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The Transformative effect of Reaching for the Moon

The Transformative effect of Reaching for the Moon

Saturday, 17. November 2018 - 17:30

How are we going to fill this with people?

The small team of members from RC Marbella-Guadalmina were awed by the first sight of the hall they had to fill. Aircraft hangar might be a more appropriate description. Generously donated free of charge by Marbella Town Hall, who are very supportive of the expatriate community, it was also free of table, chairs, a sound system, a stage and several other necessities for putting on a large public event.

Founded in 2010, RC Marbella-Guadalmina is an English-speaking Club with a number of different nationalities, and many new Rotarians in its ranks. 80 was probably the maximum number of people who had attended one of our walks or parties, and we were comfortable with that. We were effective at fundraising for local and international charities, so why did we suddenly take this on?

Why did we do it?
We’d love to tell you it was part of a master plan for growth and community engagement, but the truth is that it was like a ball that started rolling and didn’t stop. A Member suggested that we could aim for a Guinness World Record in a competitive game called Beetle, which involves throwing a die and drawing parts of a Beetle according to the numbers that fall.  Sounded easy; get lots of people along for a couple of hours, give them a paper, pencil and die, and film the record attempt.  Several months later we were still working out logistics, how best to sell tickets, what else we would have to offer, how to promote the event, how to get tables and chairs to the venue, and so on.
There were some dark days, doubts and debates, a mountain of emails, and uncertainty until the very last that we would have enough people in the hall to even make the record attempt valid.  A warning for severe rain on the day of the event was not auspicious.

Team dynamics as never before
Just before the Event, the team working on it pulled out all the stops; united by a strong determination to do the very best they could for the Club. Our Events teams are used to working hard, but this was exceptional. Furniture, audio, display stands, crowd control, refreshments, publicity…  they were unified by a spirit that had everyone working effectively and somehow not falling over with exhaustion.
And yes, despite the weather, well over 300 people came to enjoy the displays, the entertainment, and to take part in the game, hoping to win the beautifully crafted Golden Beetle.

Reach for the moon, and even if you fail, you will be amongst the stars.
Things weren’t perfect on the day, yet the atmosphere was positive and there was a great connection with the local community.  Sponsorship had raised money that would still go to the Alzheimer’s charity, whatever happened. Even though the record attempt still has to be ratified by Guinness World Records, people left the hall feeling it was a success.
The Club has been a different place since this accomplishment.  There is a feelgood vibe. Our horizons have expanded, our confidence has increased. We are prepared to be less insular, more organised, more dynamic. There won’t be another Beetle event for sure. But the Marbella Town Hall has said we can have the Palacio again next year. Will we do it?

YouTube video record of the Event