Funding Summer Arts Program for Kids

Quinebaug Valley Council for the Arts and Humanities is offering its annual children’s summer art workshop this year with the help of the Rotary Club of Sturbridge.

The popular class runs in two sessions, both serving two age groups. The current session runs from July 9 to July 13. Children ages six through eight attend a morning session five days a week. Kids ages nine or older attend a class immediately following the younger set’s class each day. There is a second session scheduled for July 16 through July 20, but that session is full.

The Sturbridge Rotary sponsored the program at the arts center in whole this summer, alongside grants to the Tri-Community YMCA and Literacy Volunteers of South Central Massachusetts, and other local organizations. Sturbridge Rotarians Robert and Pauline White recently visited QVCAH’s art center at 111 Main Street in Southbridge to discuss the importance of the program and why QVCAH was chosen for funding.

“We are very interested in supporting youth and children’s programs. One of Sturbridge Rotary’s areas of focus is youth and youth development,” comments Mr. White.

The Sturbridge Rotary has recently awarded a series of grants to organizations serving youth development in Sturbridge and nearby towns. The round of grants comes from the Sturbridge Rotary’s Education and Charitable Trust and seeks to provide access to enriching experiences and support for children.

There has never been a fee for enrolling in the kids’ summer art classes that QVCAH offers. The annual program is open to students in any of the twenty-five towns that the arts organization serves. However, there are several costs involved in running the program, ranging from art supplies to a very modest stipend for the instructors who spend months planning, organizing and holding the classes. The instructors are longtime members of the arts organization and they bring a lifetime of experience as artists to the classes.

Students in this year’s cohort come from a range of towns including Southbridge, Sturbridge, Charlton, Brimfield and beyond. Many of the kids return to the program year after year and many become involved in other QVCAH programs after taking a class.

QVCAH is very grateful to the Sturbridge Rotary for their help with this year’s summer arts programming.  “They have been very supportive in so many ways to us and I have been very grateful,” comments a leading member of QVCAH.

The two sessions of the art classes will culminate in a “mini-gallery” show and opening Sunday, July 22 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at 111 Main Street in Southbridge. The annual event is presented like a professional art opening and the children who have participated will have the opportunity to proudly show their work to family and loved ones.

Bob, Pauline White - Art Center


Playground at the YMCA Day Care Center

The Sturbridge Rotary Club recently awarded $5,000 to the Tri-Community YMCA Child Development Center, 115 Marcy Street in Southbridge, to help fund a new outdoor playground that will be enjoyed by more than 150 kids a day.

“This playground will help the Y provide safe and healthy spaces for our children to learn foundational skills, develop healthy, trusting relationships and build self-esteem,” Glenn Juchno, Executive Director of the Tri-Community YMCA. “We are fortunate to have great partners like the Sturbridge Rotary Club who understand the impact of youth development in our community.”

For over 100 years, the YMCA has been meeting the needs of children, adults and families in our community.  The Child Development Center at the Y offers year-round licensed childcare for infants, toddlers, preschoolers and school age children.

“We’re happy to help support the YMCA’s new playground with funds from our educational trust account,” Past-President Otto Prohaska.  “One of Sturbridge Rotary’s areas of focus is youth and youth development.  The Y offers so many programs for children of all ages that funding toward the playground was a perfect fit for us.”

YMCA check from CETA - June 20, 2018


The Produce is Growing!

The Community Food Collaborative garden is growing and growing.  We’ve delivered two loads of various kinds of lettuce and recently delivered lettuce, cucumbers, cauliflower, zucchini, broccoli, beans, bell pepper, sweet banana peppers, summer squash, radishes and beets.  The folks at the St. John Paul II Food Pantry were really excited to start getting fresh organic vegetables.

July 10 - Harvest brought to JP II

July 10 - Bill, Eunice, Jim harvesting

Garden Angel, marigolds - July 5, 2018

July 5 - Garden4

July 5 - Garden yellow squash3

July 5 - Garden cauliflower

July 5 - Garden bush beans2

July 5 - Garden broccoli

July 5 - Garden - Butternut Sqash

Charity Golf Classic at Cohasse

On Monday, August 20, the Cohasse Country Club in Southbridge will again host the Rotary Club of Sturbridge for its ninth Charity Golf Classic.  Chair of the event, Dave Zonia, reports that the field of 64 golfers is filling up quickly so it’s best to make your reservations now to be included.  The day begins with a tee time at 10:30 AM, a BBQ luncheon on the course and a full prime rib dinner prepared by the club’s Executive Chef.  We’ll have auctions and the awarding of prizes following dinner.  Cost for this prestigious event is $600 for a foursome and $150 for an individual signup, upon which you will be assigned to a group.

Special events include a Hole-in-One contest on a par 3 with success providing a $10,000 award.  As in previous years there will be contests for closest to the pin, longest drive and closest to the line with those prizes awarded in the evening.  Also available for purchase are “play improvement” strings.

This year Rotary welcomes Henke-Sasse Wolf as a new major sponsor to the Golf Classic, who joins with continuing major sponsors Cornerstone Bank, P. J. Keating Construction, National Guard Association, Southbridge Credit Union and Safety Source – Northeast. Hometown Bank will sponsor the on-course lunch.  Many contributions will also be recognized for tee and green signs as well as many gifts donated for golfers and for the auctions.

All proceeds from this golfing event will be used to fund Sturbridge Rotary’s charitable activities to empower youth, improve health, provide scholarships and whenever possible, answer needs in the local communities.  Just this past June the Rotary Club awarded another $6,000 in scholarships to Tantasqua Regional students bringing the total of scholarships awarded in the last 45 years to over $200,000.

To participate in the Golf Classic or to attend the social event following the golf, contact any Sturbridge Rotary Club member or contact the Golf Chair at or phone at 508-335-4550.


Golf8 swing 8-29-2016

Check Presented at the CFC Garden

We had a special visit at the garden from the Branch and Assistant Branch Managers of the Sturbridge bankHometown. They presented us with a check as a “Hot Pepper” Sponsor of the garden. All Hot Pepper sponsors get to have their name on one of the growing beds. They join four other Hot Pepper sponsors that already have their names on display. It was great to get the personal visit from Hometown and to show off the garden. The CFC is very thankful for the support we have received from all of our sponsors on all four sponsor levels, as well as the In-Kind contributors. Pauline, a.k.a. “Lettuce Tell All” handles much of the garden’s publicity. She is shown happily accepting the check from Karla (on the right).

June 29 - Check bankHometown-mgr

Sponsor tag Sbg Credit Union

Sponsor tag Savers

Sponsor tag Harrington


Sponsor tag Cornerstone

2018 Scholars Visit Rotary

We were honored to host the 2018 Tantasqua scholarship recipients and their parents recently.  The Club has been awarding scholarships each year to local students for the past 45 years.  The first scholarship was for $500 and the amount awarded has steadily increased over the years.  This year Sturbridge Rotary awarded scholarships of $1,000 each to six students.  Cumulatively, we are proud to have awarded over $200,000 in local scholarships.

Of the 47 applications reviewed this year, the scholarship committee chose the following students based upon the Club’s criteria of personal and scholastic achievement, participation in school activities including sports, as well as community participation through work and volunteering.

Tayla Lynn Shepard from Sturbridge – accepted at the American International College in Springfield, MA in the Nursing Program.

Emily Irene Bready from Wales – accepted to pursue a BS in Public Health/BSN dual degree program offered through Worcester State University and the MA College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences University.

Thomas Muir from Sturbridge – accepted at UMass Amherst pursuing a degree in Environmental Engineering.

Rachel Godek from Wales – accepted at UConn in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences with a major in Molecular and Cell Biology.

Sylvia Costa from Brimfield – accepted at UMass Lowell College of Engineering with a major of Civil Engineering.

Philip Standrowicz from Southbridge – accepted to Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston focusing on a Computer Science program.  Philip also received the Wendell Wright Memorial Educational Award for $500 in memory of Wendell Wright.  Wendell’s widow, Dorothy Wright, a Sturbridge Rotarian, presented the award.

L to R:  Sylvia Costa, Emily Irene Bready, President Dave, Philip Standrowicz, Rachel Godek, Thomas Muir.  Unfortunately, Tayla Lynn Shepard was not able to attend.

L to R: Sylvia Costa, Emily Irene Bready, President Dave, Philip Standrowicz, Rachel Godek, Thomas Muir. Unfortunately, Tayla Lynn Shepard was not able to attend.

2018 - Wendell Wright Schlr2, Zonia, Dorothy - June 25