Our country has a long and rich history of service clubs contributing to the growth of their communities but there have been signs in the past two decades that interest in these groups is waning.  Not so at Suburban Woman’s Club of South Plainfield.  Thanks to the efforts of Membership Chair Grace Bertucci, this past year seven new members joined this relatively small group of volunteers.  The Club attracts women who are committed to fundraising which allows them to support local and international charities, grant scholarships, and, as part of the New Jersey State Federation of Women’s Clubs, support organizations such as Prevent Child Abuse-NJ. 

Both passion and commitment were evident at the Club’s Installation Banquet held on June 7th at Giovanna’s Restaurant in Plainfield, an event organized by Banquet Chair Adele Kwiatkowski to install officers for the 2018-2019 term.  After a delicious Italian meal, President Diana Cotone called the meeting to order and asked for committee reports.  One item in particular sparked a lively discussion.  Legislation Chair Kathy Wozniak updated members on a proposed bill to ban underage marriages which has been in the Legislature since 2015 but is now blocked.  Club members agreed unanimously with Wozniak again to write legislators encouraging them to pass this bill.

Maribeth Hugelmeyer, formerly College District VP and now serving as NJSFWC Recording Secretary, inducted officers for the 2018-2019 year.  They are:  Diana Cotone, President; Jane Rundella, VP; Lucy Hudson, Treasurer; Orvie Hoffman, Federation/Corresponding Secretary; and Alberta Esposito, Recording Secretary.

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In her review of the previous year’s activities, Club Historian Cathy Wells reminded members of the many events to which they gave their time and talent.  These included the fall G&G Boutique, the December Theater Party, and the Spring Fashion Show -- important events but the list did not end there.  Also of note were Boatsie’s Boxes which sends personal items to overseas servicemen and women; crocheted lap robes for veterans at the Menlo Park Veterans Memorial Home; holiday food baskets for those in need; celebrating the 100th anniversary of Douglass College for Women which was established by the NJSFWC; Lucy Hudson’s Dr. Seuss display at the Library; with South Plainfield Women’s Leadership Team Committee sponsoring an essay contest on Amelia Earhart; and conducting a spelling bee for fourth and fifth graders in South Plainfield.

At the College District Spring Conference and Achievement Day, an event which includes 28 women’s clubs, Suburban Woman’s Club was recognized for its leadership and fundraising.  Maribeth Hugelmeyer received a gold ribbon for a lovely knitted shawl entered in the Arts Creative event.  At the NJSFWC Convention the Club received the NJSFWC State Grand Award and a State Certificate of Merit for the monthly newsletter it publishes for its members.  Diana Cotone and Jane Rundella were placed on the NJSFWC Honor Roll, the highest recognition a member can achieve. 

But it’s not just work and no play.  Vice President and Program Chair Jane Rundella invites engrossing speakers to the monthly meetings to discuss various important and interesting issues.  Bert Baron, WCTC-AM radio morning talk show host, and Carol Simon Levin, who discussed World War II women aviators, were two such speakers.   Rundella books musical entertainment for Husband/Guest Night in October as well as the South Plainfield High School Chorus in December.  At one meeting Arts Creative Chair Judy Krieg helped members create greeting cards which will be given to veterans at Menlo Park Veterans Memorial Home in autumn.  The Suburban Woman’s Club provides a variety of interesting activities to keep its members involved and informed.

The Suburban Woman’s Club of South Plainfield is a member of the New Jersey State Federation of Women’s Clubs of GFWC.  In addition to fundraising to award scholarships and support local charities, the Club offers its members programs on a wide variety of topics designed to instruct and entertain at each of our monthly meetings.  Interested in joining?  Any woman of South Plainfield or the surrounding area is very welcome to become a member!  Membership dues are $35 per year. Meetings are first Thursday of the month at 1:00 p.m.  To learn more, please contact Membership Chair Grace Bertucci at 732-549-9633 or suburbanwomansclubsp@gmail.com.  Like us on Facebook!