Writing this in a spring snowstorm, it’s hard to believe this is my final message for the Elk year. While it still feels like winter, the calendar says I only have three weeks left as your Exalted Ruler. By all accounts it’s been a terrific year for our Lodge and it has been an honor to serve as your ER for the past 12 months. But like all things, times change and now it is time for us to usher in our next Exalted Ruler, Tommy Frazier to lead the way. We are excited to have Tommy take over as the new Lodge President. We know he will do a great job leading the way next year! Tommy and the rest of our new officers will be installed on Friday, March 30th
We accomplished many things this year and have a lot to be proud of as our Lodge is poised to do well for its Members and our community for years to come. One of the biggest areas of success was in our Membership growth. I am proud to announce that we will finish the Elk year with MORE Members than we began the year with (and by a good margin!). This is the first time we have had at least a +1 in Membership in over a decade. We are projected to finish in 3rd place in “Members Gained” among all 33 NC Elk Lodges! Much of this credit goes to a dynamic Membership Committee led by Doug Orcutt and his team of Stewart McGlaughlin, Shari Driscoll, Whitney Cook, David Labiak & Tom Connolly. They were active and creative in finding ways that we can bring in new Members and also to retain the ones we have. Thank you all for your efforts!
Other key accomplishments this year include:
– Completing the transition to a different bank (First Citizens) that is a much better fit for what we do and values our contributions to the community.
– Refinancing our mortgage to a lower fixed rate, longer fixed term and freeing up a good amount of monthly cash flow which allows us to save for capital expenditures.
– We celebrated as our very own Shari Driscoll was elected to become the first female State President (for 2019-2020) and our 5th State President in our history.
– Replacing two HVAC units that were over 20 years old and causing service problems ($18,200 cost).
– Successfully balancing our budget. With the year almost over, we project a slight profit for the year.
– The House Committee under Gary Feldner’s leadership will finish in the “black” for the first time in several years.
– Replaced the floors in upstairs bar and downstairs Kid’s room. Much needed, safer surface, better looking and will last for a very long time.
– Repaired and replaced large portions of the roof that were leaking.
– Raised over $5,000 for Hospice of the Piedmont in May with the Annual Andy Albertson Memorial Golf Tournament.
– Raised over $5,000 for Swim For Cancer in June.
– Raised over $2,000 for Camp Carefree during our August event and silent auction.
– Raised over $2,000 by hosting our First Annual Disabled Veterans Car Show in September.
– Presented $1500 in grant funds to High Point CAV(Community Against Violence) which works closely with the High Point Police Department to prevent violent crimes.
– Visited the VA Hospital every month to serve our Veterans. Hosted annual spring cook out and fall BBQ.
– Hosted several exciting events for our Members and guests. Just some of them: Chili-Cook Off, Wing Fest, ER Steak Nights, Hypnotist Night, Band Nights, Theme Party Nights, Halloween Party, Super Bowl Party, NFL Sundays, Family Burger Nights, Trivia Nights, Name That Tune, Breakfast with Santa, New Year’s Eve Party, and many more.
As we move into the 2018-2019 year there is still much for us to do. Please support Tommy Frazier in his efforts to lead our Lodge. As I transition to the 5 year Trustee role I look forward to working closely with our Board to create a five year plan that will identify some things that will need to be addressed in the coming years. Our plumbing continues to challenge us on a regular basis with old copper pipes. The roof will be due for a complete replacement in a few years and it would be great to upgrade our Pool House, Lounge and upstairs dance floor, just to name a few. I look forward to working on long range solutions to these needs.
Please plan to attend our Installation & Awards Night on Friday, March 30th. We will have Dinner/Social at 6 pm. Installations of New Officers at 7 pm along with presentation of our Annual Awards: Elk of the Year, Officer of the Year and Citizen of the Year. Afterwards, the party will continue down in the Lounge with live music from Big Bump and the Stun Gunz. This is a free evening for all who attend. Dinner and Awards Ceremony is family friendly. Please make your dinner reservations by March 28th by calling the Office at 336-869-7313.
On behalf of all the Lodge Officers, I thank you for supporting us this past year. I know we did the very best we could do and we hope we made you proud to be a Member of the High Point Elks Lodge.
Finally, congratulations to David Labiak for being named our February Elk of the Month.
Bob Gold, Jr.