Eupora Rotary Club marks 80th anniversary

From Club Reports


The Eupora Rotary Club celebrated its 80th anniversary June 9 at the Caked Up Café.

President Hays Burchfield made a brief presentation followed by fellowship among members, attending spouses, former members and prospective members. They enjoyed a meal and birthday cake from Caked Up Bakery that was decorated with the Rotary International wheel.

The club was organized June 11, 1937, with help from the West Point and Moorhead Rotary clubs. The 15 charter Rotarians were C.P. Fortner Sr., Ned Lee, W.E. Taylor, W.R. Sugg, J.R. Phillips Jr., R.T. Hobson, T.F. Taylor Jr. J.B. Johnston Sr., A.C. Hooper, F.L. Roberts, W.H. Lamb, P.H. Dunning, L. H. Jobe, Charles Field and W. H. Jones.

Eupora Rotary Club now has 19 members and Burchfield said it is always looking for prospective members who would make great Rotarians.

“The Eupora Rotary Club is pleased to be celebrating 80 years of positive change here in Eupora, and we’d love for those of you who are not current members to talk with a current member about joining,” he told those gathered. “The Eupora Rotary Club is as strong as its members, and we can make a difference here by working together.”

Starting July 1, the club’s officers will be Robin Mixon as president, Michael Kolb as president-elect, Earl Johnson as vice president, Russell Hood as secretary, Bonita Martin as treasurer, Josh Whitlock as sergeant-at-arms and Burchfield as immediate past president. Committee chairs will be Sandra Dewberry over club administration, Wes Sigler over membership, Lara Bowman over public relations, Larry White over Rotary Foundation and Josh Whitlock over service projects.

Eupora Rotary Club is part of Rotary International, which has more than 35,000 clubs and 1.2 million members across the world. Rotary is neighbors, friends, leaders and problem-solvers who come together to make positive, lasting change in communities. Its motto is Service Above Self. Rotary’s values are service, fellowship, diversity, integrity and leadership. Across the world, Rotary fights to end polio and other diseases, promote peace and provide clean water.

Over the past 80 years, Eupora Rotary Club has welcomed women as members, performed countless community projects and made donations to causes important to the people of Eupora. The club sponsors the Eupora Christmas Parade each year and has started organizing ribbon cuttings for new businesses here in Eupora. Each month during the school year, the club recognizes a Rotary Student of the Month who is a senior at Eupora High School and picks one winner in April to receive the $1,000 Eupora Rotary Club scholarship.

Eupora Rotarians promote literacy by reading books to children and sponsoring the Between the Lions reading program at V’s Peace, Love and Happy Faces. The club sponsors the Interact Club at EHS and paid for three juniors to attend the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards conference this year.

It has donated dictionaries to students at Eupora Elementary School, donated funds to its after-school Love Bag program, and spent more than $2,000 to purchase and donate two defibrillators for the Eupora schools.

In addition to promoting education, Eupora Rotary Club supports the city’s parks. It paid for the refurbishment of the entrance sign at Spud Stennett Park and has a sign at Gary Park. The club also has donated money to the Angel Tree Project, the Mississippi Army National Guard’s area Family Readiness Group, Webster Baptist Association Food Pantry, Eupora Arts Council and the Tombigbee Regional Library Sy