December 12, 2013

That will be a quarter, sir

Optimist Clubs and Districts will generally appoint one member to serve as Sergeant at Arms. This position is a social role that goes to work anytime a group of Optimist Club members gather. Its purpose is to increase fellowship by poking innocent fun at members for innocent infractions. Its goal is to collect fines in the name of fun.  Examples of times that a fine that might be levied include:
  • Being late to the Optimist Club meeting
  • Talking out of turn 
  • Not wearing your Optimist Club pin when your picture is in the paper
  • Telling a bad joke
  • Forgetting to shake hands with the other members when you arrive
  • Being the first person to receive their meal 
  • Getting a haircut 
  • Dressing too casual or too formal for the average Optimist Club meeting 
  • Wearing a cap or other apparel from a rival sports team
Or anything that will make others, and the person being fined, giggle. Such infractions will typically cost the miscreant a quarter; however, a very grievous infraction might call for a silent fine indicating that the person being charged is expected to put in a dollar.

Again, it's all done in fun and never is anyone meant to feel that they are being punished. Instead, they should know that the fun being shared with them builds comaraderie in the group and the fines are being donated to a worthy cause.

Of course, the Optimist Club members pick the cause each year, and at twenty-five cents a charge, it takes a while to accumulate enough to donate.

In Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, the Riverside Optimist Club just made their fine pot donation, just in time for Christmas. They gave over $100 to Santa's Sporting Christmas fund, a project that raises money for the Salvation Army's Christmas hamper program.

This is just one creative way that Optimist Clubs encourage giving and fellowship.

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