Friday, April 30, 2021

Program: Dr. Carrie Bridge - NASA, Mars Science Laboratory
Messages this week from our Club President, Tracey Curtis
          Toronto Symphony Orchestra      
Hello Rotarians. We're on the brink of May, a beautiful time of year, yet quite weary from worry and this third wave of Covid. Hang on. Be safe. Do something nice for someone else every day.
This week's O Canada was by a talented high school choir in Saskatchewan. Isn't it amazing how many people have learned this technology of performing remotely and then putting it all together online? Performing remotely was a perfect tie-in with today's special program.   
Many happy returns to:
Jolly Bedi - May 2
Matt Webster - May 5
Roger Garriock - May 6
Congratulations on these Rotary anniversaries:
Randy Seager - 29 years (May 1, 1992)
Martha Rogers - 30 years (May 3, 1991)
Jim Fryett - 31 years (May 4, 1990)
John Vieira - 16 years (May 6, 2005)
Thank you for your service, Rotarians! We truly appreciate you. 
Knowing of Jim's proud Manitoba heritage, Mahmud Hassain, also a proud Manitoban, wrote to the Regional Municipality of Wallace-Woodworth, MB, letting them know that one of their past residents, now an esteemed scholar in Guelph, was celebrating his 90th birthday last August. Covid slowed down the municipality's response time but this week a beautiful letter and certificate arrived honouring and congratulating Jim. Mahmud was delighted to present it today, and Jim was deeply touched to receive it. 

Our Prima Festa volunteers have worked very hard on this fundraiser and everything is ready for meals being picked up safely from ICC on Saturday, May 1.


Because of the current state and high anxiety in this third wave of Covid, these helpful sessions are being held every second week instead of once a month. The 11th session will be on Tuesday, May 4 at 7pm. Register here. It can also be watched on the livestream from the CMHAWW Facebook page.
Martin Van Dam, president of the Rotary Club of Guelph-Wellington, was delighted to announce that the 2021 Virtual Duck Race campaign launches on May 1. Proceeds will benefit Food4Kids Guelph, the charity founded through the efforts of the four Rotary Clubs of Guelph. 
Full Duck Race details will be on our club website soon, but if you can't wait to get tickets for fantastic Early Bird draws, and the chance to win Groceries For A Year from Zehrs, go here now. https://www.gotduck.ca 
  • Mother's Day Fundraiser helping Food4Kids Guelph. Place orders for beautiful hanging baskets from Royal City Nursery hereGift solved while helping a good cause! Pickup pre-paid baskets from the Nursery parking lot on May 6 and 7. Food4Kids volunteers will be there to help and thank you!
  • Annual Budget Request Meeting on May 15, 2021 from 9am to 12 noon. The link will be sent out the week before. Get to hear about some new things planned for our club!
  • Rotary District 7080 Virtual Conference on May 29, 2021 from 9am to 12:30pm. Details are here. The theme is "Take Care of Yourself, Each Other, & The Planet." Well worth attending!
  • Guelph Black Heritage Society Anti-Racism Summit is from April 29 to May 2. Details are here about this plus other events in our community. #ChangeStartsNow
  • Hike For Hospice Wellington.  Email Tracey to join our virtual team!
  • Tour de Guelph - have you registered to ride yet, or sponsored anyone in the important annual fundraiser for the Guelph General Hospital plus two of our Guelph Rotary clubs? Go here. Help amazing Guelph Rotarian Charlie Barnes (84) reach his fundraising target of $10,000 as he completes the 50km event - go here
  • Rain Barrels can still be ordered through the Rotary Club of Guelph Trillium until May 13. Go here
If you're happy and you know it, contribute your Happy Bucks on our club's GiveSome pages here. There are four different topics you can donate to: 
Food4Kids, IYSN, Indigenous Water First project, or Polio Plus.
  • Marva Wisdom thanked the many members who had sent her warm wishes, and one member who had even delivered tulips. ​​​​​________
Program this week - April 30, 2021
When Tom Funk advertised this week's program as being "Out of this world", he wasn't kidding, because our speaker was Dr. Carrie Bridge, calling in from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California, to tell us about her role in the Mars Rover program.
And how in the world did the Rotary Club of Guelph book such an eminent speaker? Simply by asking! Tracey knew that Carrie originally hailed from southwestern Ontario and that her parents still live in these parts, so Tracey Googled until she found an email address, got in touch to invite Carrie who graciously said "Of course - I'd love to talk to your club!"  In fact, Carrie's mum and dad from Minto, Ontario were online also, plus her aunt and uncle. (Her dad, George Bridge, is the current Mayor of Minto.) We all loved that this program became a family affair! 
We have COVID to thank for bringing Zoom meetings into our lives, and the amazing opportunity of having speakers connect from many different locations. Almost 90 people signed on for Carrie's presentation, and every one of us is glad we did.
Randy Seager introduced Carrie whose official job is "Science Operations Team Chief for the Mars Rover Curiosity at NASA's JPL and Research Associate at Caltech".  
Carrie is not only an accomplished scientist in the Astronomical Community, but a wonderful presenter, too, with information at her fingertips and admirable skill in making it understandable and fascinating for non-astrophysicists. 
No attempt can be made by this amateur reporter to summarize Carrie's presentation, but she encourages us to go here for information and to follow developments.
A couple of interesting points were that the general public gets to see new videos from Mars at the very same time as Carrie and the science team does. It's all available online, every day.
It was also ironic to note that while her science team's work on the Mars Rover is already managed remotely (VERY remotely, as in communications taking about 15 minutes to transmit between earth and Mars), the JPL science team has also had to work remotely from their office and each other in the past year due to Covid, just like the rest of us in the world! And like everyone else, working parents (such as Carrie) are having to balance children out of school along with working from home. Such a human story, even for a top scientist like Carrie. 
We learned a lot of interesting facts about the Rover's design, performance and discoveries. Carrie graciously answered many questions and shared anecdotes, making an "Out of this world" topic very conversational and utterly fascinating. 
Jim Stevens thanked Carrie for her presentation, assuring her that we will all be "Rover Curiosity" and "Rover Perseverance" fans from now on. 
Upcoming programs 
Check our home page for upcoming speakers. Invite guests! 
  • Friday, May 7, 2021 at 12:15pm - Peter Stokes, Prof. Emeritus - Seminal work on management of genocide
  • Friday, May 14, 2021 at 12:15pm - Fotini Iconomopoulos - Art of negotiations in everyday life
  • Friday, May 21, 20212 at 12:15pm - Eleni Bakopoulos - Up close and personal (introduction by a newish member)
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