The Walton Kiwanis Club celebrated its 10th anniversary in August and its 27 members have a lot to celebrate.
In its 10 years the club has dispersed more than $100,000 to local charities and that number is going up as membership increases.
Bay Grove resident Bill Fletcher joined the club five years ago when the organization was based in Freeport. Hoping to get more members, the club's membership began holding its meetings south of the bay about three years ago.
Meetings are now held on the first and third Wednesdays of each month at the Coastal Branch Library on U.S. Highway 331S. During meetings, members hear from speakers who talk about various subjects of community interest.
The organization raises funds throughout the year through golf tournaments, pecan sales, and putting out flags.
"When I joined, I started promoting the flags in my neighborhood and other places," said Fletcher. "We're now approaching 400 flags that we put out for special events and patriotic days."
For $36 per flag, Kiwanis members will come to your home or business and put up a 3-foot by 5-foot American flag in a pole they place in your yard.
With money raised, the club is able to award scholarships to high school students and recognize outstanding students for good citizenship and grades.
Every month during the school year, the Kiwanis Club recognizes 12 local elementary and middle-school students who have been nominated by their teachers to be Citizens of the Month. These students are presented medallions and trophies during a club meeting. These awards are named after the late Pete DiMaggion, a long-time Kiwanis member and military veteran who exemplified the virtues of a good citizen.
"We feel confident that after these kids finish their education they will return to be good citizens of their community, and hopefully join the Kiwanis Club," said Fletcher.
The club also supports Backpacks of Love, Children in Crisis, Children's Volunteer Health Network, and hurricane victims.
"We support anything to do with kids," said Fletcher.
New members are encouraged.