November 2018 Optimizer

The Optimizer

November 2018 • Menomonee Falls Optimist Club

In this issue

  • November Meeting Schedule
  • President’s Thoughts
  • Up-coming Activities and Events
    • Calendar
    • Senior Leaf Raking
    • Holiday Drop & Shop
    • Christmas Caroling at Linden Grove
    • Holiday Party
  • Board Briefings
  • Getting To Know You
  • Optimist Clothing
  • Past Events
    • Students of the Month
    • Optimist Meeting Photos
  • Junior Optimist Club
  • This Month in Club History
  • How to Publish Optimist News
  • “Christmas Carol” by Patio Players Theater Social Gathering for Zone 1


—- November Meeting schedule —-

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

  • Wed. Nov. 7 Matt Carran, Director of Community Development, makes his annual November visit to our Club. This is always an interesting, informative meeting about the status and continued growth of the Village. Matt usually throws out a “teaser” during the meeting, something that’s in the works but not finalized, to keep us guessing about potential new development.
  • Tue. Nov. 13 OA5 meeting and new member installation. We will be installing 15 new members! 6:00 pm at the Community Center. All are welcome to attend.
  • Wed. Nov. 14 NMS Principal Lynn Grimm and MFHS Principal Vitale will introducing the presenters and winners of the November Students of the Month. Due to no school the following Wednesday (Thanksgiving break), this monthly Club favorite has been moved up a week.
  • Wed. Nov. 21 What would Fall be like without a visit from the Patio Players; boring, that’s what! You can plan on an energetic preview of the Christmas Carol, their holiday favorite.
  • Wed. Nov. 28 Kicking off the MFHS Winter Sports season will be a visit by the Boys Basketball Team and new Head Coach Aaron Womack. Joining Coach Womack will be members of his staff. It’s great to get a breakdown not only of the current team, but the status of the overall basketball program.


—- President’s Thoughts —-

October has been an exciting month for our Club as we begin with a new Board and begin learning from each other. I am grateful for the support that I personally have received by so many as I learn my new role. Thank you! Thank you!

I want you to be aware of special duties our Board members have:

  • Todd Paulus – 1st Vice President (assist Jeanine)
  • Rick Kohl – 2nd Vice President (secretary for all Board minutes and Board Briefings for newsletter)
  • Marcia Hebbring -Treasurer
  • Dave Curran – Optimist apparel (with Larry Hebbring)
  • Steve Fleming – July 3rd parade
  • Ann Freudenthal – volunteer coordination
  • Kathryn Hoff – display case
  • Barb Schmit – newsletter
  • Joanne Wanner – meeting prayers

Thank you for supporting them in their roles.

Join us on Tuesday, November 13 at 6:00 pm as we install 15 new members! We will meet in Room 106 of the Community Center. This is a great time to meet the new members and get them involved!

Please contact me as needed at I look forward to seeing you at our morning meetings, at Optimist After Five meetings and events and at our events run by terrific committees. Be sure to check out the Meeting Schedule and Upcoming Activities and Events section in the newsletters for details.

We have a lot to be proud of. I thank you as we press on to the greater achievements of the future and move forward together!

Please note: Optimist meetings will be cancelled if the Menomonee Falls Schools are closed.

Jeanine Dederich


—- Upcoming Activities and Events—-

  • Sat. Nov. 10 Leaf Raking. See article below.
  • Tue. Nov. 20 Optimist Board meeting. 7 am at the Community Center
  • Sat. Dec. 1 Holiday Shop and Drop. See article below for details.
  • Sat. Dec. 1 Theater social gathering for Zone 1. Falls Patio Players “Christmas Carol”. See article below.
  • Wed. Dec. 5 Optimist Caroling and Holiday Party. See articles below.
  • Fri. Jan. 25 Chili Supper. Mark your calendar. More info to follow.


Senior Leaf Raking is November 10!

The annual senior leaf raking event is just around the corner; it will be held on Saturday, November 10.  We can still use volunteers to help serve as captains.  And if you have access to a trailer, we could use your help with trucking the leaves (when necessary) over to Shady Lane Greenhouse.

Please reserve some time, round up some volunteers and help if you can!  Contact Jason Husslein (414-852-9634, or John Yusko (414-339-2637,

And don’t forget to patronize Shady Lane Greenhouse! Karl Hornung has again agreed to allow us to dump leaves at his nursery, saving the Optimist Club the expense of using the Orchard Ridge landfill and freeing up more of our funds to donate to kids.

John Yusko and Jason Husslein


Holiday Drop & Shop

The 8th Annual Parent Holiday Drop & Shop will be held on Saturday, December 1st which will be here soon enough.

If you are interested in helping out, please contact Dawn Mariscal at or by phone/text to (262)442-4952.  All are welcome to attend!

Dawn Mariscal


Christmas Caroling at Linden Grove

Join your fellow Optimists for Christmas Caroling at Linden Grove before the holiday party. Great singing voices are NOT required. The residents love to see our smiling faces. Come to sing, whether you are attending the holiday party or not.

Linden Grove

5:15 pm on Wednesday, December 5


Optimist Club Holiday Party

Wed Dec.5 2018
5:15 Caroling at Linden Grove
6:15 Cocktails at Silver Spring Country Club
7:00 Plated Sit-down Dinner with Wine
Murder mystery….Who Slayed Santa?
Silver Spring Country Club
$37.50 ea or $75 per couple

Watch your email for registration information.


—– Board Briefings – October 23, 2018 —–


Donation requests:

  • Carrie Rebro, a counselor at North Middle School requested a $750 donation for Your Choice Live program which deals in alcohol and drug prevention for eighth graders. Donation approved
  • Ann Freudenthal from Patio Players asked for $3,000 for the Jack Strawbridge scholarship fund. Donation approved.

Budgets approved:

  • Chili dinner
  • Installation banquet
  • Drop’n Shop

Committee report:

Larry Podolske and Tim Newman gave update on the popcorn wagon. Jeanine will inform the membership as the amount requested for improvements will exceed $3,000. (Approximately $5,000)

Treasurers report:

The club ended the year with a net income of $13,569.

New business:

On November 13th there will be an installation of approximately 15 new members.

2018-2019 Optimist Board:

  • President Jeanine Dederich
  • 1st Vice President Todd Paulus
  • 2nd Vice President Rick Kohl
  • Treasurer Marcia Hebbring
  • Past President Lynette Shepherd
  • Past Presidents Council Don Eisenhauer
  • Board Members: Dave Curran, Kathryn Hoff, Barb Schmit, Ann Freudenthal, Steve Flemming, Joann Wanner

Rick Kohl


—– Getting to Know You —–

Photo by Jon Cline

Meet John Yusko and Jason Husslein, co-chairs of Senior Leaf Raking

John Yusko has been an Optimist Club member since 2014 and enjoys the camaraderie of the Club and having fun while volunteering! He helps out with the golf outing, chili dinner, co-chairs the November leaf raking and provides support for his partner and fellow Optimist member Carol Schulteis with the annual Christmas party.

John moved to Menomonee Falls from Cleveland, Ohio in 1995. He has one daughter and three grandchildren in the Cleveland are and another daughter and 3 more grandchildren in the Columbus, Ohio area.

John stays active with golf, bowling, yardwork, his job at FIS and cheering on the Cleveland Indians (last championship in 1948), Cleveland Browns (last championship in 1964), Milwaukee Brewers and Green Bay Packers. Pull him aside for a conversation about these teams!

John’s final message: “I might have to get older but I plan to stay immature. So far, so good…my Mom is proud!”

Jason Husslein has been a member since 2016 and joined because he believes in the mission of the Optimist Club to provide service and give back which ultimately benefits the youth in the community.

Jason is currently involved as a co-chair for the Senior Leaf Raking event, and assists with facility logistics and registration for the Holiday Drop & Shop. Through his employment as Director of Community Education and Recreation for the School District of Menomonee Falls, he also helps support many of the great things the Club does by assisting in promotion and marketing, and making facilities available.

Jason was born and raised in Menomonee Falls, is a graduate of the School District, and has lived here most of his life. For a year he lived in Sussex, and just last year he and his wife Gwen purchased a home in Germantown. (He says this is still a sore subject for him because he really wanted to stay in the Falls, but it’s the perfect home for his family!)

Gwen and Jason have one son who will turn 3 in January and keeps them on their toes each and every day. They are excited for their 3-year old to become a big brother as they are expecting a baby girl in late March. Congratulations!

In Jason’s spare time, he enjoys spending time with family and friends, whether it’s poolside during the summer, or Packer Sundays during football season. He also enjoys watching the Brewers, playing cards, swimming, and bowling.

Thank you John and Jason for all you do to help bring out the best in kids!!

Jeanine Dederich


—– Optimist Clothing —–

Get your new Menomonee Falls Optimist “Knit Cap”, $10.00 each.  A great gift for Christmas and even better for members to wear at the Leaf Raking, Christmas Parade, and other winter events.  We only have a limited number, so don’t miss out, order now.  The Cap is shown on the Optimist Apparel store web site and will be available at our weekly meetings.

The Optimist Clothing store is also open for ordering this Holiday season.  The store will be open from October 24th to November 14th.  Please check out the items and place orders by going to the Menomonee Falls Optimist web site: Go to “ABOUT US” (on top, left), then “Useful Links” and to “Get your Optimist Apparel”.  Once you get to the site, follow the prompts to ordering.  You can also go direct to the store; 

Store is only open until November 14th.  Orders are ganged and ordered at one time for items to be delivered the 1st week in December.

Larry Hebbring


—- Past Events —-


Students of the Month

Photo by Don Gorzek

The Menomonee Falls Optimist Club Students of the Month for October 2018 include (L to R) junior Jared Schwartz and senior Brynn Wozniak from MFHS, and Kierste Klingkrammer and Michael Shea both are seventh graders, both from North Middle School.


Optimist Club Meeting Photos

North Middle School 8th Grade Girls Basketball Team

Head Coach Luke Langer brought the North Middle School 8th Grade Girls Basketball Team for a first time Club appearance.

Photos by Don Gorzek







MFHS Grade Girls Tennis Team

Head Coach Joe Keller and the MFHS Girls Tennis Team.

Photos by Don Gorzek








Junior Achievement

Junior Achievement Development Manager, Hannah Pausma, and a student representative were our guest speakers at the October 24 meeting.  In March of this year, our Club awarded $500 to this program.

Photos by Don Gorzek




—- Junior Optimists —-

The Junior Optimist Club is in full swing! We’ve held several meetings that were bursting with interested students. So far, we’ve had the chance to pair high school students with elementary students at Ben Franklin through a mentorship program we’ve been developing for the last couple years. We’ve also started pairing some of our high school members with senior citizens at Riverview Village Senior Living where students will have the opportunity to meet with their assigned person regularly, play games, do puzzles, and talk. We also have a big group of students signed up to help with the annual leaf raking event this year, and we are excited to be able to participate in this adult Optimist Club event! We are looking forward to an excellent year of service!

Ali Leon

—– October Thank You’s (excerpts) —–

Cathy Ferderbar – St Mary Parish School – “Thank you so much for your gift of $300 to help support (our) native butterfly garden….Blessings on the efforts of your organization to support youth in our community, you make an incredibly positive difference!”

Lynn Kluth – “Thank you for your generous donation and for supporting…JA Team Achieve to Benefit Junior Achievement of Wisconsin!”

Molly Brandt – MFHS – “I cannot express how much I appreciate you sponsoring my attendance at Wisconsin Leadership Seminars. …I hope you continue to support WILS because it’s an outstanding opportunity for someone in our community to be exposed to new people, diversity and leadership techniques. Then, they can use the things they’ve learned to impact Menomonee Falls!”

Submitted by Jerry Mislang


—- This Month in Club History —

November, 1995 (23 years ago) – Club member Sue Jeskewitz is named “Citizen of the Year” by the Menomonee Falls Chamber of Commerce.

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


—- 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 –
  • NEWSPAPERS Kim Wenzel 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 –


“Christmas Carol” at Patio Players

Dec. 1: Theater social gathering for the Zone 1

“And the Tradition goes on…”  Falls Patio Players again performs the beloved version of Charles Dickens’ classic “Christmas Carol”.  Two of our very own members, the late Carol Klose and the late Jack Strawbridge, collaborated to write this musical version, which encompasses French and English carols as well as many original songs.  It has truly become a family tradition, of which, Menomonee Falls can be proud. We are also excited to be back in our newly renovated auditorium, thanks to the referendum that was passed.  Come check out the new seats and sound system. So with glad tidings, we at Patio Players, wish you, the faithful audience, the very best for the coming Yuletide season.

Saturday, December 1 at 3:00 pm – Zone 1 gathering. The purpose for this gathering is a social event. The Menomonee Falls Optimist Club will play host to a SWIS District Zone 1 theater outing.  After the show you will be treated to a backstage tour. A great way for fellowship and social time.  A block of 50 seats plus will be available for this Optimist event. For questions or tickets, call 262-255-8372 or email Please let them know that you are from the Optimist Club SWIS District Group.  A special way to start your wonderful Christmas season.

Click for PDF of flyer


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