President Dave began the meeting with some introductory comments, the Pledge of Allegiance and Four-Way Test.   It being May 1st, in honor of “Spring,” President Dave asked John Rice to begin the meeting with a warming song – so the Club performance was “God Bless America.”  For the moment, the Club ignored the 50 degree, cloudy, wet day.  Also ignored were the trees that lacked buds in this seemingly endless cool transition from Winter to Spring.

Several guests were announced, including Jared Smith, a guest of Lynn McLaren, who is on 7 day notice.

General announcements included a “thank you” by Tiffany of A Safe Place, who reflected on the improvements made to their shelter using a $8500 Cash Committee grant.   A Safe Place was the first domestic abuse shelter in New Hampshire, and has been serving the community for 36 years. 

Additionally President Dave read an excerpt from a letter from Steve with Friends Forever thanking Rotary for the financial support as it moves into the next phase.  Rotarians are always welcome to stop by and visit the Friends Forever offices.


Lou Ferland reminded the group that there are only two weeks to nominate a candidate for a vocational award.  Please fill out a form at lunch or contact Lou by email.


A Rotary Mavericks baseball night is planned for June 25th, which will include a BBQ and a game.   The Mavs will be playing Old Orchard Beach Raging Tide – should be fun.  Tickets will be available starting this week at lunch.   Also, the Maverick players are still looking for host homes, so please contact Dave or visit the Maverick website if you, or someone you know, can host a player this summer.

President Dave also reminded the club of next week’s board of directors meeting (all are welcome) and that we’re about $4500 away from meeting the club target of $13,000 in Foundation Giving.  Make a gift today – the fiscal year ends June 30th.


$10 Happy Dollars were offered by Janis Reams, in recognition of her husband’s return to office.

VP Elect James then introduced our speaker.  Our guest speaker today was Deirdre McEachern, of the Seacoast Waldorf School.   On September 10, 2013 the Seacoast Waldorf School opened its door and with it came the tradition of Waldorf Schools, which were first founded in Germany in 1919.   

We learned that the Waldorf  School, a non-profit educational facility located in Eliot Maine, approached education differently than many main stream schools.   Waldorf schools are located throughout the world and have been teaching children for about 100 years.  Here on the seacoast, the Waldorf School has been educating kids for the past 14 years. 

At the school, kids are given an opportunity to grow and be challenged in an interactive, structured environment.  The school offers education at the pre-school to 5th grade at this time, but hopes to expand by a grade a year through 8th grade.  A new building, with lots of land and options for building, will help the school grow, and it’s grown just in the past nine month by 28%.  In fact, Waldorf schools around the country (located mostly on the coasts and in cities) are the fastest growing independent school movement in the nation.   94% of the graduates of the Waldorf Schools attend 4-year colleges and 89% report having high satisfaction in their careers.

The Waldorf School focuses on the following core components:   Creativity, Resilience, Collaboration, Curiousity and Critical Thinking.   The school starts kids on collaborative learning projects, such as painting and knitting early in their educational career, and continues to challenge them with daily outdoor (rain or shine) learning assignments and other project-based learning endeavors which develops not only their traditional educational skill sets (math, English, foreign language, etc…), but also life learning skills (communication, resilience, etc…).

The Waldorf School is proud of its tradition and thankful for the support that it’s received from the community.

The meeting closed with raffle winner Peter Grace taking home $80, but missing the match of $650.

See you next week.