Medical Marijuana speaker did not show (procrastinating I believe)!
Dave Jones gave us an informative talk of the club’s foundation:
Brief history of the El Camino Real Rotary Club
The Rotary Club of El Camino Real had its origin in 1970 under the direction of Miguel Castorena, past District Governor and a member of The Carlsbad Rotary Club. At that time the only existing Rotary clubs in the Tri-City area were the Oceanside, Carlsbad (evening) and Vista Rotary Clubs. Also at that time in order to form a new Rotary club, existing Rotary clubs had to cede territory to the forming Rotary club to recruit members.
The prospective member had to work or reside within that area. Oceanside Rotary Club ceded south Oceanside (Oceanside Blvd south to the Buena Vista Lagoon and from the ocean east to the Vista city limits). Carlsbad Rotary ceded the Carlsbad mall.
Seven men were picked in Feb and March of 1970 to assist in forming the new club. They included Larry Black, manager of the Security Pacific National Bank in Oceanside, Bill Biebush, a CPA in Oceanside, Ed Danborn, a school principal, Dave Jones, a family physician with the Cassidy Clinic, as it was known in those days due to its location on Cassidy St., John Butler, a hairdresser on south Hill St. as Coast Hgwy was known as in those days, Jon Pile, manager of a Savings & Loan across from the Carlsbad Mall and Walt Stewart, public information officer at Mira Costa College. Larry Black was chosen to be the club’s first president. He was the only one with any prior Rotary experience. Walt Stewart was chosen to be president-elect and four of the other five noted above served as the club’s first board members. El Camino Real was chosen for the name of the new club and the El Camino Real bell was chosen as its symbol.
The club was chartered June 17, 1970 with 26 members. The club met at the Oceanside Elk’s Club initially, moving to the El Camino Country Club in 1973, where it has continued to meet except for a couple years in the 1990’s. The lyrics of our welcome song sung to the tune of “Peggy O’Neill” were written by Walt Stewart in our early years. Stan Stevens served as our secretary-treasurer in the early years of our club. Our first club service project was affixing reflectors to bicycles (in those days bicycles were not sold with reflectors), a project proposed by Dr. Paul Weber, a veterinarian in the club.
Our club has had a booth in the Carlsbad Street Fairs from its early years, usually selling Dudley Bakery bread and Julian apple pies in the fall and strawberry shortcake in the spring. We have also participated for many years at the Oceanside Harbor Days in the fall, sponsoring a booth and also participating in the “Nail ‘N Sail” contest, in which we built a boat in two hours and sailed it in a harbor race with other like boats. We won or at least were a strong contender several times.
We have done many things with El Camino High School through the years. Don Marks, the first principal of El Camino High School was one of our early members and it was his idea for our club to have a banquet to honor students for their academic achievement, which led to the Gold Seal Banquet in which we honor the Gold Seal Bearers (the honor graduates of El Camino High School) and their parents at the end of the school year. This has been chaired by member Lee Russell through the years. It is truly the highlight of the year for many of us.
Herb Meyer, former coach and athletic director at El Camino High School and the winningest high school football coach in California history at the time of his retirement was also a member of our club and a past president. An award in his honor was established to recognize a graduating high school senior annually for community service. We also award graduating students from El Camino High School a vocational scholarship and a scholarship for a student going to college to pursue a career in teaching or business.
Our club has established an Interact club at El Camino High School and continues to support it as well as well as sponsor five juniors to attend the RYLA conference annually. We also sponsor a Four Way speech contest with students from El Camino High and in the early years, our students frequently advanced to the District finals and won several times.
Our major fund-raising event through the years has been a golf tournament, in which we partner with the other Rotary clubs in Oceanside, Oceanside Rotary and San Luis Rey Rotary. Our member Dr. Dave Jones has chaired this event in recent years.