Sonoma Strong

The Unit 509 Santa Rosa/Petaluma community was hit hard by wildfires in early October, 2017. Eighteen of our bridge players lost their homes. We also lost one of the most important landmarks in Santa Rosa, the Round Barn. It was built in 1899 as part of a Utopian colony managed by Kanaye Nagasawa, one of the first Japanese immigrants ever to enter the United States. We in Sonoma County are working hard at rebuilding, strengthened by pulling together at a time of need. In commemoration of the past and in helping survivors build a new future, one of Santa Rosa’s artists, Hillary Rose Miller, painted Snoopy at the Round Barn. Snoopy is the beloved character of Charles Schultz whose house burnt down in the fire. The print is a delight and a bargain at $20. All proceeds go to the Redwood Credit Union Community Fund to support fire survivors.

You might ask why you are learning about this print on the Unit 509 website. If you look at the picture with the artist, you can see Hilary’s mom in the background in the brightly colored jacket. It’s the Bridge Gallery’s own Randee Dimond, one of the best Supervised Play directors ever. If you would like to know more or to order a print, see: https://www.facebook.com/HRMillerArt/

by Cecelia Zachar

Posted in Unit News | Leave a comment

Unit 509 Members Mine Silver In San Francisco

Congratulations to Larry Spanier, Jonathan Cohen. Mark Hersko and Rose Baltrusaitis, who bagged First Place in Sunday’s Bracketed Swiss Teams game at the San Francisco Sectional on January 13 and 14, 2018.

High marks also to Bob Klein, Erwin Linzer, and teammates David Neuman and Nick Wiebe, who scratched in Bracketed Swiss and to Bob Klein, Jonathan Cohen, Larry Spanier, and Sara Rothmuller, who scratched in pairs games.

Hooray for Petaluma’s Paula Cornyn and Winifred Whooley, who took third place in the 499er Pairs game.

Good work, one and all!

by Kathy Juarez

Posted in Unit News | Leave a comment

Our Newest Life Master: Conrad Larkin

Conrad Larkin made life master this November while playing with his wife, Lynn Blumenthal. He grew up in Vermont. While in elementary school he started playing a card game called “whist” on Friday nights with his family as part of a fund raising endeavor. He graduated to poker tournaments which now have gone by the wayside, being replaced by bridge tournaments. Conrad started playing bridge in March 2010 after Lynn bought him lessons at the Bridge Gallery with Kathy Venton. He suspects that his passion for bridge was Lynn’s plan so she could start going to tournaments without feeling guilty leaving him at home. Conrad earned his first red point (though he had no idea what that meant) days after he finished the Beginner bridge course. He was dragged up to the Reno Nationals where Lynn found him a partner, and he earned his first point in the 49er game. Apparently not realizing Conrad would become addicted to the game, Lynn forgot to enroll Conrad as an ACBL member before the 300 MP rule changed to 500. This is why it took him so long to make life master. It took a few years, but his excuse is that he has had a full therapy practice in between tournaments.

by Cecelia Zachar

Posted in Unit News | Leave a comment

Shelly Dunietz named Diamond Life Master!

With just over 5,000 points, Shelly made Diamond Life Master in November. Shelley says “After a devastating year with the fires, it was nice to see the beauty in life again. The highlight of my year was becoming a grandmother. The best bridge experience by far was competing in the 3rd day of the Blue Ribbon pairs in San Diego. It was amazing to play in a room with the best bridge players in the world.” Congratulations, Shelly.

by Cecelia Zachar

Posted in Unit News | Leave a comment

World Champion Cris Barrere Presents Pre-game Lessons

Cris’s lectures (presented before some of our Sunday Unit games in Santa Rosa) have been a big hit. The Bridge Gallery has been packed with bridge players of all levels. The most recent lecture on November 19 was titled Hide and Seek at the Bridge Table. Cris discussed strategies for sharing and concealing information at the bridge table — with partner, with declarer, and with defenders. We’re hoping that Cris will return for three new lectures in 2018.  The lectures are free to unit members, thanks to the Unit 509 board. What a deal!

by Cecelia Zachar

Posted in Unit News | Leave a comment

Shower of Support

For more than a week, starting on October 8, Sonoma County was decimated by wildfires which left eighteen players from the Santa Rosa Bridge Gallery losing everything. On November 3, the Gallery and Unit 509 came together to honor them with a “Shower of Support.” Over 50 people crowded into the Gallery to hear the terrifying stories of escape, to share tears and to offer hugs. After a sumptuous lunch and a few hands of bridge, the victims left with armloads of “comfort” gifts: gift certificates, warm blankets, bottles of wine, chocolate, scarves, games, etc. All of us who attended went home with a gift as well—the reminder that bridge is much more than a card game and that those who sit at the table are our opponents in name only.
by Cecelia Zachar

Posted in Unit News | Leave a comment

Holiday Party December 10

It’s time to come together in our most festive clothes to play our favorite card game. Our party will be held again at the lovely Oakmont Golf Club. For directions, click here. We start with a no-host bar at 11 am, then a buffet at 11:45 with Caesar salad, chicken marsala, penne pasta marinara with sausage on the side, roasted vegetables, and chocolate mousse with raspberries. After our annual meeting, we’ll play an afternoon of bridge. This is a STAC game with silver points and both open and limited sections. The deadline to sign up for the game was November 20, although it may be possible to squeeze someone in. See you there!

by Cecelia Zachar

Posted in Unit News | Comments Off on Holiday Party December 10