The Rotary Club Of Festival City

President:  Dianne Yundt

Minutes of the meeting of May 7, 2013

Club email:

Club website:

Guests: Rotary Exchange student Leticia Figueiredo

Door Prize: Sam Theocharis donated the prize won by Ron Rogers.


  1. The Bridge, May Edition: If you haven’t read the latest edition emailed to all Rotarians in District 6330 check out the following articles. The new Rotaract Club in Stratford. Changes to legislation.  The fifth avenue of service is changed from New Directions to Youth Services. The District Assembly will now be called District Training Assembly. These are just two of the changes.
  2. CRCID Changes: Lynne Ternosky gave us an overview of changes to Canadian Rotary Collaboration for International Development. It is through CRCID that our club received matching funds for the El Salvador project. CRCID works with CIDA (Canada International Development Agency) to fund international projects. CIDA has been moved to the department of Foreign Affairs. As a result it will be more challenging to obtain funding. CRCID has had to undergo an audit as well as the countries receiving funds.  The finances of CRCID are being restated and there will be a delay in advancing funds to projects for which funds have already been allocated. Members of the CRCID board will be working from their homes as there is no funding for office space. Lynne serves on the board.
  3. Rotary Dues: The membership has received invoices for the 2013-2014 Rotary year. Please make cheques payable to the Rotary Club of Festival City Stratford. Cheques can be post-dated to July 2. Give cheques to treasurer Etienne Leushuis.
  4. Coffee: El Salvador coffee beans or ground coffee in 1lb bags is available from Randy Matthews for $15 each.
  5. District Assembly: Takes place June 7-9 in Sarnia. Anyone attending and wishes to travel with President Dianne should speak to her.
  6. Rotary Social Evenings: The first one will be at the Rivers home on May 28. It will be a “Wine and Cheese” evening. Bring your favourite cheese with a short description of the cheese type.
  7. Rotaract Banquet: It is confirmed that the banquet is Wednesday May 29 at the Arden Park. Tickets are $40. It is hoped that all members of Festival City Rotary will be able to attend. Rotaract is a joint venture of Festival City and Stratford Rotary Clubs. Tyler Canal has tickets for the event beginning at 6 PM.

Guest Speaker: President Dianne introduced Kent Chisholm who spoke about SABBA, the Stratford Area Bed and Breakfast Association. From 1953 when Laura Pogson’s parents started one of the first B&B’s in Stratford the number of B&B’s grew to 235 by the year 2000. In that year licensing for B&B’s was introduced by the City. Since then the number of B&B’s has declined to 92 in 2013. Some of the decline is due to the fact that B&B owners tend to be older people who operate B&B’s more as a lifestyle choice than as essential income earner and wish to retire. The owners sell or close their B&B’s. Some B&B’s have closed due to the requirements of fire and safety upgrades required by the fire code and the city’s building bylaws. Sabba was formed in the mid 90’s and became an important lobby group at City Hall to help encourage sensible licensing. 72 of Stratford’s B&B’s belong to SABBA.

Costs involved in operating a B&B include a 20% increase in property assessed value, a licencing fee of $152 for one room and $91 for each additional room. For members of the Stratford Tourism Alliance there is an additional fee. The Stratford Festival adds a room fee for any bookings they make on behalf of the B&B. Among the other costs is Festival Guide advertising, food, and maintaining furnishings and home.

Kent showed how to use the SABBA website to book a room. By entering the dates and type of accommodation a guest desires, the website shows only those B&B’s which have availability. This makes it much easier to find a room than phoning around. The potential guest can also check out the amenities of each B&B which show pictures of the public areas and bedrooms in the B&B.

Although having guests staying in your home can be an enjoyable and enriching experience it does require the host to be available throughout the festival season for most of each day. Some guests become returning guests each year and close ties develop between guests and hosts.  

Kent was thanked by Etienne Leushuis.