CNOtes – Optimist 2.0 January 16, 2020 – Eric Soller – Old Scratch Pizza @ Nelly’s A Taste of Bolivia

Guests and Members in Attendance

Dawn Bunger
Jason Bunger
Ashley McGuire
Debbie Parks
Bill Shisler
Julie Shisler
Eric Soller
Vicki Thompson
Brenda Weller
Jack Anderson
Nancy Anderson
Diane Arehart
Patrick Arehart
Brandon Barrett
Joan Cordonnier
Mike Cordonnier
Abby Davis
Gary DeMarco
Judy DeMarco
Shelby DiPasquale
Emily Duke
Greg Fay
Stan Fronzaglia
Jesse Gaither
Greg Griffin
Gary Hansen
Bryan Miller
Brian Nolan
Lacy Owens
Laurie Poeppelman
Fred Polizzi
Jean Pummill
Rafael Santillan
Ashley Simeone
Bill Stone
Ron Thompson
Ron Tinnerman
Jon Werts
Suzanne Werts

All Photos are Here

CNO 2.0 Meeting Venue and Details

The venue for tonight’s CNO 2.0 meeting was Nelly’s Taste of Bolivia at 79 S. Main St Centerville, Ohio. Thank you to the owner of Nelly’s, Rafael Santillan and his fine team, for the great food and the space.

There was a 50/50 drawing won by Emily Duke.

There were 39 people at the meeting (30 members and 9 guests).

Greg Griffin announced that the net proceeds from the Christmas Tree lot fundraiser for 2019 was $45,000.

Eric Soller Old Scratch Pizza

Greg Fay introduced tonight’s speaker, Eric Soller, the owner of Old Scratch Pizza. He and his wife Stephanie opened the restaurant in October, 2016 after a year of hard work. He has been involved in the restaurant sector his whole life, either with restaurants or businesses that supplied equipment to restaurants.

The first location is at 812 S Patterson Blvd and the second one opened in 2019 at 440 Miamisburg Centerville Rd.

Eric’s first job when he was just 15 years old was at Subway. At that time, they cut meat and vegetables themselves at the restaurant. He earned an associate degree in culinary arts right out of High School. Later, he went back to school to learn food and beverage management.

At the end of 1999 he took a job for a food service company serving at grocery stores. They trained grocery stores how to cook for their customers. In 2006 he started a job at Hobart selling restaurant equipment because of his experience in training groceries. He learned a lot of principles from the corporate world that he applies to his restaurants.

While working at Hobart, he couldn’t get the idea out of his head for a pizza restaurant. He wrote business plans for his ideas as a hobby. He loves pizza. While traveling for Hobart he would do research for his ideas. He would go to 4 different pizza places in one night while traveling. With all of these business plans he referred to himself for a long time as a “wantrepreneur”.

The recurring ideas included that his restaurant should have big, long communal tables, like a “Neapolitan Pizza Beer Hall”, and be in a class B business location.

His restaurants are about simplicity. They will always have a simple menu. There might be different items at times, but never more items.

Their service is about kindness and nicety. New employees don’t need restaurant experience, but they need to be nice people. They can train them how to do the work, but it is hard to train someone how to be nice

Old Scratch makes Artisan Pizzas. They make the most complicated pizza in the fastest possible way. Everything in the restaurants, including the sauces and dressings, is made from scratch. He explained how the name of the restaurant came about. Pizza is an old recipe dating back to 900 A.D. and they make everything from scratch, so you get “Old” + “Scratch”.


They receive very high marks for service. Part of the reason for this is how the restaurant works. You still get the services you want while helping yourself with the simple things. You walk in and place your order, pickup your drinks and wait a short time for your food to be delivered to your table.

Hobart was very cooperative when he told them he planned to leave their employment and open a restaurant. He figured out when to let them know. A local news report was about to be published about his plans to open a restaurant. They called him for comment because they saw the application for a liquor license.

Eric and Stephanie love giving back to the community. They have a program called, “Cones for a Cause”. At each restaurant you can have free ice cream. They have a place for you to donate for your treat. They give this money to a local organization or cause each month. They look for small ones where $4000 can make a real difference. In 2019, they raised $50,000 and since 2016 they have raised a total of $140,000. Giving back helps them relate to the community and adds to the culture of their employees. An example of a cause is the Adaptive Color Guard. It is a color guard club for special needs teens and adults.

He said they have had good success. It took a while, but the lines to order started and they have stayed.

Eric owns the buildings where his restaurants are located. He is now in the commercial real estate business since his restaurants do not occupy the entire space in the buildings. He is looking for other restaurants or businesses to occupy the unused space in the buildings with his restaurants.

Thank you, Eric Soller, for sharing your story with us this evening.

About CNO 2.0

CNO 2.0 is a club within a club of the Centerville Noon Optimist club. CNO (and CNO 2.0) is a world class service organization. Our CNO 2.0 club within a club has become the model for Optimist clubs around the world. At regional, national and international meetings we are asked all the time about how our CNO 2.0 club and its meetings work.

Being a member of either club allows their members all the same opportunities to participate in fundraising and club activities. CNO 2.0 started in 2016 and is very much a part of the 52-year-old Centerville Noon Optimist Club. CNO has given away over $2 million during its history. CNO is a group of like-minded members that are passionate about helping youth and having fun in the process.

The speaker at each 2.0 meeting is someone with a local business success story.

The Centerville Noon Optimist and its clubs within a club have annual fundraisers and community activities.

Annual Fundraisers

  • Christmas Tree Lot, located behind the Centerville BMV
  • Avenue of Flags
  • Golf Outing

Major Activities for the youth in our community

  • Build-a-Bear at Children’s Hospital, 3 times a year
  • Fishing Derby in June
  • Kid’s Day in the Park in August
  • Easter Egg Hunt

CNO Donations 2013 through September 2019

Click this link to see a summary of the donations our club has made.

Over 50 years, we have donated close to $2,000,000 to our youth community. In the past 6 years, we have donated nearly $700,000.

CNOtes – January 14, 2020 – CLUB DAY – Tom Frazier Tee Off for Youth Committee Presentation

Phather Phil’s Prayer

Phather Phil did not provide a copy of his prayer this week – he said to tell all club members to come to lunch at noon and hear it in person!

Today’s Guests – WELCOME!

Guest Guest Of
Corky Katz Kristine Balsan
Mike Kistler Dave Kaye
Kristen Marks Gary DeMarco
Mary Stahley Jerry Stahley
Kate Trangenstein Jessie Lightle
Ralph Young Charlie Tapp

All Photos from the Meeting are Here

Committee Announcements

Judy DeMarco announced that last week’s speaker Jenell Ross sent CNO a thank you note and a donation to the CNO scholarship fund.

Cherie Gentry announced that the quarterly Great Ohio District meeting in Columbus will be 2/15/2020. CNO will be receiving several awards. There is still time to sign up. Contact Cherie for forms to attend. The deadline for early bird pricing is January 23, 2020. CNO will pay the fee for you to attend. Send completed forms to Roland Rapp.

Jean Pummill will be taking over the PDP and PGI programs from Myron. Check with her for updated passport books and for help using this program to help your personal growth and to enhance your value to the club and community.

Gary Hansen, the Will Cale scholarship chair, said that the committee has just received the next batch of candidates for this scholarship. The scholarship is given to students overcoming a significant disadvantage. CNO provides 3-year scholarships to Sinclair Community College. The next meeting will be before lunch at 11:15 AM on 1/21/2020 at Yankee Trace before the CNO lunch meeting. Come and learn more about how you can help. There will be information about becoming a mentor or helping in other ways.

Katie Calloway, the  social media chair, asked if you would please like CNO on Facebook. Contact her if you would like to join the committee. She said if you are a committee chair and have announcements contact her and she will get them on Facebook.

Bob Lawson announced that the Fishing Derby will be June 6, 2020. The website has the latest information and the 2020 registration form and can be found here.

Committee Meetings

  • 1/21/2020, 6 PM, Monthly board meeting at Woodbourne Library
  • 2/12/2020, 6 PM, Golf Committee at Buckeye Home Health Care on Paragon Rd. Future meetings will be 3/18/2020, 4/15/2020, 5/13/2020, 6/17/2020, 7/8/2020

Tom Frazier Tee Off for Youth Golf 2020 Volunteer Opportunities

Today was CNO “Club Day”. Instead of an outside speaker, Mike Bevis and Judy DeMarco presented information about last year’s golf outing and how you can help with the 2020 outing. The 2020 golf outing will be 6 months from now on Monday, July 13, 2020. This will the 29th golf fundraiser for CNO.

The CNO Tom Frazier Tee Off for Youth Golf fundraiser is the premier golf outing of Dayton. If you would like to play in the tournament be sure to register early as it sells out every year. You can get a registration form here.

The golf committee is comprised of about 25 members and they help produce the best golf outing in the Dayton area. Starting in January, the committee meets once a month. Any member can join the committee. The meetings are fun as well as functional.

Net proceeds from the 2019 fundraiser was $50,000. A third of the money each year is donated to Dayton Children’s Hospital. They use the funds to help disadvantaged families afford the travel expenses to get their children to and from the hospital for their childhood cancer treatments.

The outing is held at Sycamore Country Club. Mike is often asked why the outing is held at a private country club. He said it was because there is more flexibility in bringing in our own supplies, such as food, drinks, ice, etc.

Several committee members spoke today about areas where you can help:

  • Pat Behn runs the golfer registration process on the day of the outing.
  • Barbara Santo, Val Huff and Vida McDowell organize the silent auction. All items are donated for the 60 baskets they make. The silent auction typically raises about $8000. They need donations of items for the baskets. Gift cards make excellent donations.
  • Donna Huss handles the various mailings and coordinates ice and beer delivery.
  • Golfers are presented with gift bags with goodies in them from sponsors. This process needs a new person to be in charge. Let Mike Bevis know if you would like to be that person. Thank you to Ellie Parker for handling this for several years.
  • Wendy Hattan takes care of posting updates on Facebook.
  • Denise O’Neill and her family cook the food donated by Dorothy Lane Market.
  • Vince Reidy works on getting donations from area automobile dealers.
  • Chris Ziehler works on getting donations of gift certificates from local area golf courses for foursomes with carts.
  • Gary DeMarco is the coordinator of the day. His team uses golf carts to make sure things are setup for the day. This includes tables, drink stations, beverage stations, and people to monitor the hole in one prize station. Volunteers work 3 hours shifts. They can always use more volunteers. You do not need to know how to play golf to help.

Scroll down to the bottom of this blog entry to read he full report about the 2019 golf outing.

Thank Notes sent to CNO

You can read recent thank you notes here.

CNO Donations 2013 through September 2019

Click this link to see a summary of the donations our club has made.

Over 50 years, we have donated close to $2,000,000 to our youth community. In the past 6 years, we have donated nearly $700,


Member Birthday
Bob Duffy January 15
Barbara Santo January 17
Myron Rheaume January 20

Membership Anniversaries

Member Month Day Joined # Years
Susan Thomsen January 14 1/14/1997 23
Deb Ulrich January 18 1/18/2017 3
Dick Lee January 18 1/18/2017 3
Lynne Reilly January 18 1/18/2017 3
Pam Miller January 18 1/18/2017 3
Shawn Thacker January 18 1/18/2017 3
Gary DeMarco January 20 1/20/2016 4

New Member Readings and Inductions

Name Sponsor 1st 2nd 3rd Reading or Induction
D Ralph Young Charlie Tapp 2nd Reading
Michael Kistler Dave Kay 1st Reading
Kristen Marks Gary De Marco 1st Reading

Sergeants at Arms

Member Infraction
Gentlemen that did not stand when given these instructions. If you are the best looking guy at each table please stand up.
Chris McAlpine Buying a Tesla
Jerry Stahley Don Kelley claimed Mary Stahley as his guest today, even though Mary was sitting right next to Jerry. Jerry was therefore fined for not bringing a guest today.
Fred Polizzi Stealing the bell
Scott Langer Didn’t think lunch was special enough.

 Happy Bucks! 

Member Reason
Bob Duffy LSU won the NCAA National Football Championship.
Donna Huss Grandson married a wonderful girl last Saturday. David Ladd officiated the ceremony.
Jay McAlpine Attended the Lady Gaga show recently in Las Vegas.
Lynne Reilly Attending today’s lunch meeting.

CNOtes – January 7, 2020 – Community Champion Award Presentation

Phather Phil’s Prayer

Phather Phil did not provide a copy of his prayer this week – he said to tell all club members to come to lunch at noon and hear it in person!

Today’s Guests – WELCOME!

Sue Bicknell
Ann Christie
Jeff Danner
Brian Hogarth
Mike Kistler
Sybil Martin
Yvonne Petty
Jenell Ross
Andrea White
Ralph Young

All Photos from the Meeting are Here

Social Events

1/19/2020, 2 PM – Sunday, U.D.  Women’s basketball game followed by a group meal at the Spaghetti Warehouse. Tickets are $5.00 for the game and dinner at Spaghetti Warehouse is on your own. Sign up at lunch or contact Beth Duncan.

Optimist Community Champion 2019, Jenell Ross

Mike Bevis and Judy DeMarco discussed our annual Optimist Community Champion award.

Mike Bevis notes

Five years ago, we started our Optimist Community Champion recognition. If you are new to the club, you probably are asking what is a community champion?

It is the goal of your club and your committee to honor unsung and unrecognized citizens who have gone over and above to make a difference in our community.

These community leaders can be from any walks of life. They could be a coach, a neighbor, a mentor, a teacher, a businessperson, a doctor or even a member of our club.

Over the past years we have received numerous recommendations and have spoken with many worthy citizens in our community. We have found so many who are worthy of such awards, so we always have our work cut out for us.

Why do we recognize these worthy individuals? Well that is up to you…on your tables, you have forms where you can nominate the next honoree or pass it on to someone else. Make sure you check this out or go to the website and download one. There are many unsung heroes out there.

We are always searching for people who have given back. Ones who have touched someone. Someone who has gone over and above. A person who has provided hope and a positive vision to bring out the best in our community. We were looking for people who have dedicated their life or career to encourage friendship among all people or have encouraged the development of youth to advance the well-being of life in our community.

Judy DeMarco notes

We have been honored to find that there are a few special unsung members in our community who have been recognized as Community Champions.

In the past few years, we have honored the following community champions:

  • Lisa Elam Tucker, owner of Bill’s Donuts
  • Randy Eldridge, former manager of the Kroger Market Place
  • Marc Colclasure of Synergy Family Therapy
  • Karen Chatman, a special education teacher
  • Greg and Tiffany Moehl who started the First Dawn food pantry in Centerville.
  • Dean & Mindy Heyne foster parents for more than 35 special needs children
  • Tonya Johns who started Operation Prom Dress
  • Jani Rice a 35-year veteran nurse at Dayton Children’s Hospital


It is the goal of your club and your committee to continue to honor these unsung and unrecognized citizens who have gone over and above to make a difference in our community.

Tom Novak’s nomination of today’s recipient

This Club’s “Community Champion” Award is our way of reaching out into our community to recognize those who have stepped forward to also “give back” in their own special way.  Today, we recognize Jenell Ross as our Community Champion of 2019.

As the President of the Bob Ross Auto Group in Centerville since 2010, we might assume that this role may prevent her from actively involving herself in giving back to our larger community.  Those of us who had the opportunity to hear from her as our featured speaker at our 2.0 meeting in August of last year, know differently.

My introduction to Jenell’s generosity came thru her support of our Avenue of Flags program as one of our earliest subscribers, and the first of all the auto dealerships on Loop Road; then, at the beginning of last year, in a time of explosive growth of flags, (but still in need of additional flag-carrying vehicles), she responded to us with the use of a vehicle from her dealership – all 5 holidays.

I learned that she has been active in many community groups and community causes – too many for me to mention at this time, but they are best illustrated when, in 2018, the Presidents Club of Dayton presented her the Citizen Legion of Honor Award for her outstanding volunteer leadership. 

In 2010, she formed the Norma Ross Foundation to honor her mother after her mother lost her battle to breast cancer.  I hope she will share some thoughts on the efforts of that foundation which has raised over $300,000.

This past summer, when the tornado devastated our Dayton community, she partnered with the Red Cross and was at the forefront collecting and delivering items for those in immediate need. 

Jenell’s spirit of “giving back” continues to make a difference in the lives of many in our community – please give her a warm welcome.

Jenell Ross Acceptance Speech

Jenell Ross is President of Bob Ross Auto Group which celebrated 45 years of business in 2019.

She feels she was chosen for this award because of her parents. Her parents always had everyone in her family giving back to the community. She grew up thinking this is what everyone did.  Giving back and being involved in the community is part of life. She appreciates that she and her team can give back. The 100 employees of her company make it possible for her to have the time to give back.

She lost her mother Norma J Ross to breast cancer in 2010. Jenell started the Norma J. Ross Memorial Foundation. Their website is To date they have raised $350,000 for the American Cancer Society. The foundation also helps make breast cancer screening available for those who are under served.

She thanked CNO for the honor and she looks forward to working with CNO and the community.

Thank Notes sent to CNO

You can read recent thank you notes here.

CNO Donations 2013 through September 2019

Click this link to see a summary of the donations our club has made.

Over 50 years, we have donated close to $2,000,000 to our youth community. In the past 6 years, we have donated nearly $700,


Member Birthday
Ted Humphrey January 7
Laura Caschera January 8
Wilma Quarin January 8
Don Massie January 10
Bill Williams January 11
Jesse Gaither January 11
Jordan Feldkamp January 11
Candace Rinke January 11
Joe Soucy January 12
Rob Jones January 13

Membership Anniversaries

Member Month Day Joined # Years
Greg McAfee January 7 1/7/2008 12
John Speers January 7 1/7/2008 12

New Member Readings and Inductions

Name Sponsor 1st 2nd 3rd Reading or Induction
D Ralph Young Charlie Tapp 1st Reading
Jay Schindler Mike Bevis Induction

Sergeants at Arms

Member Infraction
Gary Smiga Picture in the paper at UD basketball game under the basket
Brandon Barrett For trying to pardon himself from future fines on last day of being a sergeant
Donna Huss For trying to pardon herself from future fines on last day of being a sergeant
Judge Long For helping Donna Huss and Brandon Barrett try to exempt themselves from fines on their last day of being  sergeants
Christine Balsan and Wes Cleaves For showing up at the lunch meeting 12/10/2019 when it was cancelled since the holiday party was that night
Chris McAlpine Letting his wife and children run out of gasoline
Art Hung Accusing sergeant Jay McAlpine of wearing a clip on tie
Gary Anderson For never inviting Jay McAlpine to a CNO lunch meeting
Doug Reno Left CNO holiday party early

 Happy Bucks! 

Member Reason
Dr. Dan Passidomo Welcomed a new grandson
Doug Reno Welcomed a new grandchild; He celebrated by buying a truck from today’s speaker Jenell Ross from Ross Auto Group
Cherie Gentry The Toys for Tots organization that she chairs went from helping 500 kids in 2018 to 2300 for 2019
Gary Hansen Finished Master Bedroom remodel after starting the project in April 2018
Gary Hansen 45th wedding anniversary
Jack Anderson Minnesota Vikings won their playoff game
Bob Burkman 57th wedding anniversary
Myron Rheaume Thankful for the Optimist Creed helping him through many relatives health challenges over the holiday season
Myron Rheaume Thankful for how much CNO gets to give away from happy bucks and fines
Myron Rheaume This spring at the original site of the first Optimist Club, the Great Lakes region will have their first regional meeting (CNO is part of this region)