World Polio Day on October 24 – END POLIO NOW!


Champaign, Ill. (WCIA)

Janet Ellis-Nelson, Immediate Past President with the Rotary Club of Champaign, shares how you can help END POLIO NOW!

Rotary’s number one humanitarian cause is to eradicate polio from the world! In the 1950s, polio hysteria in the United States was much like our current pandemic. Schools and pools closed, and parents kept their children at home, away from other children. Thousands of children in the United States were paralyzed or died. Jonas Salk discovered the polio vaccine in 1953 and by 1979, polio was eradicated in the United States. In 1985, there were over 1,000 polio cases a day in 125 other countries, and Rotary vowed to eradicate polio from the world.

Inspired by Rotary’s volunteer commitment and fundraising success, the Global Polio Eradication Initiative was launched in 1988. This remarkable partnership includes Rotary, the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and more recently the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. (The Gates Foundation matches every donation that is made to The Rotary Foundation for Polio Eradication two to one!) These organizations work alongside governments of the world to end polio. Because of our efforts, nearly 19 million people who would have otherwise been paralyzed are walking and more than 1.5 million people are alive who would otherwise have died. Today, the number of cases is down 99.9%. Rotarians have contributed $2.1 billion and countless volunteer hours to fight polio. Afghanistan and Pakistan are currently the only countries with polio, but over 400 million children still have to receive their polio vaccinations every year in more than 50 countries.

World Polio Day is October 24. For the month of October, Champaign Rotary is asking our friends and members of the community to make donations and help us END POLIO NOW! People can help by:

  1. Dropping off a donation at The News-Gazette office, 201 Devonshire Drive, Champaign. Each person who gives a $20 or more donation will be given an END POLIO NOW button to wear.
  2. Making a check payable to The Rotary Foundation with Polio written on the memo line and mailing it to Champaign Rotary, 1222 Lancaster Drive, Champaign, IL 61821.
  3. Bidding on the Rotary 6490 Basket Auction at between September 30 to October 3. All proceeds will go to Polio Eradication and be matched 2 to 1 by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Champaign Rotary was founded in 1916 and was the first service organization in downstate Illinois. We do a variety of service projects for the Champaign community and donate several thousand dollars to nonprofit organizations in Champaign County each year. We donated $26,000 to COVID-19 relief and our members are volunteering to pack and distribute food. After the tornado in Gifford, our club purchased and planted over 200 trees to help restore Gifford. These are just a few examples.

We help by volunteering and by donating money to organizations that need financial assistance. Some examples: We drilled a water well and held a survival gardening workshop for a school in Kenya that had no source of clean water. We have served as tutors in Champaign schools and we provide vocational scholarships for Parkland students. We serve as mentors to students in our EarlyAct Progam at Garden Hills and our Interact Club at Centennial High School. We have worked with the Champaign Park District to beautify and enhance the parks. We have contributed the funds to build a wing that will house the elementary students from the Don Moyer Boys and Girls Club at the new Martens Center in north Champaign and hope to tutor there when it is finished.

Many thanks to Champaign West Rotary Charities for allowing Rotary District 6490 to use their CU’s Got Talent OneCause/BidPal platform to host the District 6490 Virtual Basket Auction! The URL to bid on the baskets is Click on Browse Items, All Items, then click on the pictures to bid. What follows is a word document, which will allow you to preview the baskets before visiting the bidding site.

Auction Baskets:

#1 is a link to donate to PolioPlus, as we hope to conquer COVID-19, let’s finally eradicate polio!

#2 Bloomington Rotary Club, “Breakfast is ready!”

Whether you are staying at home or going out, the most important meal of the day is breakfast! Includes a Yeti tumbler, $40 gift card to Bob Evans, Cuisinart heat resistant oven mitts, coffee sign, Donut Shop K-cups 18 pack, tomato pod and two egg rings. Value: $110.00.

#3 Gibson City Rotary Club, “COVID-19 Relief Basket”

Tune out the world and enjoy your family or a good book! Includes For active family fun: oversized volleyball and football; Family games for when you still want to be together, but you are ready to slow things down: 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzle, “Mixed Emojis” card game, “Fortnite” Monopoly game; When you want to tune everything and everyone out, you can get absorbed in these: The Summer I Met Jack, a book by Michelle Gable, Long Road to Mercy, a book by David Baldacci, and DVDs, “Hidden Figures” and “Hatfields and McCoys.” And if none of that works, we have just the things to help you deal with the craziness of 2020: a bag of chocolate candy, stainless steel mugs, cocktail shaker, drink markers, and a 3-bottle set of Titus Wines. Value $150.00

#4 Art Drake of Normal Rotary Club, “Interesting Reads”

Reality in 2020 hasn’t been much fun. It’s a good time to escape with a novel! Crum by Lee Maynard This is a novel that reads like a memoir. It centers around a boy’s life in a coal town on the West Virginia-Kentucky border. This is a funny and moving book. The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit by Michael Finkel In 1986, twenty-year-old Christopher Knight drove into rural Maine, abandoned his car, and disappeared into the woods. He would not have a conversation with another person for the next twenty-seven years. Three Junes by Julia Glass A novel about the dynamic of a British family. Trampoline by Robert Gipe A novel about a teenage girl and her observations about her family and community in West Virginia. We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler This is a novel about a family and how their adopted daughter, Fern (a chimpanzee), affects their family dynamic. It’s told from the standpoint of Fern’s human sister. This House of Sky by Ivan Doig This is a memoir about growing up in 20th century Montana, where the cowboy culture of the West had not yet died out. Value: $60.00

#5 Art Drake of Normal Rotary Club, “For History Buffs”

“Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” – George Santayana

Let’s learn some history. Going Home to Glory: A Memoir of Life with Dwight D. Eisenhower by David Eisenhower and Julie Nixon Eisenhower. Independence Lost: Lives on the Edge of the American Revolution by Kathleen DuVal A story of the American Revolution as seen from the far corners of the colonies. Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President by Candice Millard This is an interesting story about the assassination of President James Garfield and how the doctors seem to have done more to kill him than the bullet did. The First Congress: How James Madison, George Washington and a Group of Extraordinary Men Invented the Government by Fergus M. Bordewich Value: $60.00

#6 Kirby Rodgers of Lincoln Rotary Club, “A Night on the Town”

Maybe you’ve never been to Lincoln. Here’s a good reason to go! This includes a $75 gift certificate for Guzzard’s Italian Villa in downtown Lincoln. If driving from outside of our area, you will need a reservation, especially on a Friday or Sat night. Great Prime Rib, wonderful Italian food, steaks, pork chops, and coconut shrimp. Plus a fantastic salad bar, with French onion soup and homemade bread. 509 Pulaski Street Lincoln 217-732-6370 Check them out online. Guzzardo’s has no beer or wine on the menu so we’ve included a $20.00 gift certificate for Spirited Republic/Limerick Brewing Company (15 feet from Guzzardo’s) 509 B Pulaski Street 217-605.0475. Taste their wines and beers and take some into Guzzardo’s for dinner. $10.00 gift certificate for Top Hat Creamery (twenty steps outside Guzzardo’s front door and Spirited Republic’s back door) Open 4-9 p.m. and finish off a wonderful night out in downtown Lincoln Illinois. Value $105.00

#7 Effingham Rotary Club, “Everything Effingham”

Diverse Diversions in Effingham

Includes a cool stress squeezer, Tuscan Hills wine, $50 Firefly Grill gift card, tickets to the Effingham Performance Center, Boos butcher block, Midland States bank golf accessories, Crossroads Bank Merchandise, St. Anthony High School travel drink cup and packet, locally packaged Krusteaz pancake mix, locally knitted dish cloths and travel guides to experience the small, quaint town of Effingham. Value: $250.00

#8 CU Sunrise Rotary, “Breakfast in Champaign-Urbana”

You don’t have to get up early to enjoy breakfast! Contains a $25 gift certificate to Original House of Pancakes in Champaign, two Champaign-Urbana coffee mugs, four CU Sunrise special coffee blend packets, and a book on the origin of Illinois town names Value: $55.00

#9 Champaign West Rotary Club, “COVID-19 Stress Relief Basket”

Is this your luck day? Want to forget 2020? Bid on this basket! Contains $100 Visa Gift Card, $40 in Lottery Tickets, Woodford Reserve Double Oaked Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Ketel One Vodka, one can ginger beer, two Moscow mule cups, three Illini face masks, one packet (50 wipes) sanitizing wipes, two – 8 oz. bottles hand sanitizer, two – 2 oz. bottles hand sanitizer Value: $250.00

#10 Marlys Scarbrough from Champaign Rotary Club, “East 40 Homemade Favorites”

Homemade jams, sauces, and pickles without all the work! Sweet and savory treats for yourself or for gifting: Sixteen 8-oz. jars of jams, sauces, and pickles in a gift basket, lovingly grown and home-canned by the donor: Apple Butter, Basil Jelly, Bruschetta in A Jar, Corn Relish, Curry Squash Relish, Dill Beans, Gooseberry Conserve, Hot Pepper Jam, Hot Sauce, Kosher Dill Pickles, Peach BBQ Sauce, Pickled Beets, Pickled Snow Peas, Seedless Raspberry Jam, Spicy Cucumber Pickles, and Strawberry-Rhubarb Jam. Jar labels list all ingredients. Value: $85.00

#11 Bloomington-Normal Sunrise Rotary, “Basket of Fun!”

Grab and go! Don’t forget the candy! This basket contains Speed Cups, Sorry- Grab and Go Edition, Hungry Hippo- Grab and Go Edition, Double 6 Dominos, What Do You Meme-Family Edition, Giant Poker Set, Guess Who-Grab and Go Edition, Yahtzee, Cards Against Humanity-Red Box, UNO Dice, UNO Flip, Phase 10, Left Right Center, Go Fish, Matching, Crazy 8’s, Popcorn, Licorice, Goldfish, Sour Patch Kids, M & M’s, Skittles, Buncha Crunch Value: $150.00

#12 Bloomington-Normal Sunset Rotary Club, “Cranberry Splash Wreath”

It’s never too early to think about Christmas decorations! The elegant gold trimmed, wired fabric bow centerpieces this lovely wreath as a truly, stunning holiday decoration! The faux cranberry picks and large pinecones laced with gold jingle bells complete the exquisite look of this fresh 25” evergreen wreath. This will be delivered to you by December 1st. Value: $33.00

#13 Bloomington-Normal Sunset Rotary Club, “Candlelit Centerpiece”

Win the bid on #s 12 and 13, and your holiday decorating is almost complete! This seasonal centerpiece is bursting with naturally scented mixed evergreens, which stay fresh and moist from the floral foam base. This high-quality LED candle is perfectly safe for use, centered within your centerpiece’s bed of fresh evergreens and can be used in a variety of applications throughout the year. Powered with 3 AAA batteries (not included), the candle’s timer stays lit for 6 hours, turns off, and then will turn on again 18 hours later. This centerpiece will be delivered to the winning bidder by December 1st. Value: $33.00

#14 Danville Sunrise Rotary, “Golf Getaway”

There’s still time for golf! This basket includes: Four 18-hole rounds of golf with cart at Wolf Creek Golf Course (Expires 6/30/2021); Four 18-hole rounds of golf with cart at Harrison Park Golf Course (Expires 12/31/2020); One 18-hole round with cart at Turtle Run Golf Course (no expiration); Golf towel with additional hand towel from Turtle Run Golf; Hat with ball marker clip from Wolf Creek; 12-pack of Taylor Made golf balls; Bag of practice balls with basket; Black Golf Bag Cooler and Accessory Caddy (12″ x 9″ x 7″ dimensions), which includes inside can holding ten 12-ounce cans and an ice pack, external mesh bottle holder, two zipper pockets (one large, one small), handle on top and long strap for carrying, can be clipped or strapped onto a golf bag or cart. Value: $414.00

#15: Rotary Club of Paris, “An Evening in Paris”

C’est tres bien! Paris est magnifique! This basket includes: Fine dining for two at Andrews at the Westbrook, a one-night stay at the Red Oak Inn Bed & Breakfast, gift certificates to 120 Coffee Company, Betty Janes Kitchen, and Lot 50 Brewing, a bottle of 2015 Rodney Strong Cabernet Sauvignon and a bottle of Hirschbach & Sohne Reisling. Value: $400.00

#16 Hoopeston Rotary Club, “Go, Cubs, Go!

Just in time for the play-offs! Contains a signed autograph by Kerry Wood, a Tervis stainless steel 30 oz. tumbler, Cubs sports bucket, Cubs (MLB) earrings, Cubs bottle holder, and Cubs playing cards Value: $119.00

#17 Dwight Rotary Club and Dwight Country Club, “Let’s Go to the Country Club!”

Do it in Dwight! Includes 18 holes of golf, golf cart for 4, and a $40 dining certificate for the Dwight Country Club Value: $200

#18 Urbana Rotary Club, “Here’s to Your Health, Wealth & Happiness!”

Invest in your health! Includes 4 Urbana Indoor Aquatic Center tickets with a total of 30 punches for admission, a beautiful green 8-1/2” square pottery plate for serving treats, a ceramic piggy bank, and a collector’s painted 2000 Silver Eagle to get your investments started. Value: $185.00

#19 CU Illini After Five Rotary Club, “Wine and Cheese in Autumn”

Settle back and enjoy the season! Basket includes a $50.00 gift card to Art Mart in Champaign, a cheese tool set, bottles of 2015 Deloach Zinfandel wine, and a 2018 Monastrell wine. Value: $125.00

#20 Rotary Club of Champaign, “COVID Car Care”

Healthy, Clean, and Beam! Includes Items to keep you healthy during the pandemic: 100 count large Nitrile gloves, 2 boxes of disposable masks, 4 adult cloth masks, 2 children’s cloth masks, 3 specialized masks, anti-bacterial disinfectant wipes, lemon scented disinfecting wipes, 8 oz. hand sanitizer, two 2 oz. hand sanitizers, a First Aid kit, a YMCA Fitness Pack Items to keep your car clean, organized, and running well: an Insta-crate carrier, Igloo cooler and ice blocks, auto sun shield, flashlight holder, booster cables and bag, vinyl gloves, microfiber cloths, Armor All wipes, Ultimate Liquid Wax, Value Gard Undercoating, Refresh car air freshner and For when you return home: a bottle of Jim Beam Bourbon Value: $400.00

#21 Arcola Sunrise Rotary Club, “Let’s Barbecue!

The only thing missing from this party basket is the meat! Includes $100 in Omaha Steak Gift Cards, Jack Daniel’s Whiskey and Jack Daniel’s BBQ Sauce Recipe, McClard’s BBQ Sauce, Hot Springs AR (advertised as President Clinton’s favorite), Stubby’s Original BBQ Sauce (featured in Arkansas Times,) Jones KC Sweet & Tangy BBQ Sauce (featured on TV’s “Queer Eye”), Hickory Rub Seasoning, BBQ set including tongs, fork, and spatula in a metal box, Mild Capital City Mambo Sauce, large red and white checked table cloth, Cuisinart sauce pot and basting brush set, set of two ultra-premium grade silicone basting brushes, a bottle of grill cleaner, grill lighter, and two Libman Company grill brushes, picnic basket and liner Value $280.00

#22 Charleston Rotary Club, “Stay Warm with Rotary”

Bid on this basket, and you’ll get that warm Rotary feeling! Cuddle up with a 60-inch by 50-inch Chenille throw embroidered with the Rotary logo! Value $50.00

#23 Bloomington-Normal Sunrise Rotary Club, “Family Reading Time”

Books and popcorn! It’s a natural! Includes the following books: The Wonder of the Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp, The Oldest Student by Rita Lorraine Hubbard, Jack Blasts Off by Mac Barnett & Greg Pizzoli, Beware! by Bob Raczka, Die with Zero by Bill Perkins, Lifeboat 12 by Susan Good, Let’s Play Crabby by Johnathan Fenske, $25 Barnes & Noble gift card, $25 Netflix card, three pack of Pop Secret movie theater buttered popcorn, disinfectant wipes, hand soap, hand sanitizer; does not include the basket. Value: $135.00

#24 “Everything Rotary Basket” by Julie Dobski, PDG 2019-2020 and District Director of Public Image 2020-2021 and Liz Palma, President of Bloomington-Normal Family Club

You don’t have to be a District Governor to have Rotary swag! This collection includes past and present Rotary theme items. These items will help compliment your style while promoting Rotary’s name! The basket includes: Great gift cards: $40 McDonalds, $30 Panera, $10 Starbucks, $25 Amazon, and $100 Visa. Office Accessories: Four-Way Test notebook with pen, two Rotary pens, Rotary tablet carrier, Rotary Opens Opportunities leather notebook with zipper. Fashion Accessories: Three People of Action blue face masks, Rotary Connects The World blue tie, Black/gray Rotary logo woman’s scarf, 2020 Hawaiian Rotary Convention woman’s scarf, and Rotary large, black umbrella. Leisure: Two Four-Way Test beer cozies, two Rotary car coaster stones, two per set. Decorative: IMPACT sign and Rotary Connects The World 2019 ceramic Christmas ornament. Value: $400.00

#25 Tuscola Rotary Club, “Fun in Tuscola!”

Enjoy some highlights of Tuscola! Includes: $50 Ta’Carbon Steak House gift certificate, $50 Flesor’s Candy Kitchen gift certificate (full menu plus sweet treats), and two rounds of golf with cart at Ironhorse Golf Course in Tuscola Value: $160

Click here to bid on the baskets.

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