The Carmi Rotary club meeting on October 3 covered a lot of ground. First up, the club discussed the upcoming Fall Trivia contest, which will be held this year on Saturday, November 2 at the American Legion on Oak Street. As in year’s past, the entry fee is forty dollars for a four-person team. Questions will be asked from categories such as: history, science, the Bible, pop culture, sports and many others. There will be ten questions per round, four rounds to determine the champion. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three teams, and there will be plenty of finger foods and drinks on-hand. The first question will be asked at 6:00pm and the night should wrap up around 8:00pm.

Next up for the Rotarians will be the chili supper. This year’s chili feed will take place on Friday, November 15 at the Lion’s Den in Carmi. More details to follow on this annual event.

With Fall festival season wrapping up in the area, President Patrick Haskell passed the gavel so Rotarians could tell their favorite fall festival stories. First up, Tom Logan shared the fact that he is partially responsible for the “no candy thrown from a float” rule that is in place at Corn Day. As Tom explained, he drove the lawn tractor that pulled the scout float in the Corn Day parade for many years. He said the tractor was rather noisy, and he was focused on the road ahead one particular year. Little did he know, that several of the scouts riding on the float had decided to try throwing candy in to parked cars with open windows. The following year riders on floats were banned from throwing candy. 

Next up, Don Drone told the club about a Corn Day parade in the 50’s. As he stated, back then, the Rotary club would spend upwards of five hundred dollars on their float to win a one hundred dollar first prize. This particular year, the club built a replica of an 1800’s steam boat complete with kids dressed in garb from the period. To make the smokestacks more authentic, the Rotarians placed “smudge” pots inside the smokestacks. These smudge pots were filled with dirty oil, so when lit they would smoke. It was all thrilling until the float hit a bump, causing both smudge pots to slosh burning oil on to the cardboard chimneys. The float’s driver was not aware what had happened until onlookers began yelling that “the float is on fire!” At that point, someone quickly doused the chimneys with water and the parade continued. On a side note, Rotary won the award for best float again that year.

Other Rotarians had shorter memories, but the bottom line was plain to see, that Fall festivals in our area create lasting memories.

In club business, Patrick Haskell won the 50/50 drawing and for the third consecutive week, the cash pot was taken home by the winner.

Sherri Logan was named the day’s phantom.

The Carmi Rotary club meets every Thursday at noon at the First United Methodist Church on Main Street in Carmi. Anyone wishing to learn more about this civic organization is welcome to attend a meeting or speak with any Carmi Rotarian.