The Mountain Empire Rotary Club (MER) has not missed a beat in the past many months of the COVID19 pandemic. Our Rotary year is ending with our primary annual fundraiser, the presentations of cash awards to well-deserving students at local schools, and multiple recycling events. 

This year we partnered with the Benson Rotary Club and the San Pedro Golf Club in Benson for our annual fund raiser, the Swing into Spring Golf Tournament held on April 24. Thanks to the great work of the Rotarians and the generous sponsorships by our local community it was a fun event, and a tremendous success. 76 golfers had a day of sunshine, laughs, and exercise beginning with a continental breakfast and ending with a pulled pork lunch, a lively auction, and 40 great raffle items. The event realized a profit of more than $10,000 for each of the Rotary Clubs. 

Every cent of this money goes directly back into the community through the many projects the clubs provide. We extend hearty gratitude to our sponsors, who have supported our work for years. We couldn’t do it without you! 

In addition to our annual post-secondary scholarships (see article, p. 19), our Club honors six eighth grade graduates from Elgin School and Patagonia Elementary with a Certificate of Merit and a crisp $100 bill. The students, selected by the teachers, are as follows Elgin School: Academic Excellence – Sebastian Padilla; Exemplary Citizenship – Dixie Meier; Scholar Athlete – Johnathan Fields. Patagonia Elementary: Citizenship – Arihanna Pelayo; Scholarship – Keahna Valenzuela; Leadership – Alexis Fimbres 

This community produces such impressive young adults. MER is dedicated and proud to support them all through their academic years, with the Birthday Books program, Student of the Month, Rotary Youth Leadership Academy, and many other literacy projects. It’s our privilege to partner with the local schools in supporting our youth. If you’d like to get involved and experience the sheer fun and joy of working with our youth, please consider joining The Mountain Empire Rotary Club. Contact Keith Barth at or your favorite Rotarian.