Sun Lakes Rotarians honor Mother Earth - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Sun Lakes Rotarians honor Mother Earth

May 11th, 2021 development
Sun Lakes Rotarians honor Mother Earth

By Steve Carr
Guest Writer

There wasn’t an Arizona Diamondback in sight when the Sun Lakes Rotary Club pulled off a triple play on April 22.

The field was set for this rarity in 1970 when the words “Earth Day” first became part of our lexicon.

Fifty-one years later, Sun Lakes Rotary members celebrated the occasion by planting an ash tree near the children’s playground at Snedigar Park East in Chandler on the same day the club turned 35 years old and the same week that marked the first-ever Arizona Rotarians at Work Week with volunteer events across the state.

“The stars were certainly fully aligned for this event,” said Sun Lakes Rotary President Jon Lyons. “It was a significant day on many levels.

“As Rotary members, we believe in working collaboratively to address important issues that affect so many in our community and around the world and this was a special week for us in achieving that mission.”

The Earth Day connection was particularly meaningful because “planting a tree on Earth Day reflects our belief in sustaining and protecting our environment,” Lyons said.

“At the same time, its location near the children’s playground at Snedigar Park East represents our ongoing commitment to support educational programs and ensure that our children have a safe and welcoming place to be together and play.”

Special guests at the event included District 17 state Rep. Jennifer Pawlik, Chandler Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Terri Kimble; Rotary District 5495 Past District Governor Nancy Van Pelt, currently leader of Peace Building Clubs; Judi Edmonds, SLRC Peace Building Projects Committee Chair; Ruston Reynolds from Earnhardt Automotive and Bret McKeand, the incoming Arizona Rotary District 5495 Governor.

More than 30 children from the Strong Foundations Academy entertained the crowd of nearly 100 with several Earth Day-themed songs and presented potted plants to Rotary members and guests on hand.

“This event is important because we all have to do our part to take care of the earth,” Pawlik said. “We’re setting an example for the next generation of elementary school kids by planting a tree to help combat climate change.”

McKeand said that the Rotary Week of Service gave “Rotary Clubs throughout Arizona the opportunity to serve and give back to their communities.

“Rotary Clubs big and small throughout the state do incredible things for their communities, but the pandemic has kept us from doing what we normally do during a typical year,” McKeand added. “Our Week of Service gave us the chance to roll up our sleeves and get back to what Rotarians do best: serving others.”

For more information about the Sun Lakes Rotary Club visit Currently, Sun Lakes Rotary holds weekly Tuesday meetings for its more than 80 members through Zoom, alternating weekly between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.