WEST ORANGE, NJ  Nearly two-dozen local women recently gathered at Total Wine in West Orange to attend a third general-interest meeting about starting a West Orange chapter of the NJ State Federation of Women’s Clubs of GFWC. The women mingled as they learned about wines from France, enjoyed a few tastings and discussed projects and services the club could offer.

Members of other New Jersey chapters—including Jane Mackesy of Kearney, Barbara McCloskey of New Brunswick and a representative from the Arlington Women's Club—were also on hand to tell attendees about the types of projects and services they have offered in their communities, such as buying books for the library and having a charitable chili cook-off. These women also answered questions, volunteered to offer future guidance and shared that there is no limit to the types of projects, programs and services the club can offer.

“We invited these seasoned Women’s Club members to our meeting to give our West Orange women an opportunity to learn from members of successful clubs, and to gain ideas for projects and services we could provide through our chapter,” said West Orange resident Jennifer Tunnicliffe, who has been spearheading the idea of starting the West Orange Club.

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For more than 125 years, the NJ State Federation of Women’s Clubs of GFWC has been providing community service, education and leadership, according to the club's brochure. The group’s mission is to enhance the quality of life in the community and state by transforming public interests and concerns into meaningful projects and programs.

If West Orange launches a chapter, members would have many opportunities for skill development and to serve as grassroots volunteer resources in the community.

As it stands, the West Orange ladies plan to meet again and hope to attract the interest of more like-minded residents of all ages. The club is currently looking for a local location to hold future meetings and plans to create rules and by-laws and choose officers.

Anyone interested in joining or learning more is invited to join the Women’s Club of West Orange Facebook page for information and details on the next meeting.