Map to Rotary

Welcome to Our Club!


Fellowship and Service the Bluffton Way

We meet Wednesdays at 7:30 AM
Rotary Community Center/Oscar Frazier Park
Recreation Court
Bluffton, SC  29910
United States
District Site
Venue Map
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Action for Autism (AFA) is building a new AFA Academy of the Low Country, where children on the Autism Spectrum and with other neurodevelopmental
delays, ages 1 - 21, can learn, grow and  reach their fullest potential, all while feeling confident, safe and secure in a positive learning environment.
Dan Messmer, Assistant Executive Director for AFA, spoke to the Bluffton Rotary Club about his two children that are on the autism spectrum. With his
personal experience, Dan has made it his mission to provide help for families and special needs children in our area by providing an avenue to
make it better. They hope to open AFA Academy in late August. Messmer also covered some general facts of autism - how the rate of autism has increased
over the past 20 years, stats that boys are more likely than girls to be affected by autism, and autism affects 1 in every 68 children now. For more
information or to get involved, click HERE.

Dr. Al Stokes, Director of the Waddell Maricultural Center in Bluffton, recently spoke to the Bluffton Rotary Club about the Aqua Culture Research Center at Waddell and its main focus of seafood reproduction, working all over the world. The research facility has 25 ponds and is currently going through some renovations where they will add their own hatching system; they currently use a hatching system in Charleston. With help from summer interns, the group works with our cobia, blue crabs, shrimp and horseshoe crab populations. Click HERE for more information and or tours.
Jay Walea, Executive Director of the Palmetto Bluff Conservancy, has been with Palmetto Bluff for 27 years...even before it was Palmetto Bluff, but
known as Union Camp's Land Resources Division. During a recent Bluffton Rotary Club meeting, Jay shared some of the goals and programs of the
conservancy group, including history of the Palmetto Bluff area, which can be traced back to Paleo times, with written history going to
pre-revolutionary war times. The staff does a lot of public outreach education as well as preservation and conservation of this beautiful area.
Routine jobs may include controlled burning (in winter months only), counting the blue bird, rattle snake and wild turkey populations,
maintaining and stocking retention ponds. "The Palmetto Bluff Conservancy was created to insure the conservation vision of this amazing piece of land
in the heart of the Lowcountry", according to Walea. Click HERE for more information.
Russell Baxley joined Beaufort Memorial Hospital as President and Chief Executive Officer in September, 2016, right before Hurricane Matthew hit our area, and he has been a whirlwind of activity himself since then. Baxley joined the Bluffton Rotary Club to update members on Beaufort Memorial Hospital, which began operations in 1944 as a not for profit and a state operated organization. Growth over the past few years has been phenomenal, as with our area, and they are now the largest hospital between Charleston and Savannah, with 197 available beds and 1800 employees. Designated as a Pathway to Excellence hospital, Beaufort Memorial, under Baxley’s leadership, has developed and expanded critical services including oncology, constructed a new facility for urgent care services, developed telemedicine options, and introduced “Violet” a germ-zapping robot that “cleans” every room after a patient is discharged to zap any germs or bugs. Baxley also reviewed some projects heading our way in the next 5 years, such as a new birthing center and a new 50,000 square foot facility for Bluffton, projected to open in 2019. Click HERE for more information about Beaufort Memorial Hospital.
Bill Beltz, member of the Okatie Rotary Club and a Rotarian since 1980, spoke to the Bluffton Rotary Club on March 15 about his life as a Franciscan Monk, growing up with his PTSD and abusive father and his published memoir, The Buried War. Congratulations, Bill, for publishing your memoir and having the courage to speak out about difficult phases in your life. You can find more at Balboa Press HERE or on Amazon HERE.
Chris Shoemaker (center) was recently inducted as a new member of the Rotary Club of Bluffton. Shown here with his sponsor, Dan Wood and President Michael Putich.
Congratulations Chris!
Steven Yokley, Administrator at NHC HealthCare, Bluffton for the past nine months, along with Stacy Floyd, Executive Director for The Palmettos
Assisted Living and Memory Care Community spoke to the Bluffton Rotary Club about NHC and the new Palmettoes Assisted Living and Memory Care facility on Wednesday, March 8. The new Memory Care units will open in the next few weeks; currently all 36 beds are reserved, just waiting to open. NHC, with its expansion to serve the needs of our community, has grown to 210
employees and a facility that provides rehab, home care, assisted living and now memory care services. For more information go to 
Mike Jukofsky of the Hilton Head Island Club spoke to the Bluffton Rotary Club and showed a video of the upcoming Grease Beach Scene '17 Rotary District Conference, scheduled March 24 - 26 at the Marriott Oceanfront Resort on Hilton Head Island. There will be lots of fun events, plus many interesting and informative sessions...all members are encouraged to attend. The Friday lunch will be partly subsidized by our Rotary Club; if you don't have time for the entire conference, please try to make the lunch and then stay for classes, time permitting. We will have a sign-up sheet during Rotary next week, for the lunch. Click HERE for more information.
Stephen Borgianini, Associate Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
in the Department of Natural Sciences at USCB talked about the importance of
the ecosystems and the uniqueness of the salt marshes of the May River. Salt
marshes make up 1/2 of the land in Beaufort County, making our marshlands
among the most productive ecosystems in the world. Different factors  that
affect the ecosystem include latitude, tidal cycles and the degree of
riverine input. The tides serve to clean the marsh and our marshes today are
affected by Sea Level Rise (SLR). While the environment can be harsh for the
many organisms and creatures that live in the marshes, the balance is very
important to maintaining a good balance...even a fast boat leaving a wake
can have a detrimental effect on the marsh.
Congratulations to Emily Santos, the Bluffton Rotary February Student of the Month. Shown with Adrian Sutton the principal of M.C. Riley Elementary School.
The Rotary Club of Bluffton held its classic Oyster Roast event from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 18 at the Bluffton Oyster Factory Park in Old Town Bluffton. The community enjoyed a unique evening on the banks of the May River with succulent local oysters, entertainment, good company and a bonfire. Local favorite Harden & Crenshaw entertained the crowd with its bluegrass sound. The ticket price covered all-you-can-eat, freshly harvested May River oysters. After filling up with oysters, guests enjoyed chili, hot dogs, brats and the Rotary’s famous, homemade hand-cut fries. Soda, beer and wine were also available. All proceeds help support the Bluffton Rotary’s efforts in the community and around the world. This is an annual event so join us again in 2018.
Collins Doughtie
Jun 07, 2017
Growing up and fishing in the Hilton Head area
Alan Prenoveau & Russ Spicer
Jun 14, 2017
Lowcountry Foundation for Wounded Military Heroes
Judge McElynn, Chief Judge
Jul 12, 2017
Beaufort County Magistrate Court
Eric Esquivel, La Isla Magazine
Jul 19, 2017
Know Your Neighbors
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