by Sheila Baltzell-Linn

(9-24-21) The Twenty First Century Club met for the opening meeting of the year on September 21, 2021 after taking a year off for COVID. The meeting was held at the Rockford United Methodist Church for a lovely dinner featuring grilled chicken shiskabobs and vegetables off the skewers and other delicious sides prepared by Julie Henkle and Janet Steffy. A pumpkin cheesecake finished up the meal.

President Julie Henkle welcomed everyone and called the meeting to order. Roll-Call was completed with everyone stating what they have learned to do “without” during the past 1-1/2 years off with the COVID Pandemic. The members were happy to share their thoughts on this including eating out and haircuts to
name a few.

The treasurer’s report by Val Frizinger was $ 190.09.

Minutes from January of 2020 were read and approved.

Dues were raised to $5. The Helping Hands Food Pantry is not currently in need of anything, so the women voted to donate a gift card to a struggling Rockford family with a sick child.

The 21st Century Club old-fashioned “tea” (for the Rockford Bi-centennial) which was cancelled last year due to COVID was on the agenda. The women decided to cancel the event completely.

The new year’s program booklets were passed out.

The theme for the year “Our Story/Ohio’s Story” was introduced by president Julie. Our Story will feature the genealogy and history of the members who will present their own families on upcoming club nights. There were several members who did not get to share their genealogies due to COVID, so this part will proceed. Julie also explained that a famous Ohioan will also be featured at each meeting.

Julie then shared a famous Rockford native, Earl Wilson, who was raised on a farm outside Rockford, became a writer and worked for the Rockford Press and the Lima News. Later he graduated from OSU with a BS in Journalism. He then went to work for the Washington Post and later the New York Post. It was at the latter he wrote a column for 43 years on the celebrities of the day. His column ran from the 1920’s till 1983. He was very popular on the jet-setters and celebrity scene. Those he wrote about trusted his honesty and often gave him exclusives. Later he was in films and on game show. He was married and had one son. In 1970, he and his wife came home to Rockford for the sesqui-centennial.

The next meeting will be on Tuesday, October 26, 2021 at Rockford United Methodist Church Cafe Room. Karla Butler and Sheila Baltzell-Linn are hostesses with Louisa Hemmelgarn and Toni Fisher providing the program.

Contact Sheila Baltzell-Linn if you are interested in attending a meeting.