The Rotary Club of
Centerville, OH
Chartered 1972
eBulletin - September 2, 2021
Centerville Rotary Meeting Highlights
President Brian Hayes welcomed everyone to the Centerville Rotary Club and led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance. Brian shared an update we received on member Don Gearhardt:
This is Don Gerhardt's daughter, Laurie, just reaching out to let you know that my Dad is still in Nursing care at Oak Creek Terrace in Kettering. It is looking like this may be a permanent thing. I thought some Rotarians might like to know since he was such a go-getter for Centerville Rotary for so many years.
I take my Mom to visit him almost every day, but he is still very lonely. He really doesn't want or expect visitors, especially with all the Covid scares, but a call once in awhile would be appreciated. His personal number is: 937-281-6019.
By the way, he has seemingly begun selling Pancake breakfast tickets from his bed. I'm not sure you are doing that yet this year. Luckily, he doesn't have many numbers in his phone. When are the dates for Pancake Breakfast ticket sales? I will let him know if it is even something he needs to do.
I appreciate your patience with my long email. It's a difficult time in our family. If anything, I would appreciate prayers for my parents and my family.
All the best,
Laurie Gerhardt-Kronmiller
PDG Harvey Smith noted he talks to Don regularly and has already received many of his contacts for pancake tickets. Harvey then provided the prayer.
Brian shared the thought for the moment – Actress Mae West said - “Too much of a good thing can be wonderful.”
Brian had the following announcements:
  • Don’t forget your Pledge Cards. They should be returned to me. Be sure to indicate which project it is for so that we can allocate the proceeds to the proper Pledge. So Far we have pledges through August of $4500 for our 50th Anniversary, $3400 for Pancake Day and $3600 for the Golf Outing.
  • Today our Guest Speaker is Jim Amon – who will discuss the Beaver Creek Wetlands. Dave Trout will give a proper introduction in a few moments.
Harvey Smith announced Pancake Tickets are available but not ready to distribute yet. He requested help stuffing envelopes with 25 tickets each after the meeting today.
Happy Bucks this quarter are for Operation Warm - to provide new winter coats to children in need.
Our Sergeant of Arms this week was Brian Hayes
  • Rebecca was happy to announce Carlos got new assignment for next summer - he’s coming back home to Centerville!
  • Sofie Ameloot had unhappy bucks because after her daughter Delphine’s apartment flooded, her car was broken into!
  • Susan Schnell was happy/bittersweet because she started grad school but then dropped her daughter off at college and they are missing her already.
  • Lee Hieronymus was sorry to miss Scott’s induction last week but he got stuck on hold for more than an hour and missed the meeting.
  • Carol Kennard invited everyone to attend the Fair at New Boston at one of her parks in Springfield this weekend. Enjoy a step back in time to 1801 to speak with artisans, sample food, wander through a Native American village, and watch a battle reenactment including a replica cannon (bring ear plugs!)
  • Chuck King welcomed visitor Brian Lee who is possibly interested in joining the club.
  • Guest Rand Oliver (a familiar face!) was greeted warmly and then he gave for Operation Warm, and noted it was good to be back. He retired 4 weeks ago and wants to come back to Centerville club.
  • Mike Wier was going to welcome Rand but Chuck beat him to it.
  • Dale Berry announced next Thursday, Centerville-Washington History will present A Sense of Taste at Benham’s Grove starting at 5 pm, where you can sample good food from local restaurants. There are only a few tickets left on sale. You can get them at the Walton House for $30.
  • Carol Sue Galloway was happy for a 3 day weekend.
  • Jeff Senney is happy to be going to the Hamptons to visit friends.
  • Brad Thorp announced his son Brit finished a Master’s in Fine Arts, and is now teaching 8th graders in Austin, TX. He admits he knows nothing about  8th graders and apologized to his parents for ever being an 8th grader!
  • Jim Harris grandson attended OSU from out of state, and now that he’s back home, he got called for jury duty Jim was able to  get him excused for not living in the county anymore.
  • Brian Hayes was happy to see his grandson and hear his favorite words: “Pops”,  “Hallelujah”, and “Amen”. And now he has also learned “Granny” which made Erica happy.
Our speaker today was Jim Amon with the Beaver Creek Wetlands Association.
Dave Trout introduced Dr. Jim Amon who grew up on a Clermont County farm, earned a B.S. in biology and a Masters in marine biology. He served in the  U.S. Army as a bacteriologist and retired from Wright State University Department of Biology. In 1988 , Jim was a founding member of Beaver Creek Wetlands Association, and has worked hard to secure grants and and preserve land to protect the wetland ecosystem.
Jim said he likes to go out into the wetlands everyday to experience the beauty, as you see something different each time. We have some of the most diverse wetlands, with an incredible number of different species that are linked to one another and help each other exist.
What is a wetland? The land is WET. The EPA and Corp of Engineers have legal definitions, but basically, it’s wet. You can’t always see the water, but when it rains, wetlands flood - storing water to keep from flooding other areas.
Jim shared a video showing the beauty of the land preserved throughout the Beaver Creek Wetlands. It can be viewed here:
He highlighted a couple of properties:
Siebenthaler Fen is the crown jewel with 470 different plant species, many species of frogs (indicator species for quality habitat), and home to some of the more than 160 species of damselflies and dragonflies in OH
Creekside Preserve has 3.5 miles of trails and is in full bloom mid-late summer. It has a Monarch way station which can giver you ideas of what to plant in your own gardens to help monarch butterflies.
Fairborn Marsh is a prairie with newly planted oaks, spice bush, dogwood.
Koogler boardwalk is a wet woods, prairie, and sedge meadow.
They provide many different programs and offer citizen science activities including Monarch tagging, which provides information on where they travel. The programs help foster an understanding about the outdoors and the importance of preserving wetlands and natural habitats.
Beaver Creek Wetlands Association formed in 1988 when several individuals recognized a resource that needed to be protected. They saved the land from being drained and turned into a golf course. Several endangered species were found in that area.
Technically, the Beaver Creek Wetlands is a fen, meaning a wetland that is supplied water from the ground, year-round. Water runs off into Beaver Creek.
The newest addition is Pearl’s Fen. It is a fairly small area where horses were grazing, and gravel was dumped. Greene County Parks &Trails partnered with them, and local naturalist Dave Nolin got a Clean Ohio Conservation Fund grant to purchase the land and restore the fen. 300 different species of plants can be found in the 0.4 mile boardwalk.
Cemex Reserve was closed for awhile after the tornados and beavers built dams which flooded it all. Jim took it on as a project to restore and protect Fairborn from flooding by creating a fen. He asked Cemex for matching money and they agreed to donation the land and paying them $25,000 so they wouldn’t have to pay fines. They were able to take this place with no topsoil and turn it into a viable wetland and wet prairie. There is 54 acre feet of flood storage there.
They have completed restoration in areas that were in trouble. And now the goal is to connect all spots together throughout the Beaver Creek Wetland areas ($7.5 million project.) But they need help. Most everyone involved are volunteers, although they do have a hired administrator. Volunteers have installed trail signs, benches, and boardwalks, improved trails, and removed invasive plants.
90% of the original wetlands in Ohio were drained and wiped out, mostly due to farming. They are important ecosystems for helping slow down the flow of water during high rain events, provide habitat for hundreds of native species, and act as a filtration system for impurities in the waterways.
How you can help?
Become a member
Make a donation
Spread the word
Sponsor a project
For more information, visit
President Brian announced Next week our special guests will be Dylan Pohl of the Victory Project. The Rotary Board Meeting is Monday September 20th @ 5:30pm – more info forthcoming.
And then led the group in reciting The 4 Way Test.
Editor's note: The top photo was taken by yours truly and won a spot in the Beaver Creek Wetlands Association 2022 calendar! You can order a calendar here:
Anyone still need one of our stylish 50th Anniversary polo shirts? We ordered a few extra so contact Carol Kennard if interested! 
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Service Above Self
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Centerville, OH 45458
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