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October at a Glance

SILG in October, Easy as 1-2-3!

October 3 – Board Meeting 12noon at Dennys, All Members Encouraged

October 10 – Business Meeting 12noon at Dennys, All Members

October 17 – Social at The Marketplace, 6pm

Bring a potential member to any of these opportunities to learn about SILG!

Festival Committee Meetings Set

Festival of Tree Committee meetings have been set and members are welcome and encouraged to get involved if there is an interest sooner rather than later! There are MANY sizes of tasks to making this event a fantabulous success for our club and the scholarships and programs that it supports, so the more hands on deck, the merrier! (Did we confuse anyone, there?) HO, HO, HO!

All meetings are held at Dennys at noon.

October 7, 14, 21, 28

November 4, 11, 18, 25

December 2

September At A Glance

SILG in September, Easy as 1-2-3!

September 5 – Board Meeting 12noon at Dennys, All Members Encouraged

September 12 – Business Meeting 12noon at Dennys, All Members

September 19 – Program/Social at President Shannon’s House, 6pm

Bring a potential member to any of these opportunities to learn about SILG!

Final Words from President Di

THANK YOU to my officers and board members, all the committee chairs and the entire club for helping make this a fun and productive year.

My emphasis this year was getting back to basics, and re-energizing our club. Thanks to all of you in this room we accomplished that and so much more.

We re-designed our program, reducing the number of meetings to one Board meeting, and one Business meeting, and one evening event to work around all of our very busy schedules. The marketing committee designed our Easy as 1-2-3 catch phrase, and overall the new approach was very successful. We will continue to modify it as we continue to grow and develop.

We moved our meeting place to Dennys, and even though it seemed a bit cramped at times, I truly believe the new setting was cozy and inviting, and for whatever reason, our attendance this year went way up.

Incoming President Shannon will put her own spin on this aspect, and I know it will be a huge hit.

We set our sights on recruiting ten new members – Done

Those new members represent new ideas, energy and enthusiasm. It is my hope that President Shannon takes up the challenge to induct another ten new members next year.

We focused on what makes our club run smoothly, and we improved on some areas – We established a new incentive program for recruitment – reducing our yearly dues and supplementing that budget line item with funds from our Oregon Community Foundation endowments. Happy members equates to a healthy club.

Thanks to Fam and her fantastic committee, we had our first Dream It Be It Program, and it was a huge success, setting the stage for many more to come.

We raised beaucoup bucks with Raise Your Paddle and our June Breakfast to allow us to present 12 Union County students with wonderful scholarships.

Our Festival of Trees continues to serve as the social soiree of the season, and a large number of non-profit groups benefit from our hard work.

It has been my honor and privilege to serve as your President this year. As I said at the beginning of this year, our Soroptimist Club is such a key part of our community, and we all make a huge difference is so many lives. We should be so proud of our achievements and contributions and we sang out loud and proud this year – Soroptimists of La Grande!!

Now, just a small token of my appreciation for my officers and board members: Shannon, Ashley, Andrea, Shirley, Tori, Fam, Rebecca, Tressa.

Thank you all so much for your hard work and dedication to Soroptimistism and our mission. We made a great team and I love you all.

Summer Soroptimist Anniversaries

Congratulations to our tremendous crowd of summer Soroptimist Anniversaries!

June 2005 – Tori Gandy, Pat Wood

June 2010 – Nancy Comstock

June 2012 – Ashley Walker

June 2014 – Jacque Harvey

June 2015 – Shayla Hewitt, Fam Moulton, Maria Moulton

June 2016 – Peggy Anthony, Mary Horn, Sam LeBold, Andrea Waldrop

June 2017 – Vicky Hart

June 2018 – Jessica Cromer, Angie Neill, Teresa Roberts

July 1995 – Teresa Penninger

July 2007 – Tressa Seydel

August 2013 – Shannon Willmarth

June Breakfast This Sunday

Seventy seven years ago a member of the local Soroptimist Club had the creative idea of cooking up a hot breakfast and serving it to area residents – all in the comfort of the great outdoors at Riverside Park.

Soroptimist International of La Grande has kept that idea going and growing over the past seven decades, and area breakfast lovers can again indulge in hot cakes, sausage and eggs at Riverside Pavilion on Sunday, June 2 from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. Tickets are available from any club member or at the door. Cost is $6 for adults and $5 for children under age 12.

Net proceeds from the Breakfast in the Park go toward a $5000 scholarship for an Eastern Oregon University senior woman from Union County.

The breakfast this year will be extra special, as the La Grande High School Tiger Marching Band will be unveiling their new uniforms at 10:30 a.m. with a live, on-site performance in the park in honor of SILG’s financial support in purchasing the uniforms.

La Grande Soroptimists have enjoyed a lengthy history working with Riverside Park Pavilion and the La Grande Parks and Recreation Department. The Soroptimists purchased the first kitchen appliances back in 1953, and later paid for the fireplace upgrades in the 1970s. After the disastrous fire in 2011 that totally destroyed the pavilion, Soroptimists donated $25,000 from their Maxine Cook Endowment Fund to purchase the new stainless steel appliances for the pavilion kitchen. Members of the club also helped design the new commercial kitchen. Maxine Cook was a long-time member of the local Soroptimist Club.

For more information on the June Breakfast and Soroptimist International of La Grande please contact

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NWR Conference Summary by President Di

Soroptimist Governor Marti Crook’s theme for the 101st Region Conference was “Growing Stronger Together – Working as One” and her garden and flower theme was in full bloom throughout the whole weekend at Skamania Lodge.

Governor-Elect Kristi Puckett put her own spin on the theme with a special bingo game. She planted pictures of various flower varieties everywhere, and I mean everywhere, and it was fun watching all the ladies scamper around the grounds looking for clues.

Friday night 78 beautifully decorated Garden Hats were modeled and then set up around the conference center to be voted on. There are some extremely creative and talented Soroptimists in our region, for sure!

I attended the Dream It Be It session, and learned that more and more clubs are diving into this wonderful program. However, out of the 78 clubs only 9 had submitted their evaluation and report forms, and I was busting with pride when the list was displayed in the power point and there was La Grande. Way to go Fam and her wonderful team!

The DIBI Curriculum is being revised to include more technical training, not just focusing on college as the only goal for our young girls. They also encouraged us to open our DIBI session with an open discussion on confidentiality – that we are providing the girls with a judgment free space, even going so far as having everyone take a pledge to not judge anyone or anything they hear that day. Girls are encouraged to set their own guidelines. It’s still a mixed bag – some clubs prefer the one-day session, while others prefer the whole seven-week course.

I also attended the “How Does Your Garden Grow?” session led by Marti and Kristi. This dealt with basic essentials needed to help our clubs grow and survive. We discussed active listening techniques and qualities we need to nurture to become outstanding leaders.

The Live Your Dream Luncheon featured outstanding young women honored for their many accomplishments in overcoming

One of my favorite portions of each region conference is the Yellow Rose Ceremony which honors our members who have passed away. Club representatives walk in single-file holding a rose representing their lost member. It was so startling to see one member with five roses, and many others with two or three. They all place their roses in a single vase and then we all cry silent tears as the deceased members’ pictures and years’ of club service are displayed.

Attending district and/or region conference puts everything into perspective – helping us see the bigger picture and why we all work so hard on our local programs and fundraisers. I strongly encourage all of you to sign up to go to our next district conference which will be nearby at Wildhorse Resort in October. The next region conference will be at Lake Washington in April 2020, and our own Kristi Puckett will be installed as our next Region Governor at that time.

NWR Conference Spotlight by Andrea

Membership Mojo – This was an interesting session in that the room was filled with about 65 to 75 members. The group leaders started the meeting by asking the attendees to move into smaller groups by age – the first group were those members who were 39 years old or younger (4). The next group was 40-59 years old (about 15), and the last group was 60 years or older (a huge majority).

Each group was asked to brainstorm on the following questions.

  1. Why are you a Soroptimist International member?
  2. What do you find challenging in your club?
  3. What do you find engaging about your club?

The groups then reported back. It was very interesting to see what members had to say. I would say that it is safe to say other clubs struggle with the generation gap more than ours does. As a member of the Recruitment and Retention Committee, I would like to do some form of this activity to see if we in fact have some of these same issues. It was a good session.