Some people wonder: What does the Optimist Club of Roanoke Rapids do? What is the Optimist Club?

According to a press release, members of this club meet once a month at the Jo Story Senior Center, 701 Jackson St., or at the Rosemary Baptist Church fellowship hall, 936 Jackson St., both in Roanoke Rapids. A dinner is held, including beverages and dessert for $5. After dinner, club members discuss past and future plans to continue helping the area youth.

The club gives to the Boys & Girls Club at Lake Waccamaw, the children’s cancer fund, etc. The club also sponsors local T-ball and baseball teams. Those games have the concession stands the club runs as well. The club also has cooked Boston butt fundraisers, thanks to Mike and Betty Jo Moseley, and a concealed weapons class with thanks to Pete Smith.

Last year and past years, the club has sponsored an essay contest. Tyler Gupton was the district essay contest last year and won a $2,500 college scholarship. This year’s essay winners were Wesley Boerner, first place; Ashlyn Cooke, second place; and Sarah DeBerry, third place. All winners were presented with a mendelian medal and invited to a special meeting/dinner in their honor along with their parents. Boerner will go forward to hopefully win this year’s $2,500 scholarship. This year’s topic for the essay was “what optimism means to me?”

Members of the club are Renee Little, president; Pete Smith, vice president, and his wife, Lynn; Russell Leake, past governor and his wife, Joyce, she is lieutenant governor for the local zone; Carey Foster; Marshania Barnes; Roy Barnes, treasurer and his wife, Marian, who is secretary; Dan Durham, who is the AA person and district past president, and his wife, Barbara; Daniel Durham; Jennifer Purdue; Jase and Susan Elias; Victoria and Brandon Allen; Tammy Colston; and Lee and Leslie Acree.

This is the creed the club members recite at every meeting: “Promise yourself to be strong, that nothing can disturb your peace of mind to talk health, happiness and porosity to every person you meet. To make all your friends feel that there is something in them! To look at the sunny side of everything, and make your optimism come true! To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and to expect only the best. To be just as enthusiastic about your success of others as you are about your own. To forget the mistakes of the past and press onto the greater achievements of the future. To wear a cheerful countenances at all times and to give every living creature you meet a smile. To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others. To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, to happy too permit the presence of trouble.”

For information about the club or have an interest in joining, call 252-676-5602.