The Knoxville Downtown Sertoma Club

Service To Mankind

Buy Tickets to Oktoberfest

Updates for the Club

Tom Baker| October 10th

Allie Harmon brought us Tom Baker who he became acquainted with when Tom was growing up. Seems he knew not only his parents but also grandparents.  He was an excellent speaker who has written a book about his dog!  I bought the book as a devoted dog lover but in a nutshell, Tom went through a rough time as we all do occasionally. He says his wife tried to help him to no avail, but the dog named Mango made all the difference.  Tom’s business was failing and in trying to keep it afloat he made the decision to pay his employees who were also his friends and not pay IRS.  Not a good idea.  I understand they get real mean quick. From bad to worse he said he couldn’t sleep, eat or carry on a conversation and then he started watching the dog. Dog is God spelled backward and the only animal that loves you more than themselves.  He concluded life is an adventure and blessings are everywhere. Live for now, let tomorrow take care of itself. He still has the business but a better outlook on life and a payment plan for IRS.

Oktoberfest is almost here! We are meeting at 6 pm on Thursday, October 18 to get the room set up, package brown bag items and do whatever Marianne needs us to do. We would love to have you join us.


Benita Alberts | Math Instructor | Sept 19th

This week we had Benita Alberts who is Beverly’s sister and Rusty’s sister-in-law.  She taught math at Oak Ridge High School and among other things received the award of Teacher of the Year in 1973.  Trust me, people with that kind of math skills can write their own ticket in the real world and the only reason she would teach is the love of children and teaching.  She handed out a math quiz and like any class some did better than others.  We need teachers, according to Ms. Alberts the system loses half of the non-tenured teachers each year.

The annual Boy Scout Golf Tournament is just around the corner on 10/3.  Still time to sign up if your interested.  I believe we have one team, could use more

The Knoxville Oktoberfest is four weeks away. We talk about it so much it seems to be forever in the future. “Stuff” is coming in and we are hoping for a big turnout with lots of happy people. The food is great, I even like the beer, and everybody gets something.  It’s the only fund raiser we have all year, so we must make it a big one.

It was announced Tim Curbow has been in the hospital with heart problems. I understand he is home now but I’m sure he would appreciate hearing from you guys. “In lieu of flowers” at least send him a card.

Record keeping:  Terrell Kerr prayed, Carol Mohney led the pledge. Karen Kerr (Chris’s wife) visited, along with the husband of our speaker.

1 view

Matt Hall | Oktoberfest update

Matt Hall was a stand in for Jacob and did an excellent job. Especially since he was in charge of the speaker and she didn’t come.  Happens to all of us and he handled it with grace.  I do believe he’ll do an excellent job next year and its good he’s getting some on the job training.

We passed around sigh up sheets for “Celebrate Sound” to first find out if you were going to participate and what size t-shirt you wanted.  We’re only asking for $25.00 (tax deductible) and the money goes to our hearing aid loaner program.  If you were not there last week plan to sign up this week. The walk this year will be at Concord Park on September 9th

We discussed the Knoxville Oktoberfest Fundraiser which is not that far away.  September is just a week away. Carol Mohney and I went shopping for some brown bag items over the weekend but not enough to fill all the brown bags. We also need auction items. Remember we didn’t want to constantly be having “fund” raisers and determined to have the one and let that be it – this is it!  We have several beer sponsors so regardless we can get drunk!

Next Week (maybe) our speaker will be Lisa Nichols who came up with the program Stocking from US. This is a great idea and really makes you feel good especially when you see newsfeeds of soldiers that won’t be coming home.  We contributed to this so come hear what she has to say and give yourself a pat on the back.

Just a reminder: Speaker chairs for September are as follows:

09/5 Rusty Farrell

9/12 Mike McKinney

9/19 Terrell Kerr


Rebecca Koszalinski | Speak for Myself | Aug 15th

Our speaker this week was Rebecca Koszalinski which is a lot easier to type than to say.  She developed a program for mainly hospitals but has applications other places called “Speak for Myself”.  It is most frustrating to be in a situation where you find it difficult to communicate what the problem is or what you want. I think it’s a great idea and will go far.  I spoke with her after the meeting and she said she has added a great deal to the program because of patient expressed wishes but feels there is too much on it at this time and needs to be “fine-tuned”.  She had added end of life suggestions and thought this might not be a good idea for everyone. It’s trial and error time but I’m sure it is making a lot of patients lives easier and the nurses too.

Report on the board meeting….  Mostly we talked about our Downtown Knoxville Oktoberfest and who was going to do what. I think it’s safe to say Caroline and Brett have paved the way and we are on our own.  At present we need you – the membership- to bring in auction items and brown bag stuff.  Marianne has agreed to store anything we bring in at her place, Carol and myself are going “scouting” for items on Saturday and we will bring them on Wednesday.  Auction items can be anything from jewelry to cookware. Get out there and hit Wal-Mart, Target, etc.

We also determined to sponsor a team to play golf for the 40th Annual for Boy Scouts.  Don’t have any details, if your interested ask Matt Hall.

The annual “Celebrate Sound” walk has been moved to Tyson Park to accommodate everyone who didn’t want to drive to Maryville. It will be on September9th and we expect BIG turnout. You can still walk on line and not have to leave home but if it’s not raining its kind of fun. Plan to join us.

Next week:  We have Elaina Steno with Second Harvest Food Bank.  Brought to us by Matt Hall.

President Jacob tippens and Jacob Landis with Jacob's Ride Foundation

Jacob Landis | Jacob’s Ride | Aug 8th

Jacob Landis is a one man show that started in April of 2013 on a mission to raise money for people without insurance to get cochlear implants. He has ridden nearly 20,000 miles spreading awareness and raising money. Jacob has met with thousands of supporters and donors at over 120 events. Through his efforts and the generosity of their supporters, Jacob’s Ride has provided financial assistance for over one dozen cochlear implant recipients in the last five years. Over 12,000 children in America are born with hearing loss each year and cochlear implants are the most successful medical intervention for deaf or severely hard of hearing. However, insurance often does not cover the cost.  Jacob also meets with teenagers and young adults who are deaf or hard of hearing and insists to them not to let that “hearing problem thing” get in the way of identifying goals and pursuing your dreams.

John Kerr shared with us Celebrate Sound Walk will be on September 9th (this is a Sunday) at 4 p.m.  They have moved the event to Tyson Park trying to make people happy that didn’t want to drive to Maryville.  That means that everyone that complained must show up.  He took down names.

Jerry Winston announced we had members that participated in the Helen Ross McNabb – Shooting event.

Next week is the monthly board meeting. Time is 6 pm, on Tuesday at Chesapeak’s.  All are welcome.

Next Week:  Rebecca Koszalinski, our speaker, is being brought to us by Lee Freeman.

#knoxsertomaclub #knoxvilleTN #CivicClubKnoxville

1 view
Alan Stuckey VP, Sandra Clark, and Linda Price

Sandra Clark | Election Predictions | Aug 1st

The election is behind us and I was pleased with the outcome. We made the national news – it was reported we elected a professional wrestler as mayor. Seems the “scruffy little city” just can’t get a break.  All of Sandra’s predictions came true and I got the feeling she is definitely not a President Trump fan.

I would be willing to bet even if he knew it wouldn’t keep him up nights.  I worked at West Valley Middle School. We voted a total of 501 persons and 2 of them were my daughter-in-law and granddaughter (her first-time voting).  One picked Republican and the other Democrat, they should have stayed home!

It’s much harder when you have two candidates running for the same office and you really like both.  I was impressed with Mattock and Burchett really “pounded the pavement”. You couldn’t go to any function he didn’t show up too.  Sandra seem to think he (Burchett) plans to move on up.  We can sit back and say “I knew him when. . . . . “

The cost of campaigning I’m sure keeps a lot of good people from running. Sandra said thousands of dollars had been spent (this is a matter of public record, how much they spent and where they got it) and wouldn’t you love to be a fly on the wall after and election you lost and have the wife say – “don’t ever mention how much I spend on shoes again”


Jimmy Matlock | June 25th

Last week we heard from Jimmy Matlock and I think most of us left with a favorable impression of him. One of the great things about our country you get to vote by yourself. He did say he is living on the farm he was raised on which is 87 acres, married to the same woman and attends the same church.  He either stands by his convictions or he’s in a rut. I like him and have been buying tires from him for years.

On July 18th we learned about stem cell therapy and I don’t think I was the only person in the room that didn’t understand half of it.  I did write down the highest concentration of stem cells are in the hip bones; I am again screwed as mine are metal – takes forever for me to get through the airport.  He did enlighten us on where they get stem cells and put to rest some of the horror stories we hear.  I had no idea it could be used in so many ways.  We are blessed to live now.

Next Week:  We will have Sandra Clark with Knox TN Today to give us her predictions on the outcome of the elections. Early voting ended on Saturday and the “real” election is Thursday so should be interesting.


Brett Grimm | Oktoberfest | July 11th

Brett took most of the meeting telling us what needs to be done to make our Oktoberfest a success. He walked us through what each job requires and how many people it takes to “get er done”.  This is our one and only fund raiser and thus far has been successful and fun. HOWEVER, I do believe if it is to be a success this year we are going to have to “step up to the plate.”

The first items on the agenda was to sell more tickets.  We could have made a big difference in the amount of money we made last year if we had only sold as many tickets as we did the year before.  A lot of the expense has been paid for, now we get to set back and reap the rewards if we get enough people there.  I feel your pain, I hate to ask my friends also (and you truly find out who your friends are) but I go into my spiel about it being for a good cause and since this covers three different charities if one of them is special to the person your selling too you pretty much have it made. Give it your best shot, all they can do is say no.  Also, everybody get something along with a good meal and all the beer they can drink and the plan is to have better brown bag items. So, if they miss out on the $5000. Prize they have something for their effort.


Detective Loeffler | June 27th

Detective Loeffler was a hoot. Got a little gory in places but most interesting. He also told us last year they (Knoxville Police) had 247,000 violent crimes reported with 12 investigators to handle them. Some were down right funny (if your not involved with the people) and some fall into the category of too stupid to live but not bright enough to kill themselves either.  The attempted suicides were down-right funny (again if you don’t know the people) .

Dr. Asp shared with us he has 20 South Korean students here studying with him.

Matt Hall brought his son, Ashton with him and Adrian Block a fellow worker.  We can only hope he was so impressed with the program he will want to join.

John Kerr, Chris Kerr, Becky Massey, and Lee Freeman

Becky Duncan Massey | State Senator | June 20th

State Senator Becky Duncan Massey

Our very special Becky Massey was our speaker for this week. She informed us the senate begins every session by saying the pledge to the United States flag and the Tennessee flag and they have a prayer. It’s a comfort to know this is the custom.  She also made our state sound pretty good and this is a comfort as we take hits quite often such as the “scruffy little city next to the river”.  At present, we have a very low unemployment rate which is only good if you’re not trying to hire someone; we are 3rd in the nation on income growth; we have a balanced budget (it’s required) and we are 9th in the country on taxes.  We host one of the largest percentages of kids graduating from high school. The only bad thing about her doing so well, we don’t see her as often, however, her replacement at the center introduced her, and we are happy to have Lee with us.

Next week: For all you Law & Order and Criminal Minds fans we will have (courtesy of Jerry Faerber – remember your mother telling you to pick your friends carefully?)  A.J. Loeffler, a homicide detective with the Knoxville Police Dept. I never miss an episode so if the “creek don’t rise” I’ll be there.


We had as our guest John Kerr and wife Diane to present to him:

Service to Mankind Award

Congratulations, John, you are an inspiration to all of us.