January 2018 Optimizer

The Optimizer
January 2018
Menomonee Falls Optimist Club

In this issue

  • January Meeting Schedule
  • President’s Thoughts
  • Upcoming Events
    • Jan. 3 Meeting at MFHS
    • Chili Dinner
    • Broadway Musicals
  • December Board Meeting
  • Past Events
    • Drop and Shop
    • Students of the Month
    • Club Meeting Photos
    • Holiday Party Photos
  • This Month in Club History
  • Thank You Notes
  • How to Publish Optimist News
  • Additional Drop and Shop Photos

—- January Meeting schedule —-

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

  • January 3 Night meeting at MFHS Innovation Center. Meeting at 6:15. Gathering after at Three Cellars.
  • January 10 MFHS Wrestling Team – New Head Coach Any Rutke, a former student and longtime resident, will give us an update on his program and we’ll meet many of the grapplers on this season’s squad.
  • January 17 Officer Nick Gapinski, a MFPD Home Security Specialist, will be joining us for the first time. “Lock” this one up on your calendar.
  • January 24 Students of the Month – several of MFHS, NMS and St. Mary’s outstanding students will be presented by Principal’s Bob Vitale, Lynn Grimm and Linda Joyner and their nominators.
  • January 31 A Twofer! MFHS JOOI Club Advisor Ali Leon and several of her students will share the latest news on their club. Also, the NMS LEGO Club members and their advisors will be joining us for the first time! Should be interesting and informative.


—- President’s Thoughts —-

Happy Holidays to all my Optimist Club friends!!

I hope everyone enjoyed the holidays with loved ones and look forward to starting a new year!!!

I’d like to thank everyone for the positive feedback, encouragement and advice since becoming President of our fine club!!  Please – Keep it coming!!

In fact, we had a wonderful Board Meeting and the emphasis was NEW IDEAS!!  Share your ideas with someone on the board, or better yet, come to a board meeting and share with everyone!!  One suggestion was to re-vamp existing fundraisers and events a little and call it the “NEW” whatever to attract more attention to it not only from a public participation standpoint but member volunteer standpoint, as well!!

If you are following us on facebook you probably noticed a NEW “incentive” program to encourage active members to get inactive members INVOLVED!!!  For every meeting you bring a member to, who usually doesn’t come, your name gets put into a monthly drawing for a gift certificate to a local establishment!!  So get on the phone and start inviting your fellow optimists that we haven’t seen in a while!!  The next meeting is a night meeting at the high school so that should be an easy invite – Invite them to come and see their tax dollars at work!!

I’d also like to encourage you to read your Optimist magazine because you may be inspired but what other clubs are doing and bring that NEW idea to our club!!

Here’s to a great 2017 and an even better 2018!!

Your friend in Optimism,
Lynette Shepherd


—- Upcoming Events —-

January 3rd Meeting at Menomonee Falls High School

Do you know what STEM means? Are you baffled by some (most?) of today’s technology? Would you like to hear about how Menomonee Falls High School is preparing our students to help baffle us even more? Or would you just like to be informed and entertained?

Join us on January 3, 2018 for the Optimist Club meeting in Room 035 in the Innovation Center at the High School. After a brief business meeting, Bret Warner will help us learn that STEM means science, technology, engineering, and math. We will find out what our educators are doing to make sure our kids are prepared to lead in an ever-changing technological and economic global marketplace. And we’ll get to see cool stuff to make us wish we were back in high school!

Please plan to meet in the lobby at 6:00 p.m. The meeting starts at 6:15 p.m. Afterwards, we’ll head to Three Cellars at N72W13400 Lund Lane to discuss what we’ve learned—there will be a quiz! This should be fun…don’t miss it!

Carol Schulteis

Chili Dinner

candy raffle basketIn addition to our annual 50/50 raffle, this year at the Optimist Club Chili Dinner Friday January 12, 2018 we will have gift basket raffles like this spectacular candy basket. Don’t forget to get your tickets/money back to Kirsten Sperl. Any questions contact her at kirstensperl@gmail.com.  Thanks for participating in this great event.

Kirsten Sperl

Broadway Musicals at Marcus Center

Optimist club members have the opportunity to purchase great tickets for Broadway musicals at the Marcus Center. A flyer about the shows and how to get tickets is attached to the newsletter email. Every one of these shows have won Tony awards and are a great entertainment.  We have reserved seating, so buy your tickets today and take friends and family. You will not regret the experience.

2017-18 Marcus flyer

JJ Selland

— Board Briefings – December 19, 2017 —

President Lynette Shepherd led the Board meeting on Tuesday, December 19th, 2017. Meeting synopsis is as follows:

Donation requests:

1. Badger Girls State – Approved $300 donation

Treasurer’s report:

Larry Podolske will provide a maintenance proposal for the popcorn wagon in Spring 2018. Larry will also follow-up on a request for a credit card report to be analyzed

Committee Reports and Budgets:

  1. A Packer Raffle budget was submitted

Unfinished Business:

  1. Independence Day Parade – Talk about saving money. Lynette will ask Steve Fleming and Larry Hebbring to attend a special parade discussion meeting in February

New Business:

  1. Sponsoring the Christmas Parade Long Term – Larry Hebbring – Name recognition and insurance purposes – Will ask Larry to provide parade structure details and who is covered by insurance. Jim Foster will review current policy. Christmas parade to be added to events list
  2. Kohls Volunteers and $500 – Larry Podolske – Continue with this program as much as possible
  3. Young Member Social – Lynette – A “sub club” – Set meeting with younger members and friends to brainstorm ideas
  4. Do the Right Thing – Discussion on moving to March – Criteria – S. Carney and C. O’Reilly will meet with Karen Nelson
  5. District Goals – Recruiting membership is always a goal

The Board meets the third Tuesday of every month at 7:00 a.m. Members include:

  • President Lynette Shepherd
  • 1st Vice President Jeanine Dederich
  • 2nd Vice President Dustin Koehler
  • Treasurer Larry Podolske
  • Past President Don Gorzek
  • Past Presidents Council Dan Schwind
  • Board Members: Sue Carney, Tom Dueppen, Chris O’Reilly, Barb Schmit, Kathryn Hoff, Dave Curran Dustin Koehler


—- Past Events —-

Drop and Shop

Michelle Leiner, age 4, takes a thoughtful pause after she is asked what she would like for Christmas. Emily Gottry, age 5, crawls through a colorful tunnel as part of the “Drop & Shop” activities. Photographer Don Gorzek made use of special “Fish-eye” lens in order to capture this 180-degree view of the inside of the tunnel. Kathy Kiepert adds color sparkle paint to an ornament being decorated in the craft area of the 2017 holiday “Drop & Shop”. Bob Pape, potter, from the MF Arts Guild teachers Ryan Abrahmson how to form a pot, while William Karczewski watches. Alexa Alfagene, age 6, tells Santa’s helper Larry Wegner that she would like her two front teeth. Junior Optimist Club members, Leah Kreiter, Grace Hurst, and Olivia Eisenhauer gilded children through the many activities during the Holiday Drop and Shop held at the community center.

Photos by Don Gorzek

WE DID IT!!!!  The 7th Annual Parent Holiday Drop & Shop is now in the history books and once again a huge success.  Prior to the event, 144 children were pre-registered.  We had 113 children actually attend, 42 wonderful Optimist volunteers, and 36 student volunteers partake in all the fun and festivities.

To all the club members who continue to support this event year after year, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!  Thank you for all being so flexible and jumping in to different areas to keep things flowing along.  That was truly above and beyond!!

To Jason Husslein and the Rec Dept. staff – we would not be able to put so many smiles on so many faces without all you do for the Optimist Club.  Thank you for your partnership and support.

Sincere thanks and appreciation goes out to Alice Barbeln, Gloria Behr, Jean Christian, Linda Christman, Jim Dieter, Don Eisenhauer, Steve Fleming, Ann Freudenthal, Joy Fricke, Larry & Marcia Hebbring, Gail Heinecki, Kathryn Hoff, Jason Husslein, Kathie Jensen, Kathy Kiepert, Cory Kleeba, Linda Kons, Rema Kunnath, Peter Lalonde, Meg Latus (along with Nora & Mason), Kathy Matthiessen, Deb & Greg Mattson, Diane Matuszek, Jenny O’Keefe, Chris O’Reilly, Gary & Laurie Pollpeter, Corrine & Joe Reiter, Nancy & Randy Schopf, Rose Schwartz, Kirsten Sperl, Carl Trapp, Kathy Walkner, Joanne Wanner, Bob Wenzel, & Linda Zylka

SAVE THE DATE – Mark your calendars now for Saturday, December 1st, 2018 to join the crew above for a fun and rewarding volunteering experience.  As always, I am open for any suggestions, recommendations or criticism of any kind.  Your input helps make this event better and better year after year.

Dawn Marsical

Additional Drop and Shop photos are on Facebook.

Students of the Month

The Optimist Club Students of the Month for December 2017 include Junior Maya Barwick, and Senior Jordan Bonenberger from MFHS, and Faith Holland and Grace Heuss, Both sixth graders from North Middle School.

Photo by Don Gorzek

Optimist Club Meeting Photos

Photos by Don Gorzek

Girls Swim Head Coach Kelsey Ogle and some of her highly successful swimmers enlightened us on their season.





“Girls on the Run” adviser Cathie Cedzo, and fifth grade teacher at Riverside School with Principal Scott Walter presenting the “Girls on the Run” program we have supported financially with a donation to their program and recently had their run!




Our Club presented member Pat Greco an award in recognition for being selected “2018 School Superintendent of the Year” by the Wisconsin Association of School District Administrators.

Optimist Holiday Party Photos

Optimist Chris O’Reilly joins the “Comedy Sports” Team to spell out words.

Photos by Don Gorzek



—- This Month in Club History —

January 1, 1998 (20 years ago) – Membership hits an all-time high of 82 people

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


—- Thank You Notes —-

The club received thank you notes from the following:

  • Food Pantry

—- 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 no later than the 25th of each month – jerry.mislang@prodigy.net
  • NEWSPAPERS Kim Wenzel three or more weeks prior to your event, as quickly as possible after an event – kfwenzel87@gmail.com
  • FACEBOOK Cathy Sharkey, Dawn Mariscal or Lynette Shepherd – csharkey224@yahoo.com, dmariscal@wi.rr.com, llshep4ma@gmail.com
  • WEBSITE Beth Saunders –  bethjsaunders@gmail.com

Additional Drop and Shop Photos Photos by Jon Cline

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