Bulletin or December 13, 2011

Rotary Bulletin for 12/13/11





Phyllis Staplin introduced Joseph Gunta the long time conductor of the Des Moines Symphony.   The Des Moines Symphony is one of 1400 orchestras in the U.S.  Iowa alone has 19.  Many are community based groups, but a few, such as DSM, employ professional musicians.  In DSM there are 85 professional musicians in the symphony.


The number of musicians is determined by the concert hall and how many musicians are required to fill the hall with sound.


Joe told us about his background and the symphony and also shared his thoughts about whether listening to music (Mozart for example) makes you smarter.  While many would argue this point, scientific evidence is inconclusive.  Joe does believe that listening to music is very helpful in learning to analyze different situations based upon the theory that to carefully analyze a problem, one must listen carefully to determine the question.


Public schools have eliminated music programs around the U.S. as part of cost cutting.  Fortunately, groups like the DSM symphony have created youth programs which really pick up the slack. The DSM program started a few years ago with less than 100 students and today has over 450 students. 


He explained that music is basic to the human existence.  Historically there have been music at all great celebrations and tragedies.   Music expresses what we cannot do with words.   So, in order to celebrate the New Year, he invited us to come to the symphony on New Year’s Eve when the symphony with join the group Spectrum to feature music of Motown.




Adopt a Family:  Dana Petrowsky has taken the lead on this program this year.  She and her staff used the money our club contributed (I think it was $20 per member) to do the shopping.  Thanks Dana!


Bicycles:  It was reported by Harold Hulleman that there will be a work day on 12/27 from 9-5 at Bob Start’s warehouse.   Come for all or part of the day.  Harold promises to provide food and drink. Please note: there is no meeting that day.


Also, Harold reports that the on the evening of  12/13, the DSM bike collective is looking for some help to work on bikes to send to South Dakota to a Native American Indian reservation.





Polio Plus/ Iowa Energy:


Once again this year the Iowa Energy have designated a home game as Rotary Polio Plus night.  The Energy donate approximately 1/3 of the $25 ticket price to the Rotary Polio Plus program.  Members who purchase 3 tickets satisfy the RI President’s goal.   The Energy has set aside 100 tickets for this event.  Contact Harold or Tom to purchase your tickets.


Big Band, Big Cheer, No Cost:  Bob Start reports that Java Joe’s will feature free holiday big band jazz on 12/18.


Salvation Army:  It was reported that bells were rung on 12/14 and money was raised for the Army.  Thanks to all who helped!


Dictionaries:  Shahna Jannsen shared a few thank you letters from students who had recently received dictionaries.  This is a great program and the students really look forward to it.


Three minute/Sgt. @ Arms:  Linda Leave gave a brief review of her personal life.  She is CPA with LWBJ.  After she moved 11 times in 18 years, she has now been in DSM area for 13 years, the longest she has lived anywhere.  She has two grown sons and …. then turned her attention to trivia about historical events that occurred this week.  For instance the Washington monument was completed on 12/6 in 1884; Thomas Edison made his first recording in 1887; and first Nobel prize was awarded in 1901.