Avon Lions Club

The Avon Lions meet at Tom's Country Place beginning at 6:00 pm, on the second Thursday of each month.

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NEWS ARTICLE from The Press, 5-3-06, By Julie A. Short

``Students' Rock for Refief concert helps charitable doctors

AVON -- Get ready to rock at the second annual Rock for Relief concert, sponsored by the Avon Leo Club, May 13 [2006] at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Avon. The benefit concert features high school bands from around the area.

"It's going to be a great night," Leo Club President Sruti Ramadugu said. "We have a lot of people interested. Some of the bands participating feature Avon High students, as well as graduates. Much of the music will be alternative in nature, with a little rock. We really want to stress this is a community event, geared toward high school students. Younger students are welcome, but there will be a lot of high school-aged kids."

Featured bands include Elephant in the Living Room (Bay Village and Westlake), Burning Down Broadway (North Royalton), Thee Tv Oh Dees (Avon), Andy Gardener (Lorain County Community College), Rock Revolution (Lorain County Community College), Arson to Allies (Macedonia), Exit Suburbia (Avon), Motter Flynn (Cleveland) and 80 hd (Westlake).

Proceeds from the concert benefit Doctors Without Borders. The international independent medical humanitarian organization, founded in 1971, delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural or man-made disasters or exclusion from health care in more than 70 countries ...

"They are a fantastic organization," Ramadugu said. "With everything that has been going on around the world, we wanted to focus on something that will reach as many people as possible."

Leo clubs are school or community-based clubs that are sponsored by a local Lions Club. The Avon Leo Club is open to all Avon residents in grades 5-12. Leo Club projects will include: clothing drives, food drives, Rock for Relief, The Duct Tape Festival Float and Lorain County Free Clinic Walk.

"We used to be affiliated with the schools," Ramadugu, a sophomore at Avon High School said. "Now we are more of a community organization. Mark Lundy of the Avon Lions Club is our adviser. We also receive a lot of help and support from Mr. (Doug) and Mrs. (Liesa) Wetzig. The Leo Club committee heads have also been great." Committee heads include Alex Fine, Chelsey Judge, Liz Simoncic, Brittany Brown, Andy Vielhaber, Zach Shagovac, Mike Shepherd, Chris McDonald, Ramadugu, Emilie Wetzig, Kirtana Ramadugu, Zack Wetzig, Nolan Andersky and Devin Simoncic.

According to Ramadugu, students from the other high schools have been very supportive of the efforts of the Avon Leos. "It's great to see everyone come together," she said. "It benefits the whole community for the greater good. We even have kids involved from Magnificat High School who live in Avon."

Doors will open at 5:30 p.m. and the show begins at 6 p.m. on May 13. Presale tickets are $5. Tickets at the door are $7. To order tickets, call Zach Shagovac at 242-7825.''

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NEWS ARTICLE from The Press, 3-8-06, By Julie A. Short

``Lions Club envisions clearer future for less fortunate

AVON -- It was a crisp, sunny Saturday afternoon and while most residents were out enjoying an early taste of spring, Floyd Poruban and his fellow Avon Lions Club members were at Avon United Methodist Church wrapping and packing more than 600 pairs of eyeglasses. Lions are recognized worldwide for their service to the blind and visually impaired. This service began when Helen Keller challenged the Lions to become "knights of the blind in the crusade against darkness" during the association's 1925 international convention held at Cedar Point ...

What makes the Avon Lions Club commitment to this cause even more special is the dedication and spirit of Poruban. Legally blind for 63 years, Poruban stores many eyeglasses at his Avon home until there are enough to sort and package for shipment. Also assisting Poruban in the collection efforts are Craig Witherspoon and Norris Pyle, along with other Lions members. Since the first of the year, the group has packaged more than 3,000 glasses.

"The glasses are reused in Third World countries," Poruban said. "There are many optometrists, ophthalmologists and physicians who volunteer their time. We work with an organization called VOSH (Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity). The glasses are sent to them. It's a tremendous volunteer effort. I'm just a small piece of a greater effort. There are many hands and hearts involved in caring for others. This is more than just recycling."

Poruban has been a member of the Avon Lion's Club since 1967. It is estimated that he has collected over 75,000 pairs of eyeglasses. The group also collects lenses and frames.

"Despite his disability, Floyd is a remarkable man who continues to give back," Lions Club President Paul Johnson said. "He could have given up, but he continues to help others. Most clubs don't have someone who takes on this project for so long. We are very lucky to have Floyd." According to Poruban, the glasses are given to needy people in other countries because federal regulations prohibit the recycling of glasses in the United States. He has never thought twice about helping others, despite his own loss.

"God bless them if these glasses enable them to see," Poruban said. In addition to his involvement in the Lions Club, Poruban, wife Ann and son, Rich own Poruban Nursery. He has worked in the nursery industry for nearly 50 years. Poruban attended The Ohio State University, where he received a bachelor of science degree in horticulture in 1961 and a master's degree in Plant Pathology in 1964.

His research on crown gall bacteria (a disease of roots and stems) resulted in the discovery of plasmids, a widely used tool in early cancer research. A pioneer of sorts, he was the first blind person to be admitted into any science program since the university's beginning.

He and his wife received the very first horticultural enterprise loan in the U.S. to expand the nursery in 1969. Ann, a registered nurse, and their daughter, Jeannette, provide office and technical support for the nursery. For more information on the Avon Lions and Leo clubs, log on to http://avonoh.lionwap.org/''

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