Hello!  ๐Ÿ‘‹๐Ÿผ
 
Did you see our (winning!) exhibit at the Santa Cruz Co. Fair Holiday Lights? Or maybe our sign in Aptos, & that's why you are visiting our website? Well, WELCOME!!! 
 
 
We are Capitola-Aptos Rotary! 
 
 
We are a non profit organization of like minded community leaders who want to have fellowship and be of service. 
 
Our club was chartered in 1965 as the Rotary of Mid County, and we became Rotary of Capitola-Aptos in the 1980's.  We are part of Rotary International's District 5170 (https://rotarydistrict5170.org/), Area 7 (which is all seven of the Santa Cruz County Rotary Clubs!). 
 
 
The programs that we are most proud of are as follows: 
 
1. Community Grants
 
The open application period is usually in Fall and local non-profits complete an application telling us about their organization and what they would be doing with the money if they are chosen. 
 
On Dec. 8, 2022 we gave out our most recent year's Community Grants. We gave out over $18,000 to this year's twelve non-profit recipients!  The 2022 focus that our club board & grant committee identified as top priority were food insecurity, mental health, children's issues and protection for parents & children (domestic violence). 
 

In 2022 our Grant Recipient organizations were: 

For Kids Foundation Monterey Bay https://www.forkidsfoundationmontereybay.org/
Grey Bears  https://greybears.org/
Monarch Services https://www.monarchscc.org/
Pajaro Valley Loaves and Fishes  https://www.pvloavesandfishes.org/
Safe Schools Project  https://safeschoolsproject.org/
Santa Cruz Symphony  https://santacruzsymphony.org/classical-music-classrooms 
Veterans Memorial Building:  https://www.veteranshall.org/revised-home-page/
Volunteer Center, Literacy Project:  https://scvolunteercenter.org/programs/literacy-program/
Siena House  https://www.sienahouse.org/what-we-do
Teen Kitchen Project  https://teenkitchenproject.org/about-us/
Walnut Avenue Center   http://www.wafwc.org/whoweare
Your Future Is Our Business  https://yfiob.org/about-us/
Meals on Wheels of Santa Cruz County   https://communitybridges.org/mealsonwheels/

 
Grant Recipient Organizations with Co-Pres Kendra
 
 
To support our Community Grants Program, our members pay annual and quarterly dues, weekly meeting fees, and this is in addition to any annual donations our members make. We also hold a few events annually that raise more money, which we then give away! ๐Ÿ’ธ๐Ÿ’ฐ๐Ÿ’ธ
 
๐Ÿป๐ŸŽ† 4th of July Beer Booth: ๐ŸŽ‡๐Ÿป  After the Aptos World's Shortest Parade we sell beer and hard seltzers in the Aptos Village Party in the Park.  So every time you see us after the 4th of July parade buy an extra beer and leave a tip, since all the funds we raise support your local community! 
๐Ÿฝ๏ธ๐ŸŽคAnnual Dinner & Roast:๐Ÿฝ๏ธ๐ŸŽค in the late fall we hold a gala where a local community member is roasted at a gourmet plated dinner. 
๐Ÿ“๐ŸŽพ Pickleball Tournament:๐ŸŽพ๐Ÿ“ 2022 was our inaugural pickleball tournament and the event went so well we'll be holding our 2nd annual Pickleball in the Park Tournament in September 2023. 
๐ŸŽ๐ŸŒนKentucky Derby Party: ๐ŸŒน๐ŸŽ In 2023 we'll be holding our inaugural Kentucky Derby Party! Stay tuned for more details but put May 6, 2023 on your calendar!   
 
 
We have also fundraised and funded some very special large projects over the last decade alone! 
 
 
Sgt. Gutzwiller Memorial at Willowbrook Park: In March 2022 an initial sponsorship of the playground renovation for $50,000 was made, & then an additional $1,000 was given---the proceeds from our Inaugural Pickleball in the Park Fundraiser held in May 2022 at the Willowbrook Park newly resurfaced Courts! 
 
 
 
 
2. High School Scholarships
 
 We give about $6000 annually to students who are graduating from Aptos & Soquel High Schools.  To receive these scholarships students apply & write an essay, then once they are chosen they must come visit one of our club meetings to meet us & tell us about themselves & their plans! They also must provide proof of enrollment & grades to Treasurer Julie for a check to be cut, which goes directly to their institution of higher education. 
 
We also have a special scholarship called the John Fisher Scholarship---in honor of Past District Governor, RotaCare Bay Area Founder and our dear Rotarian Emeritus, John Fisher (1922-2020).
 
John is in the center, seated, in the blue blazer. Here he is pictured with fellow Rotarians at his 95th birthday celebration in 2017. 
 
A little about our dear John: 
John was active in Rotary for over 60 years, achieving perfect attendance for decades! John served as Club President in Cupertino (1966-67) and again for the Capitola/Aptos Club (1981-82). In 1988-89 he was named as District Governor of Rotary District 5170. John was a founding member of the RotaCare Free Clinics, providing no-cost medical treatment to the uninsured and working poor in the Bay Area, including Santa Cruz. RotaCare was a vision John brought to reality. John served as an active member of the RotaCare Bay Area Board of Directors from its inception. In 2019 he was honored with the RotaCare Lifetime Volunteer Award for his 30 years of service.
In 2000, John was a recipient of the KSBW distinguished Jefferson Award presented to those who have exhibited outstanding service to their community as a volunteer. He traveled to Washington, D.C. to receive this award in the chambers of the U.S. Supreme Court. 
 
We established the John Fisher Scholarship after John's passing and locally graduating high school students from Aptos & Soquel High Schools who are going to be attending Cabrillo College as the first part of furthering their higher education. 
 
3. Piatt (pronounced Pie-IT) Endowment at UCSC 
 
Capitola-Aptos Rotarian Henry Piatt and his wife Vera were children of Mid-America. Vera was born in Iowa in 1907 and Henry, a bit
earlier, in Missouri. In the late 1920's Henry was traveling the world with the U.S. Navy when he was stricken with Tuberculosis and
hospitalized for treatment in a Colorado military facility. Vera was a nurse in that hospital. They fell in love, Vera resigned her commission and after Henry's recovery began their lifelong marriage, which brought them to Sacramento.
Henry's business relationships led him to his first Rotary Club where he thrived in the "Service Above Self" philosophy. After relocating to Aptos, he became a member of The Rotary Club of Soquel (now The Rotary Club of Capitola/Aptos) in 1965, and remained a member until his death in 1984. His personable soft-spoken manner combined with vision & common sense made him a popular Rotarian and accounted for his long service as Club Secretary where he guided many Club Presidents during the 70's & 80's. Henry's vision of a Club Foundation to extend its capabilities to serve the community came to fruition, and in 1986 Vera established the Piatt Trust, which culminated in the Graduate Fellowship as it exists today. Vera passed on in 2007.
 
When asked why a graduate fellowship? Henry replied "I want to fund our community's best and brightest!"

Henry and Vera Piatt Fellowship is for Graduate Studies in the STEM Disciplines. The Piatt Fellowship provides a single award annually of $15,000 to a graduate of a Santa Cruz County Public High School who is pursuing a graduate degree at UC Santa Cruz in one of the science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) disciplines during the academic year following their application. ๐Ÿงฌ๐Ÿ”ฌ๐Ÿงซ๐Ÿงช๐Ÿ”ญ

The Henry and Vera Piatt Fellows (as endowed with Capitola-Aptos Rotary Club) are:
 
โ™ฆ   Kevin Weatherwax (2022-2023) 
โ™ฆ   Megan Durham (2021-2022)
โ™ฆ   John Wenger (2020-2021)
โ™ฆ   Veronica Urabe (2019-2020)
โ™ฆ   Alexey Munishkin (2018-2019)
โ™ฆ   Chad Townsend (2017-2018)
โ™ฆ   Keelan Guiley, Rubin Lab (2016-2017)
โ™ฆ   Christopher Deming, Chen Lab (2015-2016)
โ™ฆ   Kenji Kurita, Linington lab (2014-2015)
โ™ฆ   Susanna "Susy" Honig (2013-2014) 
 
 
4. Adopt-A-Beach and Quarterly Beach Cleanups: Rio Del Mar State Beach ๐Ÿšฎ๐Ÿšญ๐Ÿชฃ๐Ÿšฏโ™ป๏ธ
 
We partnered with Save Our Shores (SOS) and have adopted Rio Del Mar State Beach in Aptos! Prior to the storm of January 2023 we even had a sign! 
Adopting a beach means we do quarterly beach clean ups at our designated location. 
 
 
 
What is a Rotary Meeting? 
 
Want to know what to expect?! Currently Rotarians arrive on Thursday's around noon and first check in and pay for lunch, this is all done with our very friendly treasurer, Julie! (Sometimes Rich or Lowry will act as treasurer in Julie's absence!) 
 
 
 
 
 
After you check in with Julie you will see the buffet lunch, which is served right around 12:10pm!  Fill your plate and take a seat in our meeting room. We call our meetings to order at 12:30pm sharp! 
 
Our meetings start with the Pledge of Allegiance, our club song which is called "The Welcome Song!" with musical accompaniment by our in-house band; Sam Nigh on the guitar, Al DeCamara on the keyboard and sometimes Art Dover joins them on the Sax! Additionally to The Welcome Song, when Sam Nigh is in attendance we also sing an original song he wrote called "The Four Way Test Song" which is sung to the melody of Running Bear. 
 
 
Art Dover, Sam Nigh & Al DeCamara
 
 
After the song we introduce any visitors or guest Rotarians who are visiting from other clubs then we do club announcements.  After announcements we kick it over to that week's detective.  The detective changes each week as assigned by Detective Coordinator Trish Glassey. The job of the detective is to raise some money for our club, the goal is to raise about $100 per meeting in $10 fine's. Usually the detective either lets us brag, or "outs" us on something proud that has happened in our life or the lives of our immediate family (i.e. a new grandchild being born, a child graduating from high school or college, an award a Rotarian has won in the community). Or they run a pop quiz style Q&A on a topic of the day, usually something that happened on that day in historic years. Like history of Labor Day, or a memory from one's childhood Christmases, or a story from a summer vacation taken in years past! Usually only members are fined, we let guests off the hook unless they ask to participate! 
 
Then right at 1pm sharp we turn it over to the day's Speaker. The Speaker Calendar can be found on our website menu on the tab called Calendar, or you can find it here: https://capitolaaptosrotary.org/events/calendar 
The calendar lists who the day's scheduled speaker is, and the topic they will be speaking on!  Huge shout out to our Speaker Coordinator, Rotarian Anissa Novak who keeps the schedule booked and also keeps us entertained with really interesting and educational topics! 
 
The speaker talks until we adjourn at 1:30pm sharp!  Right at the end of our meeting we run a little raffle---that each member or guest can pay $3 to enter upon that day's registration with Treasurer Julie!  The weekly payout is $25, but if the winner wasn't present the previous week the pot rolls over to the next week so upon entry you'll see a sign saying what the week's jackpot amount is! 
 
We hope this has given you a little intro to our Rotary Club, what our meetings look like and what we do in the community. If you want to join us in person we'd love to have you! Check the calendar for our meeting location! 
Or if you want to join us via Zoom, the link is on our homepage!  
 
We look forward to meeting you! 
--Presidents Kendra & Laura on behalf of the entire club