105 years ago today, the Kiwanis club was formed in Detroit, Michigan, as a networking group for young professional businessmen, but it turned into so much more. Today, Kiwanis International is in 96 nations with 550,000 members who dedicate themselves to serving children and improving the world.
Joe Prance, a tailor, was the first businessman to say yes to the idea conceived by organizer Allen S. Browne. These days, Kiwanis clubs host nearly 150,000 creative service projects each year, raising more than $100 million annually to support community causes and the Kiwanis Children’s Fund, which fights poverty, improves literacy, and offers mentoring. (1915)
– Photos from the Kiwanis International on Facebook
MORE Good News on this Date:
- Albania declared itself a republic (1925)
- Operatic tenor Placido Domingo, one of the famous trio known as “The Three Tenors,” turns 78 today (1941)
- U.S. President Jimmy Carter pardoned nearly all American Vietnam War draft evaders, some of whom had emigrated to Canada (1977)
- Pope John Paul II began his first visit to Cuba (1998)
- A 72-year-old hardware store was inundated with customers when a grassroots “cash mob” delivered a boost to the local family-owned Ohio business (2012)
- The Women’s March for civil rights drew more than a million marchers in D.C. and around the U.S. (2017)
34 years ago today, the first National Hugging Day was celebrated, founded by a minister and social services worker in Michigan.
The Hugging Day website name “Most Huggable in 2006” Jana Doolittle of Clio, Michigan, a third grade teacher at Carter Elementary who asks her class daily “Does anyone need a hug today?” (Watch the popular Free Hugs music video)
And Happy Birthday to the smart, and sporty actress Geena Davis, who turns 64 today.
The actress, most known for her role in Thelma and Louise and A League of Their Own, won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for The Accidental Tourist in 1988. The Mensa member who has campaigned for more and better women’s roles in children’s programming also fronts the Women’s Sports Foundation. Davis was one of 300 women who vied for a semifinals berth in the US Olympic archery team and placed 24th just two years after being introduced to the sport. In 2007 she was honored for her work on gender in the media, receiving the Hollywood Hero award – WATCH that video, here. (1956)
And, on this day in 1968, Jimi Hendrix recorded his version of the Bob Dylan song All Along the Watchtower. Sitting in on the session at Olympic Studios in London, just six months after Dylan’s original recording, were Brian Jones from the Rolling Stones and Dave Mason from Traffic. The single by the Jimi Hendrix Experience peaked at No.20 on the US charts and was ranked 47th in Rolling Stone magazine’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. WATCH him perform it live…