Major Events and Fundraisers

Scholarship Programs

Rotary-Garbe Foundation Scholarship

Over the years, Rotary-Garbe scholarship awards to local high school graduates have provided more than a million dollars of support to a total of 332 students.


William Garbe was a Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotarian, a district governor of Rotary for a time and a long-time resident of Scotch Plains. In 1955 to assist students with college tuition, he founded the Garbe Foundation. Upon his death in 1969 the supervision of the foundation passed to his wife Merle, and then in 1981 at Merle Garbe’s request, FSP Rotary took over the foundation’s administration. It was renamed Rotary-Garbe Foundation.


Today Rotary-Garbe works hand in hand with the Fanwood-Scotch Plains Scholarship Foundation, led by its president Ellie Kramps. Ellie each year organizes and manages selection for a wide variety of scholarships for local graduates, including those to be awarded in the name of the Rotary-Garbe Foundation.


Each year five local high school seniors receive awards of $1,000 per year renewable three additional years. Consideration for award begins when a student applies generally by March 1 of each year. In 2017, our club awarded $37,000 in scholarships.

Rotary 'Turnaround Award'

Awarded to a Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School senior whose life in high school exemplifies the most dramatic growth. Application for this scholarship is made informally, perhaps with an inquiry to a student's high school guidance counselor, teacher or other school leader. In contrast to other local awards, the Rotary Turnaround Award is based on perceptions and discussion among the SPFY high school educational leaders.

David E. Ringle Memorial Scholarship

Awarded annually in memory of Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotarian, Dave Ringle.

Robert H. Kraus Memorial Scholarship

This scholarship honors the memory of Bob Kraus, a long time Rotarian and respected member of the community. The Robert H. Kraus Memorial Scholarship is awarded to a Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School graduating senior who will be attending Rutgers University, has been involved in extra-curricular activities or volunteerism and has maintained a minimum grade point average of 3.0. More here

Volunteer Of The Year

The Fanwood Scotch Plains Rotary Club honors an individual or organization each year to acknowledge volunteerism in our communities. In 2014 we were proud to honor the Fanwood Scotch Plains Service League for their operation of the Thrift Shop and the contributions they make to our community in the form of Scholarships and grants to various organizations.

Community Projects and Fund Raising Events

Community Share Raffle

A major annual raffle with proceeds earmarked for the local community. Half the proceeds from the raffle are disbursed among non-profit, community organizations and programs such as Resolve Community Counseling, Scotch Plains-Fanwood YMCA, Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School Student Leadership Program, Fanwood Community Foundation, and others.

Dictionary Project

Free dictionaries to all of the 3rd grade students in Fanwood-Scotch Plains, including St. Bartholomew’s elementary school. The distribution of the dictionaries each November is keenly anticipated and provides a morning of excitement for more than 400 children every year as club members visit classrooms with cartons of dictionaries to bestow.

Service Projects

Club members volunteer for various service projects including:

  • Mobile Meals of Westfield and El Centro
    We volunteer for Mobile Meals on the last Wednesday of every month, usually instead of going to the weekly Wednesday meeting. Several members pack food for the elderly and other members deliver the food to people on various routes within Scotch Plains, Westfield and Clark. Those Rotarians who complete shorter routes can chose to also attend lunch if their schedules allow. Rotarians who are not able to volunteer can attend a small lunch meeting at the usual location. Several Rotarians also volunteer to pack food for El Centro once a month.
  • Operation Chillout
    In November, club members contribute toward the purchase of backpacks with gloves, scarves and hats to be given to Operation Chillout, an organization that supports homeless Veterans.

Frazee House Resoration Project

A long term project to restore the historic Betty and Gershom Frazee House at the intersection of Raritan Road and Terrill Road (area residents may recall the site as the home of the one-time Terry Lou Zoo). This is the club’s Centennial project, inspired by a directive of Rotary International in 2004. By restoring the house (detailed plans currently under deliberation), the club hopes to turn the house and adjacent one acre into a resource for the community and state, further distinguishing New Jersey as a key site in the American Revolutionary War. Progress to date includes the shoring and stabilization of the house. The Scotch Plains Community Garden was started on the property in June 2016 and is now in its second year.  Website

Luminary Project

Luminaries have long been a popular holiday tradition in Fanwood and Scotch Plains. The club sells kits of candles and bags, making the display of luminaries convenient for thousands of townspeople by enabling them to purchase them at the Fanwood Public Works garage in December each year. Funds generated are a major source of the club’s ability to support community activities such as those described above.

The Robert H. Kraus Memorial Golf Outing

The proceeds of the Robert H. Kraus Memorial golf outing fund the Robert H. Kraus Memorial Scholarship. This scholarship was created to honor the memory of Bob Kraus, a long time Rotarian and respected member of the community. The Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary Club began the scholarship in 2010, with the first scholarship awarded in June 2011. The first annual golf outing was held in October 2011. More here

International Projects Sponsored by the FSP Rotary

Beads of Hope

The Beads of Hope project supports Set Her Free, a non-profit group working to remove young girls in Uganda from child labor and prostitution by providing them with shelter and education. The Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary launched the project in late 2010, and before year-end 2011 had already raised $15,000 for food, shelter and medical expenses. Much of the funds are raised through the sale of bead bracelets, necklaces and earrings made by the Ugandan girls. In Uganda, bead making is an art form. The beads are created out of recycled paper like newspapers and calendars and then cut into thin strips with a paper cutter and dyed. Once dyed, they spin the paper on looms to make different shapes and sizes. Various events are held throughout the year to sell the beads and to raise community awareness. The largest of these events was the Beads of Hope Benefit Concert in November 2011. Numerous volunteers came together to make the event a great success. More here

Dare to be Great / Read-A-Thon
Elementary school students from School One were “ Dared to be Great” and the children identified a Read-a-thon project to promote reading in their school and feed children in Malawi!   On March 8th, 2017 children who participated in the program were honored from around the world for their efforts! The Read-a-thon supported Mary’s Meals and raised enough money to feed 250 children in Malawi for 1 year! Former UN Ambassador Dengo was there to meet children who are “changing the world”. They were also thanked by CNN hero of the year and Time 100 Most Influential People, Magnus Macfarlane-Barrow!  The Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary club presented them with a $5,000 check which will be given to Mary’s Meals.

Nicaragua Project
 Rotarian Brooks Smith and eleven other New Jerseyans helped initiate a Rotary Foundation Global Grant project in Granada, Nicaragua that included building a soccer/volleyball court, a kitchen, outdoor classrooms and teaching gardens at two large public schools.  Rotarians will have another opportunity to travel to Nicaragua next year, to continue the next phase of the project.


International Projects Sponsored by Rotary International

Polio Plus Program

Rotary International has targeted a goal to eliminate polio worldwide. All local clubs support this.


Pure Water for the World

A New Jersey regional project that the club supports, we help provide water filtration kits to communities beset with the ills of untreated water – billions of people worldwide.


Homes of Hope

This child sponsorship program aims at providing a better life for underprivileged people in developing regions of the world, notably San Pablo, Ecuador, by building homes, schools, community centers and health clinics.


Gift of Life

An activity to bring children in need of advanced-world surgery to the United States for treatment.


Every Wednesday at 12:15 PM

The Stage House Restaurant

Park Avenue, Scotch Plains, NJ

Last Wednesday of the month: Service Project and/or evening meeting