May 2022 Optimizer

The Optimizer | May 2022 | Menomonee Falls Optimist Club

— In this issue —

Weekly Meeting Schedule

President’s Message

Upcoming Activities and Events


Volunteer Opportunities

Fishing Derby

Scholarship Golf Outing

SWIS District Junior Golf Outing

Tri-Star Baseball

July 3 Parade

Football Crazr Raffle

Trivia Contest

Getting to Know You

Tom Ciskoski

Optimist Meetings

New Member Kelly Lorenz

Past Event

Distinguished Young Women

Board Meeting Minutes

This Month in Club History

How to Publish Optimist News

— Weekly Meeting Schedule —

Meetings are held at 7:15 a.m. at the Community Center unless otherwise noted.

It’s time for us to honor our DO THE RIGHT THING winners.  This is a once a year opportunity to recognize those North Middle School students, their parents, friends and relatives with an award started years ago by the late Optimist Club member and MFSD teacher John Weaver.

STUDENTS OF THE MONTH from MFHS, NMS and St. Mary’s will be presented by their principals. This will be a bittersweet meeting as we have a special presentation planned to honor our good friend, retiring MFHS principal Bob Vitale at his last SOM meeting.

No Meeting – There will be great weather, good times and lots of fellowship at the annual Optimist Scholarship Golf Outing at Ironwood Golf Course.

We will be recognizing the North Middle School Falls Creative Club and club advisor Michael Tamas. The club’s mission is to help students learn about multimedia and the dynamics of writing, producing, editing and directing in studio broadcasting.  Be ready to meet some very talented students!

** Do you have ideas for future guest speakers? Contact the Speakers Committee – Jerry Mislang, Jeanine Dederich, Beth Saunders, Larry Barbera. **

~ Jerry Mislang

— President’s Message —

Hello Optimists!!

Well, the April showers help the grass and flowers but the sun and warmer weather did not show up. May is here and being an Optimist so will the warm weather and sunshine.

In April we had one of our longest programs for Optimists, Distinguished Young Women, and Cathy Sharkey did another outstanding job as she always does. Congratulations Cathy on another great year and program. Thanks to you and your many volunteers for putting on a great show.

May will be filled with some great events for the club.

May 14th is the Fishing Derby at Mill Pond. Dustin Koehler and his team have a great event planned, now we need the weather to help.

May 18th is our Scholarship Golf Outing. If you have not signed up, please make sure you do and get your information out to Todd. It looks to be shaping up to be a sellout.

Other events on the horizon are:

Tri-Star Baseball

July 3rd Parade

If you are interested in volunteering for either event please contact Don Eisenhauer or Steve Fleming. As you know, Ann Freudenthal will be contacting you to help with the Parade.

Welcome Kelly Lorenz to the club. Kelly was sworn in as a new member in April and is looking to get involved. Welcome Kelly!!

Highlights from the Board meeting this month:

We approved the Junior Prom event that will be held in May.

As I put out in my Monday message, please keep Jon Cline and Ed Schlumpf in your prayers. Jon was in a serious car accident. Ed had emergency knee surgery and will be in some intense rehab. Heal quickly Jon and Ed.

Until next month, let’s see the sun and warm weather.

President Dan




— Upcoming Activities and Events —


Fishing Derby

Scholarship Golf Outing

SWIS District Junior Golf Outing
and Tri-Star Baseball


Trivia Contest


Volunteer Opportunities

Fishing Derby Saturday May 14
Contact Dustin Koehler 262-370-9529 or Sue Carney 608-509-3117

3rd of July Parade Sunday July 3
Looking for volunteers to help chair the committee, help with staging and help recruit volunteers.
Contact Steve Fleming 262-385-6499

Make cotton candy, sell cotton candy and popcorn, be in the bucket Brigade, be a marshal, help with the land grab, help get the units lined up, and so much more!
Contact Ann Freudenthal 

Football Crazr mid-May
The Club has taken 300 Football Crazr raffle tickets to sell for the Swiss District and our Club.  We need club members to sell tickets.
Contact Larry Hebbring 414-899-5807


2022 Fishing Derby

The 2022 Optimist Club of Menomonee Falls Kids Fishing Derby is almost here!  The Derby will take place on Saturday, May 14th at the Mill Pond in downtown Menomonee Falls.  The contest is free and is open to all boys and girls age three through 16 that reside or attend school in the Menomonee Falls area.  All participants will receive a t-shirt and door prize. Trophies will be awarded to boys and girls in five age divisions for the longest fish and most fish caught during the contest.

Registration for the event will be from 9:00 AM to 10:00 AM at the Mill Pond Shelter.  During registration, each child will receive a t-shirt, fish recording log, and a ticket for a door prize.  The fishing contest will be from 10:00 AM to Noon.  At Noon, participants will want to hand-in their fish recording log to one of many volunteers that will be on site.  Trophies will be awarded to contest winners shortly after Noon.  Door prizes can be claimed at the registration table anytime between 10:00 AM and Noon.

The Menomonee Falls Neighborhood Watch will be selling food at the pavilion at the Mill Pond & Shelter from 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM.

Please bring your own fishing equipment.  Only a limited supply of bait will be provided.  Children under 11 years old must be accompanied by an adult.  Those 16 years old and older must have a fishing license.

Over the years, sponsors and supporters of this event include the Menomonee Falls Police Department, the Menomonee Falls Neighborhood Watch, the Village of Menomonee Falls, RB Enterprises, Fleet Farm, Krueger’s Entertainment Center, Cops and Kids Foundation, Sandy Spring Farm, Kwik Trip, Tru Turn, Menomonee Falls CE & Rec, and the Optimist Club of Menomonee Falls.

If you want to volunteer or have questions, please contact Dustin Koehler at 262-370-9529 or Sue Carney at 608-509-3117.

2022 Fishing Derby flyer

~ Dustin Koehler

32nd Annual Scholarship Golf Outing

Yes, year 32 is upon us as we are into the final weeks of preparation.  The Scholarship Golf Outing will be held May 18, 2022 at Ironwood Golf Course in Sussex, WI.  It will be an 11:00 am shotgun start with a scramble format.  Beforehand, you will enjoy a box lunch and the putting contest

Afterwards, you can enjoy heavy hors d’oeuvres as we announce the golf winners and partake in the voice auction.  If you have not registered your team, please do so as soon as possible, as at time of writing this article, we are close to being sold out.

I’d like to thank those golfers that have already signed up and also those that have reached out to bring in new people to the outing.  Without golfers, the event would not happen.  Many thanks to those that have donated items for our opportunity baskets, voice auction, golf balls, and bottles of booze.  If you still want to donate, bring your items to a morning meeting before the event, or if you cannot get there, please contact me, and I’ll make arrangements to pick up the item(s).  We should have a great event that day.  Many thanks to our committee for helping to plan this event.  I cannot do it alone.  Now we need prayers for a warm sunny day on May 18.  I hope to see you there!

~ Todd Paulus


SWIS District Junior Golf outing

The SWIS District Junior Golf outing will be held Saturday June 11, 2022 at Brown Deer Golf Course.  The event will start at noon, with registration beginning at 11:00 am.  This event is open to boys and girls ages 10-18.  They will be paired with other golfers to compete for open spots at the International Golf Outing held in Florida in late July if they shoot a qualifying score.  We will need help that day with scoring, registration, and marshalling.  I will send out more information our as the event gets closer.

~ Todd Paulus


Tri-Star Baseball

The annual Tri-Star Baseball event will be taking place on Saturday, June 11 from 12:00-4:00 at the Little League Baseball Complex on Mill Road. This event will be taking place during Little League’s Mid-Season Celebration, so there will be lots of activity in addition to baseball. They also plan on showing movies that evening, so they have requested our Optimist Popcorn Wagon for the affair. What a great marketing opportunity in addition to providing a venue for all kids ages 7-12 to compete at speed throwing, running the bases and hitting. Please come and help if you are available for a few hours.

~ Don Eisenhauer

July 3rd Parade

After a 2-year hiatus, the annual July 3rd parade is only 2 months away.  For those members who are new to the club, this big event is hosted by the Optimist Club.  I just did a count of the number of volunteer opportunities that need to be filled and I came up with 88.  That should not be a problem for a club as large as ours.

Please mark your calendars for that day.  Later in May and during June, I will be contacting all members to volunteer.  We need members to make cotton candy, sell cotton candy and popcorn, be in the bucket Brigade, be a marshal, help with the land grab, help get the units lined up, and so much more.  There is something fun for everyone.

If there is an activity that you want to sign up for, please contact me at

Thanks so much.

~ Ann Freudenthal


Football Crazr Raffle

The Club has taken 300 Football Crazr raffle tickets to sell for the Swiss District and our Club.  We should have the tickets by mid-May.  Anyone interested in helping to sell the 300 tickets for the club please contact Larry Hebbring.  Last year we sold 300 tickets and raised over $1600.00 for the club and people who bought our tickets were awarded over $1000.00.  It is a fun way to watch the 17-week football season and an easy sell at $20.00 per ticket.

~ Larry Hebbring


Jim Jeskewitz Memorial Trivia Contest 2023: SAVE THE DATE!

First, we need to apologize for first pushing this year’s contest back a month and then having to cancel it all together.  We only had 8 teams signed up for each one so that is why we did this.  In hopes of getting more teams, we are putting out a SAVE THE DATE article for next year.  The contest will be held Saturday February 4, 2023 at St. Agnes School.  We have already reserved the facility.  Put it on your calendar and for those snowbirds heading south, make sure you leave after this date.  This represents the weekend between the Conference championship games and the Super Bowl as we originally ran it.  We hope to have a full room for this fun trivia contest.

~ Todd Paulus, Karen Nelson & Sue Jeskewitz, Trivia Contest Chairs



— Getting to Know You 

Tom Ciskoski

Hi!  I am Tom Ciskoski and I grew up in Chicagoland.  After high school I went on to UW-Madison where in my junior year I ran into a beautiful young lady who needed help carrying a keg upstairs for her party, which she then felt obligated to invite me to.  I am happy to say that same beautiful lady has now been my wife Kathy for 33 years.

We graduated and shortly thereafter I took on a job with Sylvania Lighting and we were moved out to the mountains of PA.  In 1993 after having our daughter Marina we decided we’d prefer to move between the two families.  We had never heard of Menomonee Falls but stumbled into this place and it has turned out to be a great find for us.

Not knowing many people here, I started coaching my daughter’s teams: 7 years of soccer, 5 years of softball and 3 years of basketball.  This did allow us to meet many of the friends you still see us hanging with today. After she had moved on to better teams and need for a better coach I got to enjoy from the sidelines.  However, once she had moved on to college at UW- LaCrosse, I needed to join some club to keep out of trouble.  I then spoke to Greg Mattson about the Optimist because I liked the idea of still being involved with kids.  In 2010 I joined the Club and am currently on my second duty as a Board member.

In our spare time we love to travel both domestically and abroad, as we have been overseas three times and will be returning to London, Ireland and Spain next year.  My wife LOVES to cook and is the best cook I know, and she also loves to golf.  I, on the other hand, love to work in the yard, hang with my buddies and run, as I have run 3 marathons and over a dozen halves.

I have met many great people in this club and have gotten involved with such events as being a Packer raffle captain, a popcorn wagon captain, on the golf committee, involved in the football craze, as well as helping with the chili dinner, and many tri-star events.  I also recently got suckered into taking over the cotton candy making for the Kernel himself as he steps down.

For work, let’s just say we are both semi-retired as we both lost jobs during COVID: me, after 34 years with Sylvania, and Kathy from her last place of employment at Sendik’s as their Marketing Director.  Today the only one working full-time is our daughter who lives in NC and has just gotten into management with Trane Technologies where she has worked for over 7 years.  Today I am a part-time bartender at Player’s Pub on Tuesdays and Thursdays during the day and Kathy, with her art degree has gone back to her roots and hand paints greeting cards which she will have on display at Lavender Fest this year. So, for those of you who’d like to get to know us you now know where to find us.  We look forward to it!





— Optimist Meetings 


New Member Kelly Lorenz

Kelly Lorenz was welcomed as the newest member of our Optimist Club.








— Past Events 


The 58th Annual Distinguished Young Women Program returned to the North Middle School stage on Saturday, April. Participants from the Class of 2023 were Grace Booher, Shannon Doherty, Marin Olson, and Rachel Ripke from Menomonee Falls High School and Ify Ebije, Elise Elkin, and Brooke Stanley from Hamilton High School. Siya Mahajan, Distinguished Young Woman of Menomonee Falls for 2022, gave her farewell address and passed on her title.

Shannon Doherty was named Distinguished Young Woman of Menomonee Falls for 2023. She received a $2500 scholarship from the Optimist Club and will represent Menomonee Falls at the Wisconsin State Program to be held in Franklin, WI this summer. Shannon is the daughter of Linda and Bryan Doherty. Shannon also won the Talent Award and was named the Spirit Award winner by her fellow participants.

If the Doherty name sounds familiar it is because Shannon is following in the footsteps of sisters Ashley (DYW 2015) and Kailee (DYW 2019).


Grace Booher was named 1st Alternate. Grace will receive a $1000 scholarship from the Optimist Club and $300 cash award from Community League of Menomonee Falls. She was also the winner of the Scholastics and Be Your Best Self Essay Awards.  Grace is the daughter of club members John and Carrie Booher and granddaughter of Ed and Bonnie Veth.

Ify Ebije was named 2nd Alternate. She will receive a $500 scholarship from the Optimist Club. Ify also won the Fitness, Self-Expression, and Interview Awards. The winner of each category will receive a $100 cash award. Ify is the daughter of Harriet and Godwin Ebije.

The girls spent two months learning a virtual fitness routine, and preparing their talents. They had a practice interview with judges Jim Foster, Annie Jurczyk, Kathy Matthiesen, and Meg Latus. After tech rehearsal, we treated the girls to dinner and ice cream at Dairy Queen. Their hard work paid off at their showcase April 9th. They were magical on stage!


Our program is so wonderfully successful because of the great team I have working with me. Ali Leon did the fitness choreography, is a co-host and is a contact at school for the girls. Becky Shull returned to co-host again this year. Dawn Mariscal put together the beautiful program book and Good Luck Wishes. Jeanine Dederich coordinated and Keri Duce judged the Be Your Best Self Essay. Rema Kunnath was the Scholastic Judge Chairperson. Former member Kathryn Hoff was the Scholastic Judge. Barb Burja was the Program Judges’ Chairperson.

President Dan opened the show with welcome from the Optimist Club. Kathie Jensen, Jenny O’Keefe, Joanne Wanner, Annie Jurczak, Mary Goveas, and Caden Wilson (Carol Schulteis’ grandson) sold tickets and programs and worked the doors. My sisters, Candy Blommel, Sue Gorecki, and Michelle Grandlic, were on hand to help where needed. Kim Wenzel was the tabulator. WendySue Fluegge and Caden assisted back-stage.

Special thanks to Danny Shepherd for providing the sound for the program and Chris Forston and his team at Falls Cable Access for recording the program. You can catch it on Channel 14 or online at

Jason Huesslein and Menomonee Falls Recreation Department were so helpful assisting with facilities. We are grateful to the Principal Dan Gebauer and the North Middle School staff for the use of the auditorium. Thanks to Falls Patio Players for providing entertainment at the program and donating gift certificates to our participants.

And finally, our program is so blessed to have photographer Jon Cline who put in endless hours to capture all the special memories for the participants. Thank you doesn’t seem adequate to express our gratitude.

~ Cathy Sharkey



— Membership and Executive Board Info —

April 29, 2022 Board Minutes

Unapproved: to be approved at the next board meeting.

Board members: Jerry Mislang, Mike Russell, Scott Dreier, Dan Schwind, John Yusko, Fred Blanke, Tom Ciskoski, Rick Kohl, Kim Wenzel, Jenn Dedrick
Absent: Shannon Dederich, Don Eisenhauer
Other attendees: Todd Paulus

Purpose: Regular monthly meeting

  1. The meeting was called to order at approximately 7:00 am.
  2.  The meeting agenda was approved; motion by Jerry, second by Mike; motion carried. Minutes from last month’s meeting were not available for approval.
  3. Donation Requests

    a. Post Prom—Dave Mahlum and Prom committeei. Expect approximately 300 kids for May 21st event
    ii. All prices (buses, DJ, restaurant…) have increased
    iii. Total cost is expected to be about $34,000.  Ticket sales ($100/kid) and donations (Booster Club and Optimist Club) should cover the cost.
    iv. Request is for $2,700, or approximately $9 per attendee
    v. Motion to approve spending $9 per attendee by John, second by Mike; motion carried
    vi. Jerry reminded us that we have also previously approved spending $450 for gift cards for the event.

4. Budget Request

a. 2022 Golf Outing—Todd Paulus

i. Golf Outing is scheduled for May 18, 2022
ii. Revenue is estimated at $23,200 – $25,020 depending on number of golfers and donations
iii. Expenses are estimated at $9,900 – $10,850; golf fees remained the same but food expenses have gone up
iv. Rick moved to accept the budget as presented, second by Mike; motion carried

5. 501(c) (3) update—Dan Schwind

a. We received the official IRS approval of our application for recognition as a charitable organization.

6. Treasurer’s Report—Jerry Mislang

a. Jerry has been on vacation and has not completed documentation for February and March.
b. He expect to have the results forwarded to Jim Foster by this weekend.
c. However, our account balances have declined as expected because of various payouts (scholarships, Distinguished Young Women…). We are still in good shape and will receive an income boost in May after the Golf Outing.

7. Anything else for the good of the club

a. Website—Beth Saunders wants to move away from managing the website. Shannon in leading an effort to find replacements.
b. Payment processing—We would like to find an alternative to the current situation so that we are able to easily and cost-effectively accept payments through various mechanisms (web, onsite, etc.). Shannon is leading an effort to recommend options.
c. We discussed recognizing Bob Vitale for his service as he retired as MFHS Principal. Jerry moved to approved spending up to $150 for a gift card and some other remembrance (TBD), second by Jenn; motion carried.
d. We need ideas for candidates to serve on the next term of the board. Fred, Jenn and Kim need more people to get involved.
e. Jerry pointed out that we should continue to look for new members for the club; we need more people to get involved.
Jenn moved to approve the application of new member Kelly Lorenz, second by Mike; motion carried.

9. The next meeting is scheduled for May 17, 2022.

10. The meeting was adjourned at approximately 7:55 a.m.

~ John Yusko



— This Month in Club History — 4-5, 1974

A Bike Rodeo for kids aged 8-15 is sponsored in conjunction with the Menomonee Falls Police Department. Contestants are required to register their bikes as a part of Bike Safety Week.

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


— How to Publish Optimist News –-

See the source image

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 27th 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 or Dawn Mariscal –

WEBSITE  Beth Saunders –



Post a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.