Rotary Club announces awards for organizers of recent fundraiser

From left are Rotary Club President Blake Width, President-elect and event Chairperson Tony LaPorta, honorable mention winner Warren Rorden and Golden Pancake Award winner Ray Kostyack.

WESTFIELD, NJ — Westfield Rotary Club fundraising Chairperson Tony LaPorta announced awards for organizers of the club’s recent Breakfast With the Bands fundraiser. The purpose of the event was to raise money for college scholarships to Westfield high school seniors and also to help the homeless veterans living at Lyons VA Medical Center.

This is the first event the club has run since the COVID-19 shutdown; attendance was good, and, LaPorta said, the event was a “complete success.”

The event was started in 1967 as Pancake Day. Its name was recently changed to Breakfast With the Bands, to reflect the participation of local high school and middle school bands. This year, some school choirs and a group from the Westfield High School musical “Mamma Mia!” also participated.

LaPorta was appreciative of all the Rotarians who participated, especially the chairpersons; he said that most of the club’s 50 Rotarians participated in the event.

Rotary District Gov. Shelby Rhodes participated with her set of chef knives, cutting up fruit in the kitchen. Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, plus high school Interact Service Club members, participated. With 100 volunteers to help, the program is truly a community event. More than 400 meals were served.

Honorable mention went to Warren Rorden for his work on obtaining sponsorships from local businesses. He was given a box of pancake mix as a friendly token. The winner of the Golden Pancake Award was Ray Kostyack, for attending to the food deliveries and organizing and managing the kitchen activities. Kostyack was given a shadow box with plastic pancakes mounted inside.

The Rotary Club of Westfield meets at noon on three Tuesdays per month. Some meetings are in person at local restaurants and others take place over Zoom. Guests are always welcome. For information, contact club secretary Dr. D. Michael Hart at [email protected].

Photo Courtesy of D. Michael Hart/Rotary Club of Westfield