Club Projects
The Lake Sumter Lions are proud to support our local & state communities
through various club projects. 

Diabetes Screening Again at the American Legion

Lake Sumter Lions were back at the American Legion to conduct diabetic screenings at the Health Expo.  Led by Lion John Bradshaw, screeners included Lions Bob Irvine, Todd Saylor, and Bill Sheehan.  Assisting the screeners were Lions Michelle Fournier and Sonia Saylor.

Lake Sumter Lions Receives Sumter Co Schools Award

Lake Sumter Lions Club was awarded the Sumter County District Wide Outstanding Service to Schools Award for their KidSight vision screenings. The award given to Club President Chuck LeGare by Sumter County Superintendent of Schools, Richard Shirley.  Lion Chuck leads the KidSight project for the Lake Sumter Lions Club.



Lake Sumter Lions Receives Award

At a recent meeting of the Friends of the SOZO kids, Lake Sumter Lion Eileen accepted a Certificate of Appreciation for the Club.  Lion Eileen led the effort of Lake Sumter Lions providing meals for the After School Program at Sandy Acres and Forest Lake Park.  Eastport Lions were also honored with a Certificate.



Lions Provide Meals to SOZO Kids

Lions prepare and deliver meals for the Sozo Kids After School Program.  Four groups of Lake Sumter Lions each provide a monthly meal for the 30-45 kids at Sandy Acres and Forest Lake Park facilities. 




Eyeglass Sorting Keeping Lions Busy!

Lake Sumter Lions conducted several eyeglass sortings in the first half of 2024. Thanks goes to Lion John Sabatini for organizing these sortings.

In April, Lions sorted approximately 20,000 pairs of used eyeglasses.




In March, Lions sorted approximately 13,000 pairs of used eyeglasses.



In January, Lions sorted approximately 12,500 pairs of used eyeglasses.




Lake Sumter Lions and KidSight at Rotary Fest

Lake Sumter Lions Chuck, Dennis, Ed and Marilyn conducted their vision screening (aka KidSight) on the second floor. Due to the increment weather, the Rotary Fun & Food Fest was moved indoors at the Wildwood Community Center. Lion Ed explained the camera to Wildwood Mayor Ed while Lion Ed got his face painted.



Lions and VIP Golf

Every month, from Sep to May, Lake Sumter Lions pair with golfers from the Visually Impaired Persons (VIP) Support Group to play a round of golf.  Lead Lion John Thomson organizes Lions who drive the golf carts and who provide direction on where and how far to hit the golf ball.





Lake Sumter Lions Served VIP Luncheon

Twelve Lake Sumter Lions served lunch at the March meeting of the VIP (Visually Impaired Persons) Club at Bridgeport Rec Center. Lions helped serve a delicious picnic style lunch of hotdogs, chips, cookies, and soda. Thanks goes to Lions Bob and Jean Hatten who organized the luncheon.




Diabetes Screening at the American Legion

Nine Lake Sumter Lions conducted diabetic screenings at the American Legion. Led by Lion John M. Bradshaw, they screened 20 folks attending the monthly breakfast. There was success at this screening thanks to the greeters marketing this free service and Lion Esther Ann Walton offering assistance with completing the consent forms.
The Commandant of the American Legion was very pleased to offer this opportunity to his members and welcome Lions back again.


Lions Ring Bells Again for Salvation Army

This was the second year that Lake Sumter Lions rang bells for the Salvation Army. Thanks goes to Lions Bob and Jean for organizing the Lake Sumter Lions participation in this service event.


We did it again!! For the second consecutive year, the Lake Sumter Lions were honored with the "Over the Top Bellringing" award (Service Clubs category) by the Salvation Army. Lake Sumter Lions brought in $3,290.63 ringing bells last Christmas 2023 for the SA Red Kettle fundraiser.
Lake Sumter Lion Bob Hatten accepted the award at the Salvation Army Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon. Lion Bob was joined at the event by Lions Bob Irvine and Art Staus.


Lake Sumter Lions Served the VIP for Christmas

Ten Lake Sumter Lions helped served at the Visually Impaired People (VIP) Christmas luncheon last week at Bridgeport Rec Center. Thanks goes to LS Lions Bob and Jean Hatten (who organized the luncheon), John Hanna and Bernice Hanna, Cecile Raphel Mills, Mary Alice Raphel Phillips, John Thomson and Annette Thomson, and new Lions Cheryl Pavell and Doug Seiders (who took the photos). Thanks Lions!


Lions Treat the SOZO Kids

Lake Sumter Lions and Eastport Lions gathered at the Mello's house to fill 144 bags of Christmas candy treats for the SOZO Kids After School Program. Lake Sumter Lion Eileen Sabatini Disinger and Eastport Lion Dave Cremisi coordinated the event. Bags were packed in Eastport Lion Dave's car for transport to the SOZO Sandy Acres facility.


KidSight - 27,000 screenings

Since June 2016, the Lake Sumter Lions have screened the vision of over 27,000 children in Lake, Marion and Sumter counties and beyond.  Thanks goes to leaders Lions Chuck LeGare and Jon Joel, along with Linda and Dennis Ryan...and the many Lions who have helped screen the children. Great work!
UPDATE:  Now 29,000 screenings!


Lake Sumter Lions Conducts a Food Drive

Lake Sumter Lions recently held a food drive at six Regional Rec Centers. Both food and $$ donations benefitted local food banks. Great service to our community.



VIP and Lions Golf

Saturday was a beautiful day for the VIP (Visually Impaired Persons) /Lake Sumter Lions golf at El Santiago Golf Course. Lake Sumter Lions John Angiolo, John Hanna, Dan LeBlond, Bill Sheahan, & A.J. Theiler drove & assisted the visually impaired & blind golfers. This program is coordinated by Lion John Thomson.


KidSight: Vision Screenings at The Charter Schools

Lake Sumter Lions Chuck LeGare, Joanne Lex Sheahan, Ralph Long, Jon Joel, Bob Irvine, and Doris Ann Brennan, along with Eastport Lions Chris Culberson, and Chuck Zeller screened the vision of 507 children in the Charter School, Buffalo Ridge Kindergarten, 1st and 3rd Grades.


Lions March in White Cane Day activities

The 3 Lions Clubs of The Villages (OBG, Lake Sumter, and Eastport) joined New Vision for Independence and the Visually Impaired Persons (VIP) Club for the annual White Cane Walk at Lake Sumter Landing square. The Walk sought to champion the full participation of blind Americans in our community.



Lions 2023-2024 Peace Poster Contest

Theme - Dare to Dream

The Lake Sumter Lions Club again sponsored the Peace Poster Contest with The Villages Charter Middle School, at both the Buffalo Ridge and Middleton locations.  Top four entries were awarded checks for $100, $75, $50, and $50  for 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place respectively for each location. The First Place winning posters are forwarded to District 35-O for the further competition at that higher level.  Thanks goes to the both Charter School Art Departments who encouraged students in their artistic endeavors. Also, thanks to Lions Linda and John Bradshaw, the Lake Sumter Lions Peace Poster Chairs.

These are the top 4 posters from The Middle School at Buffalo Ridge.

These are the top 4 posters at the Middle School at Middleton

Club Members were asked to judge over 70 entries.


KidSight:  25,000 Vision Screenings

Lake Sumter Lion Dan screened the 25,000th child in the Club's KidSight vision screening program. PreSchool children were screened at the Little Darlings Children Care Center in Umatilla. Lake Sumter Lions began their KidSight vision screenings in June 2016.


 2023 Recipients of Lions Scholarships

Lake Sumter Lions Club awarded six scholarships this year to graduates in two local high schools, The Villages Charter High School and the Wildwood High School.  Lion John (aka Walter) was Chair of the Club's Scholarship Committee.


Flags at the Florida National Cemetery

On Sunday, May 28, 2023, 23 Lake Sumter Lions and friends travelled to the Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, FL to plant flags on the graves of our nation's Veterans in honor of Memorial Day. This was truly a humbling experience reading the headstones and thanking the veterans for their service and sacrifice.



On Saturday June 3rd, 14 Lions travelled back to the Florida National Cemetery to remove the flags that were previously placed for Memorial Day.



Serving the VIP Club

Lions John & Bunny and John & made sandwiches for the VIP (Visually Impaired Persons) Support Group Meeting. Lions Cecile, Mary Alice, Bob & Jean helped serve at Thursday's meeting.



Cooking for the SOZO Kids

Lake Sumter Lions prepared an after school meal for the SOZO Kids who live in the Ocala Forest. They are one of 3 groups of Lake Sumter Lions who prepare a monthly meal that is delivered to either Sandy Acres or Forest Lake Park facility. Thanks goes to Chairwoman Eileen for coordinating this event for the Club.



Training to Read Eyeglass Prescriptions

Lake Sumter Lions John and Tim traveled to the Lake Alfred Lions Clubhouse to receive training on the equipment that reads the prescription for eyeglasses.  With the Lake Sumter Lions collecting over 10K of used eyeglasses annually, being able to read prescriptions would help greatly in the sorting of eyeglasses.  These sorted eyeglasses are used for needy Florida residents as well as for mission to other parts of the world.  Thanks to Lake Alfred Lion Maggie for providing the training.


KidSight:  24,000 Vision Screenings

Lake Sumter Lions screened their 24,000th child! Lions were screening at the We are the Future preschool. Lake Sumter Lions began their KidSight vision screenings in June 2016. Thanks goes to Lions Chuck and Jon (pictured left and right) who leads the program for the Lake Sumter Lions Club. Also pictured is Lion Ralph (center).


Lions Serving at the VIP Luncheon

Lake Sumter Lions John, Bob, and Todd cooked hot dogs and Lions John T, Cecile and Mary Alice served attendees at the Visually Impaired People (VIP) monthly meeting in March.  


Lions & SOZO Kids:  Making Marbles "Runs"

Lake Sumter Lions Art and Molly, with the help of Lion Bob, kicked off the month of March by teaching kids at the Sandy Acre SOZO facility how to build marble runs. After a simple level was completed, they worked with each child to build the next level of difficulty following the diagrams in a Gravitrax workbook. What started out to be easy became more and more challenging, but kids discovered different ways of completing the tracks so the marbles would run smoothly from beginning to end. It was fun for both kids and Lions!


Lions & SOZO Kids:  Making Marbles

Lake Sumter Lions Art and Molly taught 26 kids with the SOZO after school program how to make marbles out of clay at their Sandy Springs facility. They enjoyed putting their personal spin on each using different colors and designs. They then put their marbles in a bag with their name on it. Their creations will be baked by the Lions to harden and will be returned to the kids next week. They can’t wait to play with them!



Giving Showcase

Lake Sumter Lions participated in The Villages Giving Showcase with a booth displaying the Club's various service activities, to include KidSight screenings and VIP Golf.  The purpose of the Giving Showcase was to highlight local organizations, like the Lions, who give back to the community.  Attendees talked to Lions and learned about our club's service events and fundraisers.



Lions and the SOZO Kids

Every month, from January to April, the Lake Sumter Lions are supporting the SOZO Kids (impoverished children who live in the Ocala Forest) in an after school program. At Sandy Acres and Forest Lake Park, Lions provide a meal (3 times a month) and play marbles (once a month). Thanks to Lion Eileen for organizing this service activity.




Lions are #1 Bell Ringers!

Wow! At the Salvation Army Volunteer Luncheon, the Lake Sumter Lions Club was recognized as the #1 service organization serving as bell ringers in 2022. Lake Sumter Lion Bob Hatten accepted the award and plaque. Thanks goes to Lion Molly Staus who took these photos.



Lions Ring Bells for Salvation Army

Lake Sumter Lions were Bell Ringers for the Salvation Army this year. LS Lions rang the bells at the Walmart Marketplace off Rt 466A. Thanks goes to Lions Bob and Jean for organizing the Lake Sumter Lions participation in this service event.




Lions and Marbles

Lake Sumter Lions Art & Molly traveled to the Sandy Acres Sozo Kids Activities Building to conduct the first of what is hoped to be many future marble shooting sessions. There was a total of 23 youngsters ranging from ages 6 to 12 years. After an initial slide presentation, the kids were broken up into 3 separate age groups to knuckle down at the practice rings.



KidSight Vision Screening

Since June 30, 2016, Lake Sumter Lions have screened over 23,000 children!!

Lake Sumter Lions Jon and Linda (along with Chuck) screened the 23,000th child at the Little Villages, Inc day care in Fruitland Park.


Lions Prepared Meals for SOZO Kids

It took a village...or rather a Lions prepare and deliver food to the SOZO Kids (aka children living in the Ocala Forest). First, Lake Sumter Lions gathered at the Mello's house to put together 50 Halloween bags of treats for the children. Lion Esther Ann made 44 beautiful cupcakes with candy pumpkins on top. PDG Lion Ed Mello cooked the 60 corn dogs. And Lions Ralph and Jane delivered the food to the Sandy Acres facility. Lake Sumter Lions support the SoZo Kids by preparing after-school meals three times a month.



   Lions are collecting Bottle Caps...Again

Lake Sumter Lions are collecting bottle caps again for a special research project by Florida Institute of Technology.  [Previously, Lions collected bottle caps to make benches.] Lions Linda and Dennis recently delivered 500 lbs of bottle caps to FIT. 

Per FIT, Ocean engineering and marine sciences assistant professor Austin Fox and graduate oceanography student Abbey Gering are working on an Indian River Lagoon water treatment that will feature mesh bags filled with bottle caps. The bags will be placed in strategic locations within the lagoon to allow “good” bacteria to grow on them. These good bacteria can convert and remove excess nitrogen from the lagoon through a process called denitrification, helping clean the water and contributing to the prevention of harmful algal blooms."

New Guidance for Collecting Bottle Caps

For more info, go to:


Lions Sorted Eyeglasses in Ocoee

Six Lake Sumter Lions traveled to the Project Right to Sight (PRTS) warehouse in Ocoee to deliver LSL sorted eyeglasses and to sort more eyeglasses at the warehouse: Bob Irvine, John Hanna, Chris Culberson, Charlie, AJ, and John Thomson. LS Lions worked alongside other District 35-O Lions as well as some UCF student volunteers. President of PRTS, IPDG Steven Van Varick set up a very efficient process so that the sorting moved fast and only took about 3 hours.




Lions Food Drive
Thursday, August 11

Lake Sumter Lions, joined by members of the Orange Blossom Gardens Lions Club and the Eastport Club Branch, conducted a food drive on the morning of August 11. Lots of food collected , hot (temps) fun, and Lions fellowships. The Lake Sumter Lions collected 639 pounds and $801 in donations. No report from the other two clubs. Thank You Villagers.


Eyeglass Sorting for the 2022-2023 Lions Year

Lake Sumter Lions were joined by members of the Orange Blossom Gardens Lions Club and the Eastport Club Branch to sort 8,137 pairs of used eyeglasses.  Lions gathered at Lake Miona Rec Center.   Thanks to The Villagers and others who donated their used eyeglasses and hearing aids at the Lions Collection boxes. 





The KidSight Numbers are....

Number of children vision screenings by Lake Sumter Lions in one Lion year (from July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022)


LCI President Recognizes 3 Lake Sumter Lions

During his June visit to District 35-O, LCI President Alexander presented Presidential Certificates of Appreciation to three Lake Sumter Lions for their leadership and participation in the USA Games of the Special Olympics: Lions John, Linda and John. Congrats!


USA Special Olympics & Opening Eyes

Three Lake Sumter Lions attended the USA Special Olympics in Orlando and volunteered at the LCIF Opening Eyes:  Lions Linda & John and Marcia.  Opening Eyes is part of the Heathly Athlete experience provided to all SO Athletes.  Lions Linda and John also attended the opening Ceremony for the Special Olympics Games.



Special Olympics Florida Team (SOFL)

The Lake Sumter Lions have spent the past 6+ months raising funds for the Florida team of Special Olympics athletics.
As of mid May, the club has raised over $14,000!

Lake Sumter Lions Linda and John Bradshaw along with the following six Lake Sumter Lions attended the SOFL Hall of Fame Reception at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando: John and Bunny, Bob and Bonnie,  Kathy and Jane. The Bradshaws are the MD35 Lions SOFL Marketing Chairs. Lions met some of the athletics representing Sumter County. Unfortunately, the SOFL Opening Ceremony (following the Reception) was canceled due to heavy rain and wind.

Youth Marbles Program

Lake Sumter Lion Art presented to Club members the Marbles program: terminology, how to play and marbles tournament at the national level. Marbles is a youth program sponsored and supported by the Lake Sumter Lions Club.


A Marbles Clinic was held at MLK Community Center in Wildwood.

More VIP and Lions' Golf Outings

Lake Sumter Lion and Visually Impaired Person (VIP) Sonia joined the annual Lions & VIP golf group at this month's golf outing.  Lions assist VIP golfers by lining up the direction of their shot with yellow rods on the ground.


Another Lions Food Drive
Thursday, Feb 17

Villagers again were generous and contributed food and/or $$ to the Lions food drive. Lake Sumter Lions collected 1047 lbs of food and nearly $300 in donations.  Thank you Lions John H and Chuck for organizing this service project and thanks to the Lake Sumter Lions who collected the food.



VIP and Lions' Golf Outings

Every Month, from October to May, the Lake Sumter Lions join with visually impaired golfers to play a round of golf at the El Santiago golf course.  One Lion is paired with one visually impaired golfer.  Lions drive the golf carts and assist VIP golfers in lining up their shots, providing directions on the course. Thanks goes to Lion John Thomson who initiated and coordinates this project. 




Eyeglass Sorting for the 2021-2022 Lions Year

Lake Sumter Lions sorted 6,857 pairs of used eyeglasses at the Bacall Rec Center. Thanks goes to Lion John Hanna who organized this sorting. These eyeglasses will eventually be taken to the Ocoee Center for further sorting and distribution to needy people in Florida and overseas. Used hearing aids were also collected and will be taken to the Deaf and Hearing Services (DHS) of Lake and Sumter Counties, located in Leesburg.





20,000 Screenings in 5 1/2 Years!

While at the Little Village PreSchool in Fruitland Park, Lake Sumter Lions Eileen Sabatini DisingerLinda Ryan, and Dennis Ryan conducted a vision screening on the 20,000th child, since the Lake Sumter Lions started the Club's KidSight program in June 30, 2016. Included in the photo is the PreSchool's Director Ashlyn Flint and young Emma (photo with the permission of her parents).
A big THANKS goes to LS Lion Chuck LeGare (assisted by Lion Jon Joel) who introduced and leads the current KidSight program in the Lake Sumter Lions Club. CONGRATS!


Special Olympics Florida Team

For the first time, the USA Special Olympics will be held in Orlando from 5-12 June 2022.  The Lions Clubs of Florida has been asked to solicit donations for Team Florida athletics and coaches.  Click here for the Special Olympics Florida brochure.  Click here for  the letter that the Lake Sumter Lions sent to clubs within The Villages asking for donations.  Clubs and individuals can also contribute to Special Olympics Team Florida (SOFL) by going to the home page and clicking on the SOFL logo button.

American Legion Post 347, the largest in the world, contributed $1,000 to the Special Olympics Florida Team (SOFL).  Great!


(from left to right) Lake Sumter Club SOFL Chair Lion John, Post 347 Commander Joan, District 35-O SOFL Marketing Chair Lion John, and Lake Sumter King Lion Bob.   

District 35-O SOFL Marketing Chair Lion John thanks Post 347 Commander Joan for the generous donation.


Marine Corps League Detachment 1267 donated $500 to Special Olympics Florida Team.   Virgina Trace Crusaders donated $1000 from their wine and cheese bingo. Kensington Place Neighbors donated $250, thanks to Lions Dave & Esther Ann.
(from left to right) Lion John Brashaw; Nathan Pratt, Adjutant Past Commander; and Athlete Catherine Federico.    (from left to right) Lion John Hanna, King Lion Bob, and Lion John Brashaw. (from left to right) Lion John, Lion Dave, Lion Esther Ann, and King Lion Bob.


Fifth Lions Food Drive
Thursday, Dec 2

Thank you Villagers for contributing food and/or $$ to the Lions food drive. Lake Sumter Lions collected 1622 lbs of food and over $300 in donations. Collection sites were at the Regional Rec Centers in The Villages.






Let's Play Marbles Again!

Lake Sumter Lions Art and Molly held 4 one-hour sessions of a marble clinic at the Sumter Youth Center in Bushnell yesterday. There was a total of 24 children, ranging in ages from 6 to 12 years.In addition to learning how to play marbles, the children saw a video about the history of marbles, heard about the fun of collecting marbles and learned how to properly "knuckle" down when shooting in a game of marbles.
All children went home with a bag of marbles and an invitation to play some more marbles and compete in tournaments as part of the LS Lions program. Great Youth Activity. Thanks Lions Art and Molly.


 KidSight Screening at The Villages Charter School


984 is the number of students that Lake Sumter Lions screened for vision this school year at The Villages Charter School: Elementary, Middle and High school level.  This is the fourth year where school nurses coordinate with the Lions Club to conduct the vision portion of the overall health check of students. Lions will also be screening pre-school and little Buffalo students in the next few weeks.


KidSight Screening

Six Lake Sumter Lions conducted KidSight vision screening at the Village View Christian Academy in Summerfield, FL: Lions Chuck, Doris, Kathy, Chris, John, and Jon. Four Mt Dora Lions were also there getting hands-on experience with the PlusOptix camera.
Altogether, Lions screened 132 students' eyes.


Fourth Lions Food Drive

Thank you to those who donated food and $$ to our Lions Food Drive today. We collected 1,416 lbs of food and over $450 in donations.  Lake Sumter Lions and Orange Blossom Gardens Lions hosted this food drive at the Regional Rec Centers in The Villages. We are grateful that we live in a generous community.


Three KidSight Screenings

Lake Sumter Lions participated in the Back-to-School Bash at the Fruitland Park Library, conducting KidSight vision screenings. Thanks goes to Lions Jon, Kathy, and Dan LeBlond. A video was made by the Back-to-School Bash folks. You can see the Lions Kidsight sign at 1:18mins.


Lake Sumter Lions participated in the Langley Services Back to School Bash by conducting free vision screenings. The event was held at the Sumter Co fairgrounds. Lions screened 70 children. Thanks goes to Lions Jon, Marcia, John, Kathy Bob I and John H.


For one week in July, nine Lake Sumter Lions screened 139 children for the Episcopal Children's Services Headstart Program.  We screened at 5 facilities in Lake County:  Leesburg, Clermont, Eustis,  Mt. Dora, and Umatilla.  Thanks goes to Lions screeners: Doris, John H, Bob I, Ed and Jane, Jan, Bob B, Ralph and Jon. 

At Umatilla, Leo the Lion (and his "handler" Ed) entertained the 3 and 4 year olds who were not always happy to have their eyes screened. It was hard work, but Leo enticed all the children into opening their eyes wide for the specialized camera.  Leo even got his own eyes screened by Lion Jon.  After a hard day's work, Leo enjoyed some refreshments.


KidSight - Five Year Anniversary!

Five years ago, Lake Sumter Lions Club purchased two Plusoptix Vision Screening Camera, thanks to the support of the public of our club's fundraisers.  Using these vision screeners, Lions screened young children's eyes for various disorders, to include hyperopia, myopia, astigmatism, anisometropia, anisocaria, and strabismus. 

News article in the Daily Sun newspaper.


KidSight Screenings
Since June 30, 2016, Lake Sumter Lions have screened over 18,000 children.


After screening, each child receives a yellow sticker.

Right:  KidSight Chairman Chuck is screening a young child's eyes.

The Lake Sumter Lions Club members now spend their days screening children's eyes at day care centers and county libraries in Sumter and Lake County.  Led by Lake Sumter Lions Chuck, Jon, John and Ralph, certified Lions spent, on the average, two mornings a week screening the eyes of young children.  Referrals are sent to an Ophthalmologist in Gainesville for further evaluation.  Parents are then notified if further testing was recommended. 

Lion Jon looks through a specially made box for screening childen's eyes in a sunny or light environment.



For more info on Lions KidSight USA, click here.   Click here to view the Club's brochure on KidSight.


Lions Donate Used Hearing Aids

Thanks to the Villagers, the Lake Sumter Lions Club donated over 100 hearing aids to the Deaf and Hearing Services of Lake and Sumter Counties. PDG Ed (right) and Lions Jane delivered the hearings aids, along with batteries and associated items.


The Journey of Used Eyeglasses

Have you ever wonder what happens to the used eyeglasses you donated at one of the Rec Centers or other designated facilities south of Rt 466?  Click here to read about the journey.

Lake Sumter Lions John H, John B, Chris, and Bob delivered 7,000 pairs of sorted used eyeglasses to the Project Right to Sight (PRTS) warehouse in Ocoee. They then help to sort additional used eyeglasses which total to an estimate of over 30,000 pairs.


Second (and Last) Eyeglass Sorting for 2020-2021 Lions Year

Lake Sumter Lions sorted 7,239 used eyeglasses at the Lake Miona Rec Center.  Lions also collected and sorted 63 hearing aids received from the public in eyeglass collection boxes located in Rec Centers and others area south of Rt 466.  This data was published in the Daily Sun newspaper (right).

For a complete list of collection sites, click here




Lake Sumter Lions Third Food Drive

The Lake Sumter Lions hosted their third Food Drive, again at the Regional Rec Centers within The Villages.  The Lake Sumter Lions collected over 1500 pounds of food which was distributed to three local food banks.  In addition, nearly $1000 was raised from donation jars.  Thanks goes to Lions John and Chuck for organizing this community project.



Let's Play Marbles!

Lake Sumter Lion Art introduced a new youth program recently....marbles!  Having facilitated youth marbles programs "up north" for 30 years, Lion Art has lots of experience to set a similar program here in Sumter County. 
During Spring Break 2021, the Wildwood Rec Dept invited Lion Art to set up a marbles clinic at the Wildwood Community Center.  Fourteen children between the ages of 6 and 12 attended this beginners marbles clinic.  After viewing a video on the history of marbles and the different types of marbles, the children were taught how to play a marble game called Ringer.  They learned how to shoot a marble and to keep score.  All attendees went home with a bag of marbles, compliments of the Lake Sumter Lion club.  The Wildwood Rec Center was pleased with this new program and asked if Lions would participate again in the summer program.
Click here to go to a "Let's Play Marbles in Florida" facebook page that Lion Art has been set up.  The National Marble Tournament is held every year in Wildwood, NJ.  Click here for tournament info.

WANTED:  A Marbles Coach who can mentor children and provide instructions on how to play marbles in a tournament setting.


Eyeglasses & Hearing Aids: Ways to Give

10 Ways to Give in The Villages...Lake Sumter Lions collection and recycling of used eyeglasses and hearing aids is no. 3.
Source: Daily Sun Newspaper, 31 Mar 2021

First Eyeglass Sorting of the 2020-2021 Lions Year

Lake Sumter Lions were finally able to meet and sort used eyeglasses at the Canal Street Rec Center.  Lions sorted 6,610 pairs of prescription eyeglasses.  These eyeglasses will be taken to the Ocoee Center for further sorting and distribution to needy people in Florida and overseas.  Used hearing aids are also collected and taken to the Deaf and Hearing Services (DHS) of Lake and Sumter Counties, located in Leesburg. 



Lake Sumter Lions Second Food Drive

The Lake Sumter Lions hosted their second Food Drive at 8 Rec centers within The Villages.  The Food Drive was delayed from an earlier date due to Hurricane Eta. The Lake Sumter Lions collected 2,682 pounds of food which was distributed to local food banks.  Thanks goes to Lions John and Chuck for organizing this community project.


Lions Donate Used Hearing Aids

PDG Ed and Lion Jane recently made their semi-annual trip to Leesburg to deliver used hearing aids and good hearing aids batteries to the Deaf and Hearing Services of Lake and Sumter Counties. These used hearing aids and batteries were obtained from the public in our LS Lions used eyeglasses collection boxes. For more info about the Deaf and Hearing Services, go to


District 35-O Blessings Bags

Lake Sumter Lions, together with the other clubs in Zone 3, put together blessing bags for the people affected by the hurricane in the panhandle of Florida (Lions District 35-L).  Lion Diana ordered online the specific supplies for the bags sposnored by the Lake Sumter Lions.  Then the following Lake Sumter Lions put together the Club's bags:  Lions Eileen and Bob D, Lion Bob I, Lions Bunny and John H, and Lions John and Annette T.  District Governor Harry then traveled to the home of Bunny and John (Zone 3 Chair) and picked up 143 bags.  Nice work Lions!


Lake Sumter Lions Food Drive

Answering a community need in these pandemic times, the Lake Sumter Lions sponsored a food drive at 6 Rec Centers within The Villages: Colony Cottage, Eisenhower, Everglades, Laurel Manor, Rohan, and SeaBreeze. The public dropped off food items and paper supplies without leaving their cars. Afterwards, items were sorted at Lake Okahumpka Park.  Then various local food pantries picked up the contributions.
Lions collected over one ton of items, specifically 2,167 pounds!
Congrats to Lions John and Chuck who coordinated and organized this service project.  Yea!
Coloney Cottage Eisenhower Everglades
Laurel Manor Rohan SeaBreeze


There was great news coverage of this service project.  Chair Lion John was interviewed, describing the event in a video to be broadcast on The Villages channel.  In addition, Lions Bob and Jaci were interviewed by The Daily Sun newspaper reporter.  

The Club recieved over $500+ from donation jars placed at each location.  The money was donated to 4 food pantries:  Beyond the Walls Food Pantry in Fruitland Park; Our Mother of Mercy Food Pantry in Wildwood; Christian Food Pantry in Lady Lake and Wildwood Food Pantry.


 Hole-in-One for VIP Golfer

Update:  At a recent Lions meeting, Coordinator for the Lions VIP Golf Lion John presented VIP Golfer Pat
with a plaque which honored her hole-in-one achievement.

Visually Impaired Persons (VIP) Golfer scored a hole-in-one on the 7th tee on the El Santiago golf course in November 2019.  Congrats to VIP Golfer Pat Lohse, assisted by Lion Jim Braxmeier. Wow! This is the second VIP golfer to have a hole-in-one.   Every second Saturday afternoon, Lake Sumter Lions assist VIP golfers to play a 9-hole round of golf.

VIP Golfer Pat (right) with Lion Jim. (From left to right) VIP Golfer Mike Mulanax, Lion Jim Braxmeier, VIP Golfer Pat Lohse, VIP Golfer Dot Williver, and Lion Glenn Ridenour.


Lions Sponsored New Vision's Blind Walk


New Vision for Independence, a nonprofit that provides training for people with visual impairment, hosted their second annual Blind Walk at Sumter Landing in The Villages in honor of White Cane Safety Day.  The event allowed sighted people to get a brief look at the difficulties the visually impaired deal with and how they adapt. Attendees walked around the square, learning how to be a safe human guide for a visually impaired persons walking with white canes.

The Lake Sumter Lions again served as the event's sponsor for the second year.  Many Lake Sumter Lions attends this event to show their support.




Used Hearing Aids

Lake Sumter Lions also collect used hearing aids in the boxes with used eyeglasses.  Used hearing aids and the many many batteries are routinely donated to the Deaf and Hearing Services (DHS) of Lake and Sumter Counties, located in Leesburg.  You can learn more about this organization at their web site:



Lake Sumter Lions Sponsor a Guide Dog


The Lake Sumter Lions donated enough $$ to the Southeastern Guide dogs (SEGD) to sponsor and name a Guide Dog.  The Club held a raffle among its members to name our guide dog.  Lion Lorraine won the raffle and submitted the name of "Keller," after Helen Keller who provided to Lions Clubs International the mission of assisting visually impaired people.


Born August 12, 2018

   Keller at 12 Months

Keller has had a wonderful first year. He has mastered house manners and basic obedience in environments with increasing distractions.

Keller's Graduation

Upon completionn of his training, Keller returned to Southeastern Guide Dogs campus.  Because of his excellent mastery of skills, he became part of the SEGD breeding program.   In the future, we look forward to little "Kellers" to help the visually impaired. 


KidSight Vision Screening

Lake Sumter Lions Club screened nearly 50 children at the First Back to School event hosted by the United Way of the Lake and Sumter Counties.  The screening was held at the Midway Baptist Church in Leesburg.




KidSight Vision Screening - More Photos



Grilling for the VIP's
Nine Lake Sumter Lions prepared and served a summer cookout of hamburgers and hot dogs, baked beans, salads, watermelon, cake and drinks to members and guests of the Visually Impaired Persons (VIP) Club.  The cookout was held at the Bridgeport Rec Center in The Villages.
  Left photo below: Lions Bob, Eileen, Bunny and Mary Alice.  Right photo below: Lions John W and John H. 
Not pictured are Lions Bob, Jan and (photographer) Cecile.



 Delivering Sorted Eyeglasses to PRTS

Four Lake Sumter Lions delivered the sorted eyeglasses to Ocoee where the Project Right to Sight (PRTS) has their warehouse of used eyeglasses.  Lions Ralph, John W., John A. and John H. made the hour trip to view the massive operation and to provide a $$$ donation from the Lake Sumter Lions Club.  Project Right to Sight "provide reconditioned, recycled eye glasses, at NO COST, to homeless and uninsured people living in our Central Florida Community. Eye glasses are also provided for Vision Projects to aid people in need throughout the world."  Go to for more info.


Golfing with Visually Impaired Persons (VIP)

VIP Golfer scores a Hole-in-One!


Above is a picture of Mike Mulanax picking his golf ball out of the cup on the 100 yard ninth hole od El Santiago Golf Course. Mike, playing in the Lake Sumter Lions VIP golf outing on May 12, recorded a hole in one using a five iron. This is the first hole in one recorded since we started the VIP Golf program. As Mike’s wife, Carol said, “Not bad for a blind guy”.
At a recent club meeting, Lake Sumter Lion Kevin presented Mike with a Plaque honoring his hole-in-one achievement.


VIP and Lions' Golf Outings

What better place to host a golf outing for Visually Impaired Persons (VIP) than The Villages, a golfing community.  Lake Sumter Lions joined with the VIP club members to play a round of golf at the El Santiago golf course.  One Lion is paired with one visually impaired golfer.  Lions drive the golf carts and assist VIP golfers in lining up their shots and in providing directions on the course. 
This is an ongoing project.  Lions meet with VIP golfers the 2nd Saturday of every month.  Thanks goes to Lion John Thomson who initiated and coordinates this project. 

Look who landed on the front page of the Sports section of The Villages newspaper The Daily Sun!  Lion Tim is providing guidance to a VIP golfer.

VIP/Lions Golfing continues to be a popular sport with a growing number of VIP golfers joining this activity. 


  • The VIP Club meets the first Thursday of every month at 1pm at the Bridgeport Rec Center.
  • The VIP Club hosts Game Day on the second Thursday of every month from 1-3pm, at Laurel Manor Rec Center.  Games are designed for the VIP.










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