The Motto of Rotary “Service Above Self.”
When a member of the Fayetteville Rotary Club learned that there was not going to be a Christmas Parade in 1999, he approached his club and the other two Rotary Clubs in Fayetteville at the time, suggesting that this would be an excellent Community Service Project. The clubs agreed and banded together to insure Fayetteville would continue to have a Christmas Parade.
The Rotarians were fortunate that one of their members, Greg Gunn, had helped with a Christmas Parade in another city, he agreed to chair the parade. When his job took him to another city the following year, Johnson Chestnutt and Matthew Smith agreed to co-chair the Parade. With the passing of Johnson in 2017, it was determined that Matthew needed some assistance with the parade at the Rotary Christmas Parade Committee was established.
One of the goals set by the committee is to bring in aa Grand Marshal that the children of Fayetteville can look to for inspiration. An individual that children can relate to, someone who presents good moral character and who parents would not be displeased to see their child emulate.
The Rotarians are very appreciative of the support they have been given by the community. The first Rotary Christmas Parade had about 50 entries; that has now grown to 110-120 units with some coming from out of state. Support from the business community has been a blessing. We have had several well-known past sponsors as well as our current sponsors Rotary International, FayTV, WTVD and Chick-Fil-A.
Rotary in Fayetteville
The Fayetteville Rotary Club is one of 50 clubs within Rotary International’s District 7730. The Fayetteville Rotary Club was formed on May 1, 1920. This club holds its weekly meetings at 1 pm on Thursdays at Highland Country Club. The club has a shared history of three local clubs (Fayetteville Rotary, West Fayetteville Rotary and LaFayette Rotary) that merged in 2019.
LOCAL ROTARY CLUBS SERVICE PROJECTS
In addition to sponsoring the Rotary Christmas Parade, the Fayetteville Rotary Club is involved in many service projects that benefit the Fayetteville/Cumberland County area:
The Walker Family Golf Classic
Rotary Loudermilk Scholarship Award at Methodist College
Downtown Linear Park Overlook
Cumberland Community Foundation – West Fayetteville Endowment Fund, supporting charitable projects in the Fayetteville area
Rotary Youth Leadership Awards
Rick’s Place – Playground for military families
Better Health of Cumberland County
Solar Panels for Rwanda
Rotary International Youth Exchange Student Program