Club Information

Welcome to our Club!


Rotary Opens Opportunities

We meet In Person
Tuesdays at 7:00 AM
Currently meeting virtually
PO Box 24
South Haven, MI 49090
United States of America
Speakers and Events
Lake Michigan College Update
Dec 01, 2020
Dr. Trevore Kubatzke, President
Political Scientist David Ryden
Dec 08, 2020
The Future of the Electoral College
Club Assembly
Dec 15, 2020 7:00 AM
President Thompson
Congregational Community Dinner
Dec 17, 2020 5:45 PM
Service Project
Our Latest Club News

Rotary is Meeting Virtually

During the COVID19 pandemic South Haven Rotary is conducting its meetings remotely with members joining via the ZOOM. Our next virtual meeting will be Tuesday, December 1, at 7 a.m. If you would like to "attend" please email us ( We will gladly provide access information.

Dedicated to Community

Since 2010, The Rotary Club of South Haven has recognized and honors a resident(s) of the South Haven area who has made a difference in the community while embodying the spirit of Service Above Self. The Golden Trowel Award is awarded by the Rotary District 6360 Foundation (consisting essentially all of Southwest Michigan) to those individuals who have significantly impacted the success of their respective local community Rotary Club.  


The Rotary Club of South Haven was recently notified that their nomination of Heidi and Joel Gesiakowski of TASTE Restaurant of South Haven were the recipients of a Rotary District 6360 Golden Trowel Award for 2020.


"Heidi and Joel have been solid and generous members of the South Haven Community since opening their award-winning restaurant in 2012," said President Dan Thompson. "They have repeatedly gone above and beyond in their contribution to the well-being of South Haven, through their dedication to the business, support of community civic events, and charitable donations to a number of worthy local causes.  The classically trained Chef Joel and Heidi are completely committed to the City of South Haven."


They have actively participated in the community activities freely giving their time and treasure through donations to the local festivals. Heidi and Joel annually provide for auction a “cooking class” at the South Haven Foundation Educational Fundraiser sponsored by the Rotary Club of South Haven. This cooking class raises thousands of dollars for the benefit of South Haven Schools and Lake Michigan College students.  The auction of this cooking class is by far the largest single fund raiser at this event. 


They most recently donated food and meals to the local first responders and hospital staff during the current COVID-19 crisis. Throughout this pandemic period, they have offered professionally prepared take-out meals to members of the community.  In addition, Chef Joel has offered “virtual” cooking classes on Sunday afternoons open to the entire South Haven community providing welcome respite to the area during this difficult period. 


"Heidi and Joel Gesiakowski are truly valued members of our community and well deserving of the Rotary District 6360 Foundation Golden Trowel Award," said Thompson.


A Tree (actually two)
Grows in South Haven

Arbor Day 2020 came and went without its usual fanfare last spring because of the COVID pandemic. But it wasn't forgotten by members of the Rotary Club of South Haven. On Wednesday, Oct. 21,  the Rotarians continued their annual tree planting tradition by placing two trees in historic Stanley Johnston Park on the city's north side.
President Dan Thompson and fellow Rotarians joined City Manager Kate Kosier and City Arborist Aaron Priebe in planting two Autumn Brilliance Serviceberry trees. They are an early spring-flowering tree, truly a plant for all seasons: it has beautiful spring flowers, handsome green leaves, striking orange to red fall color and silver bark.
The Rotary club works with Priebe in determining locations for the annual project. This year's trees replace two deteriorating spruces near the Johnston Park formal garden along Dyckman Avenue.
South Haven has been recognized as a Tree City USA by the Arbor Day Foundation for the past 16 years. Priebe said the city this fall planted 28 trees throughout the city. Johnston Park opened in the 1890s. It was originally named the Grove and renamed Oakland Park for its many oak trees. In 1969 it was renamed Stanley Johnston Park in honor of the developer of the Haven line of peaches. The formal garden was first created more than 100 years ago.
The Rotary Club of South Haven has earned the Rotary International Gold Citation, the most significant award a Rotary club can achieve, for 2019-20. During a year that was challenging for many Rotarians around the world, our club, under the leadership of President Mark Odland, demonstrated a commitment to achieve its goals, which ultimately helps strengthen Rotary and shape its future. Only seven percent of all Rotary clubs worldwide receive this recognition.

Rotary's Community
Service Recognized

The Rotary Club of South Haven was recognized for its support, dedication and service to the Greater South Haven area by the South Haven Area Chamber of Commerce on October 6. The Club was presented the Chamber's Community Investment Award. Club representatives Dan Thompson and Mark Odland were also presented a State of Michigan Special Tribute by Representative Beth Griffin.
The tribute reads:
LET IT BE KNOWN: That we are proud to join with the South Haven Area Chamber of Commerce in recognizing the Rotary Club of South Haven with the 2020 Community Investment Award. This award is a reflection of the Club's unselfishness and commitment to the common good that is most commendable. While the members of this distinguished organization celebrate receiving this award we also offer our thanks for the service they have shared within South Haven and throughout Michigan.
"Service Above Self" is the motto of the Rotary Club of South Haven since the Club's founding in our community in 1956.  In the years that have followed, this organization has adapted to the changes in society, membership and expectations. Through it all, the Club has maintained their mission of service.
In a typical year the Rotary Club donates an estimated $40,000 to community charitable causes. This past year has been exceptional. The Rotary Club provided significant donations to We Care I.N.C.'s utility assistance program, responded to the Martin Luther King Jr. Day appeal for laundry detergent by donating nearly 500 containers, contributed to the City of South Haven's new splashpad project, and funded the installation of a fire detection system at the historic Scott Club. The Rotarians have also continued their decades-long support of Lake Michigan College and the South Haven Public Schools Foundation and have recently created four new scholarships for South Haven High School graduates.
As the Club is recognized with the Community Investment Award, the members and officers of the Rotary Club of South Haven will remember the vision of many people and the hours and years of commitment that have brought the group to this point. Fittingly, as they look to the past, they will also be casting an eye to the future and to the many ways in which South Haven's Rotary Club will continue to reach out in our State.
IN SPECIAL TRIBUTE: Therefore. This document is signed and dedicated to commemorate the Rotary Club of South Haven as the South Haven Area Chamber of Commerce 2020 Community Investment Award recipient. We commend everyone who has contributed to its success and thank them for the manner in which their members have strengthened Michigan.
Signed by
State Representative Beth Griffin
State Senator Aric Nesbitt
Congressman Fred Upton
Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist II
Governor Gretchen Whitmer

Rotary Supports Kids

The Rotary Club of South Haven was a major donor in support of the construction of a splashpad near the city's South beach. President Dan Thompson presents a check as the final payment on the $17,500 pledge to Mayor Scott Smith and City Manager Kate Hosier. The pledge included $10,000 from the club, $4,000 from the Rotary District 6360 Foundation and $3,500 from the District 6360 Karl Sandelin Grant program. The splashpad is intended to provide a safe haven for kids, especially when Lake Michigan conditions are not conducive for swimming. The splashpad depicts the South Haven-based Friends Good Will, a replica of an 1800s sailing schooner that's featured at the Michigan Maritime Museum.
Minutes and Archive
Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
Immediate Past President
Birthdays & Anniversaries
Member Birthdays:
  • Tony Martorano
    November 11
  • Jim Bradford
    November 20
  • Mary Sue Lyon
    November 28
  • James Davis
    December 18
  • Jean Stein
    December 21
  • Bob Straits
    December 30