Posted by Zoltan Nagy
I recently had a membership inquiry from someone who lived just outside the Montgomery Twp line who wasn’t sure that precluded them from being a member of our club.  While we are the Rotary Club of Montgomery/Rocky Hill, there is no requirement that our members reside or work within the boundaries of Montgomery Twp or Rocky Hill.   Of course, it doesn’t make much sense for someone to join our club if they don’t have some connection to the area but don’t rule out potential new members from surrounding towns.
It’s not that we’re looking to poach potential members from neighboring Rotary clubs but many times a potential candidate for Rotary makes their choice of whether or where to join based on when the meetings are held.  Rotary clubs typically fall into a weekly morning, noon, or evening meeting schedule.  Prior to the pandemic, the Madison Rotary even had both a breakfast and a lunch meeting during the week to capture separate audiences.  We are a breakfast club and that generally comprises people who like to get up early and get the meeting out of the way so they can attack the day.
Both the Princeton Rotary and Princeton Corridor Rotary clubs meet midday.  The Hillsborough club meets at night (fun fact – the Hillsborough club was originally known as the Rotary Club of Belle Mead).  What’s sort of interesting is that there are no Rotary clubs in Hopewell or Pennington and there doesn’t appear to be any Rotary clubs currently in Franklin Twp or South Brunswick (that’s a pretty big area).
Normally, this would be the point in my column where I would exhort you to go out and visit some of our neighboring clubs.  However, the pandemic has upended much of the traditional Rotary meeting schedule.  Many of the clubs are still totally on Zoom.  Even prior to the pandemic, Rotary International has been pushing clubs to consider alternative meeting formats like online meetings.  And although I think Zoom is a great tool to have when in-person meetings are not possible, I am still a firm believer in the value of meeting in-person on a weekly basis as I believe the weekly camaraderie is the fuel that gives our club its greatness.
Now that we are back to our regular meetings at Cherry Valley Country Club, it’s a good time to invite potential new members to check us out.  Of course, some things are different.  We are mitigating the COVID-19 risks by meeting outside on the second floor patio (the heat lamps are working well) and we are asking attendees to practice social distancing and wear masks if within 6 feet of another.  We’re trying to work in Zoom attendees via the big screen TV but still have a few glitches to iron out.
See you Thursday!

Rotarically Yours,
Zoltan Nagy
Rotary Club of Montgomery/Rocky Hill (NJ)