The Rotary Club of Edina celebrated the club's 60th Anniversary at their meeting Oct. 5. The Diamond Jubilee was marked with a special meeting featuring a video honoring all the past presidents of the club, special recognition of the longest serving members and the membership pillars, a program on the history of the club by Edina Historical Society Executive Director Jennifer Adam and congratulatory remarks from Irene Kelly, the District 5950 Governor-Elect. For a recap of the celebration, click on the link.
 
President San Asato opened the meeting by thanking all for attending as we celebrated the 60th anniversary of the Rotary Club of Edina. He took note that each of us at the meeting received a special coin that commemorates the day and shows the 60 years of Edina Rotary on one side and the 4-Way test on the other.  
 
Dick Teegen, a previous member of our club and now a new member again, gave a reading of Micky Lane’s "History of the Rotary Club of Edina." For those of you not aware, Dick was Tim Murphy’s sponsor, so we have Dick to blame for that. Dick took note of our first meeting, which took place Oct. 7, 1957 with over 400 Rotarians from around Minnesota in attendance and our club receiving gifts from 25 Rotary clubs in District 5950. As Edina was considered for a new Rotary Club, the Godfather of our Club Sam Thorpe (a member at the time of Minneapolis Rotary) said that Edina was a “high class village” and due for a club. That description of our city changed in 1991 when Jon Barnett moved into town. There were 21 charter members of Edina Rotary and the club started meeting at the Biltmore Inn.  
 
Past President Jennifer Bennerotte then recognized three of our members who are not official charter members but were at the first meeting in 1957: Don EricksonFrank Cardarelle and Jack Braun. Jennifer and her team put together an excellent video where Don was interviewed and gave his perspective on 60 years of Edina Rotary and all the good that we have done both here and abroad. 
 
The Rotary Club of Edina was formed in August of 1957, and its Charter Night held Oct. 7 of that year. Erickson and Cardarelle were both part of that milestone, with Erickson joining on Aug. 26, 1957, and Cardarelle joining on Aug. 27, 1957. Both men served as Club President. Erickson served as the club’s seventh president in 1963 and 1964. Cardarelle was the club’s 14th president in 1969 and 1970.
 
The club’s other Past Presidents were also honored at the “Diamond Jubilee” celebration. Other Past Presidents in attendance were Dan Hallberg, 1980-81; Bill Clynes, 1983-84; Dennis Hykes, 1990-91; Les Wanninger, 1996-97; Bob Solheim, 1997-98; Tom McNellis, 1998-99; Bob Hildreth, 1999-00; Patti
Ellingson Solheim, 2001-02; Bob Stehlik, 2003-03; Brad Hepp, 2003-04; Sandy Schley, 2005-06; Tim Murphy, 2006-07; Terry Stevens, 2007-08; Paul Mooty, 2008-2009; Woodrow “Wooj” Byun, 2011-12; Scott MacDonald, 2012-13; Steve Slyce, 2013-14; Jeff Ohe, 2014-2015; Jennifer Bennerotte, 2015-2016; and Ann Platt, 2016-17.
 
Membership Director Greg Yoch then recognized our membership pillars, those who have sponsored the most members. Josh Sprague and MacDonald were recognized as the club’s Membership Pillars. Sprague has sponsored 13 members and MacDonald has sponsored 11. MacDonald was also recognized as the club’s Membership Pillar at its 50th anniversary celebration in
2007.
 
District Governor-Elect Irene Kennedy from Eden Prairie Rotary came to the podium to give congratulations to our club and called President-Elect John Flynn to the podium to receive the District's instructional booklet for his year as president.
 
Today’s program was Jennifer Adam, the Executive Director of the Edina Historical Society. She acknowledged Frank and Lois Cardarelle for all of the help they gave in identifying pictures and to Frank for all of his work over the years at the Historical Society. Adam showed many pictures that document our club’s history, including a photo of the program at the initial meeting in 1957. She pointed out how clean and crisp the program looked and contrasted it with programs recently printed by Jessen Press. There were also great pictures of Edina Rotarians taking a bus to Rochester for a meeting, as well as pictures at a meeting there. She noted the style of dress and décor present in those photos taken in the 1960s. Rotarian Chrysanne Manoles was our club’s first female member in 1988 and her picture brought big applause. 
 
 
Over the years, our club has met at the Biltmore Inn, Interlachen Country Club, The Camelot and now the Edina Country Club since 1989. She showed some great pictures of our Barker, Camp Enterprise, a picture of Barnett with a mustache, Moses, and a picture of Rotarians giving a check in the amount of $25,000 in 1987 for an addition to the Historical Society at Arneson Acres. A highlight of the pictures was when she pointed out a lovely picture of Bob Solheim and Patti Ellingson Solheim, which drew some whispers as the picture was actually of Jean Morrison, not Patti. It was an innocent mistake! Past President Bob Hildreth, at his second club meeting in seven years, pointed out to Adam that our club was recognized by Rotary International as the No. 1 Club in the Universe. He plans to give her data to that effect for the Historical Society’s archives.
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