Kiwanis Club of Mattoon awards $2,000 in scholarships
May 2018

MATTOON -- The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon awarded three scholarships to three 2018 Mattoon High School graduates.  The Kiwanis Club awarded Mikayla Prevo a scholarship in the amount of $1,000. Prevo will attend the University of Illinois and study cardiothoracic surgery.  Receiving $500 scholarships from the club were Madison Freeman and Sam Kettleson.  Freeman plans to attend Eastern Illinois University and study marketing and fashion merchandising.  Kettleson will attend Maryville University of St. Louis to study cyber security.  Prevo (left) and Freeman (right) were guests of the Kiwanis Club at the noon meeting on May 16.  Kettleson was unavailable.

Kiwanis vists Mattoon Middle School for annual Builders Club lunch
April 18, 2018 

MATTOON -- The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon visited the Builders Club at Mattoon Middle School for the Kiwanis annual Builders Club luncheon on April 18.  The Builders Club entertained Kiwanis members with Builders Club Bingo in which the questions and answers used to fill bingo cards consisted of Builders Club facts, including the number of Builders Club members and facts about various Builders Club projects, such as the club’s  shoebox project in December in which the students filled 29 shoeboxes with various items such as school supplies and gloves to be sent to children in Appalachia. The Builders Club is the largest national service organization for middle school students; it is student-led and sponsored by the Kiwanis Club.  Pictured are members of the MMS Builders Club, and Kiwanis and Builders Club members enjoying a game of Builders Club Bingo.


Kiwanis Club of Mattoon inducts six new members
and presents check to Camp New Hope

MATTOON -  The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon inducted six new members at its weekly meeting at Brian's Place in Mattoon on March 28, 2018.

New members pictured above from left to right are Briana Nevius with Wells Fargo, Mike Cook with ISS Insurance Group, Major Carrie Pollum with the Salvation Army, Mattoon Kiwanis president Steve Ferguson, Zoraida Irizarry retired from EIU, Rob Scheffer of Scheff’s Supplies, and Kelsey Jacobsen with CCAR.

The club also presented Camp New Hope a check for $200 at the meeting.  The Camp New Hope executive director Taneya Higginbotham spoke to the club on March 21.

Picture of check presentation above include Camp New Hope program director  and Kiwanis member Jill Rohr and Mattoon Kiwanis Club president Steve Ferguson.



November 29, 2017: The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon donated $1,750 for the One Stop Community Christmas Program which provides Christmas presents for children, food, and a household items to families in a seven county area that need assistance for Christmas.  The donation included $250 from the Charleston Kiwanis Club.  The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon is in charge of the socks and underwear tables at the event and club member Christy Ferguson coordinates the Kiwanis efforts.  Pictured are Kiwanis board president Steve Ferguson and Christy Ferguson (no relation).


Builders Club sends 29 Christmas packages to Appalachia

Members of the Mattoon Middle School Builders Club collected donations of various items such as hats, gloves, and school supplies to send to children in Appalachia. Club members gathered at the Middle School on Nov. 15 to package the items in shoeboxes in preparation for mailing. This is one of a number of community-based projects the club completes each school year. The Builders Club is the largest service organization for middle school students, it is student-led and sponsored by the Kiwanis Club.



2017-18 Officers and Board Members installed

Pictured from left to right:  Outgoing treasurer Gary Hawker; 2017-18 board member Victor Matigian; 2017-18 board member David Schilling; 2017-18 president Steve Ferguson; Illinois-Iowa District lieutenant governor Joann Daugherty; 2017-18 board member Natalie Parkerson; 2017-18 past-president Brian Johanpeter; 2017-18 vice-president Latonya Casas; 2017-18 president-elect Tracy Peterson; 2017-18 board member Janet Winter-Black; 2017-18 secretary Shelly Eddington.  (Not pictured: 2017-18 treasurer Phillip Spencer, and 2017-18 board members Jason Badman and Sean Junge)

MATTOON -- The 2017-18 Kiwanis Club of Mattoon officers and board members were installed at club’s annual dinner at Suite Dreams banquet hall on Sept. 29.  Outgoing 2016-17 president Brian Johanpeter spoke to the attendees about the accomplishments of the past year and offered his thanks for a successful year and incoming 2017-18 president Steve Ferguson talked of his plans for the coming year.  This is Ferguson’s second term as president of the Mattoon club. 

Also speaking at the dinner was Mattoon High School student Sam Kettleson with the MHS Key Club.  The Key Club is sponsored by Kiwanis.  Kettleson served as Division 26 lieutenant governor in 2016-17 and is currently serving as the Division 26 co-chairman of new club building and reactivation in 2017-18.  He attended the 2016 Key Club International Convention in Atlanta and attended the 2017 International Convention in San Antonio in July.  Kettleson talked to Kiwanis about his recent convention experience, which was partly funded by Kiwanis, and about his future plans as a member of Key Club and Kiwanis. 


Pictured from left to right: Sam Kettleson and Brian Johanpeter


Discusses the Kiwanis Joe Gary Scholarship

September 13, 2017

Pictured l to r: Club member Greg Thompson, Mary Gary, Kiwanis president Brian Johanpeter

MATTOON - Mary Gary was the guest speaker at the Kiwanis Club of Mattoon on September 13.  Mrs. Gary is a former member of the Mattoon club, having served as secretary for many years and as Division 26 lieutenant governor in 1996. She was one of the first female members of the local organization.  Mrs. Gary was a librarian at Mattoon High School, serving as head librarian, and worked for the Mattoon Public Library (MPL). She created the MPL’s first digital catalogue, involving more than 60,000 titles. Mrs. Gary spoke to the club about her late husband, Joe Gary.  Joe Gary was also a long-time member of the Kiwanis Club of Mattoon.  Mr. Gary, an employee of Lake Land College, was instrumental in forming a vocational scholarship for Lake Land to be given by Kiwanis to a local student.  After Mr. Gary’s death in 1988, the scholarship was renamed in his honor and it remains a highlight of the Kiwanis philanthropic efforts to this day.  For more information about the Kiwanis club go to  Pictured from left to right are Kiwanis club member Greg Thompson, Mary Gary, and Kiwanis president Brian Johanpeter.


Joseph Gary
Kiwanis Joe Gary Scholarship

Joseph Gary was born in Elton, La. on Dec. 4, 1923, the son of Ambroise and Marie Duplechin Gary.  Raised in the Cajun French traditions of his birth, and to French speaking parents, Joseph Gary’s native language was also French. His father was blind and was unable to find work and the family was forced to go on public aid.  Joe Gary dropped out of high school.


Mr. Gary joined the U. S. Navy during WWII, participating in landings in North Africa, Southern France, the D-Day landings on Omaha Beach, and on Okinawa.  His ship performed minesweeping duties in Tokyo Bay as the Japanese Instrument of Surrender was signed there on board the USS Missouri on Sept. 2, 1945, marking the end of WWII.  He served in the U.S. Merchant Marine from 1946-1949 and 1951-1958 and earned a master’s license which allowed him to serve as ship’s captain.


Mr. Gary attended junior college in Texas, he received a B.A. in history from Washington College in Maryland, and he received an M.A. in French from Indiana University. He taught French at Wisconsin State University and eventually settled in Mattoon, Ill.  In Mattoon he taught French and became the first audio-visual director for Lake Land College.  He eventually served as the director of printing services at Lake Land, and he completed his 17-year career at Lake Land in that capacity in 1985.


In 1976, Mr. Gary became engaged in genealogical research and around that time he became part-owner of Mattoon Photo.  He was also known for making neckties, putting a great deal of time and thought into the design and creation of each piece.  Mr. Gary presented then Illinois Secretary of State and future Governor Jim Edgar with a tie at a joint meeting of the Kiwanis, Rotary, Lions and Exchange Clubs in Mattoon in 1983.  


Mr. Gary was member of the Kiwanis Club of Mattoon, and was described by his wife, Mary, as a “real Kiwanian.”  He served as club president and secretary of the Mattoon club, and as statistical secretary and lieutenant governor of the Illinois-Iowa Kiwanis District.  He attended 13 Kiwanis International Conventions held at various locations around the world.  Mary Gary, a librarian at Mattoon High School, was also a member of the Kiwanis Club, and served several years as secretary, saying they were a “true Kiwanis couple.” 


Mr. Gary was instrumental in creating the Kiwanis Club Vocational Scholarship to be awarded to a local student.  Having been influenced by one of his children whom he felt was better at working with his hands than he was with traditional learning methods, he felt strongly that students wishing to earn a vocational degree deserved encouragement as well as those wishing to earn a master’s degree. The first scholarship was awarded to Mattoon High School student Chris Dent in 1980.


Joe Gary passed away suddenly in 1988.  The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon renamed the scholarship in his memory, honoring his many years of service and marking his dedication to Kiwanis.  Today, the Kiwanis Joe Gary Scholarship is given each year to a local student of Lake Land College that best represents the Kiwanis spirit of service.     



MATTOON -- Kathy Bayley was the $2,000 grand prize winner of the 2017 Kiwanis Raffle.  Other winners included Susan Smith at $250, Steve Hardin at $100, and Jerry Groniger at $50. Proceeds from the raffle will benefit the Kiwanis Club of Mattoon.  The Kiwanis Club is working with the City of Mattoon to refurbish playground equipment or create new playgrounds.  Bayley made a $200 donation to the next Kiwanis playground project. For more information about the Kiwanis Club go to  Pictured from left to right: Kiwanis secretary Shelly Eddington, Kathy Bayley, Kiwanis president Brian Johanpeter, and Kiwanis treasurer Gary Hawker.   


Help Us Raise Funds For Our Next Park Project
The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon
Serving the Children in Our Community



The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon recently installed a sign in Lawson Park in Mattoon to honor the community members that contributed to the club’s Project Play initiative to install new playground equipment in the park.  Kiwanis is currently selling raffle tickets for a fundraiser for future park projects, with the drawing scheduled for August 30. To purchase a raffle ticket talk to any Kiwanis Club member or click on "Contact Us" on this website for contact information.  Kiwanis Club members picture l to r:  Brian Johanpeter, Gary Hawker, Natalie Parkerson, Carolyn Cloyd, Bob McClean, David Schilling, and Bill Northam.      






Spastic Paralysis Research Foundation board Chairman Larry Forsberg is
pictured speaking to the Kiwanis Club of Mattoon on June 7.  
The Foundtion is funded by Kiwanis Illinois-Eastern Iowa District clubs. 


2017 Joe Gary Memorial Scholarship 

MATTOON -- Emily Bowling was the recipient of the 2017 Joe Gary Memorial Scholarship from the Kiwanis Club of Mattoon. The $1,000 scholarship is named after long-time Kiwanis member Joe Gary and is awarded to a Lake Land College student. Gary was a part-time French and part-time audio visual instructor before becoming the full-time audio visual instructor and then later the director of print services for Lake Land College. He retired in 1985. Gary was a WWII veteran. 

2017 Pancake Day, Saturday, March 11!

A blast from our past. This plaque was stored away and returned to the club on February 22, 2017. A little research revealed that Kiwanis Clubs in the Illinois-East Iowa District contributed money to erect a fence around the Thomas and Sarah Bush Lincoln graves in Shiloh Cemetery, and the Mattoon Kiwanis Club agreed to maintain it. This plaque was attached to the fence. Kiwanians from throughout the district, and a representative from the Governor's office, came to the dedication ceremony. See article below.


Wente receives Legion of Honor, club welcomes officers

The Mattoon Kiwanis Club presented Steve Wente the Legion of Honor award for 30 years of service as a Kiwanis member and welcomed new club officers for the 2016-17 Kiwanis year at a club meeting on October 19. Pictured from left to right are club Treasurer Gary Hawker, Immediate Past-President Phillip Spencer, Legion of Honor recipient Steve Wente, President Brian Johanpeter, Secretary Shelly Eddington, and Vice-President Steve Ferguson. 

Key Club Lt. Gov. Sam Kettleson attends Key Club Convention


MATTOON -- Sam Kettleson, a junior at Mattoon High School, recently attended the Key Club International Convention in Atlanta. Kettleson, who is currently serving as 2016-17 Lieutenant Governor for the Mattoon, Shelbyville, Robinson and Paris Key Clubs, spoke to the Mattoon Kiwanis Club on Aug. 10 about his convention experience. The Key Club, a student-led organization, is the oldest and largest service club for high school students, and is sponsored by the Kiwanis Club and supports the Kiwanis mission to serve the children of the world. 


MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club recently welcomed four new members, Natalie Parkerson and Jason Badman, both with First Mid-Illinois Insurance, Jill Rohr with Camp New Hope, and Latonya Casas with the Mattoon Chamber of Commerce. The new members were inducted into the club in a ceremony on April 27. Pictured from left to right: Kiwanis secretary Shelly Eddington, club member/sponsor Natalie Parkerson, Jason Badman, Jill Rohr, Latonya Casas, and Kiwanis past-lieutenant governor Don Grewell.



Kiwanis Club of Mattoon Pancake Breakfast

March 19 at Mattoon Middle School

MATOON -- The Kiwanis Club of Mattoon annual Pancake Breakfast will be held on March 19 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Mattoon Middle School.

The breakfast is all you can eat pancakes and sausage, juice, milk and coffee. Tickets are $6 for adults, $2 for children ages 6-12, and children ages 5-and-under are free. Tickets can be purchased from any Kiwanis Club member, or at the door the day of the event.

Proceeds from Kiwanis events fund youth-oriented projects, such as the recent Lawson and Peterson Park projects, and youth programs and scholarships.

Kiwanis - Serving the Children of the World.



ROB STROUD JG-TC Staff Writer (Oct. 3, 2015)

MATTOON -- Ken Wooddell was honored Wednesday evening for his 65 years of community service as a member of the Mattoon Kiwanis Club.

Kiwanis District Gov. Penny Linneweh presented Wooddell with a Legion of Honor plaque during the club's annual dinner. In addition, state Sen. Dale Righter presented a senate proclamation honoring Wooddell and Mayor Tim Gover presented a city proclamation that named Sept. 30 "Ken Wooddell Day."

"I was surprised and also humbled," Wooddell said of these honors during an interview Friday afternoon.

Wooddell said he joined the Mattoon Kiwanis Club in 1950 a year after graduating from the University of Illinois with a degree in radio journalism and moving to town to take a job selling advertising with radio station WLBH.

Membership in the Kiwanis Club provided him with a great way to get to know other business people while also working on community service projects, Wooddell said. He noted that the club was still meeting in what was then the U.S. Grant Hotel on Charleston Avenue when he joined.

Wooddell, who served as president of the club in 1959, said the club launched its annual Pancake Day dinner fundraiser in the late 1950s, a benefit that continues to this day. He said the first pancake dinners were held in the basement of what was then the Masonic temple on Charleston Avenue.

"I was at the griddle making pancakes with everyone else," Wooddell said. "We worked hard at that."

Two of the Kiwanis Club's biggest early supporters for the pancake dinner were appliance dealer Clyde Kirk and Dr. E.X. Link, Wooddell recalled. They had a friendly competition in advance of each dinner, he said.

"They fought each other to sell the most tickets," Wooddell said. "We would have a battle going with those two."

Wooddell, who has held a variety of leadership posts with the club, said he also has fond memories of pumping gas at Willaredt Oil and Platolene 500 service stations for the Kiwanis Club's Gasoline Days fundraisers, as well as taking part in other benefits of the years.

Wooddell retired in 1988 as a co-owner and executive with WLBH and then taught a pair of broadcasting classes at Eastern Illinois University for about a decade. He also continued broadcasting Eastern Illinois University football games until his retirement in 1999.

In retirement, Wooddell said he still stays active by attending the Kiwanis Club's weekly meetings. He said the meetings give him an opportunity to hear presentations from community leaders, keep up to date on club projects, and meet new club members.

"A person does not retire to just sit down," Wooddell said. 


Club members attend KI and District conventions

MATTOON -- Mattoon Kiwanis Club members Steve Ferguson and Greg Thompson recently attended the 2015 Kiwanis International and the Illinois-Eastern Iowa (I-I) District Conventions. Ferguson attended the International Convention, celebrating the 100th birthday of Kiwanis, in Indianapolis on June 25-28. Thompson, the current president of the Mattoon club, attended the 98th Annual I-I District Convention in Peoria on Aug. 6-9. Pictured, from left, Ferguson and Thompson spoke to the Mattoon club about their convention experiences on Aug. 12.


MHS students receive Kiwanis scholarships

Pictured is MHS student Megan Shaffer at a Mattoon Kiwanis meeting on May 20

MATTOON -- Two Mattoon High School students received scholarships from the Mattoon Kiwanis Club at the MHS Honors Night on May 15, 2015 at Mattoon High School.

Megan Shaffer received the $500 Key Club scholarship and Landon Crary received a $500 Joe Gary Memorial scholarship through Lake Land College, both sponsored by the Mattoon Kiwanis Club.


Mattoon Kiwanis welcomes four new members

Pictured, from left, past-president of the Mattoon Kiwanis Club and past-district lieutenant governor Donald Grewell, and new members Madison Mullady, Victor Matigian, and Tami Knight. Photo on right, Bob Ramsey.

MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club welcomed three new members on May 6 and one member on May 13. Madison Mullady, an attorney with the Law Offices of Winter-Black & Baker; Victor Matigian, a financial advisor with Edward Jones; and Tami Knight, a partner at Kemper CPA Group, were officially inducted into the club on May 6. And Bob Ramsey, owner of Ramsey Systems in Mattoon, was inducted on May 13.


Governor Rauner declares May 2 as Kiwanis Day in Illinois

In recognition of the 100th anniversary of Kiwanis International and the 233 clubs, including the Mattoon Kiwanis Club and Charleston Kiwanis Club, and 7,000 Kiwanis members in the Illinois-Eastern Iowa (I-I) District of Kiwanis who are building a specially designed playground at the YMCA Camp Independence to support children with Spina Bifida, Spastic Paralysis, and other spinal deficiencies, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner has declared May 2 as Kiwanis Day in Illinois.

May 2 was selected a Kiwanis Day in Illinois because on that day at 10 a.m., a ribbon cutting ceremony will be held at YMCA Camp Independence to celebrate the opening of a specially designed playground at the YMCA Camp Independence to support children with Spina Bifida, Spastic Paralysis and other spinal deficiencies. 

Founded in 1915, Kiwanis International is a global organization of members dedicated to serving the children of the world. Kiwanis and its family of clubs, including Circle K International for university students, Key Club for students age 14-18, Builders Club for students age 11-14, Kiwanis Kids for students age 6-12 and Aktion Club for adults living with disabilities, dedicate annually more than 18 million service hours to strengthen communities and serve children. The Kiwanis International family comprises nearly 600,000 adult and youth members in 80 countries and geographic areas.






Mattoon club plans pancake meal, celebrates  Kiwanis International's centennial

Mattoon Kiwanis Club volunteers Mike Kallis, left, and Phillip Spencer pictured working at a previous Pancake Breakfast at the Mattoon Middle School. The club's 2015 event is scheduled for 7 a.m.-1 p.m. March 28 at MMS.

March 13, 2015 4:48 pm  • 

The breakfast is scheduled for 7 a.m.-1 p.m. March 28 at Mattoon Middle School, 1200 S. Ninth St. The menu offers all-you-can-eat pancakes and sausage, plus coffee, milk and juice. Ticket are $6 for adults, $2 for children ages 5-12, and free for children ages 4 and younger.

"This is our third year to partner with the middle school. It is really a great collaboration," said Kiwanis Club member Mary Weber, who is leading the breakfast.

Weber said live entertainment has been added to this year's breakfast, with performances by the Coles County Barbershop Singers at 8 a.m. and the Mattoon Middle School jazz band at 9-10:30 a.m.

The pancake breakfast and Peanut Days are the Kiwanis Club's main fundraisers. Proceeds from these events help this service club support programs for children.

"We are hoping the community will turn out for pancake day to help us help the community," said Kiwanis Club member Steve Ferguson.

Mattoon Kiwanis Club President Greg Thompson said they have helped fund new playgrounds at Lawson and Peterson parks in recent years and hope to help build another one. The club also has helped fund the construction of three pavilions at the youth sports fields on the northeast side town.

Other children's program have included providing sponsorships for youth sports teams, the Read Across Mattoon program and the Builders Club at the Mattoon Middle School, and the Key Club at Mattoon High School.

Funds raised by the Mattoon club also assist Kiwanis International's humanitarian work. In 1994, Kiwanis joined the fight to eliminate iodine deficiency disorders. In 2010, Kiwanis pledged to join UNICEF in the effort to eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus from countries still affected by this disease.

Kiwanis was founded in 1915 in Detroit and the Mattoon club formed in 1929. Ferguson said the local club plans to send delegates to the Kiwanis International Annual Convention on June 25-28 in Indianapolis, Ind., where this organization is headquartered.

One of the mission's of Kiwanis is for its members to volunteer within their communities. Mattoon club members have volunteered to help Camp New Hope, Lightworks, One Stop Community Christmas, the Salvation Army, and many other local causes.

Kiwanis Club member Jim Glen said one of his favorite projects is delivering food for the Peace Meal program, for which the club has been providing volunteers since at least the early 1980s.

"You don't have to ask people for money and you don't have to give money. You just help others," Glenn said of volunteering with Peace Meal.

The Mattoon Kiwanis Club meets at noon every Wednesday at Brian's Place/Bourbon Street Steakhouse, 2100 Broadway Ave. At these meetings, participants hear updates on the club's community service projects and presentations from guest speakers.

More information is available by contacting Thompson at 217-276-9985 or by visiting

Contact Stroud at or 217-238-6861.

Mattoon Kiwanis Club donates

to MMS Read Across Mattoon

Pictured photo on left, from left: MMS teacher Anieta Trame, MMS students Emma Philpott, Hannah Andersen and Katherine Carter-Alvis. Photo on right, from left: Philpott, Hannah Retzer, Carter-Alvis, and Andersen.

MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club presented the Mattoon Middle School Student Reading Committee a $500 donation for the Read Across Mattoon program on February 11. MMS students/committee members presented this year's Ready to Read Across Mattoon book selection, "The False Prince," in a skit based on the book's theme at the weekly club meeting and issued a challenge to the club to participate in this year's program.

The Mattoon Kiwanis Club has been a long-time supporter of the Read Across Mattoon Program.



Jan. 28, 2015

MATTOON - The Mattoon Kiwanis Club welcomed new member, Natalie Parkerson, on Jan. 28. Parkerson is a personal lines agent at First Mid Insurance Group in Mattoon. Pictured, from left, new member sponsor Clay Dean, new member Natalie Parkerson, and Kiwanis District Lt. Governor Janet Butler.

Dec. 3, 2014

MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club welcomed new member, Clay Dean, to the club on Dec. 3. Dean is the CEO at First Mid Insurance Group in Mattoon. Pictured, from left, new member Clay Dean, new member sponsor Janice Moritz, and past-president and past-lieutenant governor Don Grewell, of the Mattoon Kiwanis Club.

Nov. 19, 2014

MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club welcomed new member, Lt. Daniel “T.J.” Simmons, to the club on Nov. 19. Lt. Simmons and his wife, Lt. Claudia Simmons, recently became the new officers of the Salvation Army of Coles and Cumberland Counties. Pictured, from left, new member sponsor Bob McClean, new member Lt. Daniel “T.J.” Simmons, and past-president and past-lieutenant governor Don Grewell, all of the Mattoon Kiwanis Club.


2014 Annual Dinner

MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club inducted officers and board members at its annual dinner at the Mattoon Golf and Country Club on September 24. Legion of Honor awards were presented to the following club members for continuous active membership and service to the club and the community: Steve Ferguson for 30 years, Dan Cunningham for 30 years, Gary Hawker for 35 years and Dan Coleman for 45 years. Also in attendance were District 26 Lieutenant Governor Janet Butler, and Assistant Governor South David Butler, both members of the Tuscola club. The 2014-15 Mattoon Kiwanis Club slate of officers pictured, from left, Sean Junge, board member; Gary Hawker, treasurer; David Butler, assistant governor South; Janet Butler, lieutenant governor District 26; Greg Thompson, 2014-15 president; Shelly Eddington, secretary; Steve Ferguson, board member; Brian Johanpeter, 2014-15 vice president.


2014 Peanut Days dates set

(Pictured left to right: Kiwanis members Jean Balch, George Miller, Bill Northam and former club member Steve Hayes.)

MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club 2014 Peanut Days fundraising event dates have been set for October 17-18 in Mattoon.

Peanut Days is an annual tradition of the Kiwanis Club. The funds raised during the two days fund Kiwanis projects, such as the recent playgrounds purchased and installed at Lawson Park and Peterson Park in Mattoon as a joint effort between the City of Mattoon and the Mattoon Kiwanis Club.

Club members will be intersections located at Logan and Broadway Ave., Logan and Richmond Ave., and 14th St. and Dewitt Ave. in Mattoon on October 7-18. Donations to the club support Kiwanis projects. Kiwanis is dedicated to serving the children of the world, one community at a time.



2014 Kiwanis Pancake Day

MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club, along with the MHS Key Club and MMS Builders Club, will be hosting the 2014 Kiwanis Pancake Day on Saturday, March 29 at Mattoon Middle School, 1200 S. 9th St., Mattoon.

Club members will be serving all you can eat pancakes and sausage, coffee, milk and juice from 6:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tickets can be purchased from any Kiwanis member (or click on "Contact Us" at this website and send us an email) or can be purchased at the door the day of the event. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for children ages 5-12. Children 5-and-under are free.

The mission of Kiwanis is to serve children. Proceeds from Mattoon Kiwanis Club events fund youth oriented projects, such as the recent Lawson and Peterson Park projects, and youth programs and scholarships.

Gary Hawker honored for 35-years of service at Mattoon Kiwanis Club annual dinner

L to r: Gary Hawker and Greg Thompson

MATTOON – Mattoon Kiwanis Club member Gary Hawker was honored with the 35-year Legion of Honor Award at the Kiwanis Club annual dinner on January 22 at the Mattoon Golf and Country Club.

Kiwanis president Brian Daniell was the host for the evening. President Daniell and the club recognized the club’s board members and officers and several members for community service projects: Mary Weber for Pancake Day, George Miller for Peanut Day, Bill Northam for the Peterson Park Project and Carolyn Cloyd for Peace Meals.

Mary Weber and Carolyn Cloyd were recognized for serving as club presidents.

Left: Derald Doehring and Mary Weber. Right: Terry Ward, center, with Key Club members, Michaela Drake (left) and Victoria Drake.              

Kiwanis and Key Club participate in One Stop Community Christmas

Left, club members (r to l) Greg Thompson, Mary Weber, Dave Schilling, Christy Ferguson, Carolyn Cloyd at One Stop Community Christmas. Right, (r to l) Schilling, Shelly Eddington, Suzi Coffman (non-club member), Ferguson, Cloyd, setting up on Friday. 

Key Club members at the gift wrap table

MATTOON – Mattoon Kiwanis Club members and MHS Key Club members took part in the annual One Stop Community Christmas event on Dec. 14.

One Stop Community Christmas is a community effort to provide Christmas to area families that need a little assistance for the holiday. Individuals and businesses throughout the community donate items and provide manpower for the collective effort to provide everything families in Coles County and the surrounding counties might need for Christmas.

Donations included items for the holiday meal, toys or gifts for children of all ages, clothing, cold weather clothing, underwear, socks, diapers, wrapping paper and more. The Mattoon Kiwanis Club was in charge of the sock and underwear table, with the guidance of club member, Christy Ferguson, who directed the club’s participation in the project, and the MHS Key Club provided wrapping paper and gift bags.

The Kiwanis Club and its members donated $1,570 and items toward the event and a number of club members volunteered their time to work the table or as helpers for the families. More than 1,900 children and more than 800 families benefited from the event.

Mattoon Kiwanis Club teams with City of Mattoon to build
new playground at Peterson Park

The park is open...Grand Opening Oct. 23, 2013

Members of the Kiwanis Club at the grand opening, Oct. 23, 2013
(for more photos of the build, click on "Events/Photo Gallery")


MATTOON -- The Mattoon Kiwanis Club teamed with the City of Mattoon to purchase and install a new playground at Peterson Park in Mattoon. City of Mattoon workers and Kiwanis volunteers, which included members of the MHS Key Club and EIU Student Services volunteers, installed the new equipment on Oct. 18-19, 2013.

The grand opening of the new playground was held on Oct. 23. Kiwanis member Bill Northam cut the ribbon to open the park to the public. Northam was instrumental in putting the project together and in raising funds for the playground equipment.

The Mattoon Kiwanis Club installed a new playground a Lawson Park in Mattoon in 2010.



Mattoon Kiwanis Club members collecting donations during the 2013 Peanut Days fundraiser pictured from l to r: Jean Balch, George Miller, Bill Northam and Steve Hayes. 

MATTOON -- Members of the Mattoon Kiwanis Club and Mattoon High School Key Club raised $2,782.02 during the annual Peanut Day fundraiser on September 27-28. The Mattoon Kiwanis Club raises funds for various projects benefiting children. The Mattoon Kiwanis Club recently partnered with the City of Mattoon to purchase and install playground equipment at Lawson Park and Peterson Park in Mattoon. Kiwanis is an international organization working to "Serve the Children of the World."



MATTOON - The Mattoon Kiwanis Club will be holding its annual Peanut Day fundraiser in Mattoon on September 27-28, 2013. Club members will at the intersections at Broadway/Logan and Richmond/Logan collecting donations. The Mattoon club has teamed with the City of Mattoon to put in new playground equipment in Peterson Park and the funds raised during Peanut Day fundraiser will go to help fund that project. Kiwanis is an international club working to “Serve the Children of the World.” Pictured (l to r) are club members, Carolyn Cloyd, Greg Thompson and Steve Ferguson.


Pancake Day 2013. Mattoon Kiwanis Club members pictured l to r:
Phillip Spencer, Rex Barnes and Brian Murphy.
Journal Gazette & Times Courier

Kiwanis Club sets its sights on a better Peterson Park playground; fundraiser is Saturday

MARCH 20, 2013 2:00 AM  

MATTOON — Kiwanis Club members say the almost 20-year-old playground equipment at Peterson Park is due for an upgrade.

And club member Bill Northam says as soon as the organization finished the Lawson Park playground project in 2012 it set its sights on the dated equipment in the city’s largest park.

The local club has found its signature project, which focuses on updating the city’s public playgrounds, and club member Mary Weber says this is part of the worldwide Kiwanis Club mission — “to serve the children of the world.”

“And part of our local goal was to make sure they had a safe and nice place to play,” Weber said.

The initial project started at Lawson Park because the playground was almost non-existent, Northam said. With help from the community and the city, member Carolyn Cloyd says the club is looking to install the new Peterson Park playground in August.

The new structure, which has already been purchased, is the same size as the current playground, Northam said. The organization purchased the $80,000 piece of equipment for $40,000 through a grant-like process. It is similar to the Lawson Park installment and includes a spiral slide, straight slides, a rock-like climbing feature, monkey bars, toad stools and wheelchair accessibility.
A separate structure for 2- to 5-year-old children will be installed as well.

“We did that at Lawson (Park), and it worked out well so the smaller kids have a place of their own,” Northam said.

The installation date is set far into the summer so the club can raise additional funds for auxiliary products including park benches.

Cloyd said Peterson Park might be one of the most used parks in the city, and the city has found it difficult to find parts to repair it since the equipment has aged. “It’s old enough,” Cloyd joked.

The signature project idea sprouted from club members’ visits to the playgrounds in Mattoon and surrounding communities, Northam explained.
“When you have small kids and you’re in a different community you stop at the playground and let the kids play while Mom does her shopping,” he said. “Just going to other communities, both bigger and smaller, and just seeing what they had — it was just kind of neat to be able to bring some of that to Mattoon.

“Now, when you drive by Lawson Park on a warm November day and see a dozen kids on the playground when before you would never see any, it’s worth it.”

To raise money for the auxiliary equipment, the Kiwanis Club has invited the community to a pancake breakfast from 6:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Mattoon Middle School, 1200 S. Ninth St. The club has moved the breakfast to the middle school to involve the school’s Builder’s Club, a community service activity club similar to the high school’s Key Club, Weber explained.

For more information about the project or the Kiwanis Club, contact Cloyd at 217-234-8022. The group meets at noon on Wednesdays at Brian’s Place.

Contact Zyskowski at or 217-238-6869.