Spring is in the air!
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March 6, 2018
By Gay Gaube
Participants in our Creativity Fair included Amelia Grove, Lank Jenney, Annette Zack, Gayle Lipke, Joyce Mangels, Sue Williams, Jackie Helliesen and Gay Gaube.  

Sue Williams & Jackie HelliesenGay Gaube

Sue Williams &
Jackie Helliesen

Gay Gaube

Lank JenneyJoyce Mangels
                       Lank Jenney                                                   Joyce Mangels    

Gayle LipkeAmelia Grove
                     Gayle Lipke                                                    Amelia Grove

Annette Zack

We had a variety of creations to look at including knit hats, bags and scarves, whimsical wooden figures, watercolors, different kinds of note cards, jewelry of many styles, paintings, prints, and tote bags.  
Members were able to buy creations from some of the exhibitors, resulting in a donation to PDTC of approximately $120.  THANK YOU to all who exhibited as well as those who came to celebrate creativity!   

Annette Zack

What a busy tennis year this has been!  In January we hosted Deep Canyon for an exchange and visited their courts February 25.  Our own Super Bowl tennis tournament produced some fun social competition with 28 participants on Saturday, February 3rd. The Eagles win was an indicator of the football outcome. 

On February 10 two women’s teams competed for the club championship. Congratulations to Luanne Evans and Judy Sacha as winners over Kris Adams and Sandee Smith. Pat Broderick and Fred Weidling were men’s champions in an exciting match against Greg Smith and Dan Merrill. On Sunday, February 11 the mixed doubles team of Annette and Steve Zack were winners over Sara Freeman and Dan Merrill who had to retire. 

With our two 3.5 women’s and men’s teams and an 8.0 women’s team competing in the valley, there has been exciting tennis to watch on many Wednesdays and Fridays.  We have approximately 30 members participating in these contests. Our always fun Dinners for Winners tennis event was held this past weekend, with lots of action and lots of fun for all.

Our search for a new tennis pro is progressing. I hope you encountered Leif and Melanie Nordlund in their 4 weeks of Saturday and Tuesday clinics. Manuel Joseph was the visiting pro for the last two weeks of February, and Jim Wenger is with us for two weeks in March. The tennis committee is looking for feedback. Talk to Kris Adams, Mary Jenney, Greg Smith, Leon Bennett, or Karen Dummermuth.

Karen Dummermuth, Tennis Chair


Kick off day was February 1 for a pickleball trial at PDTC .  Around 25 players showed up for an orientation and demo given by homeowner Karen Gysin, who is a national champion pickleball player and certified instructor.  John Gunderson, Candace and Fraser Brinsmead assisted. 
Court 3 was designated to set up four pickleball courts.  We started with three, but after a month's play can see the need to add the fourth.  After a few weeks we found having set times and days for Drop-In/Open Play Pickleball worked the best.  We chose four days, Tuesday and Saturday at 11:00 am and every Thursday and Sunday at 3:00 pm.  Normally we have 12 to 16 players show up and have had as many as 20.
It appears the program is gaining speed and we may end up with one tennis court designated solely for pickleball, with four pickleball courts permanently painted this summer. In the meantime, we are using heavy duty tape that is holding up well.
Pickleball is fun and easy to pick up for all ages. There is what I like to call an immediate sense of gratification for a beginner. The hardest part for us seniors is learning to keep score and who is serving.
If you want to try it out, please come join us. We have extra paddles on the bench at Court 3 and pickleballs are in the metal brackets hanging from the fence for you to use.  Please wear athletic attire. 
Pickleball got its start in 1965 in Washington state, on Bainbridge Island. A family got bored and needed something to keep the kids busy. It started on an old badminton court using ping pong paddles and a wiffle ball. The net was lowered and rules were established to equalize the competition and so a person's size or gender couldn’t dominate the game. For example, you couldn’t go into the "Kitchen" (the area within seven feet of the net), so larger people didn’t have an advantage. The double bounce rule was another equalizer. On a return of serve, the serving side must let the ball bounce first before hitting it. The name "pickleball” most likely came from a family dog named Pickles, who liked to chase and run off with the balls.
For more on the history of the game: 
"Pickleball Pete" Szambelan, Pickleball Chair

(Editor's note about the article below:  Recognizing that many PDTC members volunteer at various local organizations, we are asking members to describe their volunteer job and share a little background on the organization for “The Racqueteer”.  Last month Sarah Krzesowiak wrote about volunteering at The Living Desert, and following is Brian Lord’s article on reading with Spanish speaking school children in Mecca. To others who enjoy their volunteer job and are willing to share their experience:  please contact Sara Freeman, who is coordinating this series of articles at (503) 720-6113 or  If you are interested in learning more about Palm Desert and Coachella Valley volunteer opportunities, the following website allows you to customize your options based on interests, location and time availability: (

by Brian Lord 

The charity I support here in the Coachella Valley is called “Read With Me”.  The program is best described through its mission statement: "To assist children from a low income, limited English speaking environment to develop their fullest potential by learning to read, comprehend and speak English, while understanding that people care about them as people." 
Read with Me - Brian Lord

Studies have shown that if children cannot read English by the end of 3rd grade, they will have trouble ever learning the language. It is a big advantage to understand English, not only for the future of the students, but because they in turn can interpret for their non-English speaking parents.
Several local schools participate in the “Read With Me” program including Palm Desert Presbyterian on Highway 74 and Hope Lutheran on Portola, both just a mile or two from PDTC. The program runs from November through April . 

Five years ago, I joined my wife Vicki who had volunteered at Mecca Elementary for several years. We meet a bus at Sacred Heart Catholic Church at 8:20 a.m. once a week and arrive at the school around 9:00. We go to our assigned classroom and work with students until 10:50. Ten minutes later, we are on the bus and heading back to Sacred Heart. While there, I listen to first grade students read and help them recognize or sound out words. No training is required for this program but applicants must get a background check and fill out an application.
For more information about this program, please go to 


By Bill Cook

Task: Entire team jumping.    Pete Szambelan, Norm DeWitt, Tim Adams, Mary Jenney, Greg Smith, Sue Long, Rita Ripp, Leslie Anne Moore (renter)

Thirty-two  men and women signed up for the February 17th Palm Desert Tennis Club scavenger hunt.  They were assigned to four eight-person teams. 
Homeowners and non-resident members were assigned to each team.  Husbands and wives were split onto different teams, because we wanted this to be a "get to know each other better" event. 
Toe nail paintingPlayers were allowed just one hour to perform 54 separate tasks.  Each team was asked  to take pictures of some pretty unusual items and some very unusual bits of action on a single cell phone camera. Some of the things they were asked to scavenge for: a live lizard, someone born in 1940, a yoyo, a hula hoop, a drum set, a pair of handcuffs, a  soccer ball, a donut, a sitting humming bird, a team member wearing ear muffs, and of course, a map of the state of Kansas.

Task: Male team member  having a toe nail painted by a female team member.  Joyce Mangels paints Jake McDougal, as Fraser Brinsmead supervises.         Task: Construct a pirate hat  from newspapers.  Fraser Brinsmead wears it.

Sixty minutes after the “go” signal was given, the four teams finished their frantic outing.
The team captained by Jim Konrath came up with a score of 39.  It was close; the other three teams were just one or two points behind.
Appetizers and drinks were served afterwards as team members re-lived their picture taking afternoon.
The "fun meter" was on maximum.  Special thanks to the team captains who made the event a success.Team with a dog
Team eating grapes
Task: Entire team with a dog.  Dog cannot be a team member's dog. 

Top:  Jim Konrath, Joyce Mangels, Jake McDougal, Fraser Brinsmead, Ross Cornelius, Vicki Lord.  Bottom:  Gail Broderick, Kris Adams, doggie "Henry", Kathy Zeug

(Above Right)
Task:  Six team members eating grapes.
  Top Sara Freeman. Pat Broderick, Candace Brinsmead.  Below:Susan Williams, Kathy Zeug, Sue Charles.

Task: Team picture from a mirror.  Top: Cathy Konrath, Sara Freeman, Candace Brinsmead. Fred Weidling, Bob Olson (renter).  Bottom: Lynette McDougal, Sue Charles, Susan Williams, Pat Broderick

Task:  Forty toes underwater in a swimming pool.
40 toes in a pool

(Editor's note: Bill Cook organized the event and came up with most of the strange tasks.)
Larry Gibson, Trivia MasterTACOS AND TRIVIA - A FUN NIGHT
 By Howard Back

Seventy-two PDTC-ers showed up at the clubhouse on February 23rd to exercise their brains and fill their bellies. They were divided into teams of five or six.  Questions had been prepared and were presented by Larry and Tari Gibson.  The Gibsons moved into Unit 39 a few months ago, after owning a home for many years on Homestead, just north of PDTC.

In a novel twist, Dan Merrill played songs from movies on his keyboard.  Contestants were asked not only to name each song, but also the movie in which it appeared.

When scores were added up, two teams had tied, and the winners were decided by the best answer to: “What is the mileage on Interstate Five from the Canadian border to the Mexican border?”  (The answer: 1,381 miles.)

There was plenty to eat and drink - tacos and margaritas and all the fixings.  Lynn Schultz supervised preparation and serving of the goodies.  She had a lot of help from hubby Dale, Jane Turner, Terry Basham and Gail Broderick.  Dennis Lipke and Jim Banner worked behind the bar.  Phyllis and Don Cyphers furnished dessert for all.  Perk Freeman headed up the clean-up crew and Leon Bennett took some great photos.  
Taco fixingsThe Winning Team


And the winners are:
Dennis Lipke, Candace Brinsmead, Mary Jenney, Terry Parker, Leon Bennett and EJ Cook

Hello again!  Smokey is here with another section of our PDTC Emergency Preparedness Plan.  Today we tackle more of the section in bold print, entitled “Condo Preparedness for a Fire”.  
Fire Extinguishers-
Have a home fire extinguisher available. An all-purpose, combination extinguisher, like one rated ABC will work on nearly all fires which could be expected in a home. Check the dial occasionally to insure that it is properly charged so it will be usable in an emergency. Familiarize yourself and your family with how to use the extinguisher. Pull pin, aim at the fire, squeeze the handle, and sweep the spray from side to side. In the event of a grease fire on the stove, putting a lid over the pan to smother the fire is probably the best option.
Smokey’s comment: First of all, if you do have a fire in your unit, call 911 and be prepared to give your address here in the desert.  In emergencies, some people give the wrong address when they are excited. Describe what the situation is i.e. car fire, cooking fire, bedding fire, room fire, etc. This information is radioed to the responding units so they know what to expect when they arrive on scene. If you have an extinguisher available and it is a small fire and you feel you can attempt to put it out safely, go ahead. 
The ratings for an ABC extinguisher mean as follows: “A” means good for ordinary combustible fires, “B” means good for flammable liquids fires and “C” means good for electrical fires.  That is why an ABC rated extinguisher is best for home use.  For the size of our condos, a 2A 10BC rated extinguisher should be more than adequate.  They also make pressurized water extinguishers for fighting ordinary combustible fires.  I read online that one guy bought a garden pump sprayer and keeps it full of water when not using it for the garden. Fire fighters use their pressurized water extinguishers a lot on Class A fires. One common extinguisher just about all of us have available is our garden hose.  You can put out quite a bit of Class A fire with one. For example, I was visiting a fire station dropping off department mail and the engine company was not in quarters. Several units were dispatched to a reported house fire close to the station.  I beat all the responding fire fighter’s to the scene. I broke out a window in the bedroom that was involved and I used a garden hose to quickly put the fire out. 

If you have a range top fire that involves burning liquid, the first thing you should do, if you can, is turn off the burner.   If you decide to use your fire extinguisher, be real careful not to get too close to the fire with the extinguisher nozzle. Why?  Because the extinguisher’s ingredients are under pressure and you can spread the fire by blowing the burning liquid out of its container onto other surfaces.  Approach the fire and use a sweeping motion with the extinguisher’s nozzle. Once the flame goes out don’t keep using the extinguisher. The sad fact about using a dry chemical extinguisher is that it does make a mess to clean up for possibly a small range top fire. 

If you are cooking with oil, remember to keep a lid handy in case of fire.  Other options to put out a range top fire include putting baking soda or salt on the fire. Or you can put on an oven mitt and then slide the pan off the burner or turn off the burner and let it burn itself off if it is not in danger of spreading the fire.  

If you have an oven fire or a broiler fire close the oven door and turn off the heat.  That should take care of that problem.

That’s it for now, next time we’ll look into the “Condo Checklist for Fire Prevention”.  One final thought. It is always good to find out you‘re going to be working from home….unless you are a fire fighter.

Brian Lord, Emergency Preparedness Chair


The PDTC Board of Directors held their first meeting of 2018 on the 18th of January.  A variety of proposals were put forth and approved.  Dana Fraser has offered to remodel the fitness center.  The Board voted to reduce the number of Board members from seven to five.  This will require a change in By-Laws.  A ballot will be sent to all homeowners for their approval.  The establishment of a finance committee will be considered in April.  The employee handbook is being revised.  The front entry patio and the patio facing court 1 will be repaired.  Our membership directory will include a hard copy for all homeowners and non-resident members.
The communications committee continues their hard work in improving our communication systems.  The social committee reports great success and participation in club activities.  The landscape crew continues to do an excellent job in keeping our grounds in pristine condition. The architecture committee is reviewing costs for replacing pole lighting and ground lighting within the club.  

The tennis committee is considering a proposal submitted by Leif Nordlund for our tennis program.  Courts 2 and 3 will be resurfaced in the fall.  We have money from the 2017 assessment designated for this purpose.  Pickle ball begins on court 3 for the month of February. 
Terry Basham, Interim General Manager, reported that PDTC is contracting with ADP for payroll and CAFS for financial services. 

Sue Williams, Secretary

March 17th - St. Patrick's Dinner
March 31st and April 1st - Season Round Up Tennis Tourney
April 1st - Easter Potluck
April 7th - Tennis Exchange -  Ironwood at PDTC
April 12th - Board of Directors - 10 am
Board of Directors
 President - Ann Merrill
 Vice President - Brian Long 
 Secretary - Sue Williams
 Treasurer - Jane Turner 
 Emergency Preparedness Chair - Brian Lord 
 Rental Chair - Brian Lord
 Tennis Chair - Karen Dummermuth
 Landscape Chair - Dale Schultz
 Architectural Chair - Brian Long
 Nominating Committee - Sue Williams
 & Karen  Dummermuth
 Holiday Fund Manager - Jane Turner 

Club Staff  
 Erin Grossman - General Manager
 Natasha Taylor - Office Manager
 Steve Geyer - Maintenance Supervisor
 Greg Dunkel - Landscaping Supervisor    
 Heidi Gerner  - Tennis Coordinator
 Amy Kemper - Tennis Coordinator
 Dana Hutchinson – Chef
The Racqueteer is the newsletter of the Palm Desert Tennis Club

Howard Back - Ye Olde Editor

Leon Bennett - Photographer
Pete Szambelan - Photographer
Jeri Todd – Proof Reader
Jan Roemmick – Proof Reader
Pauline Olesen - MailChimp 

Contact Information
Phone: (760) 346-5683
ProShop: (760) 340-9166
Fax: (760) 346-5777 

Copyright © 2018 Palm Desert Tennis Club, All rights reserved.

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