making process and types of wines. The winery at W179N12536 W Fond du Lac Ave will remain open after our meeting concludes if anyone would like to partake in tasting!

Doing a portion of his presentation that he gives to hundreds of kids every year, Mike Andrysczyk from the Kettle Moraine Geological Society will join us. Promises to be a “rocky” presentation!

Our Distinguished Woman representative Abigail Hughes will talk about her experiences in the Wisconsin State program held August 16. We’re also hoping to be joined by a participant from Badger Girls’ State.

No Regular Meeting, it’s time for our Annual Club Picnic, a great way to end the summer!


— President’s Thoughts August 2019 —

Summer should get a speeding ticket. ~ Unknown

I don’t know how it got to be August already but here we are – planning for the Club picnic on August 28, continuing with Packer raffle and Krazr raffle sales (see articles in this newsletter) and planning for the September installation banquet! I’m exhausted just thinking about how quickly the past ten months have flown by!

I know I keep saying this but bear with me –I can’t say enough how thankful I am for all of you and your hard work for our club and the kids we are able to support. The passion you all have is so gratifying. So once gain – Thank You!! So exciting for us now and into the future is our partnership with the Village of Menomonee Falls and the “Optimist Village Park” project. Stay tuned for continued updates on this.

I am looking forward to some upcoming vacation days and hope you are all able to take some time and get away too. A little R&R is great for us all.

Have a wonderful rest-of-summer!

– Jeanine



— 2019-20 Optimist Club Dues —

It is time to renew your membership in the Optimist Club of Menomonee Falls.  Invoices will be emailed and mailed on August 1, 2019. Rates and payment options are below. If you decide that you will not be renewing your membership, please contact Cathy Sharkey at

$30 Under 30: $30

Single Membership: $90

Couples Membership: $160

Life Membership: Separate Invoice sent


Visit the club website here: Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the link that takes you to a secure pay site.

Remit checks to:
P.O. Box 671
Menomonee Falls, WI 53052-0671



— Centennial “Homecoming” Membership Program —

As Optimist International celebrates their 100th year, they are offering an incentive program for former members who rejoin the club from now through September 30, 2019. The joining fee of $30 covers the $15 administrative fee and OI dues for one year from the date of joining. (OI dues are about $14 per quarter per member.) After the year is up, dues will be $90. This same program is also available for teachers and under 30 new members. This is a great opportunity to reach out to former members inviting them to consider rejoining us.

Contact Cathy Sharkey at with questions.


— Upcoming Activities and Events —

Sell Football Crazr tickets. Stubs and money due to Larry Hebbring or Jan Barbera on Aug. 20

Sell Packer Raffle tickets. Turn in stubs, money or unsold Packer raffle tickets to your team captain by Aug. 28.

Club Picnic

Packer Raffle Tailgate at Village Bowl

OA5 Pottery or glass painting at Just Kiln’ Time in Menomonee Falls at 6:00 p.m.

Installation Banquet at the Main Mill.

OA5 meet at the Garcade and discuss a future fundraiser event to be held at the Garcade.

Leaf Raking

OA5 meet to begin planning for our 3rd annual bags tournament. Location TBD.

OA5 annual service project. Location TBD.


Packer Raffle Time Is Here Again…..

With the NFL practices now underway, its time once again for the Annual Packer Raffle. In this our 23rd annual effort, we plan to surpass last year’s record profit of $23,803.71 to make this our year’s biggest fundraiser once again.

See the source image Team captains met on Monday. July 15 and the 17 teams are already rolling. Tickets were given to all captains, and all members will be contacted by their captain. If you have not been contacted, see the complete list attached to this newsletter. Check it carefully because some people are on different teams than last year. Phone your leader as soon as possible to be sure that you at least get a ticket for yourself, and hopefully some to sell. However, no one is required to either buy or sell any tickets!

For the 18 new members and those veterans who may have forgotten the particulars….

First Prize is a trip for eight people to Lambeau Field to see the Packers play in your choice of eight regular season games. Also included are a luxury limo ride to and from the game, a tailgate party at Lambeau, Packer wearing apparel, food and beverage enroute to Green Bay, and $1,000 cash to be used however the eight winners want. We will provide the limo ride from anywhere in Wisconsin.

Tickets cost $100 each, but remember it’s for eight people. So four couples could pay $25 each, or eight buddies could chip in $12.50. However, again this year (per the state auditor’s directive), only one person’s name can go on the ticket stub.

Second prize is $1,000; Third prize is $600; Fourth prize is $400 Thirteen more prizes of $250 will be given, and one person will win a free entry for 2020.

Sales are limited to no more than 350 tickets. Therefore, with 18 prizes, contestants have a better than 1 in 20 chance of more than doubling their money.

Each ticket allows one person to come to the drawing and tailgate party held at the Village Bowl on Monday, Sept. 9 starting at 5:15 p.m. Over $2,000 in door prizes will be given out to those in attendance that night. Others who have contributed to the purchase of the ticket can attend for $10. Free food, beer and soda make it a fun event.

When you get your ticket(s) from your captain, please try and sell them. They’re really an easy sell. At least, consider buying one yourself or with a friend. Those you don’t sell should be returned to your captain not passed on to someone else.

Stubs and money should be returned to your captain or can be turned in to Dan Schwind at Town Bank in the Falls. Deadline for turning in stubs, money or unsold tickets is Wednesday, Aug. 28.

Please write your name on the back of each ticket you sell/buy as it will help us track down the winners.

You may download the attached flyer to send or distribute to potential buyers.

Let’s get on board to raise some big money for the youth of our community!

– Ed Schlumpf


Optimist Club Picnic

See the source imageOur Optimist Club Picnic is slated for Wednesday August 28th at Shepherds Waters (same place as last year). Dan and Lynette Shepherd have graciously opened up their beautiful piece of land for our gathering. Festivities will begin at 4:00pm. You need to bring nothing except your smiling faces along with your other half and any interested or potential newbies. It is our time to celebrate all that we’ve done during the year.

We will have lots of food and beverages for all.  This is an absolutely beautiful place for all to enjoy. Directions and sign up will come in one of Jeanine’s weekly emails. Please just mark your calendars. If you have any questions, suggestions, or whatever, please feel free to contact me at Also this is an adult-only event due to us serving alcohol….

Have a safe and wonderful summer
– Marcia Hebbring

Football Crazr

We still have plenty of tickets for the SWIS District’s Crazr Football Sweepstakes.  You can pick-up tickets to buy or sell at any of our weekly meeting or contacting Co-chairs Larry Hebbring and Jan Barbera.  The Club has 660 tickets to sell and will only sell with the cooperation of the club members.  These tickets will sell and should bring in around $9,000.00 if all are sold.  Tickets are again $20.00 each.  Stubs must be returned to Co-chairs by August 20, filled out completely/correctly and accompanied with the $20.00.

During the 17 weeks of the football season the Sweepstakes pays out $1000.00 each week.  You get 4 teams each week, the cards are automatically counted to see if your 4 teams have won for the week. If you win your check comes in the mail, but you can follow on line also.  The highest accumulative score each week of 4 teams is $500.00, 2nd $150.00, 3rd $100.00, 4th $60.00, 5th $50.00, 6th $35.00, 7th $30.00, 8th $25.00, Lowest $25.00, 2nd lowest $15.00 and 3rd lowest $10.00.

Great for gifts!!
– Larry Hebbring


Menomonee Falls DYW to Compete at State

Abigail Hughes, Distinguished Young Woman of Menomonee Falls for 2020, will represent Menomonee Falls at the Wisconsin State Program on Friday, August 16, 2019. Abby is the daughter of Heide and Robert Hughes. She will perform a french horn solo for her talent. Abby will be visiting the club on August 21st to give us a recap of the state program.

The 62nd Distinguished Young Women of Wisconsin showcase takes place at 7:00 p.m. at the South Milwaukee Performing Art Center. Advance tickets are $20 for adults and $8 for students (ages 18 and under), at the door prices are $25 for adults and $10 for students.  More information can be found by contacting the box office at 414.766.5049 or online at

The 2020 contestants have participated in the Memorial Day and Independence Day Parades. They are also taking advantage of free popcorn at the wagon.

– Cathy Sharkey


See the source imageInstallation Banquet

Another year of Optimism is coming to a close at the end of September, and with that, we have a chance to gather to celebrate the great things our club did this past year. Please mark your calendars for Tuesday September 24, 2019 for a celebration at the Main Mill. Cocktail hour will run from 5:30 pm – 6:30 pm with a buffet dinner served at 6:30 pm. After dinner, Jeanine will have a chance to recap the year, give out some awards, and we will swear in our new board members and new President for the 2019-2020 year of Optimism. More details as to price and menu choices will be forthcoming. Please look for them in upcoming emails from Jeanine as well as we will pass around an envelope for signup at upcoming meetings as the date gets closer. Looking forward to this night of celebration and Optimism.

– Todd Paulus

Fall Leaf Raking

Mark Your Calendars—It’s Almost Leaf Raking Time!

It seems like Summer just arrived, but it’s also time to start thinking about the beautiful Fall…and falling leaves.

Rain, shine, sleet or snow, our annual senior leaf raking event will be held on Saturday, November 9, 2019.  Through the efforts of a half- dozen volunteer organizations and our Optimist members, we are able to help senior residents clear their yards.  And we raise money for the kids who help!

Please reserve some time, round up some volunteers and help if you can!  We especially need leaf haulers to help make things run quickly and smoothly.  If you can provide a truck or trailer to haul leaves, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can plan.   Contact Jason Husslein (414-852-9634, or John Yusko (414-339-2637,

– John Yusko


— Board Briefings – July 16, 2019 —

Executive Board Minutes: July 16, 2019 Meeting Location – Community Center – 7:00 am

Present; Jeanine Dederich, Barb Schmit, Rick Kohl, Todd Paulus, Ann Freudenthal, Kathryn Hoff, Joanne Wanner, Don Eisenhauer, Lynette Shepherd, Steve Fleming and Marcia Hebbring

Absent; Dave Curran

See the source image

Agenda approved

Minutes from last meeting approved. Ann motioned Kathryn seconded, all approved.

Elizabeth Shannon and Emily Lukasek from the Waukesha County Dental Clinic requested funding of $2,000. Lynette motioned seconded by Kathryn to approve $1,000. Motion passed. Todd, Ann, Barb and Jeanine dissented

John Yusko presented a leaf raking budget of $1,360. Steve motioned to accept seconded by Barb. All approved.

Beth Saunders gave an update on the club’s website.

Marcia Hebbring gave the Treasurers report.

Barb motioned to accept seconded by Ann. All approved.

Ann motioned to move ahead with the Village Park project seconded by Todd. All approved.

Next meeting August 27th – Note the date change from the normal meeting date.

Joanne moved to adjourn seconded by Ann. All approved. 8:25am

– Submitted by Rick Kohl


— Past Events —

July 3 Parade

See the source image

The July 3 parade turned out to be a great event as usual. There were so many people who gave their time to help out. Here is a list of many of those volunteers. If I missed your name, I apologize. Keep in mind that many people on this list worked multiple roles (land grab, make cotton candy and then also worked during the parade).

Number one thank you goes to Mother Nature for the great parade weather. And we always have to thank the Menomonee Falls Police Dept, especially Sgt Steven Sanders, and his many officers who were on hand to keep everyone safe.

The parade committee puts in many hours long before July 3. Members include Chairperson Steve Fleming, Terry Fitzsimmons, Larry Hebbring, Larry Podolske, Tony Bawiec and Ann Freudenthal.

And now the list of the rest of the volunteers: Del Kreuser, Kathy Mattheisen, Kathie Jensen, Joanne Wanner, Andy Chertack, Rick Kohl, John Thomas, Dottie Schilling, Jeanine Dederich, Cathy Sharkey, Jenna Dueppen, Mason Latus, Molly Dederich, Vickie Dederich, Shannon Dederich,  Barb Schmit, Jon Cline, Fred Blanke, Katherine Hoff, Kathy Arts, Meg Latus, Tom Dueppen, Jenna Dueppen, Tom Ciskoski, Kathy Ciskoski, Len Kimmel, Debbie Kimmel, Wendy Sue Fluegge, Dan Schwind, Kirsten Sperl, Donna Bosch, Joy Fricke, Lance Newman, Suzanne Carney, Larry Barbera, Faith Vanderhorst, Rob Pintor, Tammy Pintor, Tom Droka, Greg Mattson, Debbie Mattson, Marcia Hebbring, Danny Shepherd, Lynette Shepherd, Cassie Howard, Dustin Howard, Ed Schlumpf, Terra Chiemelewski, Anna Listwan, Sarah Kimmel, Cameryn Steder, Carola Kier, Alice Barbein, Jim Lowe, Jody Golla, Corey Golla, Jenn Dedrick, Mary Ann Zawlocki, Ross Sharkey, Kevel Anderson, Carol Schulteis, Linda Podolske, Chris Derivan, Jerry Ellis, Sharon Ellis, Bill Hathaway, Jane Hathaway, Chad Johnson, Jerry Mislang, Kathy Mislang, Jim Newman, Mike Kons, Chris O’Reilly, Linda Kons, Corrine Reiter, Joe Reiter, Don Gorzek, Charlie Keller,  Paul Lindemann and Logan Podolske.

This parade would not be possible if it weren’t for all these volunteers who ranged in age from 6 – 80 years old. Thanks so much.  Hope to see you all again next year.

The parade wrap up meeting will be on August 13th.  Please let the parade committee know if you have any comments or suggestions to make this parade even better next year.

– Ann Freudenthal


Optimist Meetings

Patio Players Summer Youth Camp

Photo by Don Gorzek

Ann Freudenthal introduced eight of over sixty participants of Patio Players Summer Youth Camp to our July 10th meeting. They thanked us for our donation and presented a performance from this year’s workshop.





OI Respect for Law

Photo by Jon Cline

On July17, we had an Optimist International Respect for Law presentation. We honored DARE Officers Jay Weber and Nick Gapinski, with police chief Anna Ruzinski.





Village Center Business Improvement District

On Wednesday July 24, 2019 we welcomed BID Director Paige Lesniewski. She told us about Village Center Business Improvement District.

Photo by Don Gorzek






TriStar Baseball

Photo by Don Gorzek

TriStar Baseball winners and their families were recognized at the July 24, 2019 meeting.

Photos by Jon Cline

— Getting to Know You – Todd Paulus —

I was born and raised in Grafton, WI. I grew up with an older sister and brother in the Town of Grafton, back when you found ways to entertain yourself and friends without all the technology and gadgets kids have today. Living out in the country with a family that owned 16 acres and we knew our neighbors well, we had a lot of spaces to explore, from hanging out in the woods and swamp to fishing by the river. Our family spent countless hours outside playing sports as well. I grew up playing football, basketball, and baseball. Football was the sport I loved the most and still do to this day. After graduating from Grafton High School, I went on to college at UW-La Crosse. My oldest daughter, Mary Claire, currently attends UW-L. No, dad did not pressure her into going there as she needs to be happy wherever she landed, but I was really pleased when she decided upon UW-L.

See the source image I met my wife Molly, through a mutual friend that I went to UW-La Crosse with, as this friend ended up marrying my roommate. In 1996 Molly and I were married and I officially moved to Menomonee Falls. Looking back it was a great decision. We have been blessed with 2 daughters, Mary Claire and Moira. Mary Claire will be a Sophomore at UW-La Crosse, My youngest daughter, Moira, will be a Senior at MFHS, and my wife, Molly, is a teacher in the Menomonee Falls School District. Many of you know them, as they have put in many Optimist Club volunteer hours over the years. Grafton and Menomonee Falls have a lot of like attributes, with the Falls being bigger in population than Grafton. I was really impressed with the volunteer work by people in Menomonee Falls when I moved here. At the time, Molly was a member of the Optimist Club and she and past member Jim “Jess” Jeskewitz pushed me to join the club and get involved in the community. So on 11/1/99, I officially became a member of our club. Ten years later, in 2009, I became President of this great club. I can honestly say the decision to join this club is one I have never regretted. I am fortunate to have met many great people along the way, both in this club as well as the community. Often times I run into people in the community with our family and say hi to them. The kids will ask me how I know them, and generally the answer is through the Optimist Club.

Our club has done many great things through the 20 years I have been a member. It is great seeing all the time the members put in to raise funds, so we can give back to the youth in our community to make it a better place. I have seen the club grow in size and recently seen it shrink in size, but the one thing that never wavered was the spirit of this club. Any event I go to whether working or just stopping in, people are always having fun, which makes the job of raising money much easier. Outside of the club I have volunteered for activities that both my kids have been involved with. After Jess passed away, I was asked to take over the famous “Jess’s Place” tent at Falls Fest. Although it was a lot of work and many long hours, I truly enjoyed doing it and raising money for Falls Fest to give back to the community. I also enjoyed seeing many people throughout those 4 day runs of Falls Fest.

To newer members, the one piece of advice I have is to get involved in as many activities that you can. Become a board member so you really see how our club operates. Step out of your comfort zone and become chair of an activity or propose something new to the club, and don’t be afraid if you are asked to be President. I am getting ready in 2 months to become our first repeat President in our club’s history. As President, you realize the each committee runs themselves. You are there to facilitate the weekly meetings and board meetings and keep our club on track to our mission of “Bringing out the best in youth”.—- August Birthdays —-


— July Thank You’s (excerpts) —

Emily Lukasek – Waukesha County Community Dental Clinic – “Thank you…we are so grateful to the club for the generous donation to help our young patients! This means a great deal to these youths…thank you sincerely.”

MFHS FBLA – Thank you for your generous donation for our Nationals trip fund. One of our members placed 4th in the nation…big thanks to you all at the Optimist Club.”

– Submitted by Jerry Mislang


—- This Month in Club History —

August 15, 2000 (19 years ago) – The Community Betterment Award is given to the club by the local Chamber of Commerce.

Submitted by Jerry Mislang from the 40 Year History Program – courtesy of Ed Schlumpf







— Optimist Member Performing at Zoo a la Carte —

Ready for a WILD weekend?  Come out for trendy music, food and animals galore @ ‘Milwaukee a la Carte at the Zoo’ (presented by Meijer).  Feed your wildest food cravings featuring 27 area restaurants and stay for the musical performances from national and local bands at stages around the Zoo.  Falls Optimist’s own member Wendy Sue Fluegge will be performing on the Lakeview Stage on Thursday, Aug 15th from 11:30-2:30!  She plans to promote our club between song sets as she mingles with community folks.  Tickets @


—- How to Publish Optimist News –—-

There are multiple venues for publishing Optimist news and events the community and to the Optimist members. It is important to get the word out so everyone is aware of the events we sponsor to benefit the youth of the community. Committee chairs are responsible for writing the articles and sending them via email to the people listed below:

NEWSLETTER  Jerry Mislang or Barb Schmit no later than the 26th of each month – or

NEWSPAPERS  Shannon Dederich three or more weeks prior to your event, as quickly as possible after an event

FACEBOOK  Cathy Sharkey, Dawn Mariscal or Lynette Shepherd –,

WEBSITE  Beth Saunders –

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