Zoom Meeting February 12, 2021
The link for the meeting is below and will also be sent out on Thursday as a reminder.
WHEN DOES THE MEETING START?  Here is the schedule:
  • At 12:00 pm the Zoom room will be available for our "breakout room/virtual tables" to have a conversation with other members.  President Julie will draw us all back into the main meeting room at 12:28 pm
  • At 12:30 pm the meeting will be called to order
  • At approximately 12:55 p.m. we will introduce our speaker
  • Speaker will start at approximately 1:00 p.m.
  • Meeting concludes at 1:30 p.m.
SPEAKERS:   Dr. Shannon Schmoll, Director Abrams Planetarium, MSU
TOPIC:  "Big Astronomy:  A Project Showcasing Careers in Astronomy and Observatories in Chile"
FOLLOW UP:  Please keep your microphone muted when you are listening.  Be aware of the lighting in your room, a well lit room with natural light if possible.  Please feel free to use Chat throughout the meeting.  If you have any questions for the speakers, ask them through Chat.
Biography for Dr. Shannon Schmoll 
Shannon Schmoll is the director of the Abrams Planetarium at Michigan State University. She has works on finding new ways if utilizing the immersive planetarium theater. She has a PhD in astronomy and science education and her research has focused on integrating field trips into formal curriculum and how people engage in content after planetarium visits. She also is the chair of the Education Committee of the International Planetarium Society. She lives in Okemos with her husband, two young daughters, and three cats (two of which are named after constellations).
Zoom Meeting Link 
Below is the meeting link and dial in phone number for our Friday Rotary Club of Lansing Meetings on Zoom.  You will find the SAME link each week in the Rotogram so you will not have to look for a new weekly link. Thank you!
Topic: Rotary Club of Lansing Meeting
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 899 2218 2374
Passcode: 016004
One tap mobile
+16468769923,,89922182374#,,,,,,0#,,016004# US (New York)
Time: Noon, Friday, February 12, 2021
Editarian Report for February 5, 2021
President Julie rang the bell bringing the Rotary Club of Lansing to order. She called upon Orlando Gillespie who gave a heartfelt invocation. Next we heard the National Anthem performed by the US Army Chorus for our patriotic music.
President Julie recognized our visiting Rotarians and guests. Visiting Rotarians included James Alden of Delton, MI, who is a past district governor, and Bill McMillan who recently moved to East Lansing and is looking to join a local club. The several guests included Joy Whitenburg from EVE (Ending Violent Encounters), Anna Martiny who will be submitting a membership application, Monique Field-Foster, Robin Hyman with Clark Trombley as Jacob Sabin's guest and Courtney Millbrook’s dad, Don Cooley, who is the Supervisor of Oneida Township.
In the Health of the Club, Diane Sanborn let us know that Ron Flinn has expressed his gratitude for the Club and members who have sent cards, gifts, and flowers for his wife’s passing.
Vicki Hamilton-Allen of Habitat for Humanity gave a brief presentation on the $10,000.00 Grant from the Foundation and how that contribution is helping individuals plus communities.  On the left is a picture of a home "before" and the picture on the right is the "after" of all the great work completed by them.
Laurie Baumer told us about the Downtown Skating Rink that will make its first appearance on the City Hall Plaza. She announced the upcoming Lansing Winterfest, culminating in Rotary Park – you can get full details at
Terry Terry introduced our special music – a lovely performance of Gotkovsky’s Quatour de Saxophones. Jeffrey Leung of the Sycamore Quartet spoke about their ensemble before showing us the recording.
President Julie thanked our Chair of the Month Umakanth.
Kurt Guter, Chair of the Day, introduced our speakers from National Grid Renewables. Kurt owns farmland in West Michigan where the company has solar panels installed.
Kara Heffelbower & David Shiflett of National Grid Renewables gave us a great overview and insight into the fascinating topic of “Solar Energy in Michigan." It turns out solar energy works even on cloudy days!
National Grid Renewables is a farmer friendly and community driven company with a growing footprint in many states. They went through solar panel components and how the sunlight gets converted into electricity.
Most of the company’s panels are on farmland. The topsoil is not removed, though it may be temporarily moved and then put back. When panels are installed, the pilings driven into ground, so there is no concrete; electric cables are on back and then trenched to distribution grid.
They spoke of the company’s vegetation management under the panels. The soil is seeded first year of operation to protect from soil erosion. They primarily use native prairie plants which are maintained through mowing or grazing.
When a site is decommissioned, the components can be reused or recycled at end of useful life. The soil is generally improved as soils have rested/lain fallow during project life. They do make decommissioning plans for their sites in case the location would no longer be wanted or in the event that future technology changes the need.
Solar projects are good neighbors, no pollutants, and they make about the noise of a dishwasher when electric conversion is taking place. They do not harm wildlife habitat.
The company works only with willing farmers, and does not act through eminent domain. It typically takes 12 to 15 years for a project to break even.
Michigan is a good place for solar power since the “sun is still there even if you don’t see it!” And importantly, solar power peaks when electricity demand peaks – when people are using air conditioning!
President Julie thanked our speakers and let them know that In lieu of a speaker’s gift we will be making donations in honor of our speakers to a local organization through our Lansing Rotary Foundation which has, over the history of our club, given in excess of $2,000,000 to local organizations and projects.
Posted by Chris Swope, email:
Feb 12, 2021
"Big Astronomy: A Project Showcasing Careers in Astronomy and Observatories in Chile"
Feb 19, 2021
"Diversity Equity Inclusion"
Feb 26, 2021
"Truth, Justice and Reconciliation: What does the U.S. Have to Learn from the Rest of the World"
Mar 05, 2021
"Company K Sharpshooters in the Union Army, Civil War"
View entire list
Rotary Club of Lansing
P. O. Box 13156
Lansing, MI   48901-3156
Meeting Responsibilities
February Birthday Chair
Sheehan, Justin
Sanborn, Diane
Schumacher, Kevin V. B.
Chair of the Month
Umakanthan, Uma
Chair of the Day
Person, John
Umakanthan, Uma