Welcome to our Abingdon Ruritan Club web site, where we invite you to get to know us by browsing our pages. Our club is located in the Bena area of Gloucester County, in coastal Virginia.
Our club is vibrant, vigorous, and robust! Members, both men and women, work together to continue the vision of our founders by working to better our community.
Ruritan National does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, national origin, religion, color, political affiliation, handicap, or gender.
Membership in a Ruritan Club is by invitation. We welcome anyone who is interested in working and giving time to our community projects to let us know of your interest. We meet monthly for dinner and a program. Our programs showcase organizations that our local club supports as well as topics of interest in our community.
2018 News You Can Use
UPDATE September 7: Fall Seafood Festival 2018 tickets have been selling briskly, and it is likely that all will be gone well in advance of the planned cutoff date. If you would like to attend our October Seafood Festival on the 3rd Wednesday in October, without delay, please go to our Seafood Festival page for a link to purchase tickets online and for additional information.
We have a Can Cottage on our grounds that benefits The Giving Garden, a local charity serving cancer patients. Why not bag up your empty aluminum cans and bring them to the Can Cottage?
The deadline for submitting 2017-18 College Scholarship Application Forms has passed. However, the old forms are still posted on our Scholarship Opportunities Page in order to let rising Gloucester High School/Gloucester Home Schooled seniors know what we look for and to consider applying next year, when new forms become available.
September Membership Meeting
Charles “Chuck” Walsh Jr. , Executive Director of the Middle Peninsula Northern Neck Community Services Board (MPNNCSB), was the guest speaker at the Club’s September membership meeting. MPNNCSB is one of 40 such boards across Virginia providing services related to mental health, intellectual disabilities, substance use, prevention, and early intervention. It serves the ten counties of the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck regions.
Walsh spoke primarily about the suicide awareness and prevention areas of the services his office provides. The statistics of suicides in the local area and state-wide were of particular interest. Club member Dan Zaruba has been working with the Board in the area of suicide awareness and prevention. For more information about the Board, please visit http://www.mpnncsb.org/index.php
Pictured from left are Zaruba, Walsh, and Club president Tony Dziadul.
Each month SONA bank “spotlights” one of its non-profit organization customers. The Abingdon Ruritan Club is currently being recognized. Below is a picture of the display provided by the Club and on display at the bank.
The Abingdon Ruritan Club’s Speedy Diesel Mechanics Relay for Life team recently had a fundraising event at the Stagecoach Markets and Antique Village in Gloucester. Club members, family and friends gathered and donated items to sell at the Market and took turns manning the tables. Since all of the items for sale were donated, all the proceeds went to the Relay for Life team. The event was planned and coordinated by Barbara Priest, Chair of the Relay for Life team.
Pictured at the Market are: In front, Lynn Onesty; first row Denise Dick, Janet Kyle, Barbara Priest. Back row, Bruce and Janet Parmiter, Roger Dick, Sid and Ann Dugas, Dave Onesty. Also helping but not pictured were Jimmy and Sandra Leiffer, Walter Priest, Dianne and Rollin Woolley, David Kyle and Dan Zaruba.
Abingdon Ruritan Club August Meeting
Rappahannock Community College (RCC) Nursing professors, Becky White and Carrie Lewis, were guest speakers at the Abingdon Ruritan Club’s August Membership Meeting. Their presentation explained the Remote Area Medical (RAM) program which is a major nonprofit provider of mobile medical clinics. Its mission is to prevent pain and alleviate suffering by providing free, quality healthcare to those in need. They do this by delivering free dental, vision, and medical services to underserved and uninsured individuals. The RCC Educational Foundation and the College Division of Health Services will sponsor a RAM clinic on November 3rd and 4th at the Ware Academy in Gloucester. Professional and non-professional volunteers are needed. To get more information or to volunteer, call 865 579-2555 or visit www.volunteer.ramusa.org. Pictured are White, Club Program Chairman Don Sandridge, & Lewis.
Visit our Community Services Committees page to see photos and details about some of our activities in 2018, or scroll down for a quick overview.
Spring and Fall Seafood Festivals – We give back to the community over $60,000 each year. Our Spring 2018, 70th Seafood Festival was a sell out.
Clam Chowder Sales – Offered in winter months with profits going back to the community.
College Scholarships – The Club awards $6000 in renewable Scholarships each year.
Gloucester Schools – We support Ruriteens, Boys and Girls State, Junior Law Cadets, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, 4-H, Little League Baseball, the STAR program, and the back-pack program.
Rudy Bears – “Rudy” distributes Rudy Bears to Children and Senior Adults. Bears are given to the Sheriff’s Office for distribution to children in accidents or in vulnerable situations.
Support Veterans – We participate with Veterans groups and Gloucester County on Memorial and Veterans’ Days and deliver care packages to VA Hospitals.
Support for the Homeless – Our Club participates with Community Churches in the GUEST program by providing meals and hands-on assistance for homeless individuals.
Christmas for Kids – Every December we host a party for all children, ages 8 and under, followed by a special party for Foster Kids of all ages. Santa and Mrs. Claus preside over both parties with lots of food, entertainment, fun, and presents. We also sponsor an Angel Tree for needy children with their personal “wishes” including clothes and shoes by size.
Protecting the Environment – We participate in Gloucester County Clean Up and help plant Sea Grass to save shorelines from erosion.
Benevolence – A fund is set up to help Gloucester citizens with special financial needs.
Special Emphasis – We work closely with our local Sheriff’s Office; provide our facilities for Blood Drives and local, state, and national elections; promote and provide a team for Relay for Life; and participate annually with the Guinea Jubilee. We collect and deliver food to local churches to stock their food pantries, make special deliveries to the Laurel Shelter, participate in Meals on Wheels, and donate pet food to the Humane Society.
Teamwork – We send cards and visit members who are sick and honor those with birthdays and anniversaries. All members share in cooking meals for monthly meetings, as well as working the Seafood Festivals to set up, advertise, sell tickets, cook, serve, and clean up. Members also maintain and repair ARC buildings and grounds. Programs for monthly meetings are used to inform, train, and entertain our members.
Visit our Community Services Committees page to learn more.