Posted by Bob Wicks on May 15, 2024
Marked by a gala celebration in the High School cafeteria in Sturbridge, Rotarians and school officials gathered on May 14 for the charter installation of the school’s Rotary Interact service club.  The event featured a pizza contest, silent auction, a citation from the State Senate, and inspiring comments from club leaders, school officials, and Rotarians. 
This newest club at Tantasqua is dedicated to providing community service that will make Sturbridge just a bit better.  Guided by their faculty advisor and in collaboration with Rotarians, Interact members will have an opportunity to identify, develop, manage, publicize, and implement service projects.  Along the way, they will learn new skills that can last a lifetime, make new friends, and have a ton of fun. 
Joining the 13 Charter members to celebrate were Faculty Advisor Amy Willard (far left), Rotary Advisor Dr. David Zonia (rear), Principal Dr. Peter Dufresne (holding the charter), and District Legislative Director Amanda Hellyar, who represented Senator Ryan Fattman.  Also in attendance, but not in the photo, was Assistant Academic Principal Beth Johnson, accompanied by her Labrador Retriever and the school’s support dog. 
Interact leaders include co-Presidents Jackson Landine, and Stella Buday, Vice President Rachel Salisbury, Treasurer Charlotte Ardis, Secretary Jocelyn Mrotek, and Publicist Samantha Baker.
Later, the entire Tantasqua Regional High School Interact Club gathered around Principal Dufresne and Amanda Hellyar.  With the 7 prospective members introduced during the ceremony, the club’s membership will grow to 20.  
Rotarians on hand to celebrate with the students and welcome them to the Rotary family were Sturbridge members David Zonia, Kelly Landine, Laurie Palmer, Otto Prohaska, Sujoy Spencer, and Bob Wicks.  Brookfields Rotary was well represented by President Teresa McCarthy, Lynn Duffy-O’Shea, Christine Gagnon and her husband John.  Unfortunately, several other Sturbridge members were traveling or under the weather and unable to attend.
Event sponsors included Southbridge Credit Union, Cormier Jewelers, BT’s Steakhouse, Brush It Off Art & Pottery Studio, Pickleball U, Honest Town Eats, Escape the Pike, Old Sturbridge Pizza, Uncle Sam’s Pizza, Pizza Chef, Tutti Quanti, and Sherwin Williams. 
Rotary and Rotary Interact are always very grateful to our generous sponsors and supporters. 
Sturbridge Rotary Interact Advisor, Dr David Zonia swears in charter Tantasqua Interact officers, co-President Jackson Landine and the Board of Directors.