We are a local service organization dedicated to bringing out the best in youth through the empowerment of postive attitude

A California non-profit organization
Affiliate of Optimist International, California Southern District
Club number 41022 | Chartered September 28, 1970

Our Purpose

To develop Optimism as a philosophy of life utilizing the tenets of the Optimist Creed;

To promote an active interest in good government and civic affairs;

To inspire respect for the law;

To promote patriotism and work for international accord and friendship among all people;

To aid and encourage the development of youth, in the belief that the giving of one’s self in service to others will advance the well-being of human-kind, community life and the world.


How We Help

Through volunteerism and distribution of funds, we support over 50 activities that advance the education, leadership, and moral values of youth. SEE ALL YOUTH PROJECTS


JOI Jr. Optimist Club Pasta for Pennies Jan 28-Feb 15

JOI Octagon Club SouperBowl of Caring (Super Bowl Sunday) February 3
Valentine’s Day Roses Feb 14
OI Essay Contest

OI Oratorical Contest
JOI of Reading

Eggstravanzag at Coronado Community Center Club
Spring Social

Sports Fiesta Ad Sales/Fundraising Campaign

CHS Scholarship presentations

Fourth of July parade
Sports Fiesta Event
Sports Fiesta Dinner

Installation Dinner

Halloween Happening Oct 26, 3:00-6:00 pm Coronado Community Center


Holiday Parade with JOI Cider and Snaps Tent Dec 7 from 5:00-7:00 pm


President – Carla Fargo
Vice President (Internal) – Renee Cavanaugh
Vice President (External) – Gene Rathswohl
Secretary – Paul Demke
Treasurer – Joe Moore

100 Years of Optimism

Are you interested in joining our club so that you can Bring Out the Best in youth, in your community, and in yourself? MORE INFORMATION

Club News & Announcements

Weekly Optimist Meeting 10-17-2019

STEP Program

Charlie Ahern lead us off with a prayer of thanksgiving for our gathering and fellowship and Jean Radcliffe started off the Pledge of Allegiance

GUESTS: We had one guest and one party crasher this morning. Tony Tervainen was our guest and speaker. The party crasher was ex-member Julie Ruth who came to return a support check that the club had given to the CHS Skateboarding Club that was never able to be utilized. Thanks Julie for following through.


Lawn Bowling: The second practice session for the upcoming match with the Rotarians is next Tuesday 5-7 PM. We had only six people at the first practice and we need some more folks to make a good showing. The match is on Nov 2. It's a fun day. All the pizza and beer you can drink (well maybe not all). The cost for the refreshments is just $5. So a real deal. Don't miss it. Contact is Bill Carinder billcarinder@yahoo.com.


We need volunteers for several on going activities. Sign up sheets are going around

Morning Greeters- Contact Brenda Kracht at bmkracht@hotmail.com or find the signup sheet at the next meeting.

Strand Clean Up- Stand Clean Up is this Saturday 8:00 AM at the Amphib Base and Navy Housing. Contact Ted Krohne for details or just show up if you already know the drill. Ted's email is tedkrohne@hotmail.com

Prayer Leaders; Contact Charlie Ahren at ahren@msn.com or find the signup sheet at the next meeting


Our speaker today was Tony Tervainen the CEO and Founder of the STEP Program. Tony gave us a good overview of the financial challenges faced by junior enlisted personnel and STEP's approach to helping them, especially in time of crisis.

The Challenge

  • 3 out of 5 Americans live paycheck to paycheck and don't even have $400 saved for emergencies
  • more than 70% don't have $1000 saved
  • 200,000 people join the military every year
  • Enlisted personnel make up 82% of the Armed Forces
  • Upon enlistment most service members are single but are twice as likely to be married by age 25 than civilian counterparts
  • Due to frequent change of duty stations enlisted families must adapt constantly to changing cost of livings and the spouse unemployment rate is 16% (four times higher than civilians)
  • 60% of junior enlisted service members' salaries are considered to be low income by HUD
  • Most junior enlisted personnel have little experience and training in management of their financial affairs
  • 12000 service personnel per year loose some basic necessity due to financial crisis

STEPs ROLE (Mission)
"Support The Enlisted Project (STEP) builds financial self-sufficiency among junior active duty enlisted service members and recently discharged enlisted Veterans and their families in Southern California facing financial crisis through counseling, education and grants."

STEPs Approach
There are two principal components, personalized financial counseling and when necessary financial grants for the preservation of basic needs. STEP case managers are trained in social work ( specifically Crisis Theory and Solution Focused Approach) They work with clients to identify strengths and weaknesses that have brought them success in the past, but also brought them to the point of financial crisis. Based on this and the assessment of the specific financial crisis they develop specific real time solutions. This approach generally boils down to:

  • Interview on the clients specific financial goals
  • Creating a plan (budget)
  • Debt reduction program
  • Taking control over their own situation

one half of clients complete the program without the need for a financial grant
STEP is effective in changing financial behaviors with 92% of clients not returning for a second grant under the program
The program continues with follow up calls as 20, 60 and 90 days post intervention
88% of clients report in follow up sessions that they have been successful in reaching one or more of their goals set during intervention.

Thanks Tony for coming today and sharing you very worthwhile program helping young enlisted personnel with their financial planning needs.


  • Bill Parry bragged about how much he admired John Watson's Midway Docent shirts
  • Cynthia bragged about her article in Life by Design Magazine
  • Doug Grossmann bragged about our first responders and how they handled his daughter's recent surfing accident.
  • Bill Carinder bragged about his new grandson


We had five anniversaries this week. Bill Carinder, 5 years sponsor Mike Lafferty; Matt Smith, 1year, sponsor Jennifer Landry; Floyd Humphreys 6 years sponsored by Dennis Dorman; Chris Cervantes 9 years, sponsored by Carla Fargo, Tom Catlin 2 years sponsored by Mark Blumenthal.



We had two birthdays, Mike Lavin from Evanston Illinois and Lynz Arendsee from Coronado California.

$Opportunity Drawings$

Roy Mantz won $29 this week.

History Lesson

On this day 10/15/1933 Albert Einstein came to the USA and convinced President Roosevelt to initiate research into atomic energy. Also on this day in 1973 The Arab oil boycott was initiated and sales of mopeds went through the roof.

Next Week's Speaker

Next Weeks Talk is on Strategies for Mental Health. Speaker is Dave Jones.

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Weekly Optimist Meeting 10-10-2019

Generate Hope

Charlie Ahern lead us off with a prayer of thanksgiving and asking our God to bless with the energy and enthusiasm to follow the Optimist Creed and George Kunberger started off the Pledge of Allegiance


The BOD approved $375 to the Moot Court Team of CHS. They will visit the Club before year end to accept their check

New Inductee: Carla inducted John Downey as a new member during todays meeting. Erin Downey was his sponsor. John was born on the east coast, became a Marine and eventually ended his service here in San Diego. He's spends time flying for the airlines, but thinks of his job helping to coach the CHS Cross Country team as his primary job. Welcome aboard John.

Club Announcements

Lawn Bowling: The annual match with our friendly Rotarians is scheduled for November 2. If you're interested in kicking some Rotarian butt, please contact Bill Carinder billcarinder@yahoo.com . He's our Captain again his year.

Annual Club Roster: Don Crawford has updated the active club roster. A copy will be on the welcome table. Please stop by to ensure your info in correct and initial next to your name.

Halloween Happening is on again this year. 3:00-5:30 PM. We need about 7 vounteers. Contact Diana for details drummedge@att.net

Carla (you remember her) presented Erin Downey with a plague to acknolodge all the great work Erin has done over the last four years as our school interface.

GUEST SPEAKER - Kimberly Harriman

Our speaker today was Kimberly Harriman with Generate Hope. The Mission of Generate Hope of is:

"We serve San Diego's sex trafficking victims by offering a real way out. Generate Hope is a faith-based organization providing long-term, comprehensive programs to women who have been sexually trafficked, so that they are able to reintegrate into society and walk powerfully into their future."

Kimberly first shared a few statistics about sex trafficking in San Diego:

  • San Diego has the 8th highest amount of Sex Trafficking in the country
  • There are approximately 8000 women/year victimized into sex trafficking in San Diego.
  • The most common age a child enters sex trafficking in 14-16 years old.
  • Typical victims have low self esteem, have absent parents, access to social media, may have been abused, may be foster children, runaways or have substance abuse problems

History - Generate Hope was started in 2008 by Harvard City Church and Susan Munsey as a grass roots effort. In 2010 the program moved to its current location. In 2016 with the help of donors they were able to purchase their Recovery Home debt-free. By 2018 the 100th survivor had been sheltered and the new Transition Home on 7th and A in Coronado was gifted to the program

Programs - The path for a woman to be able to recover and reintegrate with a powerful future consists of two programs

Recovery Program - Where a woman is first provided housing in a family like environment. Receives therapy to address PTSD and other mental health issues. Learns techniques dealing with the many effects of trafficking, betrayal, anger, grief, body image, sisterhood and more. They also use adjunct therapies such as art, dance, yoga, financial literacy, self defense, creative writing

Transition Program - Following a successful recovery program, the women have the opportunity to grow in independence. This includes Holistic Wellness (financial, social, emotional, physical, intellectual and spiritual). Career, movement towards continuing to develop a career though part time work, college, vocational training. Therapeutic continuation, psychotherapy, case management and adjunct therapies

You can get more information on how you can help at www.generatehope.org

Thanks Kimberly for sharing all the wonderful work being done by Generate Hope and for opening our eyes to the magnitude of and horrible impact of sex trafficking in San Diego


The lovely Dianna Drummey bragged that she has lost 30 pounds on her diet. Way to go Dianna.

Erin Downey bragged that today was her dogs birthday. The pooch looked as if he was taking everything in stride however, as he laid outside enjoying the cool breeze


The Ding Master was reaching way back today. He brought out a story from four years ago that mentioned Tom Brunett and Irish Flynn as members of the Democratic Club. There were lots of folks calling foul over that one. Guess there is no statute of limitations where the Ding Master is concerned. The Ding Master tried to fine Lee Cargill again for something, but Lee is on the lamb in Hawaii. Karl Mueller got dinged about 10 times. The poor guy is just trying to do his job as Superintendent of Schools. Ted Krohne got dinged for a tree falling on his house and not telling 911 when he called them that he was an Optimist. Pretty tough stuff.


We had four anniversaries this week. Bret Gary, 17 years sponsor Lee Cargill; Cynthia Kosciuczyk, 8 years, sponsor Dick Madouse, Patricia Leighty 11 years sponsor Diana Drummey and Erin Downey 5 years sponsor Laura Lynn Meek.



$Opportunity Drawings$

Jack Larison won $39 this week.

History Lesson

On this day 10/10/1886 the custom of men wearing formal wear called a Tuxedo was started. Seems a bunch of rich folks were holding a party at a place called Tuxedo Park in NYC. Some men decided to try out a new garment as a dinner jacket. Guess it caught on. These outfits were referred to as Tuxedos ever since.

Next Week's Speaker

Next Weeks Talk is on the STEP program. Tony Taravas will be the speaker.

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Weekly Optimist Meeting 10-03-2019

Bears, Seals and Penguins, OH MY!

Mike Lavin lead us off with a prayer of generosity written by St Ignatius of Loyola and Laz Waczek started off the Pledge of Allegiance.

GUESTS: We had two guests this morning. Chuck Schroeder and out Guest Speaker Blaise Guld.


BOD Meeting: There will be a BOD meeting at 6 PM on Monday 10/7/2019 at the Library. The primary topic will be the 2019-2020 budget. Our Sports Fiesta last year brought in $15,000 less than recent years and thus the budget will be tight, we need to rethink some of our past sponsorships. There is the option of dipping into some of our reserve money in order to make up the difference. All members are encouraged to either attend the meeting or to speak with one of our board members prior to the meeting to be sure everyone has a chance to have input into the budget discussion and setting our priorities for the coming year.

Perfect Attendance Awards: Dennis awarded three pins to club members who had a prefect attendance this last year. Irish Flynn and Charles Helsper were on hand to receive their pins, but Dr. Joe Moore decided today he would play hooky from the meeting, kind of ironic. However the good doctor did eventually show up to get his pin. Better late than never. Dan Hendrickson was awarded an Honorable Mention, for only missing one meeting last year, but if you total all the time he was late for a meeting, he might actually have missed 3 or more meetings. Anyway well done to all four members.

The Lambs BASH program to help stop bullying in our schools, was awarded a $1200 sponsorship, out of last years budget. They will be here near the end of the month to tell us about their program and of course to collect the check.


Our Guest Speaker today was Blaze Guld of Coronado. Blaze has a fantastic life. Six months of the year he performs with his guitar in many of the local (Coronado and San Diego) restaurants and watering holes. The other six months of the year he works for G-ADVENTURE giving tours in Zodiac Boats (motorized Rubber boats) in the Antarctic and the Artic.

Blaze's talk was more show and tell then presentation. He showed us lots of photo's and movie clips of Leopard Seals (a pretty big and scary dude), and a rock concert filled with juvenile King Penguin's with long shaggy feathers, Bull Elephant seals, Fur seals (with a nasty bite), Polar Bears, Orca and Humpback whales and even pictures of some very funny looking two legged mammals wearing ridiculous costumes and jumping into freezing water.

Blaze told us about traveling through Drakes Passage and about visits to South Georgia and Grytviken where Earnest Shackleton is buried.

G-Adventure is a very ecological minded company. They strive to leave the Artic and Antarctic more pristine than when they arrived. Besides leaving no remnants of their visits they also clean up tons of trash left behind by others.

All in all it was a very informative and entertaining talk. Thanks Blaze for sharing some of your adventures with us.

This morning's reward for the early bird setup team.


  • Dan Hendrickson bragged that his son Brian is retiring after 32 years of service and that the family has a new baby boy, Max.
  • Cynthia bragged that she recently had a poem published.
  • John Watson bragged that he and his wife recently biked from Salzburg to Italy over the Alps. Of course Bill Parry had to clarify the record and noted that they were electric bikes. Still a great adventure as far as I'm concerned.
  • Don Crawford went on about Bill Parry getting a new car and that he had made up some story about a rhino running around Coronado and side swiped his old car. I know it sounds like they were drinking Bloody Mary's before the meeting. I only report what I hear.
  • Charles Helpser bragged that our help with the Super Seal competition yielded a check for $2300 from the Iron Man Association. Way to go those who helped out.
  • Jack Larison bragged about some ex roto head turned wall street mogul and his prediction for the stock market. BTW the ex roto head is our own John Bowen, but who knows what he's predicting.


We had three anniversaries this week. John Brassert, 3 years sponsor Cynthia; Lee Cargill, 27 years, sponsor Stu Powell and Bret Gary 17 years, sponsor Lee Cargill.


We had two very special birthdays this week. Mike Lavin from Evanston IL and Lynn Arendsee form Coronado Ca.

$Opportunity Drawings$

Lee Cargill won $29 this week.

History Lesson

On this day 10/3/1789 President Washington proclaimed the first observance of Thanksgiving on Nov. 26 in honor of the adoption of the Constitution. Then on this day 10/3/1863 President Lincoln designated the last Thursday in November as Thanksgiving day. A little know fact is that the real reason behind Abe's proclamation was that his wife, Mary Todd wanted an extra day to Christmas shop, so that was the start of Black Friday.

Next Week's Speaker

Next Weeks Talk is on Project Hope.

Club Announcements

Lawn Bowling: The annual match with our friendly Rotarians is scheduled for November 2. If you're interested in kicking some Rotarian butt, please contact Bill Carinder billcarinder@yahoo.com . He's our Captain again his year.

Annual Club Roster: Don Crawford has updated the active club roster. A copy will be on the welcome table. Please stop by to ensure your info in correct and initial next to your name.

Name Badges: Diana updated all the badges and placed them back in their original numbered spots. If you have any trouble finding yours, please see Diana.

The Islander Sports Foundation will place our club photo on their website, to recognize the important roll the Optimists play in supporting youth sports in Coronado.

New Member Pins: We had a banner year for recruiting new members. Carla distributed letters of recognition and pins to all club members who sponsored a new member this past year. She did not read off the names, but it was a big stack of letters and pins. Well done to everyone who sponsored a new member.

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