Activities September-November 2016


Sat. Sept. 3—Labor Day Parade

Wed. Sept. 14—Regular Meeting

Sat. Sept. 17---Orchard Hill Clean Up                      

Wed. Sept. 21--Board of Directors Meeting at President’s House

 Sat. Sept.  24—Newtown Health Fair and Pediatric Eye Screening

 Wed. Sept. 28--Regular Meeting

Wed. Sept. 28---Youth and Family Services Breakfast

Wed. Oct. 12—Regular Meeting                                                                                            

Wed. Oct 19—Board of Directors Meeting                                                                      

Sat. Oct 22---Great Pumpkin Race and Mustang Raffle                                                 

Sun. Oct 23---Boscobel Mansion Tour and Dinner                                                       

Wed. Oct. 26---Regular Meeting –Membership Night                                                  

Wed. Nov. 9—Regular Meeting                                                                                       

Wed. Nov. 16—Board of Directors Meeting                                                                    

Fri. Nov 18—Brookfield Lions Breakfast           


                                    President’s Letter September 2016

Hope everyone had a good summer!


In early August, Barb and I went to a concert at the Oakdale in Wallingford. Before the show we went for dinner at a place called Knuckleheads which is only about two miles from the theatre.  As you might have guessed from the name, it is a bit of a dive but they have pretty good food.  We did not get as early of a start as we wanted and when we got to the restaurant there was a short but slow moving line to get a table.

While waiting in line we struck up a conversation with the people behind us and they were part of a larger group of 7 for dinner and they were also heading to the concert.  We eventually got our table for two and to help accommodate their group, when the table next to us opened up, we pushed them together and we sat with their group.


We had a nice conversation about concerts we had each been to and different venues we had attended. After we had been chatting for 15 minutes or so, Dave who was sitting next to me, mentioned that he was involved in the Lions Club.  So we exchanged details about our clubs and come to find out, he is the President of the Canton, CT Lions Club.  Just goes to show some of the nicest people you meet are Lions.


We start our 2016-17 year at the Newtown Country Club on September 14th and hopefully we end the year there without the restaurant drama of last year.  The Club has also asked if we wanted to hold our Holiday and year-end dinners there as well which is something we will consider.


For the new year we have members in new positions and responsibilities and we should all consider if we can take an increased roll in the club.  Look at the committee lists and maybe join something new.  One new thing is that we will be distributing the Lions’ directory book electronically only.  This will save the club the printing cost and you will not need to go looking for your book when you need a phone number.  Just don’t lose your computer and you will have it handy.


Unfortunately our summer was marked by the passing of two members of our Lion family.  Jim Larin who was a long time member of the club and was instrumental in the development in our Duck Race passed in June and the recent and unexpected passing of Denny McLaughlin.  Both are members that made a lasting contribution to our club and are examples for us all to follow on how to serve.


Denny’s family chose to have donations to our SHEF initiative sent instead of flowers for the funeral.  In that spirit I will make a personal donation to SHEF and encourage all our members to consider doing the same.  It is a cause that we support and it could use some additional funding.  I am sending $50 to SHEF and commit to sending another $50 if we can raise $1,000 from members. 

Thanks for your consideration.


Lion Manville


  Newtown Lions Officers for 2016-2017


President                             Jim Manville                                      

First Vice President            

Second Vice President        Kevin Corey                      

Third Vice President            Gary Frey

Secretary                            Gary Fillian                     

Administrative Treasurer     Ryan Storms

Project Treasurer                Glenn Nanavaty                 

Tail Twister                         Oscar DeLas Santos

Assistant Tail Twister           Bob Schmidt                       

Lion Tamer                          Stan Wyslick (for life!)

Cub Lion Tamer                   Bruce Walczak     

Director for 2 years              Bill Brett and Bruce Landgrebe

Director for 1 year               Jim Guattery and Dan O’Grady

Toastmaster                         Steve Bennett                   

Immediate Past President      Peter McNulty



“A Trip to the Doctor”


Brenda and Steve took their six-year-old son to the doctor.


With some hesitation, they explained that although their little angel appeared to be in good health, they were concerned about his rather small penis.


After examining the child, the doctor confidently declared, “Just feed him pancakes. That should solve the problem.”


The next morning when the boy arrived at breakfast, there was a large stack of warm pancakes in the middle of the table.  “Gee, Mom,'” he exclaimed, “for me?'”

“Just take two,” Brenda replied. “the rest are for your father.”

Doings of the Pride

 Two recent tragedies have rocked our Lions world.  Our esteemed membership chair, Denny McLaughlin, died suddenly while vacationing with his family at the beach.  Cheerful, up beat, well organized and a dedicated Lion, he will be greatly missed.  Just last week Margaret Kovacs, Dick’s beloved wife passed away.  She had struggled so valiantly, determined not to give in to her illness.  Dick proved an exemplary care giver and nurturer doing this troubled time.  Our sympathies and prayers go to both families who have suffered such sad events. 

  If  you see a familiar friendly face at the Newtown Hardware Store, you’ll soon recognize Lion Gary Fillian.  With his vast  mechanical knowledge and abilities he is a natural for the store.  .  .After winning the Republican primary,  Dan O’Grady is off and  running for northern district Judge of Probate.  We know from his time in the Lions that he is steady, reliable and a hard worker. Good luck to you, Dan . . .Peter and Jane McNulty enjoyed a Fourth of July get away.  They went to their cottage in Hyanis on the Cape for a week.  As they were within walking distance of the beach they did a fair bit of swimming as well as just enjoying time to unwind. . Bob and Josie Schmidt spent a week in California visiting their son.  Returning home they spent a lot of time just relaxing on the boat on Lake Zoar. . . .Bill and Mary Jo Brett have enjoyed two separate weeks on Georgetown Island, located on a tidal estuary about five miles from Bath. One week they spent with a daughter’s family and another with a son’s.  . . ..Augie D’Allessandro  had a toe removed at Danbury and then spent 45 days recovering at Bethel Home Care. He said the physical and occupational therapy was terrific but the food was terrible.  He was glad to get back to Donna’s cooking. . . .Alan Jacobs has also been having health issues.  Soon he will be operated on to have his parathyroid removed. . As you read this Jim Ondak and his wife, Andrea, may be in the air.  They are joining old friends for two weeks in Scotland.  I wonder if Jim has his kilt ready. . . .

The Magic Cart

        By Lion Paul Arneth


One of the greatest losses in my  life was not being able to play golf with my friends because of MS.  A few months ago, my trainer Penny Cidri, mentioned she had heard of a new piece of equipment called a Paramobile available at the Candlewood Valley Golf Club.  I rode up to the club and met with Beth Ford, the general manager of  the course and she invited me to be a guinea pig since I would be the first one to try the Paramobile.   It is absolutely an amazing piece of equipment invented by Anthony Netto, a paraplegic from South Africa who now lives in San Diego.  He has created the Stand Up and Play Foundation that distributes the Paramobiles and trains people to use them. The Paramobile is like a white wheelchair with three wheels, two in the front and one in the back.  It can go on greens as well as sand traps although golf courses have to redesign some of the entrances to the sand traps so the edges aren’t too steep.  I transfer from my power chair into the Paramobile which has a steel platform to stand on.  I then sit down and  strap in around my waist and there are straps to hold  legs in place.  Then I press joy stick and am elevated to a standing position.


 The biggest problem is finding the right position for the main strap and we have discovered that the lower down it is on my waist, the easier it is to swing.  We went to a clinic sponsored by the club and Anthony Netto was there.  He is a charismatic, funny, compassionate teacher who quickly put me at ease and soon I was hitting better shots.  It has been a process of trial and error, but last week I went out alone and played seven holes and got a four on a par three. 


It has been great to once again play with my old foursome of Tom Evagash, Denny McLaughlin and Greg Bruno.  They play the first nine (which requires them to get up very early) and I meet them on the back nine.  I am very grateful I had the chance to play with Denny ten days before his death.


  The Paramobile costs $22,000 so Beth Ford is running a tournament to raise money to help pay it off.  At most courses, we pay a cart fee plus the greens fee.  Handicapped golfers pay only the greens fee.  I  hope more disabled people will try the Paramobile because it has made such a change in my life.  I have composed info sheets and taken them to VA clinics at Danbury, Waterbury and Carmel.  Also sent the sheets to neurologists and physical therapists in the area.   The paramobile is also used for archery and skeet shooting.   Additional information may be found on the Stand Up and Play website.


See you on the course, Paul


 The Sermon

            A man went to church one day and afterward he stopped to shake the preacher's hand. He said, “Preacher, I’ll tell you, that was a damned fine

    sermon.   Damned good!”


The preacher said, “Thank you sir, but I'd rather you didn't use profanity.'”


The man said, “I was so damned impressed with that sermon I put five         thousand dollars in the offering plate!”


The preacher said, “No shit?”




 Proposal by Kevin Corey


PROPOSAL;  Present a large basket of food to Newtown’s two food pantries around Christmas time.


HOW TO DO IT;  Ask each member who attends a meeting from September to December to bring just two items (cans of food, cereal or health items) to each meeting.  Kevin will keep them until December, then present the baskets to the food pantries.  If a member forgets their two items they can contribute two dollars to the can.  Kevin will send out a reminder before each meeting to the Lions.


NEW Some Thoughts to Ponder

1..  Is it good if a vacuum really sucks?

2. Why is the third hand on the watch called the second hand?

 3.   If a word is misspelled in the dictionary, how would we ever know?

 4.   If Webster wrote the first dictionary,  where did he find the words?

 5.  Why do we say something is out of whack?  What is a whack?

 6.   Why does "slow down" and "slow up" mean the same thing?

 7.  Why does "fat chance" and "slim chance" mean the same thing?

8.  Why do "tug" boats push their barges?

 9.  Why do we sing"Take me out to the ball game" when we are already there?

 10.   Why are they called " stands" when they are made for sitting?

                                                New Lions in the Pride

            Terry Benhardt is and isn’t a new Newtowner.  His wife, Chrstine, a retired teacher, grew up in Newtown and inherited with her sister a family home on Currituck Road. So after her parents died she and Terry kept the property and made frequent visits here although they lived in New Hampshire.  Now newly retired they decided to move back to Newtown .Their nice home came with about 35 acres and they hay quite a bit of it.  When he isn’t playing farmer boy, Terry enjoys running and bowling and a little golf. He and Christine also delight in visiting their son, Andrew, and his wife and granddaughter out west. 

            Terry made his career first with Bank of Boston in the corporate trust division.  Then he switched careers and worked for Seven New Hampshire Services.  Here his job involved helping people with difficult financial situations..  His group helped needful New Hamphire men and women with their problems, especially heating bills . Through the years Terry has done a good bit of volunteering, coaching and helping youth in various other ways.  Becoming a Lion he thinks will help him get involved in the community.  We are sure it will!

                                                            Nick Strong

            Nick is a proud twenty year man of the U.S. Army,  Joining right out of high school his army life took him to various places and he held a number of different jobs.  Among the most interesting was editing an army newspaper which went to troops all over the world.  He has a great empathy for the less fortunate and that is one of the reasons he joined the Purple Heart Association as well as the Lions.  He really wants to help people.

            Currently taking courses at Post in Waterbury, he is especially interested in management and accounting.  His many army activities would be an asset in those fields.

            He met his wife, Denise, a teacher in Bridgeport, in a romantic way.  She and her class sent packages to his division in Afghanistan.  He wrote a nice thank you note.  She wrote a nice letter  back and so it goes!  Eventually when he came home they met,  And the rest is history, including a son, Nick.

            With all his experience and ability, he seems as though he will epitomize the Lions motto, “We Serve”!


                                “A Missing Wife”


A few days  after his wife disappeared in a kayaking accident, a Twillingate, Newfoundland man answered his door to find two grim-faced Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers.


 "We're sorry to intrude Mr. Flynn, but we have some information about your missing wife".  "Tell me! Did you find her?!" Cedric Flynn asked. 


One of the officers said, "We have some bad news, some good news, and some very good news". Fearing the worst, Mr. Flynn said, "Give me the bad news first." 


The RCMP officer  said, "I'm sorry to tell you, sir,  but this morning we found your wife's body in the bay." 


"Lord  sufferin'  Jesus!" exclaimed Flynn. What could possibly be the  good news?"


The officer continued, "When  we pulled her up, she had 12 of the best looking Atlantic Lobster that you have ever seen clinging to her.  We haven't seen lobsters like that since the 60’s, and we feel you are entitled to a share in the catch."


Stunned, Mr. Flynn demanded, "If that's the good news, then what's the very good news?"


The officer  replied.."We're gonna pull her up  again tomorrow."