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The creation of the Rotary Club of Greater Jamestown AM officially began in June of 1990 when the Jamestown Rotary Club appointed an extension committee with the purpose of establishing a morning Rotary club in the Jamestown area.  The extension committee initiated a series of meetings with interested persons, which led to the creation of a provisional club.  The membership of the provisional club was youthful and vigorous (which is a prerequisite to having fun first thing in the morning).  Perseverance, member recruitment and subsequent meetings satisfied Rotary International requirements and we were officially chartered on March 15, 1991, which we celebrated with a black tie affair.


The Rotary Club of Greater Jamestown, AM meets every Wednesday morning from 7:15 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. in the Marvin House, (a beautifully preserved historic building) located at 2 West Fifth Street, Jamestown, NY, 14701.  We socialize and dine on terrific breakfasts for about 15 minutes and the meeting is generally called to order at about 7:30 a.m.


After committee and general announcements including happy buck announcements, our roving Sergeant at Arms (who alternate from week to week) usually fires obscure random questions at each table of six to eight.  If you answer the question incorrectly, the penalty is $1 per person.  Members that have had been recognized in our local newspaper, receive $1 fines also.  Occasionally, each table is called on to write and perform a song or poem or otherwise creatively demonstrate their abilities.  This is no easy task for a non-singing, non-performing membership.  One of our most memorable Sergeant at Arms was the time we were all challenged to take an early morning swim after our Sergeant at Arms dove into a swimming pool, (when we were located at the Holiday Inn).  The consequence of not following her into the pool was to pay up.  Of course, the Sergeant at Arms had a ringer or two that followed her into the pool.  This one made the front page of the Post-Journal!  Currently, if you have the good fortune of winning the 50/50 pot, you are expected to serve as Sergeant at Arms the following week in order to collect your winnings.


Our programs last about 20 - 30 minutes and are diverse.  Our speakers have included rodeo cowboys and doctors talking about miracle drugs.  Equal opportunity, our membership averages about 50% women and 50% men.  It was hard to tell who liked the cowboy the most!


The hallmark of the Rotary Club of Greater Jamestown AM is its hands-on community service.  We like to put our hands to the task of sorting, buying and distributing coats for Bundle Them Up, a local campaign to provide coats for children, in conjunction with The Salvation Army.  Four times a year we perform highway cleanup on Route 60.  On an as needed basis, we like to take on projects that help other organizations.  Most recently, we assisted the Eastside YMCA with installing its playground and supplied the club with all sorts of game equipment, including a pool table and ping pong table.   We even hosted a pizza party in order to help break the new equipment in.  In 1999, the club built a playground at ChadakoinPark.  In addition to hammering and digging, the club raised the money (about $12,500) and accessed a matching Children's Opportunity Grant from The Rotary Foundation for $12,500. 


In 2000, we partnered with a club in Thailand to access a matching Rotary Foundation $3,000 grant to build two womens' sewing centers to help the women of two small villages preserve their traditional cloth weaving (Chok Cloth) and to provide a means of making a living for their struggling families by selling this traditional cloth to tourists to the country.  We are big supporters of International Service and participate each year in Youth Exchange and Group Study Exchange.  We have sponsored one Ambassadorial Scholar in our short history, a $25,000 graduate work scholarship in India.


We have raised over $350,000 in our short history to put back into local and world community projects, youth exchange, college scholarships and the Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA).  Annually, we hold two to three fundraisers.  Our Buffalo Bills Football Party has been our main fundraiser for several years.  In the past, we have also held Lobster Feasts and a couple of years we have also sponsored a Buffalo Sabres Alumni match against our own local hockey coaches and players in our new Jamestown Savings Bank Ice Arena.  Most recently, we initiated a new fundraiser, Fine Dining Books, which seems to get points from everyone - the restaurants that offer the buy one, get one-half off dinner coupons, the folks who buy the books at $25 each and the organizations that receive the grants that we make to them.


The Rotary Club of Greater Jamestown, AM invites you to visit.  We are friendly, relaxed Rotarians and our delicious breakfast only costs $9.