EMAIL mj.morris@live.ca


Saturday, November 8, 2014

Chapleau Rotary Club active in wide range of activities during its first ten years in community

Angelo Bucciarelli, Jack Shoup, governor, Art Grout, Bubs Zufelt
The Chapleau Rotary Club was very active in the community during its first 10 years after receiving its charter dated December 3, 1951.

The official opening of the club was on January 26, 1952, with a banquet held in the basement of the Town Hall.

According to a  report marking the 10th anniversary by J.M. 'Jack' Shoup and Ovide Payette who chaired the club's history committee, the Rotary district governor Kenneth Partridge rode from the CPR station on a  sled pulled by a team of purebred white Samoyede dogs driven by Adam Andrews.

Other visiting Rotarians followed on two CPR ice sleighs.

Among the many gifts the Chapleau club received were a Union Jack and a picture of King George VI -- he died on February 6, 1952, just a week after the presentation.

Charter members included president Rev. E. Roy Haddon, vice president Dr. G.E. Young, secretary Newt Pellow, treasurer Bob Serre,sergeant at arms B.W. 'Bubs' Zufelt, Gordon Bailey, Charles W Collins, Lionel Moorey, Ross Thornton, Angelo Bucciarelli, Ernie Collins, Bob James, Cecil Smith, Dr. Bill Young, Harold Cahill, John McClellan, Earle Sootheran and J.M. Shoup.

In its first year with Mr. Haddon as president the club held its first canvas for the Crippled Children's Fund as well as establishing a Ladies Night, and took over a Halloween celebration for all Chapleau children.

With Dr. Young as its second president, the club continued its good works, but the report particularly noted that Dr. Young led the Halloween Parade and Street Dance in his "Devil's Blackwith with long spiked tail" that was "pinched by all the kids".

I was unable to find a photo of Dr. Young in that costume but did have one of him dressed as a pioneer, complete with beard, for the 75th anniversary of Chapleau in 1976.

Jack Cockburn, Dr Young
John  McClellan as the third president in 1953-54 started active work with local children in need of assistance. The club paid for operations for one child at a cost of over $800.

The report noted that the community owed a deep debt of gratitude to Leyton Goodwin for his "untiring service" on behalf of children. Mr. Goodwin made "numerous trips" to Toronto and Sudbury with children in need of care.

With Arthur Grout as president, the club grew in membership and was entertained at his Camp at Devon

With Don Rose as president in 1955-56  annual ball and hockey games were started between Rotary and the Knights of Columbus, Independent Order of Oddfellows and other groups. These continued for several years and the club also had an annual trip to golf course and curling rink.

They also started making annual Christmas trip to hospital to sing carols and bring gifts.

During B.W. Zufelt's presidency, the club started honouring retired citizens, one at a time at club meetings. They also welcomed new citizens to the community.

The club also took over sponsorship of the Boy Scouts and Cubs in the community and this undertaking lasted many years.

J Purich, L Ruttle, Un, un, D Rose, F Leigh, A Bucciarelli, J McClellan, D O Payette, C Smith
In 1957-58, president Les Ruttle "preached" the Rotary cause so well that several new members were recruited and an annual trip was made to Sheppard and Morse. A donation of $1,000 was made to the hospital building fund and $500 for beach equipment.

Angelo Bucciarelli in 1958-59 organized a trip to Sudbury to visit a club there. At 37, membership reached a high point, and a curling team was sent to Englehart.

With Jim Haddow as president the club sponsored a grade from Chapleau High School on a trip to Marathon as well as providing $500 for the library. A student loan fund was also set up.

Mr. Haddow was transferred from Chapleau so Ovide Payette took over on a interim basis in 1960. Eric Gage was president for 1960-61 and a donation was made to the CNIB Sudbury Hospital Building Fund. The report notes that a plaque was placed honouring the club. "the only service club so honoured".

The 10th anniversary of the club was celebrated with a banquet on October 28th, 1961 with Des Delaney as president.

The club's donations over the years ranged between $2500 to $5000 a year with all funds raised through bingos, car raffles and Easter Seal campaign and some smaller projects. Tribute was paid to Jim Purich for his work as chairman of the Ways nd Means Committee.

Mr. Shoup and Mr. Payette that no survey would be complete "without an acknowledgement of the splendid service rendered by the Ladies of the Anglican Church (St. John's) over that entire period by serving excellent meals of a high standard, promptly and efficiently. Thanks ladies  your contribution has had a large part in the success of Rotary in Chapleau."

I well recall those meals because it is where I went for treats and sometimes a meal on many  nights as both my grandmothers Lil Morris and Edith Hunt would be there. Later, my Mom, Muriel (Hunt) Morris would be there too as the "younger" ladies of St. John's helped the "Senior WA" .. My thanks to Gemma Ouellet for providing me with the Rotary report... My email is mj.morris@live.ca

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Michael J Morris

Michael J Morris
MJ with Buckwheat (1989-2009) Photo by Leo Ouimet


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