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 11-7-2019

Looks like our President Dorman is getting the hang of the Thursday morning meetings...his reign is in full swing. Cynthia shared a prayer and memory for Veterans Day on Monday. Richard Loomis led the pledge.

Lots of excitement in the room as President Doorman made the announcement:

The Lawn Bowling team took the crown and trophy back from the Rotarians... thanks to our ringer Charles Helspar
backed up by Gene Rathswohl, John Watson, and deadly Renee Cavanaugh as they steamrolled the despondent Rotarians. To be fair the Rotarians were gracious and less smug in their sudden devastating defeat by a one game margin.
Trophy is being engraved and will be on display at next week's meeting. CONGRATULATIONS TO A GREAT VICTORY!


  1. BofD has adopted budget guideline not to exceed last years income.
  2. We have agreed to send $2000 requested by Coronado SAFE for a program geared to pre-school and kindergarten aged children in all public and private schools in Coronado to promote self reflection, empathy and skills for problem solving.
  3. We have granted a request to fund six students for sixth grade camp at $350/each whose families are unable to afford the expense.
  4. We have agreed to provide a monthly pizza party for all members of the Coronado High Junior Optimist Club in consideration of their many community activities on our behalf.

Brenda Kracht shared our Christmas Party will be
Dec 19th at the Coronado Golf Course...
5 to 6 no host bar and 6 to 9 Dinner....
more to come but mark your calendars!


  1. On this date in 1917 the Bolshevik party in Russia led a revolution against the provisional government to establish a communist dictatorship.
    The Russian Revolution did not begin as a Communist movement; the Tsar was overthrown and replaced by a democratic coalition. When a free election was held later on November 25,1917, the Communists lost; so they just threw out the election results. On this day in 1917 the Communists opted for armed force as the weapon of change.


Mayor Bailey bragged on the Lawn Bowling Team and Jim Jamison for Avenue of Heroes. As well and he and Karl Mueller attended a SAFE event where they were ID'D as OPTIMISTS! Then thanks to the Cargills for attending a council mtg.

Cynthia bragged about more writing opportunities for her.

Renee one of the lawn bowling team and praised Charles for being the anchor of the team.

Carla is going to be a grandmother again...#3.


  1. On this date in 1917 the Bolshevik party in Russia led a revolution against the provisional government to establish a communist dictatorship.
    The Russian Revolution did not begin as a Communist movement; the Tsar was overthrown and replaced by a democratic coalition. When a free election was held later on November 25,1917, the Communists lost; so they just threw out the election results. On this day in 1917 the Communists opted for armed force as the weapon of change.


School board member, Lee Pontes took home the kitty.


Kirk Henry,Nov.1,2001, 18 yrs.,by Eric Raiter; Julia Turpit, 1 yr., Nov.5 by Lyndsey Arendsee


Erin Downey Nov.6, in New Orleans


Our speaker today was Chris Hoffman is the founder and CEO of VET Training and Coaching. The goal of Chris and his staff is to assist Vets in how to re-discover, re-equip, and re-engage with what matters most in their life after serving in the military for their country.

The C.O.R.E. Values of this program helps set the tone for assisting the VETS:

Chris is providing innovative and highly effective solutions for three needs 1) Discovering individuality 2) Finding a meaningful life 3) Gaining support needed to create momentum out of uniform.

For more information check out the webpage for Chris-Hoffmann-VET-Training-and-Coaching.

Next Week's Speaker

Tom Rice and Clint Russell, Normandy Jump.

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Weekly Optimist Meeting 10-31-2019


We Optimists were greeted by smiling faces of Past Presidents Diana Drummey and Jack Larison. We had 6 guests and 38 Optimists up and moving at 0700 for a wonderful Halloween Day.

Pat Kelly led us in prayer and Dick Owens started the pledge.

We had dings and brags....fines and 50/50....but our guests were really the best part of the meeting.


Lawn Bowling: Game is On! Contact is Bill Carinder billcarinder@yahoo.com, but the competition is this Saturday at 1pm Lawn Bowling Green at John D. Spreckels Center....get there early for some practice and libations... GO OPTIMIST GOLDEN ROD TEAM!


School Liaisons; Jim Jamison, as our new external VP, is looking for volunteers to be liaisons with the many school groups we support.


We have for our entertainment today Lamb's Players BASH WORLD OF RESPECT presentation. We, Optimist help fund this presentation to elementary schools students. This presentation teaches students skills to stop bulling, being kind to fellow students, and techniques to calm themselves down when upset. The actors Jazz Ruiz, Devin Wade, Julie Meram, and John Wells led by Director Kerry Meads presents this event with song, acting and audience participation. It was a wonderful uplifting presentation.

At the end of the presentation President Dennis presented a $2,000 check to Lamb's Players BASH!

Next Week's Speaker

Chris HoffmannFounder & CEO, VET Training & Coaching.

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Weekly Optimist Meeting 10-24-2019


Bob Sheridan started by reminding us of the vast and incomprehensible nature of the universe and then lead us in a prayer of gratitude to our Maker and for the world he gave us to inhabit, acknowledging how little of it we understand, but that we trust in Him to always guide and protect us. George Kunberger kicked off the Pledge of Allegiance.

We had two guests this morning. Dave Jones our guest and speaker and Don Crawford's buddy from New Orleans, who also happens to be Erin Downey's dad.

The two smiling Optimists pictured above Mike Lavin and George Bassola were graciuos voluteers for Bill Parry and the Dingmaster who showed up at 6:00 AM to pass off their greeter responsibility so they could run off to some important meeting. I thought I heard them say something about Tijuana, but I might be wrong.


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.


Strand Clean Up was lighted supported by the Optimist Club (3 folks showed up) and we had to rely heavily on the Jr ROTC group from the high school to get the job done

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

School Liaisons; Jim Jamison, as our new external VP, is looking for volunteers to be liaisons with the many school groups we support.

Coronado Film Festival Volunteers needed: Mark Blumenthal has a sign up sheet going around for volunteers to help decorate the sidewalk with stars as part of the upcoming Film Festival.

Coronado Round Table Talk; Tomorrow 10:00 in the Winn room, Coffee at 9:45. Speaker is Tom Morelli who will speak on Prison Ministry in San Diego County

John Brassert: is recovering at Plaza Village in National City. He'll be there for about three weeks. So if you have a chance stop in and wish him well.

Halloween Happening is tomorrow from 3-5:30. Volunteers still needed. Contact Dianna.


Our speaker today was Dave Jones who gave a talk on "asking the right questions about mental health". Dave, in a light moment introduced himself as a member of a drinking club in North County that happens to have a Rotarian problem. He also noted that he has no professional credentials for talking on this subject, but he was wearing a jacket, so he looked professional. This was all meant to be a light hearted introduction to a very serious and somber presentation on why people commit suicide and sometimes take others with them.

Dave started by sharing with us his own story of mental illness in his family that went back to his grandfather and then his father, that eventually lead to Dave loosing both his mother and father in one tragic event (due to his father's severe mental illness) when he was still a small boy. He also shared a story of a local family (son and mother) who were both killed as a result of the son's mental illness. Then of course, we are all too failure with the rash of mass shootings that often end in the suicide of the shooter. All of this human suffering is the result of mental illness, and mental illness is one of the fasting growing causes of death in the US.

In sharing these stories, Dave was illustrating that whenever these tragedies occur, our first reaction is to ask "Why Did This Happen?". This is a normal human reaction to try and explain how tragic things happen. However the facts are that there is rarely an answer to this question In the mentally ill mind, driven to suicide and murder, what healthy people would consider rational thoughts, just are not there.

Dave's point here, was to suggest that we (society) should not simply be asking why did this recent tragedy happen. We should be asking WHY to a much broader spectrum of issues, that get at the heart of treating and healing mental illness. To address the illness before it ever evolves into someone feeling they have no alternative but to commit suicide. Some of the WHY questions Dave suggested we should be asking are:

  • Why do 50% of the people in prison have mental illness?
  • Why are 80% of people in prison for drug related crimes?
  • Why do we spend so much on cancer research and so little on mental health?
  • Why can't we eliminate the stigma associated with mental illness?
  • In some parts of the developing parts of the world, despite a lack of many basic necessities the suicide rate is very low. Why can't many people in the US face the reality of their situation.
  • Why do people consider suicide victims to be selfish, when they are really very ill? There is a lack of understanding of the underlying issues
  • Why are we continually shocked when someone commit's suicide?
  • Why are so many people in the US treated today with antidepressants and often do not seek therapy?
  • Why don't we talk about mental illness?
  • Why are we not aware of the signs of mental illness
  • We should consider mental illness as a cancer in the brain. We would not have brain cancer treated, but we often don't treat mental illness?

Dave is also a member of the San Diego Suicide Prevention Council and we want to thank Dave very much for his service to the community and for the very personal and meaningful talk this morning.


Lots of brags today;

  • Jim Callaway gave us a quick catch up on his recent activities including a 3 week cruise, winning every 5k race he participated in over the last 3 months which was about 12 and he told us about falling in the last race, badly hurting his shoulder (requiring surgery) but still winning the race. Wow that's stamina
  • Carla Fargo bragged about her father in law Capt. Fargo who was responsible for getting the land made available from the government so that there would be a place for the YMCA to have Camp SURF.
  • Jim Jamison bragged about the 16 Coronado Residents who are being inducted in the Avenue of the Heros this week and that today marks the 75th aniversary of the sinking of the USS Princiton in the Battle of Leyte Gulf
  • Shannon Pavell Bragged about Irish Flynn becoming th new President of the Coronado Hospital Foundation Board. Irish added in that he finally broke the glass ceiling by becoming the first male to hold that job.
  • Erin Downey bragged about our Jr Optimist President Cole Mullins being named Home Coming King this year.
  • Karl Mueller noted that Sandy Ferguson passed away recently on CHS Home Coming Day. Sandy was a long time beloved and respected teacher and advisor at CHS. In fact April 26,1994 was named Sandy Ferguson Day by the Mayor of Coronado, for his contribution to the CHS students
  • Dr. Moore bragged about my (George Kunberger) recovery for shoulder surgery, of course Joe was the first Doc to help me with my shoulder injury. The good Doctor also thanked me for producing such good bathroom reading material in the form of the Green Sheet.

One photo our beautiful sunrise this morning for those early birds, taken by Lee Cargill. The other for those who may miss Fall in the East is a picture right near our home in Pennsylvania, where I'll be spending the holidays with family. I'll miss beautiful Coronado and my Optimist friends, but I'll be in another beautiful part of the country with Diane and our kids. God is good my Friends.


Oct. 17, Buck Rogers,45 yrs. a member, by Lew Hardy; Karl Mueller, Oct. 21, 5 years by Lee Pontes; Cheryl Sylvester, Oct. 22, 4 yrs, by Jim Zoll; and Bridgette Jorgensen, today, 1 yr., by Cynthia Kosciuezyk.


Oct. 18, John Downey from Pottsville, PA; Oct. 22, Jack Couture from Boston Mass,; and Jim Alley, tomorrow, from Sacramento, CA as well as Mike Croll day after tomorrow from Niagara Falls, N.Y.

$Opportunity Drawings$

Jim Callaway won $33 this week.

Next Week's Speaker

Next Weeks Talk is on the Lambs Players BASH Program.

History Lesson

For reasons best known to the people who sell popcorn, the last week of October, beginning today, was chosen for National Popcorn Week. Popcorn is part of our national heritage having been introduced to the Pilgrims by Native Americans. National Popcorn Week, of course, is an event many optimists take with a few grains of salt.

Of international consequence today is also United Nations Day, commemorating the adoption of the U.N. Charter in 1945. In 1963 on this date Adlai Stevenson remarked that “The journey of a thousand leagues, we say, begins with a single step. So we must never neglect any work of peace that is within our reach, however small.” He went on to say that “Our efforts will be erratic, and the world will remain a dangerous place to live”. The last half century of events has confirmed his prediction.

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