Night of Magic

The Harper Creek Optimist Club will be sponsoring a “Night of Magic” on Friday November 9th at the Harper Creek High School Auditorium. This is our second time for the event and we are anticipating another well attended great show. All proceeds will be channeled back into the local youth projects our club supports.Magic Flyer 2018

Installation of Officers

On September 24th our club joined with the local Battle Creek and Pennfield Optimist Clubs at Clara’s on the River to install the upcoming year’s new officers. Accompanying a great meal and service, entertainment was provided by Harper Creek musical students. Pictured below are the new installed Harper Creek Optimist Club members: Tracie Tomak, Vice-President; Al Miller, Trustee; Dr. Craig Miller, Treasurer; Richard Peternel, President; Dr. Gary Gymer, Secretary; Mike Olson, Trustee and John Peruzze, Trustee. Unable to attend were Vice-President Dr. Jeromy Myers, Trustees Rob Ridgeway and Nate Smith.IMG_6848IMG_6842

Canine Copper

On September 20th our club was privileged to have as our guest speaker Officer Mark Beach from the Emmett Township Police Department. He presented with his well-trained canine friend “Copper” and informed our club about the history of Copper and his “dog duties”. Copper is relatively new to the department, but has already proved very valuable in assisting officers with numerous drug arrests. Our club helped financially with the purchase of Copper. Pictured below is Officer Beach, club member Craig Miller and Copper.2018-09-OptimistProgramCopper

Christmas Parade 2018

The Harper Creek Optimist Club will be sponsoring our communities 39th Annual Battle Creek Christmas Parade again this year. The theme for this year’s parade is Parade of Trees. The event will take place in downtown Battle Creek, Michigan starting at 5:45 PM Saturday, November 17. For more details of the event and to register to be a participant go to the following website:

Cross-Country Invitational

What started out as very early morning stormy weather on August 25th turned out to be one of our club’s most successful Cross-Country Invitational sponsored event last weekend at the Harper Creek High School sports complex. On the menu served up by our club for participants, coaches, parents and fans were free hot dogs (over 500!), chips, candy bars, apples, juice, coffee and water. Smiling faces and countless expression of thanks was well received by club members who donated their Saturday morning so the event could promote Optimism and support youth. Dr. Gary Gymer, who again chaired the event, extends a special thanks to the club members who volunteered their time. For more pictures and a brief summary of the event click on Cross Country Invitational under the Youth Service Projects on the main menu.2018-08-OptimistX-CountryWorkers12018-08-OptimistX-CountryFoodLine32018-08-OptimistX-CountryBoysFrSophStart2018-08-OptimistX-CountryHCBerning12018-08-OptimistX-CountryAwards2

2018 Harper Creek Optimist Open Tennis Classic Update

The Annual Optimist Tennis Tournament play starts at 6:00PM on Friday at the newly surfaced Harper Creek tennis courts with the Mixed Doubles starting the first round of their round robin format. There are two 5 team divisions designated as Red and Blue.  The winners of the divisions will meet for the championship on Sunday. Starting Saturday Mens A and Mens B tournaments each have 8 teams and will play a regular bracket tournament with a consolation bracket for first round losers. Womens Doubles will play a 2 match round robin format and the Youth Singles will have one match of play. To view the draws and obtain match times, click on the Youth Service Projects on the menu page and go to Tennis Tournament. There will be a drawing Saturday afternoon for various donated prizes; all participants will be eligible to win! The weather looks favorable, but in case of rain the tournament will move to the Minges Creek Racquet Club.

2018 Harper Creek Optimist Open Tennis Classic

The date for this year’s Harper Creek Optimist Open Tennis Classic is August 3 through August 5. It will be held at the Harper Creek High School Tennis Complex and the general tennis format will be the same: youth are encouraged to play singles and there are regular and mixed doubles divisions for adults. Youth and adults may enter not more than two tournaments and youth may also play doubles. Please click on the following link for all relative tournament information and to obtain an entry form:


Pictured below in action from last year’s tournament is the mixed youth/adult team of Ray Yager and Alexis Behnke plus the winning youth participants holding their trophies: Elise Norman and Andrew Hooker. To view pictures and results from previous tournaments click on Tennis Tournament under Youth Service Projects on the Home Page of this site.2017-08-OptimistTennisRayAlexis2017-08-OptimistTennisEliseAndrew

Optimist Junior International World of Golf

Under the direction of club members John Peruzze and Rich Peternel our club hosted the Optimist Junior International World of Golf at Binder Park Golf Course on June 13th.  The event was held this year in conjunction with the Calhoun County Junior Golf Tour and was the initial summer event for that program.

The star golfer of the event was 15-year-old Scott Yoder of Athens. He is a home schooled student and spends a good part of the year in Florida playing golf with his family. Scott shot a super 1-over-par 37 on the course 9-hole Marsh layout and a par-36 on the 9-hole Preserve layout for a 1-over-par total of 73, winning the Boys’ 15-18 division. Second place finisher was Darien Costa, of Harper Creek High School, who shot a combined total of 4-over-par 76. The Boys’ 12-14 age division (9 holes) was won by Parker Denney with a 48. The Boys’ 9-11 division winner, also 9 holes, was Spencer Denney with a 58. Winning the Girls’ 15-18 age division (18 holes) was Marie Mathieu shooting a 106. The Girls’ 12-14 division (9 holes) winner was Alexa Thurman with a 57.  Amiyah Gibson won the youngest Girls’ division (age 9 to 11), shooting a 52 for 9 holes on the Marsh course.

Our club chose Yoder, Costa and Gibson to represent the area at the State Optimist Tournament later in the month. Our club paid greens fees, offered lunch, awarded metals and trophies to the top divisional finishers, plus will pay the entry fees for our selected representatives at the State Tournament. Winning State players can move on to National and International competition.

Optimist Student of the Month

Our club’s general meeting at Moonraker West on May 3rd honored Harper Creek High School Students of the Month. The meeting was brought to order by club Vice-President Duncan Bailey. After the Pledge of Allegiance and the invocation, the students and their accompanying family members were greeted. Harper Creek High School Principal Dennis Anthony introduced the honored students and each gave a brief talk about their high school involvements and future academic plans. Students of the Month are selected monthly from the senior class by Harper Creek High School teachers relative to their superior academics and extra-curricular activities throughout their High School years. One student is chosen for each of the 10 school calendar months, but due to the busy upcoming end of the school year, the May and June honored students have been designated in advance. A meal was provided by our club for the students and their families. The meeting adjourned with a group reciting of the Optimist International Pledge.

Pictured below (L-R) are Students of the Month: Sean Fleisher, May 2018; Jonathon Taylor, October 2017; Molli Denney, December 2017; Dawson Bartlett, November 2017; Jena Wager, June 2018; Dakota Walbeck, September 2017; Kennedy Lewis, February 2018; Sophia Weller, April 2018 and Harper Creek High School Principal Dennis Anthony. Students of the Month Andrew Irons, January 2018 and Joseph Tatar, March 2018 were unable to attend the ceremony.IMG_6561

The September Student of the Month, Dakota Walbeck, was accompanied to the meeting by his parents Dave and Tiffany Walbeck.IMG_6564

The October Student of the Month, Jonathon Taylor, was accompanied to the meeting by Gary and Hannah Berning.IMG_6566

The November Student of the Month, Dawson Bartlett, was accompanied to the meeting by his father, Leon Bartlett.IMG_6570

The December Student of the Month, Molli Denny, was accompanied to the meeting by her mother Traci VanMiddlesworth.IMG_6572

The February Student of the Month, Kennedy Lewis, was accompanied to the meeting by her mother Tina Lewis.IMG_6568

The April Student of the Month, Sophia Weller, was accompanied to the meeting by her parents Bruce and Amy Lynn Weller plus sister, Grace.IMG_6580

The May Student of the Month, Sean Fleisher, was accompanied to the meeting by his parents Michael and Tina Fleisher.IMG_6574

The June Student of the Month, Jena Wager, was accompanied to the meeting by her parents Chad and Jill Wager.IMG_6576