The OFWC Woman's Club of Mingo Junction ended its club year on a "roar" when it held its annual banquet on May 10 at the First United Presbyterian Church of Mingo.
And I really enjoyed hanging out with some "wild women" that night.
They had selected "Wild About the Woman's Club of Mingo" as the theme, decorating with a flair and dressing in animal-print attire.
Stephanie Rouse, left, parliamentarian and outgoing president, and Marjean Sizemore, right, southeast district president, with new officers, from left, Clara Sue Milewsky, Mary Jane Tiberio, Shelly Bateman, Bernie Carpico, Cheri Carpico, Joanne Gorney and Sharon Cole-Isner
The idea for the wild animal theme originated with Roetta Lewis, who served on the banquet committee along with Shelly Bateman, Joanne Gorney, Clara Sue Milewsky, Janet Petrella and Kathy Maguschak, the chairman who welcomed everyone to an evening where the atmosphere was relaxed and noted at one point that the organization is more than a club - it's a family.
Mary Jane Tiberio gave the invocation.
What a delightful evening it was, spent in the midst of some hard-working women who make a positive difference in the community and are fun to be around.
I sat with Milewsky, who as the club's press reporter, makes my job a whole lot easier, providing me with meeting information since I obviously can't be everywhere and rely on many "correspondents" out there in the various communities to help me out.
Also at the table were Gorney; Bateman; Maguschak, my summers-ago co-worker at the Winter Drive-In, there with her sister, Karen Mathis, visiting from Dayton, and their mother, Shirley Valuska.
We talked about everything from how surnames come to be pronounced or mispronounced to 4-H, where I had to confess I was an early-on dropout of the Snappy Needle Pushers back in the 1960s. It was a sewing-oriented group, and I'm afraid after the first foiled T-towel hem, I did a Porky Pig "That's all, folks!" Can you spell quitter?
Kudos to the cooks for the food upon which we feasted, courtesy of Occasions by Crystal and Angela. Yummy stuff.
And the entertainment was proof positive that our area has no shortage of talent. Thirteen-year-old Shelby Styer's strong voice belted out some great tunes as her father Mike Styer played guitar, joined by Gary Ryan on percussion and Stu Moore on guitar. Mike Styer took his turn at one solo, doing great justice to a Crosby, Stills and Nash tune I like.
Stephanie Rouse, outgoing president, led a brief business session where the club agreed to donate $100 to the Mingo Softball League; learned that the club made a nice profit on its recent mystery dinner theater fundraiser; and Sharon Cole-Isner, the club's new president, was congratulated on becoming the editor of the Buckeye newsletter for the state GFWC.
The banquet also included Cole-Isner installing new members - Debbie Vendetta, Regina Patterson and Dorothy Kieffer - and Gorney leading the recognition of three honorary members whose combined service with the club translates into well more than a hundred years: Betty Ralston, Mary Kay Hallock and Barb Jackson.
Cheri Carpico presented perfect attendance awards to Tiberio, Lewis, Bernie Carpico, Bateman, Cole-Isner, Maguschak, Milewsky and Diane Taylor.
Lewis conducted a memorial service for one club member who passed away during the past club year: Mary M. Criss Cascioli, who died Aug. 26, 2011.
Marjean Sizemore, the GFWC Ohio Southeast district president over 14 clubs as far north as Columbiana County and as far south as Proctorville, installed the new officers.
They included Cole-Isner, president; Gorney, first vice president; Cheri Carpico, second vice preident; Tiberio, corresponding secretary; Bateman, recording secretary; Bernie Carpico, treasurer; Rouse, parliamentarian; and Milewsky, press reporter. Petrella is a director at large.
In special presentations, Rouse urged her peers to get involved and step up to the plate in carrying out the mission of the club and the theme "One Person, One Change, Just Do One Thing," adopted by Corky Nosek. She is the new president of the GFWC/Ohio Federation of Women's Clubs from 2012-14.
Rouse presented gifts of appreciation to her officers, including Liz Crothers, board member, and Bateman presented a gift of appreciation as well to Stephanie for her leadership as club president the past two years.
In closing remarks new president Cole-Isner expressed gratitude for the opportunity to serve and enthusiasm for the club's future.
She said increasing the membership and incorporating fun themes into the meetings will be priorities.