Posted by Tom LaBombard, Area Governor NENY
The Rotary Clubs in Northeastern New York continue to provide excellent service to their communities. 
Starting with the smallest clubs, both Chateaugay and Champlain-Rouses Point are both in the process of adding new members, good news after several years of lack of growth.  It would appear that the good things that they are doing are starting to catch on. 
Chateaugay recently received press coverage on its continued support of the Town of Chateaugay Theater project.  The bulk of the funds they have been able to raise in support of the project have been through the annual clam bake, a favorite event in the community.  Chateaugay is also active on the International front, contributing to a boy’s home in Ecuador. 
Champlain-Rouses Point has had such success with its annual Father-Daughter dance that this upcoming year they are expanding the concept to a Mother’s Day dance that will feature a Mother-Son dance event.  And get out your running shoes this December, as they will be sponsoring the first annual Christmas race in the area.  These two clubs have shown that size is not a detriment when it comes to serving your community.
Malone is very active in its community as well.  Malone has implemented a Teacher of the Year award, selecting from among the 7 schools within their service area.  Nominations are invited from a variety of sources in order to obtain a cross section of inputs as to what makes an excellent teacher.  The award, as well as their Paul Harris Fellow are presented at the annual Christmas Holiday celebration.  Their annual spaghetti dinner is an event that is looked forward to in the community.  The club is active on the international front supporting the same Ecuador project as Chateaugay, and has been a long time supporter of the Student Exchange program to the benefit of local and foreign students.  Malone has reached out to other Rotary Clubs and has had mutual events with clubs on both sides of the border.
The two clubs in Plattsburgh have taken to working on several projects together.  For many years, they have shared the Radio Days fundraiser, and have decided to mutually sponsor RYLA for area students, making for a richer and more streamlined process.  This upcoming February, they will again be coordinating their efforts on sponsoring a Chamber of Commerce event.  Together, they sponsor an International Project, for which they receive matching funds, in Nicaragua.  Individually, Plattsburgh (generally known as the noon Rotary) puts on the annual Lake Champlain Fishing Derby, one of the biggest fishing derbies on Lake Champlain, the Roducky Derby where people can buy rubber ducks and decorate them to be raced down the river, and the bed race in conjunction with the Battle of Plattsburgh weekend.  Plattsburgh Sunrise provides the activities for the annual Mayor’s Cup yachting race and land lubber events, Winter Carnival, and Literacy Challenge in conjunction with Literacy Volunteers.  Both clubs have several individual international projects as well as their local projects.

The five clubs in Northeastern NY have shown that living up the “service above self” both on the community and international fronts can be achieved while having fun.  It does not have to toil and drudgery, as these clubs have demonstrated, you can have fun while providing service to your communities.