Meet Soldotna's Rotarians
Soldotna Rotarians are a special type of Rotarian! Here are stories of local Rotarians and why Rotary is their organization of choice.
 
Rotarian: Merrill Sikorski-
I’ve been a member of the Rotary Club of Soldotna since June of its charter year 1979. I joined because Fred Chambers an Alaskan legend asked me to speak of my travels to the former U.S.S.R. he then asked me to join and seeing Fred was my hero said yes not knowing a thing about Rotary.  Over the last 41 years my life, my thinking, my giving has been molded by Rotary. My signature program “Caring for the Kenai” was molded after Rotary principles. To this day I believe Rotary is the best model for world peace. I became a photo journalist for the Dispatch in the nineties  and covered hundreds of events that our Rotary Club participated in. I like being behind the lens not in front of it
 
 
 
Home Page Stories
Soldotna Rotarians care about students and their ability to maintain proficiency in reading through the summer months. Through partnership with local schools, Soldotna Rotary supports students as the are encouraged to read during the months away from school so they don't lose the important skills needed when school starts back in the fall. This project is ongoing and is one of our longest literacy programs.
 
Congratulations to each of District 5010's 2019-2020 "Bronze Level" Shelter Box Rotary Clubs. 
 
Each Shelter Box can completely sustain for months a family that has lost everything when disasters such as storm and earthquake strike.
 
It's one of the least expensive, easiest, and most personal and direct ways to help stricken families across the globe. 
 
Joe Kashi
District 5010 Governor
2020-2021 
 
 
Congratulations to the Rotary Clubs of :
 
Anchorage Hillside

Anchorage South
 
E-Club of District 5010
 
Fairbanks Downtown

Fairbanks Golden Heart

Homer-Kachemak Bay

Juneau
 
Petersburg
 
Seward
 
Soldotna

Susitna
Soldotna Rotary Club came together with the Kenai Peninsula School District and the Students in Transition to provide backpacks with basic necessities and an invitation for mentorship with a Rotarian. 
 
 
Soldotna Rotary is looking for students in either their sophomore or junior year of high school that are looking for an adventure! We are actively seeking open-minded, flexible students who demonstrate leadership qualities to receive scholarships for study for a year in a foreign country. Applicants must have high moral standards that will enable them to become excellent cultural ambassadors for their country and the Rotary club and district that supports them. District 5010 Rotary Youth Exchange provides students ages 15 to 17 with an opportunity to travel to a foreign country and experience the culture while serving as an ambassador for their home country.
We are also looking for interested families willing to open their home to an incoming student from another country. 

Hosting a student can be an extremely rewarding experience for everyone in the family, yet it is a role that requires a lot of responsibility. The hosting period is typically 3 - 4 months.

Host families are to meet the following expectations:

  • Before the student arrives establish communication with the student.
  • Understand the program rules the student must follow.
  • Know how to contact key Rotarians involved in Youth Exchange in case of an emergency.
  • During the exchange provide a safe and welcoming environment for trust and friendship to develop between the student and your family.
  • Support and make the student feel like a part of the family, with the same privileges and obligations.
 
Soldotna Rotary was introduced in person with their new daughter from Brazil, Victoria. Victoria is a vibrant and exciting exchange student that will provide Soldotna Rotarians more opportunities to work with youth as well as the ultimate goal of bringing peace to the world. Welcome Victoria!
District 5010 participates in the Rotary Youth Exchange Program. With the support of the D5010, Soldotna Rotary Club is proud to be a participating Club in the Youth Exchange Program!
Soldotna Rotarians joined forces to build planters for Ninilchik and Soldotna Senior Centers. This was a local project that required ingenuity and patience in order to get all of the supplies and coordinate with the local senior centers. They can now use these planters therapeutically as well as practically!
Soldotna Rotarians gather each spring and fall to clean the road on Spur Hwy. This year was no different. Rotarians gathered and cleaned up the road along a mile stretch of the Spur Hwy.
It is important for our Soldotna Rotarians to make it to meetings. It is especially important to a Rotarian that has over 30 years of perfect attendance, Mike Sweeney.
Pictured from left to right: Chuck Cook, Dave Peterson, Chris Hough, Allen Auxier, Gary Hinkle, Joe Kashi, David Wartinbee, and Mike Sweeney. Photo credit: Merrill Sikorski
The Soldotna Rotary Club, in partnership with the Soldotna ARTSpace, and the City of Soldotna, worked diligently to install an avenue for aspiring artists to showcase their work to the public.
The Soldotna Rotary Club continues to support the local D.A.R.E program. Ofc. Tobin Brennan is the D.A.R.E. instructor in the three local elementary schools. Yearly, Ofc. Brennan provides D.A.R.E education to 5th graders and then provided a lock-in/graduation event. This year, Soldotna Rotary Club was able to provide the grand prize to the winning essay writer on why D.A.R.E is an important program and why it is important to them. D.A.R.E. is an important program in the community.
By partnering with the Rotary Club of Soldotna, the City of Soldotna, the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce, and local businesses, Soldotna’s ARTSpace, Inc. is implementing a community-based public art program. Many of these projects result in regular exhibits and annual events intended to promote public art that enhances the Soldotna area in a manner that’s democratic and for the enjoyment of all.
Soldotna Rotarians joined forces with K-Beach Elementary, Soldotna Elementary, and Sterling Elementary to encourage students to read through the summer months. This fall the schools joined with Rotarians to recognize those students that read this summer.
The Soldotna Rotary Club was well represented at the District 5010 Conference held in Girdwood this year. We represented our Club, our members, our projects, and our fundraising.
To the Soldotna Rotary Club:
I just want to also say thank you to the whole club for first of all picking me and also helping me out with the support you guys gave to me. Thank you for giving me this opportunity, because this year has been the best year of my life so far and the memories will stay with me forever. So Thank you again.
~Anna
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