NORTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - A beautiful day encouraged many guests to come out on October 26 to the Rotary Club of the Plainfields’ annual Pancake Breakfast. Over one hundred seventy people enjoyed the delicious pancakes, sausage, juice, coffee and tea while socializing, making new friends and renewing older acquaintances.

Held at Holy Cross Church in North Plainfield, the guests included people from all three communities served by the Rotary Club - North Plainfield, Plainfield, and South Plainfield. Four representatives from the Rotary Club of Branchburg and the District 7475 Governor-Elect Ray Freaney also attended to support the Rotary Club’s Community Service Project.

In cooperation with Sharron Peterson and Colin Baptiste of the Plainfield Senior Center, the Rotary Club brought several busloads of senior citizens from Plainfield to the free pancake breakfast. Special flyers and sign-up forms were given to each of the senior citizen apartment buildings in Plainfield to encourage participation. The Rotary Club also gave out flyers and posters to senior citizen clubs, put up a banner at Route 22 and Wilson Avenue, and set up special curb signs.

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"We offer this special event to help get our seniors out for a morning of good food and friendship," said Shannon Jefferys, president of the Rotary Club of the Plainfields. "It's also an opportunity for our North Plainfield High School Interact Club to perform a service project that is fun and satisfying. We thank them for their service and we thank the Plainfield Senior Center staff for their help in getting our senior citizens out to our breakfast."

Jeff Huggins, Interact Club Adviser at NPHS, encouraged members to attend, resulting in eighteen club members helping set up, serve breakfasts, and clean up afterward. Interact is the youth-based service club that is sponsored by the Rotary Club and is part of Rotary International.

There were twelve Rotary Club members and seven non-member friends of Rotarians there to help with the cooking and prep work and serving. Club members Joyce Scheyer and Janice Allen greeted the guests as they entered the building and collected donations while others assisted with seating. Two Interact Club members were greeters at the entrance door, and two other volunteers helped the guests find their way into the breakfast room, including some who needed the chair lift’s assistance.

The event was a free breakfast, with donations accepted for Rotary's fight to eliminate polio. "We collected $310 which, when forwarded to the Rotary International Foundation, will be matched by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation 2 to 1, increasing the total to $930," said Rev. Joyce Scheyer, the club's Foundation Chairperson. "This is enough money to provide 6,200 doses of polio vaccine." Polio has been virtually eliminated, with only Pakistan and Afghanistan still showing cases of polio.

The Club offers this breakfast every year on the last Saturday of October. It was made possible by a grant from Rotary District 7475 and through the local club’s own funds.

Rotarians were busy in the kitchen mixing pancake batter, cooking sausage and pancakes, prepping the plates and giving them to the Interact servers. Hot coffee and tea and juice were also served.

The Rotary Club of the Plainfields, founded in 1921, has served the community for over 96 years. Members are community and business leaders in the area who meet on the first Wednesday of the month for a Social Hour at The Coffee Box, 1359 South Avenue, Plainfield, and on the remaining Wednesdays at 12:15 pm at Paulo’s Restaurant in South Plainfield Come to either location to learn more about how you can join or support this great service club. Contact Michael Townley, Club Secretary, at secretary@rotarypnp.org for additional information about the Rotary Club and its activities or to inquire about membership, or visit the Club’s website at www.rotarypnp.org.