February, March and April 2008                                                              



Newtown Lions Club


Wed. February 27--Regular meeting

Sat. March 1—Work Camp breakfast—tentative                                                                    

Sat. March 8—Lions Day at the U.N.

Wed. March 12--Regular meeting

Wed. March 19—Board of Directors meeting

Wed. March 26—Father-Son and Daughter Night

Sat. April 5—Lose the Litter Day

Wed. April 9—Regular meeting

Wed. April 16—Board of Directors meeting

Wed. April 23—Regular meeting


Thoughts From Your President

               As we pass the mid-way point in our year, we should reflect back on our
 accomplishments and look to what lies ahead.  At the Mid-Winter Conference we 
presented $18,000.00 to support state and international charities.  The first three
 years that I was a member of the Lions Club, we didn't even accumulate that much
 profit in total.  Our projects have been extremely successful and improving every year.  
Our membership has grown from 35 in 1996 to 72 thus far this year. We have an 
abundance of dedicated members who are willing to help others.  "We Serve".
               We have reached a crossroads and are now contemplating another new event.  The auction and memorabilia project. 
A good number of our membership is involved in this new project and have dedicated themselves to making it a success.  
They need each and every Lion member’s help in selling tickets for this event.  Those of us who have been around long enough 
remember the infant stages of our car raffle and duck race projects. We're hoping that with everyone’s help, the auction and memorabilia 
event will be as successful as those two projects have been.  We have nothing to lose!!!  I would like to once again re-iterate that 
ALL members of the club are welcome to attend board meetings and voice their opinions on any of the issues we discuss. Please come 
and experience the inner working of your Newtown Lions Club.


Doings of the Pride   


George Arfaras has a fax machine in good condition that he no longer needs.  If any Lion has the need of a fax he would be willing to give it to him.  Give him a call if interested. . . .Second page on the Newtown Bee recently found Lions Bob Schmidt smiling at you.  They picked him as the weekly Snapshot   Congratulations! . . . Congratulations also go to Jerome Meyer who is starting his own law office located on Main Street.  If you’ve got any legal problems, he’d be glad to help.  Good luck in your new venture, Jerome. . . . Walt Schweikert is on the mend after having his throat slashed—but don’t get worried, it wasn’t by an alley thug but by a doctor who went in and  straightened  out a problem which was creating too much calcium in his blood.  All is well now—but he could tell some tales about that slashing if he chose. . . .George Smiley, known back in Kentucky as the Paul Bunyun of wood splitters, recently got carried away and lopped off the tip of his right thumb.  Right now pins are holding the reattached thumb in place and it is hoped that the flesh will meld together. . . . Boy have Lions been doing some traveling.  Jerry and Sheila Cole spearheaded a group which went to Biloxi and pounded nails, roofed, sanded and painted for a week.  From all accounts a lot was accomplished and they had a good time. . . . Alex Fraser took a great trip on the Princess Line.  He visited many interesting spots including Gibralter, Naples, Pompeii, and Monaco.  In Florida are Lions Arneth, Evagash, James, Larin and Mounts.  Also about to depart southward is ex pres Christensen.   


                                    The Bucket List

A humorous new movie currently in movie theaters is called “The Bucket List”.  Two old duffers facing life threatening illnesses make a list of all the things they yearn to do before, some day, they kick the bucket.  Some Lions offered their thoughts.


George ArfarasKayaking from the headwaters of the Connecticut River to Long Island sound.


Jim Manville--1. Ride the conveyor of the self check out lane of the grocery store when     after scanning my hot dog rolls - it says "Put your buns on the belt"

 2. Visit one of the great wonders of America like Mount Rushmore, the Grand Canyon or Dollywood.

 3. See the day when technology advances to the point where Apple creates the ultimate in entertainment system for your bathroom.  It will be called the iPotty.


Bob Schmidt—1.  To buy an antique car (I keep trying to win the Mustang, but to no avail).

2.  To take a cruise across the Atlantic

3.  To write a book

4.   To grow, to give and to dream

Joe Young--Here's what I would like to do before I die:
1. Become a doctor. Wait! I did that.
2. Marry the woman of my dreams. Wow! I did that too.
3. Have a couple of great kids. Holy crap! This is getting creepy.
 Sorry. Looks like I can die happy! 
Live long and prosper fellow Lions.

Lincoln Sander—I have always wanted to take a boat trip down the Amazon River

The Road to Marrakech

                                    Travel by Lion Oscar Berendsohn


            My fellow Lions, from November 2 through November 24, I went on a three week sojourn which took me by ship from Rome, Italy to Monte Carlo, Marseille, France, Barcelona, Cartagena and Cadiz in Spain, Gibraltar, and then to Casa Blanca, Morocco and finally to Lanzarote and Tenerife, Canary Islands and Funchal, Maderia Island.


            I will try to give you some of the highlights of this tour.  Beyond a doubt, Marrakech stands out as the most unique experience.  The old quarter and its Casbah and Souck (market) are a treasure trove of the old orient with snake charmers, belly dancers, clairvoyants, water vendors, stalls of unidentifiables and a thousand spices fragrant and pleasant, and stalls with the world’s most astute bargainers.  I chopped the price of Moroccan slippers down from eighty to twenty dollars and probably paid twice too much.  I also learned a good deal about Islam and must confess that some of it I find most impressive.  There was no sign of any hostility to foreigners at all.


            The islands of the Canaries and Madeira are absolutely beautiful and volcanic (dormant).  In Madeira I took a cable car ride to the top of a mountain and descended by means of a toboggan.  Monte Carlo reeks of money.  A potential resident must show two million dollars in his bank to be admitted.  Its roads are very good, but also very steep with terrible curves and much traffic.  Allow an hour to get to the drugstore.


            And, yes, there really is a Chateau d’If in front of the harbor of Marseille as described in The Count of Monte Christo and it is a grim medieval fortress.


            Spanish cities I found to be clean and with much evidence of the Carthaginians, Moors and Romans who ruled it at one time.  On a bench in Cadiz I approached a Spanish gentleman and tried my broken Spanish.  It turned out he spoke fluent German having worked there most of his life.  All in all it was a great trip!


                                                                        Oscar the Globetrotter


Team of Rivals by Doris  Kearns Goodwin

            Review by Lion Denny McLaughlin


If you enjoy a good book on American history, you will find Team of Rivals an excellent read.  Doris Kearns Goodwin has again put together another great book, this one on Abraham Lincoln.  I have read a number of books on Lincoln and this one is one of the best.  She spent over ten years in researching Lincoln’s life, reading numerous books and publications on him by many of her fellow authors and historians.  She has the ability to take you back to that most turbulent time in our nation’s history as the conflict over slavery was tearing our country apart and leading up to succession and civil war.


Lincoln, a one term congressman and prairie lawyer, hardly seemed to be the choice to rise over three gifted rivals of national reputation to become our President.  William Seward, Salmon Chase and Ed Bates were angry and upset when they found that they had lost to an obscure unknown country lawyer.  To be sure this was quite an accomplishment for Lincoln to rise above his more privileged and successful rivals.  Lincoln’s experiences and his ability to speak for other men as to their feelings and needs plus being able to understand their motives and desires lead to his winning the Presidency over his better educated and well known rivals.  This talent allowed Lincoln to bring his rivals together in creating the most unusual cabinet in our country’s history.  He was able to harness their individual talents to help preserve the Union and ultimately win the war between the warring states.


In reading this book we see the frustration and hostility that Lincoln had to deal with: incompetent generals, in fighting  and intrigue amongst his cabinet and a truly hostile congress.  He won over and earned  the respect of his former competitors and, in the case of Seward, found a most loyal and crucial friend to help him in this time of crises.


Even though this book is over 750 pages, Goodwin does a great job in showing how Lincoln’s character, humor, perseverance and common sense held our country together in those most turbulent and troubled times so that we could survive as a nation.  I enjoyed reading this book and I think you will too. 


                                                  Focus on our Wives!


 Gracious is a word  most people would use to describe Diana Johnson, spouse of Wayland.  Friendly and outgoing, she is always the welcoming face in a crowded party.  Diana has spent much of her life raising their three children, Dawn, Mike and Sandy, and now dotes on her three grandsons and two granddaughters.  In addition to her family obligations, Diana worked at various places including the Chamber of Commerce, the

Camp Fire group and, her favorite, the Dale Carnegie organization, for whom she worked  ten years.


            Diana has also always been a good community volunteer and for several years was co-president of the Business and Professional Women.  At another time she presided over the Chamber of Commerce, and since its inception twenty two years ago, she has been the co-chair of the luminaria committee, responsible for the wonderful show on Main Street each Christmas season.  Diana was also one of the founders of   the Mayflower Book Club, and continues active in this group as well as  in the Town and Country Garden Club. 


            Look around at the next Lions social gathering.  See if you can find a woman with a very ingratiating manner.  Nine out of ten you’ve found Diana Johnson.




The Following was written by a Female Friend of the Lions


According to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, while both male and female reindeer grow antlers in the summer each year, male reindeer drop their antlers at the beginning of winter, usually late November to mid-December.  Female reindeer retain their antlers till after they give birth in the spring.


            Therefore, according to EVERY historical rendition depicting Santa’a reindeer, EVERY single one of them, from Rudolph to Blitzen, had to be a girl.


We should’ve known. . . ONLY women would be able to drag a fat-assed man in a red velvet suit all around the world in one night and not get lost.



                                                 New Lions in the Pride


            Alan Jacobs started his career as an accountant with Arthur Anderson.  But for a long time, until his recent retirement, he worked for the Department of the Treasury and did a great deal of traveling for them.  Although semi retired today, he still gets asked to do  background work for the FBI.  “It’s either feast or famine with them” laughed Alan, commenting on his stretches of daily work and sixty  hour weeks and then nothing for two or three weeks.  When not involved in work, Alan enjoys spending time with his wife, Andrea, and with his two  married daughters and their husbands and one granddaughter.  During the summer you may find him relaxing on his boat on Candlewood Lake.  Like Lion Larin some time ago, Alan is active on the Brookfield YMCA Board of Directors.  And, of course, like our other new Lions he is hard at work on the art auction.  We look forward to seeing more of Lion Alan.


            Like new Lion Jacobs, Gary Frey likes the water and keeps a boat on Candlewood Lake, a 240 Sea Ray.  He and his wife of thirty-four years, Barbara, enjoy entertaining on the boat, especially on the Fourth of July when a whole lot of people gather for boating, swimming, fireworks, good food and fellowship.  Gary estimates that there must be 1000 boats on Candlewood over the Fourth. In addition to boating, our new Lion likes to golf.   Gary and Barbara also enjoy spending time with their two daughters, their husbands, three grandchildren  and their son, fifteen, still at Newtown High School. Having been in the technology field for twenty-three years, Gary  now owns his own company called Windsynergy.  His company brings accounting and business solutions to small companies.  When queried as to why he wanted to join the Lions, he said he knew the Lions did good things for the community, and he thought it was time for him to be a part of that.  We really welcome that attitude in the Lions, Gary!


            Doug Hensel, fancy free in his bachelor pad, is a graduate of Indiana University.  While there he was an avid basketball fan, being lucky enough to see coach Bob Knight in action.  In college he was a sports management major with a business minor.  One summer he was an intern at the Union Savings Bank.  When he graduated they offered him a job and he enjoyed his time there.  Moving to the Newtown Savings Bank, he is its cash management officer in the home office, handling anything to do with electronic banking.  He is very happy with the bank and proud of its outstanding training program and customer service.   When not handling all that money, Doug enjoys recreational basketball, skiing in Vermont and lots of golf.  Not long ago he went to Ireland on a golf outing.  Doug also finds pleasure in helping with the Danbury Westerners Baseball Team.  The team is made up of excellent college players who train with a wooden bat and play in a summer league across New England.  Aside from the enjoyment this provides for athletes and spectators, the training helps players get ready for a possible pro baseball career.   


                                    How to Impress a Woman


Wine her,

Dine her,

Do the dishes,

Hug her,

Compliment her,

Smile at her,

Laugh with her,

Cry with her,

Cuddle with her,

Give her jewelry,

Buy her flowers,

Hold her hand,

Write love letters to her


                                    How to Impress a Man


Show up with Beer.