Lawrence Central Rotary | Lawrence, KS

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New Lawrence Central Member Jay Holley talks Architecture in his Vocations Talk

Jonathan Jay HolleyIn his Rotary vocations talk on September second, Jay Holley said as a licensed architect he wants to be well rounded and include all aspects of architecture. He said some architects are visionaries, some emphasize the technical, some are business people, and some are project managers., depending on the person’s strengths. He believes a combination of these skills is the path for him.

Becoming an architect involves three to six years of school, a professional internship that can be from three years to “forever,” and becoming a licensed architect (which means, he said, you are through with tests forever—unless you practice in California.)

Jay worked as a summer intern for an architect and in his last semester at KU was in a program called Studio 804. They built modules in a warehouse that were then installed in Kansas City, KS. “You are, literally, in the trenches,” he said. “The jobs involve long hours and hard work.”

After school he went to an architecture fair to find a job, showing projects and hundreds and hundreds of sketches. He is with GouldEvans architects and several years ago took the advanced tests to become a licensed architect.

He showed pictures of his projects including the new Lawrence library.

“Architecture,” he said “is more than just going to a builder. Some things as small as where the coffee pot is will influence a whole design.”

Crystal Swearingen Discusses the State of Residential Real Estate in Lawrence

Crystal Swearingen - President, Lawrence Board of RealtorsCrystal Swearingen, a realtor with McGrew Realty and president of the Lawrence Board of Realtors said her job is both rewarding and challenging.

The ups and downs of real estate, tied in with both the health of the community and of the economy and the development of technology  keep realtors on their toes, she said.

“The first half of 2015 from January through June finished strong,” Swearingen said.

Seven hundred seventy homes sold in the period compared to 633 homes in the same period in 2014 and 698 home sold during the entire year in 2011.”

The $150,000-$300,000  price range for single family homes has been the sweet spot for the Lawrence market and the measure of inventory levels, the “Months Supply” of homes, is at the lowest it has been in many years.

“Lawrence realtors work to build better relations with home owners and to have Lawrence continue to be a place of good jobs and good wages,” she said. “We work with the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce.”

A new generation is used to doing everything on line and this has created a problem for realtors when prospective buyers do their shopping on the internet.

When asked where she predicts the city will expand she said she really doesn’t know. A lot of it depends on school placement. She said she believes the South Lawrence Traffic way is going to be  good for the market.

Questions for the future, in addition to expansion, she said, are affordable housing in Lawrence, how many rentals are too many, and  what the economy will do next.

Scott Campbell & Jane Huesemann Talk KU Field Station and Bee Hotel

Scott Campbell DSC_0265 small imageKU Biological Survey Researcher Scott Campbell visited Lawrence Central to talk about a hidden gem on the northern outskirts of Lawrence – The KU Field Station and our own Jane Huesemann was on hand to explain her firm’s part in a project on one of the field station’s trails.

Technically it is the “biological field station of the University of Kansas, was established in 1947. Its mission is to foster scholarly research, environmental education and science-based stewardship of natural resources.

The Field Station is situated within the grassland/forest transition zone (ecotone) of North America, where the eastern deciduous forest and tallgrass prairie biomes meet. Faculty, students and visiting researchers use the Field Station’s diverse native and managed habitats, experimental systems, support facilities and long-term databases to undertake an outstanding array of scholarly activities. The Field Station is available to any person or group whose research, teaching, or conservation interests are compatible with our mission.”

In real people terms that means the KU Field Station has become a small island of nature and biodiversity in an otherwise settled landscape, thus highly valuable for research.

Jane HuesemannThere are trails for the public to explore and see, but the newest public trail amenity is a “Bee Hotel” which is a “sustainable resting space for solitary pollinator bees, which make up over 90% of the bee population. They are local bees that pollinate flowers and other plants. Solitary pollinators work independently to spread
pollen from plant to plant, flower to flower. Solitary bees are different than honey bees.  They live individually, rather than as part of a hive, and they don’t make honey. The Hotel “rooms” are designed as small tunnels. Different species occupy different diameters of tunnels and will construct a series of ‘cells’ in each room. ”

beehotel600Places like this are important because bees play a keystone role in food production and in the beauty of our world through the pollination of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and flowers but these essential pollinators are
under threat and need our help. Bee numbers are declining and, for the solitary bee, this is mainly due to loss of habitat and safe living quarters. The plan was to help them by providing safe and well-designed places to stay. The hotel was researched and designed by Clark Huesemann and built and installed by Prosoco as a part of the USGBC Green Apple Day of Service with help from local Girl Scouts.

“The bee hotel adds another educational layer of interest to the features of the Rockefeller Prairie Trail,” said Scott Campbell, outreach and public service director for the Kansas Biological Survey, which manages the KU Field Station.

The Rockefeller trail, part of the Field Station’s five-mile public trail system, is ADA-compliant and runs along native and restored prairie. Amenities include interpretive signage, a restroom, a drinking fountain and benches. At the trail’s turnaround point, the Overlook deck, built by KU architecture students, offers a view across the Kansas River valley to Mount Oread.

Images from the flier that promotes the project are below with instructions on how you could create your own bee hotel.

BEE HOTEL Handout 2.0 final_Page_1 BEE HOTEL Handout 2.0 final_Page_2


Sister Cities Travelers Visit Lawrence Central

Haley Lockwood-Peterson and Nia RutledgeIt was a day to celebrate young people, their families and other guests at Lawrence Central Rotary on August 12 when two Lawrence teen-agers presented a program about their experiences in a sister city exchange this summer and Kevin Munge, an exchange student from Helsinborg, Sweden  was introduced.

Nia Rutledge and Haley Lockwood-Peterson each  spent 10 days in Hiratsuka, Japan, living with local families, soaking up local culture, going on field trips and even taking time to do some shopping. Nia had made a video of the highlights of her trip and  Haley passed around pictures she had taken.  Both had been sponsored by Central Rotary and were at the meeting with parents and grandparents.

Lawrence youth in grades seven to twelve are eligible for a Sister Cities’ Exchange Program that involves 10 days in a Lawrence Sister City. Ken Albrecht of the Sister Cities’ Advisory Board also attended the meeting and thanked Central Rotary for its support of  what he called “a very worthy project.”

Haley said she would like to be bilingual and believed this was a good start.  She is still in contact with the families who were her hosts. Nia said her impressions of Japan included crowded streets, the Tabata Festival (similar to our Fourth of July), learning about Japanese food and a fireworks display on her last night there.

Kevin, who had only been in Lawrence for two days, said he is adjusting quickly and is looking forward to playing soccer at Free State High School where he will be a senior this year.

LCR Big Crowd


Lawrence Central Welcomes Stephen Mason

Stephen Mason | lawrence Central RotaryLawrence Central inducted a new member in early August.  Stephen Mason who is a recreation center programmer for the Lawrence Parks District. You’ll be hearing more about him in the weeks to come when we schedule his vocation talk.  He’s pictured here with sponsoring member Glenn Davis and Club President Kate Campbell.

Welcome Stephen!

Becca Burns Discusses Shelter, Help, and Hope from The Willow

Kate Campbell & Beccas Burns

Becca Burns presents Kate Campbell with a certificate of appreciation from the Willow.

Shelter, Help, Hope are the offerings of  The Willow Domestic Violence Center  and Becca Burns, Willow director of Volunteer Services , outlined each for Central Rotarians on July 29. Burns also presented Central Rotary president Kate Campbell with a certificate of appreciation for the club’s support of  The Willows through donations of goods and services.

Domestic violence is not just physical violence, although it is often included, Burns said. Violence can be psychological, financial, sexual and spiritual. Abusers can use threats, manipulation, and isolation against a partner.

And, even when children are not the target of the abuser, although 40 to 60 percent are, 100 percent of children who live in an abusive home are damaged.The most resilient children are the ones who have a good relationship with the non-abusive parent and connections to other loved ones, she said.

The Willow offers a 24-hour hot line, a safe shelter home, court advocacy, and intervention. It provides a range of services for children both in the shelter and in the community, ranging from art and music programs to healthy parent classes and information about the effects of domestic violence on children.

“One of our most important jobs,” Burns said “is to make sure people know they are believed and that resources are readily available.It also helps all victims of abuse to know, through The Willow,  that others have been through this and are now doing well. It takes away the isolation.”

The Willow hot line phone is 785-843-3333.

We’ll Miss You Carolyn DeSalvo

Carolyn DeSalvo | Lawrence Central RotaryAs the Rotary year came to a close we bid farewell to 2014-2015 President Carolyn DeSalvo.  It was a bittersweet meeting because no only was she stepping down from the role of President, she also was leaving Lawrence Central as she is moving with her husband Frank DeSalvo to Washington state where she plans to open up a new integrated medicine practice.

She was surprised a the meeting by her long-time Rotarian father honored her with a Paul Harris Fellowship in her name.

Her wit, wisdom, and steadfast support of our club will be missed.  We’ve heard that she is already being heavily recruited by the local rotary clubs in her new hometown.

Local Counselor Abby Young Uses Heart–Centered Hypnotherapy To Help Patients

Abby YoungAbby Young is a licensed counselor who uses hypnotherapy in her work. “But,” she said smiling at her audience of Central Rotary Rotarians, “it’s not the kind of entertainment hypnosis people have heard about. I don’t make people quack like a duck.”

She is a graduate of KU in journalism and worked for a while as a photojournalist. But episodes of depression and anxiety prompted her to consult a therapist who helped her and spurred her interest in social work and therapy.

“An entrepreneurial shift and an undirected life shift” are what she said led her to take training in hypnotherapy.

“Stage hypnosis is a state that resembles sleep,” she said. “Hypnotherapy is the use of a relaxed state to provide therapeutic benefit. “Ten percent of our thinking is conscious,” she said “ 90 percent deals with the subconscious—long term memories, emotions, habit patterns, addictions, creativity all dwell in the subconscious.”

She trained in the Wellness Institute style and works a lot with age regression, taking some of her clients back to childhood.

“People repress emotions and don’t experience them fully. Going in deeper makes people uncomfortable but we can experience emotions, work on expressing them and come to new conclusions.”

She is a counselor with Tillery Time Counseling with offices in Lawrence and Ottawa and is one of the leaders for a Good Earth Gatherings workshop, August 22 in Baldwin “Letting Go: Living Free of Shame.”

The Summer Lawrence Community Started Wet But Ended Up Great!!

The morning started off a little, well, a lot wet, but nearly 80 participants braved the questionable skies and along with over 20 volunteers at the Rotary Arboretum and along the ride route we made it a great morning.

Event chair Steve Lane said it best in a thank-you letter to the sponsors, “Our group is on a mission to improve the health of the citizens in our community. While few in our club ride daily, many ride recreationally. By creating an event that is accessible (both literally and figuratively) to all ages, we aim to introduce, or reintroduce, biking as a means for fun and secondarily as a means for enjoyable transportation.”

The fall ride is scheduled for Saturday, September, 13th starting in the Haskell Indian Nations Stadium Parking lot with events, bike maintenance stands, helmet fittings, and the ride will go along the Burroughs Creek Trail on Lawrence’s East side.

Here’s a gallery of images from The Summer ride.

Dole Institute Senior Archivist Audrey Coleman Discusses Preserving Digital Treasures

Audrey ColemanLawrence Central Rotary’s own Audrey Coleman spoke on her work as Head Archivist at the Dole Institute of Politics and discussed the importance of preserving personal digital records. The Institute honors Senator Bob Dole “by promoting political and civic participation in a by-partisan and balanced manner.” The Institute provides educational displays, archives and programs to achieve this mission. Audrey reported that Dole is active at 91 years of age and frequently consults with staff members of the Institute. The archivists receive about 300 research requests a year. Researchers may work on site or hire a local researcher. Finding aids have been created to assist researchers including a key word search that identifies specific folders of information.

Audrey noted that the explosion of digital information is both a benefit and a challenge. Unfortunately, digital images and documents can be easily misplaced or can deteriorate and become lost forever. The following steps were recommended to preserve valuable digital records. First, identify your most important digital files and their location. Next, save the highest quality versions with multiple copies and tag the files with dates and names. Finally, store the results on computer, CD, DVD, thumb drive and utilize an Internet storage company. Saved files should be reviewed annually and copied to new media every five years. Commercial firms can assist with this process.

In closing, Audrey urged people to attend an event at the Institute to celebrate the opening of a new display commemorating the 25th anniversary of the passage of the American Disability Act. The event is on Sunday, July 26, 2:00-4:00 p.m.

Tour of Lawrence’s Bob Sanner Discusses the 2015 Race

ToL2015_Logo100x202The Tour of Lawrence was a three day  cycling celebration that began downtown on June  26 with street sprints and an evening of music and family entertainment.

Saturday the Campus Criterium Race showcased Haskell Indian Nations  University and the Breezedale Historic District with a 2.2 mile loop bicycle course, followed by at Downtown Criterium that used the former two-time Collegiate National Championship course. Case prizes for the weekend totaled over $20,000.

Bob SannerBob Sanner of the Lawrence Convention and Visitors’ Bureau said events like this help bring the community together and also get national attention for Lawrence.

“Seven hundred riders in the race and 2500 people downtown help create the idea that Lawrence is THE Midwest events destination,”  Sanner said. “It helps sell Lawrence to corporations and shows companies that they should bring their events, conferences and meetings to Lawrence.

“Our downtown track meet even got international attention. All these events demonstrate what Lawrence can do.”

Sanner said he is thankful for volunteers, some of whom came from Central Rotary, who man these events.  He believe in promoting  events on social media using the slogans “Explore Lawrence,” and “Unmistakably Lawrence.”

“Being a university community helps,” he said. “There’s a youthful vibe  that I really  enjoy.”

Susan Earle Discusses the Aaron Douglas Mural Project

Susan Earle - Curator, European & American Art - KU Spencer GallerySusan Earle, curator of European and American art at the Spencer museum chronicled the life and death of a downtown Lawrence mural when she told the story of The Pollinator.

The Pollinator was on a wall of what was then the Aquila building at 9th and New Hampshire from 2007 until March, 2015. It was inspired by the work of Aaron Douglas, a black Topeka artist, who graduated from Topeka High School in 1917 and, against formidable odds, became the first black to get an art degree at Nebraska University. He also earned a masters degree at Columbia. He studied in Paris, taught at Fisk University and, in addition to murals, designed posters, book covers for major authors and journal covers.

Aaron Douglas Mural ProjectAfter the Spencer purchased one of his murals, the idea grew for a mural in Lawrence to commemorate the influence of Douglas and other Kansas blacks including Langston Hughes, Gordon Parks and Gwendolyn Brooks, in pollinating art in America. The mural’s name reflects one of Brooks’ poems: “We are each others’ harvest . . .”

Local artist David Lowenstein led the project, aided by a large committee which included Central Rotarian Carolyn Chinn Lewis. Grants, community support and private donations provided funding. The completed mural faced the Farmers’ Market, creating a downtown site celebrating all aspects of the harvest.

By 2014 the building had been sold and marked for demolition. “We spent months trying to figure out a way to save the mural,” Earle said. “ We thought of moving the wall or taking it apart brick by brick.” But none of these ideas worked and the building was demolished in March.

“The owners have promised us wall space for a mural on the new multi-purpose building they are constructing at the site,” Earle said. “And it will still face the Farmers’ Market.

Doctor Roger L. Boyd Talks About the Baker Wetlands

Roger Boyd Discusses the Baker WetlandsThe Baker Wetlands was the subject of Doctor Roger L. Boyd’s presentation. Doctor Boyd is the Baker Wetlands Education Coordinator and a biology professor emeritus, Baker University. Preservation of wetlands is important where ever they are found as they function as a check on flooding, filter pollutants and serve as a unique habitat for plants and animals. Haskell University acquired the area in 1854 and drained it and used it for agricultural instruction. Baker University acquired the site in 1968 and in 1990 restoration began. Drainage ditches were plugged with good results. A thirty year controversy threatened the project as plans to link up highway 10 with a passage through the wetlands was fought over. The project was finally approved with a promise to reduce the impact of a roadway on the area and there was a significant property exchange that benefited both parties.

An 11,800 square foot Discovery Center will open in July and there are plans for camping areas and trails. Recent rains have speeded up the restoration. The Baker Wetlands will function as a giant outdoor classroom for area students and researchers from Haskell University, Emporia State University and Kansas University.

Prof. Mark Gerges Discusses the Fall of France in World War II

Prof Mark Gerges discusses the 75th anniversary of the fall of France to Nazi GermanyMark Gerges, Assistant Professor from the Department of Military History at Ft. Leavenworth, marked the 75th anniversary of the fall of France to Nazi Germany with his program at Lawrence Central Rotary.  This historic event occurred in June 1940.  Gerges’ explained that the fall was not a result of superior German military skill or resources, as some have claimed.  Rather, France fell as the result of a number of small twists of luck and the initiative of a few German leaders.

Gerges used maps to highlight the planned movement of allied forces and German onslaughts.  The French front was brittle; it had had no depth of resources.  Half as many men were in the French army in 1940 compared to its force in 1914.  But Germany was not as strong as they claimed either.  In particular, the German tanks were not as plentiful along the French front as portrayed in the media.  The photos of hefty German tanks were of tanks actually located in Norway, not on the French border.

Gerges also emphasized the strength and weakness of the two different command and control models that the  Germans and the Allies used.  The Germans encouraged individual initiative and maneuvering;  the French used a “fan” approach where central control managed troop movements.  Gerges believe that the German model is what gave them the victory.

Gerges will speak on “The Fall of France” at KC Library on Tuesday, June 30, at 6:30 p.m.

KU Business School’s Dee Steinle Discusses the New Online MBA Program

KU School of Business' Dee SteinleThe School of Business at KU is launching anew online MBA program. The new facet to the school was presented by Administrative Director of Masters Programs, Dee Steinle, who is the wife of Central Rotarian Michael Steinle.

“It’s an interesting way for a University to do business,” she said of the growing online presence  of university classes.

“Two years ago KU launched an online special education degree,” Steinle said. When market research showed an MBA would find an audience,  the process began.

Citing her own middle school aged son’s ease with learning online she said predictions are that by 2020 there will be five million online students in the country.  Currently there are 450 MBA programs on line but only 20 are ranked programs. “It’s getting harder for people to attend classes in person,” she said “so this is the answer.”

KU will provide the “talent,” creating the syllabus and teaching the courses, the first one to be offered in August, the second in October. EverSpring, a private company out of  Chicago will handle the technical details.

“There’s going to be a lot of learning on my part as we ramp this up,” she said.  They are formulating an admissions process and creating an eight-week cycle of class offerings. “We will  try to keep human touches too, providing places for students and graduates of the program to come together.

For more information about the program point your browser to

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Eldridge Hotel
701 Massachusetts
Lawrence, KS 66044

Wednesdays at Noon

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