January 2003 Black Swamp Driving Club Newsletter

                                                                                             By Fred Thompson

   Hello everyone and Happy New Year.  I'm sure we all hate to see Old Man 2002 disappear into wonderous memories.  It should be just as much fun to watch the New Year Baby 2003 grow up into a new and wonderful
year filled with fun and excitement.  It is always exciting trying to look ahead and anticipate what will be in the future.  Whether it is a new foal or new harness.  Maybe you are still looking for that perfect horse.  Maybe it's time for a new turnout or just a different one. Looking forwards is what keeps us all going.  What ever you are looking for or whatever New Year Resolutions you have set for yourself.  I wish you the best of luck. As for making New Year Resolution?  I really don't make them anymore.  My success ratios for keeping resolutions aren't very high.  Want some examples?  Year 2000 - resolution - lose weight - results - gained 5lbs.  Year 2001- resolution - lose weight - results-gained another 5lbs.  Year 2002 - resolution - lose weight - results - gained more than I want to tell.  See what I mean.  I guess making resolutions just puts too much stress on me and increases my appetite.  This isn't much of an excuse, but it's better than none at all.  So, if you have made a New Year Resolution- good luck.  If you didn't- join the club.  Wait a minute!  Maybe I will make one last
Resolution.  My Resolution for Year 2003-Make more drives this year. There let's see if I can keep this one.  I hope so.

   The only thing I have to report this month is our Annual Banquet and Meeting that was held November 17 at The Schnipke Inn in Ottawa.  There were 68 members and guest that attended and enjoyed the buffet and all
the socializing that went along with the evening.  I personally feel that Schnipkes serves a great buffet and once again, my only regret was that I filled up to fast and couldn't go back for more.

   President Roger Higgins opened the meeting after all the eating was over and everyone was down to picking at what ever was left on their plates and was not willing to give up.  Roger greeted and thanked everyone for showing up.  He then got down to business and opened up for the nominations for next year's directors.   President Higgins turned the voting procedure over to Roger Murray who chaired the nomination committee.  The ballots were passed out showing three-year and one-year nominee.  He then announced that Renee Walker turned down her nomination because of family obligations.  The nomination was then open to see if anyone was willing to take her place on the ballot.  After no response the nomination was closed and the voting proceeded.  The ballots were collected and the team of Joe Bell, John Hunter and Roger Murray counted the ballots.  While this was going on Roger Higgins wanted to report that our club recently received a new name.  This took place at Corn Huskers when someone from the Upper Sandusky newspaper did a little article on us.  When it appeared in the paper, sure enough there was a picture of Roger's chuck wagon and a nice story about our club.  The Black Swamp Wagon Train Association.  No Thanks.  I think we should keep our old name.  Anyway, the ballots were counted and the results were announced.  The two three year terms went to Angie Hohenbrink and Mark Newman.  The one-year term went to Sandy Young.  Congratulations.

   Roger then asked Sue Murray for the Treasury Report.  It is nice to here that our financial health is good.  Sue also reported that we received a nice thank you from the Kentucky Horse Park for our monetary donation.  This money will be used by the Park to help promote the sport of driving.

   Last but not least, was Gary Gillfillans turn to hand out the coveted Dime-on-Ring.  This year's recipient was our illustrious President Roger Higgins.  Roger has been our President for the last two years and has done a great job and well deserving of this award. He is one of the members that are always there to lend a hand.  It is always done with a smile on his face.

   Next thing Gary wanted to announce was a sleigh ride.  This is one of those events that are strictly up to Mother Nature.  If she cooperates with the right temperature with the right amount of snow on the correct days, Gary will be making some phone calls.  This is one of those things that you just can't plan ahead.  Not to get off of the subject, but do you know who wrote Jingle Bells?  His name was James Pierpont.  It was believed that he wrote it for the annual sleigh races on the mile-long stretch between the squares in Medford and Malden, two towns near Boston.  He wrote it in 1857 but it wasn't until 1902 that the Hayden Quartet recorded it and helped spread its popularity.  So much for trivia.

   Then, back by popular demand.  Our around the table Membership Call. This is where you stand up and introduce your self and your family and try not to say anything to embarrass your self.  Sometimes you can do it
by yourself and sometimes you can get help from your "friends".  This is always a fun time and a great way to find out who is who.  You might even call it our Who's Who in the BSDC.

   After everyone spoke his or her little piece, there was only one thing left to do.  That was to draw for the door prizes.  A big thanks to Sue Murray for picking out the prizes for the club.  Another thanks to John Tschantz for donating several twine cutters that his company makes in Upper Sandusky.  A special thanks goes out to Roger Higgins sister, Virginia Scranton, for the afghan that she donated.  After the last name was drawn there was sixteen happy recipients of door prizes. 

   It was great to spend an evening with so many wonderful people.  It's no wonder that so many people look forward to this event every year. Through out the evening all you have to do is look anywhere and there were smiling faces and the sound of laughter.  If you had to pick out one word to describe the evening, it would have to be FUN.

   President Roger Higgins wants to thank the officers, directors and members for all the help they have given him and the club though out the year of 2002.  A club cannot survive with out the help of its members. Members that are willing to help out the club whenever it is needed. This is the kind of dedication that keeps this club going.
   Our first meeting of the year will be held at the Trinity Lutheran Church on W. Bigelow in Findlay, Oh.  It will be on Jan. 12th between 2pm and 4pm.  Directions:  From 224, go west over I-75 to the first light which is Northridge Rd. (Cracker barrel Restaurant is on the corner), turn right and go to the end.  The church will be on your right.  Please bring snacks to share and coffee and punch will be provided.


January  4     Abby Hohenbrink
January  7     Tim Evans
January 18    Sandy Young
January 19    Virginia Secrist
January 21    Renee Walker
January 22    Roger Higgins Jr.
January 25    Patrick Bisel
January 27    Linda Gardner
January 30    Katie Thompson
January 31    Glenn Knight
January 31    Marshal Evans
February 2    Chayton Newman
February 3    Linda Spears
February 7    Ross Knight
February 8    Ken Davis
February 10  Peter Bisel
Februray 13  Al Hohenbrink
February 14  Jessie Evans
February 21  Jim Ruffing

Calendar of Events for 2003
*Jan. 12.Meeting at Trinity Lutheran Church
*Feb.   9 .Meeting at Trinity Lutheran Church
*Mar.  9..Meeting at Trinity Lutheran Church

* Denotes a club sponsored event