06/02/16 Nancy Flipse, Pat Weber and Helen Horn History of BOCK: Part 1
06/09/16 Dave McKee History of BOCK: Part 2
06/16/16 Bridgett Blough Seasonal, Organic, Unrefined, Local Food
06/23/16 Hafiz Akbar Islamophobia: Finding Common Ground
06/30/16 Mary Ann Ampersee Fellowship-4th of July
Thursday, June 2, 2016

History of BOCK: Part 1

To come….Nancy Flipse, Pat Weber and Helen Horn (Click image for larger view.)


Thursday, June 9, 2016

BOCK History – Part 2

This is the second part in our look back on where the Breakfast Optimist Club Kalamazoo started.

Thank you charter members Dave McKee, Nancy Flipse, Helen Horn and Pat Weber for all of the work that you did in starting our Club. The club has gone through many changes since the first meeting, May 5th, 1988.

Over the past 28 years many children’s lives have been changed for the better because of the efforts of our Club members.


Thursday, June 16, 2016

Seasonal, Organic, Unrefined, Local Food

Past President, Marilyn Lenox-Bosma and the Organic Gypsy food truck owner/operator Bridgett Blough.
Past President, Marilyn Lenox-Bosma and the Organic Gypsy food truck owner/operator Bridgett Blough.

Today’s meeting was pure delight listening to Bridget Blough talk about her new business the Organic Gypsy. Bridget is it cold college alumni after graduating moved to California to explore her love of Health, Exercise and. It was there that she discovered her true passion for nutrition and organically grown and sourced fresh foods. She enrolled in culinary school and brought back to Kalamazoo whole new entrepreneurial venture that we will all be the better for.

There’s a nice video explaination of Bridget Blough’s  journey and a prize won.

VIdeo       Website

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Islamophobia: Finding Common Ground

6/23/16—Welcome to new BOCK member Kerrianne Thomas who was inducted today. Kerrianne was sponsored by Dan Mills. Kerrianne is an army veteran, wife, mother of two and the Deputy Chief of Kalamazoo Public Safety.

Laurie Jefsen and Hafiz Akbar of the Kalamazoo Islamic Center
Laurie Jefsen and Hafiz Akbar of the Kalamazoo Islamic Center

Sometimes a regular meeting speaker has the ability to speak our minds and our hearts—both at the same time. Such was the case with Hafiz Akbar of the Kalamazoo Islamic Center who spoke on the topic, Islamophobia: Finding Common Ground.

Hafiz was studying Engineering at Western when his path took a turn and he became Imam of the KIC. As he spoke he held a small Quran in his hands and talked about the similarities between Islam and Christian religions. Islam is also a monotheistic religion (belief in one God). It was news to most that the Quran contains much of the same backstory as the Bible. Islam recognizes that they are descendants of Abraham, and belief of the existence of Jesus and Mary as prophets. He explained that the headscarfs worn by Islamic women is a sign of reverence just as the Mary is always depicted in works of art with a covered head.

There were many questions for Hafiz which he answers easily. This was one of those meetings where during fines-n-brags many people expressed full appreciation of the new things they had learned about Islam.

The weekly greeter raffle prize was a gift card to Target and two mini pies—which Hafiz won and graciously accepted with a smile as he is fasting in observance of the holy month of Ramadon.

What a great meeting.


Click for larger image…


Thursday, June 30, 2016

Fourth of July Fellowship

Birthday-girl Cathy Balik enjoys a cupcake in honor of her special day.

We always love opportunities when we can just hanging out and get to know each other a little better. Mary Ann Ampersee had a game which tied personality traits and colors. Just a fun little game. Lots of laughs. and lots of Announcements: Right Start Auction, Book Club, Respect for Law Movie Night and Golf Outing are coming up….whew…we Optimists are a busy lot.