New Canaan Club Featured In National Exchange Club Today Magazine

Post date: Sep 27, 2014 2:50:02 PM

The Exchange Club of New Canaan, CT, was chartered on September 27, 1952. Early in the club’s history, the members

decided to sell Christmas trees as a fundraiser and for that, the current members are grateful. The Christmas tree project,

the club’s major presence in the community and its largest fundraiser, requires each member’s participation and

takes a full month to complete. In fact, the project is such a success that it has grown to include wreaths, roping, lights,

and holiday merchandise. The project nets the club approximately $70,000 per year.

The club is not only busy during the winter season, but embraces opportunities throughout the year. Members sponsor

a golf outing at a local country club, a wine tasting program, and provide assistance selling ice cream and sodas at the

town’s Family Fourth celebration in July. Combined, these campaigns provide the club with roughly $125,000 each year.

The lion’s share of the club’s additional income, $60,000–$65,000, is used to support the affiliated Exchange Club Parenting

Skills Center, an organization which the club helped to establish in 1989 and still actively participates, with past presidents

and officers serving on the board. The club’s current records indicate that it has donated $1.43 million to local and regional

organizations throughout the past 14 years. More specifically, it has donated on average more than $127,000 throughout the past

eight years.

The Exchange Club of New Canaan also embraces several community service projects, such as the HomeFront Project,

whereby members paint and clean up a home for an elderly and needy person; Clean-A-Mile, which helps keep a road in

the town free from litter; the Christmas Senior Luncheon, which provides a Christmas dinner for local senior citizens;

and a four-year Scholarship Award.

Members also recently completed a fourth Freedom Shrine installation. Club members incorporate a variety of

fun activities throughout the year, such as the annual Christmas Dinner, visiting members’ homes for the Progressive

Dinner, ringing in the new board and toasting the outgoing directors at the Inaugural Dinner, distributing ice cream

for the town’s Historical Society, and marching proudly down Main Street to distribute more than 5,000 American flags

at the Memorial Day Parade.

This dynamic group has a roster of 103 members, with an average joining-age of 51 years. Club member Jack Devlin

describes his fellow Exchangites as people with, “not just with a desire to help us help others, but most are willing to step up and

try to make a difference in what we do. In summary, there are more than a few good men in Exchange.”