Lake George Rotary celebrating 60 years of community service

LAKE GEORGE Monday evening, dozens of local Rotary Club members will be gathering to socialize, strategize service projects and share a dinner together for decades, a weekly tradition for the group. But this particular meeting, to be held in Usher Park off state Route 9L, their planning and conversation will be augmented by a celebration of the Lake George Rotary Clubs 60th anniversary. Community leaders will be joining Rotarians, club past presidents and charter members to toast the groups many years of work and fundraising on behalf of the greater community particularly for those in need, club President Tammy Heckenberg said. This is absolutely a big event in the clubs history, she said, noting that the group has accomplished a lot in its 60-year history. Our motto is service above self, and every single member believes it and follows through on this concept. Heckenberg said the club members have routinely pursued worthy service projects with earnest and sincere motivations to help others. Its amazing how selfless our members are, she said. When a service project is needed, the egos go away, and we are right there and we have fun doing it, too. Through the years, the Lake George Rotarians have annually funded holiday Adopt-a-Family programs, taken local economically-disadvantaged children on shopping sprees allowing them the opportunity to shop for family members, and theyve co-sponsored the local food bank program, Heckenberg said. Were known as the busiest little club with a big heart, she said. Also, the Club has donated equipment for Little League ballfields, donated ballfield bleachers and playground equipment at the Lake George Elementary School, provided educational materials and equipment to schools, and supported YMCA Camp Chingachgook with special equipment. Each year, theyve also bankrolled scholarships for high school graduates to prompt students to pursue their academic goals. But the two projects theyre best known for are the development of the municipal ballfields and the construction of the Lake George Welcome Corner at the southern entrance to the village. Its near Exit 21 of I-87 Northway at the intersection of state Route 9 and 9N. This development includes a welcome sign, a trio of lighted flag poles, tiered stone walls and landscaping that includes seasonal flowers and evergreens. The local Rotarians not only planned and funded the development, but they have been maintaining it since it was built in 2002 and dedicated in 2004. At the helm of this project has been Dennis Galloway, who has been a Rotarian since 1949. For decades, he was an electrical contractor in Lake George, followed by a career as a real estate broker. Galloway said the Welcome Corner was not only an effective way to greet visitors, but also boost spirits of residents. The corner projects a sense of pride for all who live here and to those who visit the area, he said. Monday, he deferred credit to town of Lake George employees and officials, the Lake George Fire Dept members. and various businesses and individuals who worked on the project or contributed toward it. Im pleased about the community support our Club has had over the years and not just Lake George, but all the communities in the region, he said. Our club has been a great asset to the area, but also the support and cooperation weve received is really great.

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