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Demise of Social, Fraternal and Civic Clubs bad for community

If not members of these clubs, who? If not now, when? This is a familiar message mentioned in an earlier article attributed to "R.F.K." in his 1964 run for president. The who in the first question refers to young men and women regardless of marital status in age groups of 20 - 60 and above should they be so inclined. There was a song and I'll paraphrase it for you: "Where have all the young men and women gone they have gone to do what there age groups do they have gone to coach, manage, attend the young one's group Little Leagues in all the sports in all the seasons that these leagues encompass from hockey in winter, soccer, lacrosse, t-ball, baseball, football, ticket winks, etc." You name it. I don't mean to disparage this they learn valuable lessons from all organized sports. Others in this age group have other responsibilities family, family obligations, work-a-holics professional people and business people who work 24/7, etc. The "when" in this question refers to these people. Like all others have the time (not all encompassing too much time) and talent to think about the prospects of inquiring into possibilities of members in a service club be it the Rotary, Unico, Lions Clubs, Shriners and all these and more giving clubs who are losing members to age attrition, etc. with no replacements from the above younger groups regardless of gender or age. This might be a controversial issue begging to hear both sides of the debate and I welcome such a discourse. In closing, "try to remember" the good things the clubs have done through the years. The results of their fundraising drives, their volunteer time, the scholarships, giving to communities and individuals with or without recognition, the East Longmeadow Rotary carnivals and summer concerts, etc. But especially the benefactors in Longmeadow who may or might not be saddened by the demise of the Longmeadow Lions chartered in 1947 who over 61 years of service "we serve" had on June 15, 2008 decided to disband the club and at that meeting only four of the remaining members chose to attend. We came a long way from a club who numbered 135 members in 1972 when I first joined. There is still a glimmer of hope as we have not turned in our charter to District 3Y. To our authorities we will hopefully reconvene in September to reflect on what we and all the volunteer service clubs have done and remember Robert F. Kennedy's words, "If not me, who, if not now, when," and also remember if your response is not me and not now then you be responsible for the demise of all service clubs in this area. I welcome any comments whether favorable or good, critical or adverse. Don't disappoint. Dick Holmes Longmeadow
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