MAMARONECK, N.Y. -- The Larchmont and Mamaroneck Lions clubs are celebrating their respective 90th and 95th anniversaries.
Both clubs are among the original members of the International Lions, the largest service organization in the world, which will celebrate its 100th Anniversary in 2017.
Recently, Larchmont Lions Club President Phil Oldham, talked about what the local chapter has planned in the coming year.
Both clubs are working together and are looking to expand joint efforts with other clubs in the Sound shore area, from New Rochelle to Rye, and over to Eastchester and White Plains, he told Daily Voice.
"We will be determining in January our joint plans for 2017. We will do our eye health and eyeglass recycle program from January through May, which is National Eye Care Month."
Additionally, the clubs will participate in a number of the international Lions Centennial campaigns, "specifically on those dealing with children's and women's safety and rights," said Oldham.
"We will also be locally involved with town clean-ups and food banks. I expect that we will set up a special weekend for local families to visit the Guiding Eyes training facility in Yorktown Heights."
The local Lions Club does not own a building and are not a fraternal order, rather exist, Oldham explained "to provide people the opportunity to serve, give back, based on their interests, talents and time limitations.
All fundraising done by Lions goes to the service intended, said Oldham.
In addition, future plans include meeting with members of the local Rotary Club, and other service organization to support one another's efforts.
The Lions Club continues to attract new members, according to Oldham.
One way is by"finding out from our members their interests in volunteering and fundraising, and offering participation in both local and ongoing recognized national humanitarian services."
The club promotes what it does to set an example, as a way to recruit the volunteer-minded, Oldham said.
Locally, Lions make an impact by collecting glasses to distribute to those less fortunate.
More 2,000 pairs of glasses were distributed last year to people in the United States and around the world.
Next week the two clubs will announce the local winners of the International Lions Peace Poster Contest, whose entries will compete in the international Lions Competition.
An Oct. 16 luncheon at the Bonnie Briar Country Club in Mamaroneck celebrated the clubs anniversaries.
Featured speakers, were State Sen.George Latimer and Lions District Governor Peter Pergolis, who spoke about the importance of the Lions as a place where today’s busy citizens can engage in volunteerism and service projects, based on their interests and time limitations.
The celebration honored five humanitarian service organizations: Guiding Eyes For The Blind, Visions Center on Blindness, KidSight, Eyeglass recycling (In Larchmont and Mamaroneck) and Ashita Tomorrow, a United States and Japan Youth cultural exchange.
In addition, past club presidents were honored: Steve Altieri, Paul Abramson, Jack Coughlin, Henry Cohen, Debbie Etre-Collins, Joanne Granchelli, Maria Mantis, Rose Silvestro and Anthony Craparo-current Mamaroneck Lions president and twice past president.