Tell me a story

Alcoa Rotary combines mountain music, storytelling in club fundraiser

It’s a night-time thing for the Alcoa Rotary Club. The club, which is geared toward professionals who might not be able to attend daytime or luncheon meetings, meets on Tuesday nights, beginning at 5:30 p.m. A recent joint fundraising event, however, brought them out during the day and members settled in for a day of storytelling, mountain music and fellowship.

The Alcoa chapter is the only Rotary Club in the area that meets in the evening, said president Christian Dickson. “The night meetings are geared toward professionals who might not be able to leave the office during the day,” she said.

The group of approximately 15 people meets every Tuesday around 5:30 p.m. for drinks and appetizers at the Marriott Courtyard Hotel, 141 Furrow Way, in Alcoa. The weekly gatherings also include a time to plan service projects and fundraising efforts.

Dickson said the group has volunteered with the American Red Cross and other local charities. They also offer monetary support to organizations, and they recently purchased dictionaries for the students at Alcoa Elementary School. In addition to local projects, the organization is involved in the Rotary Club International’s efforts to eradicate polio.

“There are only four countries left that have not eradicated polio, and the vaccine costs only .39 cents,” Dickson said.

On June 12, the club raised funds with the “Smoky Mountain Storytelling” event, held at the Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center. The event featured storytellers Mike and Kathy Gwinn, who combined music with stories from mountain culture.

According to Carolyn White, member of the Alcoa Rotary Club, proceeds from the event were split between the Alcoa Rotary Club and the Heritage Center. She said the event was the organization’s first fundraiser of the year.

For more information about the Alcoa Rotary Club, contact Christian Dickson at 865-705-2742.

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