Upcoming Programs
Aug 07, 2015
Aug 14, 2015
Aug 21, 2015
Aug 28, 2015
View entire list
Upcoming Events
Networking Hour
Aug 12, 2015
7:30 AM – 9:00 AM
Tennis & Dinner at the Riviera
Riviera Country Club
Aug 14, 2015
4:30 PM – 9:00 PM
Backyard Badminton, Horseshoes, & BBQ
Aug 29, 2015
5:00 PM – 8:00 PM


Rotary Club of Pacific Palisades

Club Meetings, Thursdays at 7:15 AM
925 Haverford Ave
Pacific Palisades CA 90272  

Rotary Club of Westwood

Meeting Thursday noon at the
UCLA Faculty Center
480 Charles E. Young Drive East
Los Angeles, California 90095


Online makeup:
(three per year)

Special Santa Monica Makeups:
Rotary First Tuesday

(one per year)


Rotary Third Thursday
(one per year)

Rotary Club of Santa Monica

Service Since 1922

Meets Noon Most Fridays

Riviera Country Club

1250 Capri Drive

Pacific Palisades, CA 90272


Aug 07, 2015 Dr. Avraham Perlmutter - Holocaust Survivor Story

This Friday, Holocaust survivor and author Dr. Avraham Perlmutter will share his inspirational life story – from outwitting the Nazis during WWII, to fighting to establish the State of Israel, to ultimately becoming an award-winning scientist in America.

Also, this week we will celebrate July and August birthdays!! No, you can't wear your birthday suit. Sorry!



Twilight Tennis & Dinner

Tennis will be held 2nd Fridays!

Come play tennis & dine at Riviera!
Friday, August 14, 2015 @ 4:30 p.m. 
Dinner @ 7:30 p.m.
at the Riviera Country Club.

Contact Karim Jaude at
or 310-470-0650 to participate and for further details.

All levels welcome, and bring guests!

But there are only 16 spots so RSVP ASAP!

Healthy Living Backyard Badminton, Horseshoes & BBQ

Saturday, August 29, 2015
5:00 to 8:00pm

809 Enchanted Way
Pacific Palisades, CA 90272

Come join a backyard BBQ with Roary friends!


Bring a spouse or a friend!
And sign up to bring an appetizer, salad or side dish to share, plus your favorite beverage.
Host to provide burgers, turkey burgers, hotdogs, tea, lemonade & dessert.


RSVP to Connie Maguire or 310/663-3079


November 15, 2015!
(Reminder: No meeting the Friday before)


Rotary Club of Santa Monica
International Wine & Jazz Festival
The Museum of Flying

Santa Monica
2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.


This is the annual fundraiser for local and international service projects
sponsored by the Rotary Club of Santa Monica
and the Santa Monica Rotary Club Foundation!

Click here to purchase tickets!
or contact Suzan Allbritton at or 310-392-3654.


Toast Life with an afternoon of delicious food, wine and live jazz music while enjoying the Museum of Flying 


Plenty of FREE Parking 


Great Wines

Fabulous Menu by Fig of the Fairmont Hotel


Music by the George Kahn Trio


Live & Silent Auction

July 17 was our first meeting of the Rotary year, and our District Governor visit, and we had an awesome speaker on the Santa Monica Road Races!!

District Governor DJ Sun takes a ride in the old racer!

Last week’s Rotary meeting was a crash course lesson in Santa Monica’s genesis. The main theme was the city’s roots as an auto racing destination, and the syllabus included buzzworthy L.A. trivia, as well as which streets used to be the auto track.

Harold Osmer, historian and author of such books as “Where They Raced” and “Real Road Racing,” began his lecture at the beginning of Santa Monica, when it was just a rigged coastline – “nothing worth coming up seeing.”

People started coming to Santa Monica in the 1880s on trains, when a ticket during the railroad wars would cost upwards of $185 from Missouri. The train station stopped at the top of the Santa Monica Canyon near Patrick’s Roadhouse.

“What southern California had was a lot of space and a really good climate,” said Osmer, a former engineer who pursued a degree in geography. “To get to Southern California you had to want to be here. You had to target this place. The people who came here initially came for their health; later on they came because it provided a lot of opportunity. Problem was, they had to create that opportunity.”

When Osmer was writing his graduate thesis that would eventually turn into a book, he focused on auto racetracks in Los Angeles; “where they were, what’s there today, and what affect the race track had on future landings.”

He found out that more auto racing had taken place in Southern California than any other place in the world. Dating back to 1903 and to the current time, there were 174 different official race tracks in Southern California.

“A lot of Santa Monica history can be found form 1923 forward for some reason, but Santa Monica road races actually took place from 1909 to 1919. My goal here today is to point out how important the road races were to Santa Monica’s autonomy from the big nasty neighbor of Los Angeles,” Osmer told the audience.

The first main attraction of Santa Monica was the ill-fated Arcardia Hotel, on Ocean Ave. just south of the Pier. At that time, the city was competing with Venice, which had the topographical advantage of being sea level. At the Arcadia Hotel, you had to go down long flights of stairs to get to the beach and walk back up at the end of the day.

“This wound up to be probably the first celebrity trials in Los Angeles, because in 1903 nobody was here yet,” Osmer said.

His sentence? Assault with a deadly weapon claiming alcohol insanity – “in essence, the Twinkie defense.”

After two years at San Quentin, he rehabilitated his public image and donated today’s landmarks like Griffith Park, the Observatory, and the Greek Theatre.

After 10 years in business, the state-of-the-art Arcadia Hotel shut down.

“You couldn’t get anyone to stay in Santa Monica, that was the problem.”

As Santa Monica went through boom and bust periods of tourism, the city was contacted by Auto Dealers Association and got the idea to attract attention through some good old-fashioned racing.

The first organized auto race took place in 1903, and from 1909 to 1919 Santa Monica experienced a growth spurt.

The most famous in Santa Monica ran from from Ocean Ave. to Wilshire to San Vicente boulevards. Fun fact: The corner of Ocean and Wilshire was called Dead Mans Curve.

“Nobody ever died at Dead Man’s Curve – they called it that because it sells a lot of newspaper. It’s about potential and watching this for whatever demented reasons people did,” Osmer said. “They started off on Ocean right where the avenue starts and come down and made that tight left turn ... Next time you go that way, notice as you turn onto Wilshire, you’re now going uphill. You go all the way to the Old Soldier’s Home, which is the Veteran’ Center, and turn around and come down San Vicente and this is downhill.”

Well, people flocked to that first race in 1909 – the estimated crowd was about 40,000 people.

“By 1916, there were well over 100,000,” he said.

“Auto racing in this period was simply the biggest spectator-sporting event. Nothing else was bigger. And there was no radio or television or other ways to spread the word,” he said.

The stars of the West Coast racing world were tough characters from the late 1920s, early 30s era.

Men like Barney Oldfield, Earl Devore, Eddie Pullen, and Jack Tower.

Just a lot of crusty characters with big hands – “they had to because of these great big steering wheels that didn’t have powered steering” – and all good mechanics – “they had to be because they had to fix their own cars.”

These road races were relived that night, where the Fairmont Miramar Hotel and Bungalows sponsored the re-enactment to benefit the Santa Monica History Museum.

To view a fun video from the day, follow this link...


Service Since 1922 - Meets Noon Most Fridays
Riviera Country Club - 1250 Capri Drive - Pacific Palisades

Savitri Labensart
Executive Secretary
P.O. Box 586
Santa Monica, CA 90406-3316
United States of America
 Phone: +1 (310) 917-3313
Fax:+1 (310) 917-3316

Nicholas Goehner – Editor, Webmaster
Phone: +1 (480) 213-6749
Jillian Alexander – Editor, Webmaster
Phone: +1 (310) 260-9765 x 108