“Trade Club was started by Bill Brandt as a way to bring business people together in a social setting,” said President Fred Ehler, emcee of this year’s event. Each of the club’s 75 members has a role to play, he said, which helps boost the vitality of the evening. “It’s not just handed off to a committee; we all have a hand in bringing it to fruition. We’ve made it a part of who we are; we all have a vested interest in keeping it a fun event.”
This year the fun included what Ehler called the “family-friendly adult comedy” of Adam Stone and Rick D’Elia, whose barrages of jokes were wrapped around a brisk repartee with the audience. A Brentwood Fine Meats tri-tip dinner was served by the students of Future Farmers of America, which earned a tidy $1,000 for their efforts.
Ehler said the dinner would probably net about $10,000, most of which will be returned to the youth of the community via scholarships, support for the Police Activities League, A Place of Learning and the Village Community Resource Center. Also, next week Rotarians will complete the distribution of dictionaries to every third-grader in Brentwood, Oakley and Knightsen, and in conjunction with the Discovery Bay Lions Club, Byron and Discovery Bay as well.
Rotarians also support the Brentwood Regional Community Chest’s Christmas Basket Program, and this year that support included providing time for a plug for Mayor Bob Taylor’s The Mayor Is A Turkey fundraiser. Rotarians quickly plunked down enough $8 donations to buy 61 turkeys, hoping to cash in on Taylor’s promise to wear a turkey suit if donations reach 300 birds.
Following a brisk auction and raffle that included hundreds of donated items, the attendees trickled out of the Veterans Memorial Building, lugging their loot, chuckling to themselves, and planning to come back for more of the same next year.