San Juan Lions
Friday Harbor Bike Fest benefits The San Juan Island Lion’s Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charity affiliated with Lions Club International, the largest service organization in the world. The proceeds from this event will go to good use funding the local club’s varied programs. Whether you are a business or an individual, we hope that you will considering sponsoring this event.
In the last 15 years, The San Juan Island Lion’s Foundation has given over $250,000 to the community and, through Lions Club International, the world. The club members also donate their time on many of the Foundation’s charitable projects. This Foundation embodies the Lions Club motto, “We Serve!” Here is a sampling of the donations that the Foundation has made in the last 15 years:
- Post-secondary education scholarships. Every year, the Foundation gives money to students for post-high school college and vocational training. The Foundation is unusual in that it sets aside a portion of its scholarship money every year for vocational training for non-college-bound students. Over the last 15 years, the Foundation has granted more than $80,000 in scholarships.
- Sight, hearing, and health programs. The club participates in several programs benefiting sight, hearing, and health. The club sponsors the Lions Health Screening Van, which provides basic health screening for folks unable to afford it. It is implementing a vision screening program in the schools on the island to catch early childhood vision problems. It provides eye exams and glasses free of charge to those in need. And, it participates at the local and national level in other programs such as the Lions International Sight First program, the Lions Hearing Foundation, and White Canes donations.
- Friday Harbor Athletics. The Foundation has helped to fund the Carter Street fields, now the John O. Linde Community Park, a new park in Friday Harbor with a multi-purpose field, soccer field, baseball field, and softball field. The Foundation has also been a major contributor to the Friday Harbor Little League.
- Christmas Ship. The Foundation, along with our Leos high school club, funds the Christmas Ship program that gives free Christmas gifts to children from famlies that cannot afford to purchase gifts. We are very proud of our Leos Club.
- Donations to Other Charities. In the last 15 years, the Foundation has given substantial funds to other local charities including over $10,000 to the local Food Bank, over $10,000 to the San Juan School Foundation, over $13,000 to the Salvation Army, and over $12,000 to the general foundation of Lions Club International.
The club has a busy fund-raising schedule. It sells food at the Fourth of July Parade, and beer and drinks at the San Juan County Fair. It raffles a grocery shopping spree every year. In many of those years, the winner donated the winnings to the Food Bank. The affiliated San Juan Island Leos Club, made up of high school students at Friday Harbor High School, engages in several fund-raising projects throughout the year culminating in the “golf scramble” near the end of the school year.
The San Juan Lion’s Club was chartered on December 8, 1962. A few of the charter members are still members today! The charter extravaganza was attended by hundreds of Lions from all over the region, including from Canada, coming to San Juan Island by ferry.
The event was held at the Friday Harbor High School gymnasium, which was packed. The new club was presented with Lions Club paraphernalia, flags, podium, banner, gavel etc. Included was a small, real life pig, which was presented to our club by Canadians to replace the one shot in the Pig War. The pig was later auctioned off to add to the treasury of the new club.
Much of the proceeds from Friday Harbor Bike Fest will come from sponsors of the event. In addition to funding a good cause, business sponsors receive advertising placement. These benefits are described here.
Individuals can also sponsor Friday Harbor Bike Fest through the website. Simply go to the registration page.
© 2019 The San Juan Island Lions Foundation. All rights reserved.