The first meeting of 2018 for the California Kiwanis Club was held Jan. 8 at Burgher Haus. The next meeting will be Jan. 22.
Kiwanis meets twice a month, usually the first and third Monday, at 6 p.m. For January, the meetings are the second and fourth Monday, because of holidays on both the first and third Mondays.
Prospective members are urged to come to the next meeting to check out the organization.
The California Kiwanis was founded in 1949. One of the founding members, Harry Minturn, remains in regular attendance.
Beginning with its first meeting in its new location, the California Kiwanis plans for 2018 to be a growth year and is seeking new and younger members to increase its service to the community. The meetings, one-hour-long including the meal, take care of the business the organization does in serving the community.
President Jeff Shackleford opened the meeting and the members discussed what the Kiwanis Club does for the community. And, they discussed fundraisers to support those services.
Each year, the Kiwanis Club gives scholarships to three students and sponsors a girl to Girls State and a boy to Boys State.
The organization also raises funds to support Share the Harvest and the Mid-Missouri Honor Flight.
Working with the schools through the Fifth-Grade Circle of Sharing and Cal's Thriftway, the Kiwanis presents $50 certificates to about 60 people annually.
The Kiwanis members also work with special programs which may come up during the year, such as Angel Tree. This year, one of those was Moniteau County Toys For Tots.
Fundraisers include the "cow patty drop" held at the Moniteau County Fairgrounds, the Poker Run for the Honor Flight, and ham breakfasts at the annual county fair and at the Ozark Ham and Turkey Festival.
The Kiwanis Club, which has met at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, is now meeting at Burgher Haus. Shackleford, on behalf of the Kiwanis, thanked the Lutheran ladies who have provided the Monday evening meal for the meetings for the 25 years the club has met at the church.
According to members, the Kiwanis first met in the basement of the Masonic Lodge, changing a couple of times before locating in the Lutheran Church in the mid-1990s.
With the new site, in a more public location, at Burgher Haus, more people may become aware of the organization and hopefully be encouraged to join the ranks of California Kiwanis.