Event Photo Gallery
This gallery is dedicated to chronicling the various events the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary hosts and those in which it participates.
Students learn leadership skills at RYLA
Three students from Tinley Park and Lincoln-Way East high schools are back from a Rotary-sponsored leadership program where they participated in a variety of team-building activities and learned about the six C’s of leadership – charisma, confidence, character, courage, commitment and communication.
Tinley Park junior Kalynn Anderson, Lincoln-Way East junior Sean Lachat and Lincoln-Way East junior David Purucker joined students from across the country at a three-day Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) program in Lake Geneva.
They reported on their experiences Dec. 13 to the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club, which sponsored the trip.
“It made me step out of my comfort zone,” said Kalynn, explaining how she knew no one at the conference and had to learn to trust others very quickly so they could work together as a team.
“Being able to trust strangers was challenging,” she added.
Both Sean and David said they especially enjoyed RYLA’s Reality Store, which challenged them to pick a profession and then manage their finances, deciding whether they could afford a car, house and the insurance payments that go with them.
“It was a reality check,” said Sean, who chose a military career for the exercise – something he’s thinking about doing in real life.
“I didn’t know what the pay would be,” he said.
For fun, David chose a career as a diplomat. He learned diplomats don’t make as much money as he expected.
“I had to ride the bus as a diplomat,” he said.
Every year, the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club pays for at least two students in the Tinley Park/Frankfort area to attend RYLA, a worldwide program aimed at demonstrating Rotary’s respect and concern for youth.
The program provides an effective training experience for youth and potential leaders.
This year, three students were selected to attend the program. They were selected for their leadership potential to attend workshops to discuss leadership skills and to learn those skills through practice.
“The Tinley Park Frankfort Rotary understands that developing and encouraging future leaders is critical to the success of our nation and our world,” said Rotary Club President Margaret Semmer. “That is why we support RYLA. The RYLA retreat in particular encourages leadership development by promoting team building, collaboration, and problem solving. The students who attend this retreat return from their experience with a new perspective and a greater understanding of service to others. I am proud that we are able to contribute to leadership development in this way.”
Anxious to share what she learned at the training program, Kalynn put together a power point presentation about her trip, showing pictures of some of the team-building exercises.
“I really enjoyed this experience,” she told Rotarians. “I believe that I have and will continue to apply what I learned from RYLA to my daily and future life.”
Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary donates 336 dictionaries
Thanks to a donation by the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary, third-graders in Harvey School District 152 will have a resource tool of their own to turn to when looking up word spellings, facts about the planets or maps of the seven continents.
The Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club recently donated dictionaries to every third-grader in the district as well as students at Ralph J. Bunche School in Hazel Crest. The service club, which has been handing out dictionaries to students for the past six years, has donated more than 1,500 books to date.
The dictionaries are so multi-faceted, with sections about weights and measurements, biographies of the U.S. presidents and copies of the Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution, that Rotarians decided to donate a collection to English Language Learners (ELL) and English as Second Language (ESL) students at Andrew High School as well.
A similar donation has been made to ELL students at Lincoln-Way North, Lincoln-Way East and Tinley Park high schools in the past.
“It is our pleasure to present these dictionaries to students so that they can discover new words and always have a resource tool at hand when completing homework assignments,” said Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotarian Steve Purucker who organizes the dictionary project each year.
“Literacy has always been an important issue for Rotary International,” added Rotarian Karen Wegrzyn. “At the local level, this project allows us to make an impact on those who live right here in our own back yard.”
The club, which is comprised of business and community leaders from Frankfort and Tinley Park, is part of a worldwide organization that participates in a broad range of humanitarian, intercultural and educational activities designed to improve the human condition locally, nationally and globally.
It routinely raises money for victims of domestic violence, collects paper goods for the Frankfort and Tinley Park food pantries, and provides scholarships to graduating high school seniors from Andrew, Tinley Park, Lincoln-Way East and Lincoln-Way North high schools.
This is the sixth year the club has donated dictionaries to the Harvey School District and the third year it has donated dictionaries to students who are learning English as a second language. Students at Ralph J. Bunche School in Hazel Crest have benefitted from the dictionary project the last two years.
In this photo, Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club members get ready to deliver dictionaries to students in Harvey School District 152 and Ralph J. Bunche School in Hazel Crest.
Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotarians Karen Wegrzyn, Sean Brady and Tim Reilly sort dictionaries that will be handed out to students in Harvey School District 152.
Pictured are the dictionary's that where donated...
Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotarian Steve Purucker holds up one of the dictionaries that the club donated to every third-grader in the Harvey School District this year.
Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary celebrates culture and diversity with music
Several hundred folks from across the Midwest, including the Philippine Consulate General in Chicago, came together Oct. 27 in an historic celebration of Filipino heritage.
Proclaimed Filipino-American History Month by the state of Illinois as well as the villages of Tinley Park, Frankfort and Mokena, October has become a time to celebrate the important accomplishments made by Filipino Americans.
To mark the occasion, the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club arranged to bring one of Chicago’s premiere Filipino Folk Fusion bands to the area for a one-night-only performance as well as an ensemble of stringed instruments, dance troupes, martial artists and the Rip Chords – an elite 15-member, all female a cappella group from the University of Illinois.
Among those in attendance at the capstone event was the Philippine Consulate General, the Honorable Leo Herrera-Lim.
“Tonight’s concert event is another opportunity for the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club to bring together people from diverse cultures and backgrounds to promote goodwill and understanding,” said Margaret Semmer, the club’s president.
“It is a very small but important step in the people building process that Rotary embraces,” she added.
The SamaSama Project, which fuses Filipino traditional folk music with contemporary music, performs regularly at cultural festivals, museum shows and commercial/private engagements in Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin and Iowa.
Last year, the group performed at the Pope’s World Youth Day MacroFestival Concert in Madrid Spain.
“Their music and their rich culture have been influenced by a number of foreign settlers, including the United States,” said Rotarian Jan Paul Ferrer who was instrumental in bringing the group to the Lincoln-Way area. “The first Filipinos landed in Morro Bay, California on Oct. 18, 1587.
In this photo The Philippine Dance Troupe of Eastern Iowa performs an authentic folk dance showcasing the richness of the Filipino heritage.
Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club President Margaret Semmer and President-Elect Jan Paul Ferrer welcome folks to Musika SamaSama: The Together Concert at Lincoln-Way East High School on Oct. 27.
Tinley Park High School graduate Lisa Hurdle accepts a $1,000 scholarship from Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club President Margaret Semmer.
Changing of the Guard:
Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club installs new president
A new leader has stepped forward to guide the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club and to raise awareness about its global, national and local efforts.
Margaret Semmer, a Mokena resident and parent of two students at Lincoln Way East High School, was installed July 12 as president of the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club. She replaces Karen Wegrzyn who completed her third, one-year term in June.
“I’m looking forward to continuing the efforts of the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary to offer scholarships to local high school students while expanding our work to serve the community,” said Semmer, an experienced community college educator, currently serving as Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs at Ivy Tech Community College, Northwest Indiana.
Pictured: Karen Wegrzyn (far right), past president of the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club hands the gavel over to newly elected president, Margaret Semmer, and president-elect, Jan Paul Ferrer.
Filipino Folk Fusion band featured at Rotary meeting
One of Chicago’s premier Filipino Folk Fusion bands brought its unique sound to Frankfort recently, performing at the Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club meeting on June 28.
The SamaSama Project, which fuses Filipino traditional folk music with contemporary music, performed a selection of love songs for community members.
“When you open up your mind and look at diversity … you will find there are a lot of similarities (between the American culture and Filipino culture),” said Rotarian Jan Paul Ferrer who invited the group to perform at the Rotary meeting.
“We have diverse music (in the Philippines),” vocalist Louella Cabalona told students, explaining how the country has been occupied by a number of countries through the years, including the United States, Spain and China.
As a result, their art and music reflect influences from the American, Spanish and Chinese cultures.
In the picture above:
Students taking summer reading courses at Lincoln-Way North High School enjoy a sampling of Filipino music during a recent Tinley Park-Frankfort Rotary Club meeting at the school. Students learned how Filipino art and music have been influenced by the American culture