In This Edition...
The Golden Rain Foundation is Having a Busy Fall! With three grand events already in the rearview this month, GRF is looking ahead to the reopening of Gate 5 next week and construction is underway on the new first floor fitness center! Details on pages 2-6
Third must have Thanksgiving on the Brain: the food theme includes a search for couch potatoes, a bean-counting update! Read about how Third is "Bettering the Community," plus meet Treasurer Steve Parsons. See pages 7-13.
United is Hard at Work: Elections are over now it's time to get to work! Whether it's as a committee adviser or as a party volunteer, United has a job for you. Plus, United's deal with the sun shines on. See pages 14-19.
At the Towers, read all about their Veteran's Day event, play some bridge, and meet Thilde Peterson See pages 20-22
Photo by Pat Wilkinson
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A Joint Publication of the Laguna Woods Village Corporations
Clubhouse 2 Reopens with Grand Event
Clubhouse 2 was a sight to behold on November 4, as doors were officially opened to over 1,000 residents eager to see the long-awaited upgrades to the 52-year old building. GRF President, John Parker, greeted the crowd, acknowledging the directors, staff and volunteers that made the renovations possible. The ribbon was cut, and attendees enjoyed appetizers, beverages, entertainment, dancing and fun. Improvements and upgrades made to Clubhouse 2 include an enlarged main dining room, upgraded commercial kitchen and bar, and enhanced adjoining meeting rooms with kitchenettes. Beautiful new furniture, fixtures, lighting and finishes were installed throughout the Clubhouse. Go check out the new Clubhouse 2—you will be impressed!
Hundreds Cruise to Clubhouse 5 for Transportation Awareness Day
Transportation Awareness Day was a huge success, with over 500 residents and many Laguna Woods Village Board Directors attending the event. Formula One sponsor Waste Management; Turbocharged sponsors CARE Ambulance and Luxe Travel; Supercharged Sponsor the Ability Center of Orange County; Finish Line sponsors Age Well Senior Services, the Braille Institute of America, Cal Optima, the City of Laguna Woods, Dayle McIntosh Center, El Toro Water District, Florence Sylvester Senior Center, the Orange County Transportation Authority, Meguiar's, and Uber generously contributed to make the event possible. Ernesto Munoz presented the new transportation options and participants received information on the different bus routes and were coached on how to use the new system. Residents enjoyed refreshments and goodie bags with Laguna woods Village swag, and many won raffle prizes. The response to the event was overwhelmingly positive. If you missed Transportation Awareness Day, don’t despair—check your mailbox in the upcoming week for The Easy Rider, Laguna Woods Village’s official transportation guidebook. We invite you to call the Transportation Department at 597-4659 for information on the Village bus system. Happy travels!
It may be Autumn, but GRF Didn’t Fall Behind!
November has been a busy month for GRF! They are gearing up to reopen Gate 5 on November 23, have initiated construction on the first-floor fitness center, and just wrapped up three large community events. Read a recap below! Wednesday, October 19 and Thursday October 20 at Clubhouse 7.
Kit Kulak receives information on the Easy Rider bus system from Transportation Supervisor Gary Anderson.
Laguna Woods Village Salutes Its Veterans!
The Laguna Woods Recreation Department and the American Legion held a Veterans Day event at Clubhouse 1 on Friday, November 11. Over 125 people attended the event, including councilmembers from the City of Laguna Woods and many Village board members. The event provided complimentary donuts, coffee and orange juice to all attendees. American Legion Post 257 presented the Colors, and Veteran and City of Laguna Woods Councilmember Cynthia Connors, and World War II hero Lou Tirado addressed the crowd. The event was well received and much appreciated by the veterans and residents in attendance.
Garden Center Update
By GRF Second Vice Presidet JoAnn diLorenzo
The Garden Centers have deteriorated and lack security. The City of Laguna Woods and the GRF Landscape Committee have recommended that they be updated to meet City Code requirements. As a first step, a census of the plots is underway to verify plot size, condition and use. On September 29, a packet was sent to all current Garden Center lessees. It included a draft of revised policies and procedures, a rental permit, liability waiver, standard construction details and use of agricultural chemicals. Many of you have commented on the onerous standards. We are reviewing same and Staff will use responses to the September mailing to assess plot availability. Comments by current plot holders on the draft of policies and procedures can be sent in writing to: Mindra .Fielding@vmsinc.org or the Laguna Woods Village Community Center: Attn. Mindra Fielding, 24351 El Toro Road, Laguna Woods CA 92637.
During the October meeting, it was reported that the waiting list for plots is at 274, an increase of 10 from the prior month, with 12 plots recently becoming available. Clearly, there is a need for additional plots and GRF Landscape Committee and Staff are working to create additional spaces for residents. The following steps are in progres:
Shade Houses in Garden Centers 1 and 2 will be merged creating at least six additional garden plots.
Holders of lots that are more than 400 square feet in size (these are multiple lots) will be required to surrender the excess plots.
Unused or illegally-held plots will be surrendered.
Further, staff was asked to review the current management structure and regulations to ensure ongoing adherence to Garden Center rules.
Perimeter fencing with controlled access to make the Garden Centers more secure, updated signage, bulletin boards, new mulch bins and the relocation of the office at Garden Center 1 are projects currently underway. The goal is to improve and update all aspects of the Garden Centers and then assess further needs.
Enjoy a Nature Walk with Laguna Hills Audubon Society
By Eva Lydick, Immediate Past United Board Member
On September 23, members of the Laguna Hills Audubon Society (LHAS) offered a nature walk along Aliso Creek (the Creek) in Laguna Woods Village. The Creek has been transformed recently to a more riparian nature habitat. The purpose of the walk was to give Village residents an insight into this natural habitat. The focus was not just on birds, but on all plants and animals that inhabit the creek. Len Gardner described the numerous ways that cattails were used by the Native Americans who lived in this region; every part of the plant had value.
Eva Lydick described the course of the Creek from the foothills above Cooks Corner to Aliso Beach where it empties into the Pacific Ocean. Other LHAS members helped Village residents identify various species.
The plan is to conduct these walks quarterly and follow the seasonal changes in plants and animals along the Creek. The next nature walk is scheduled for December 9 starting at 8 a.m. We meet by the historic sycamore tree, a short walking distance from CDS 65. All are welcome. Contact the LHAS at 949- 462-0810 for more information.
How Do You Thrive? The Village Wants to Know!
Go to channelthrive.com and see the many ways that residents are enjoying life and thriving at Laguna Woods Village. With hundreds of clubs and an array of activities, residents want to show the world what Laguna Woods Village has to offer!
The Thrive Project is a collaborative project created for the residents, by the residents. Villagers are invited to use a smartphone, video camera, or still camera to capture special moments when they are thriving and upload them to ChannelThrive.com/submit for others to see. Share how you celebrate life: this destination is all about your experiences. Show the world what brings you joy!
Visit ChannelThrive.com now to see how your neighbors are thriving and to learn more!
Ambassadors Gear Up for New Gate Access System
Chief Tim Moy reports that if you’ve been by the Community Center recently, there’s a good chance you have seen a steady flow of Ambassadors coming and going from the Redwood Room. With the successful RFID rollout behind us, the next stage in the new Gate Access program involves the training of over 200 Ambassadors and Security personnel on the new software system. Information Technology “Guru,” Chuck Holland, and Training Coordinator, Stacy Griffith, have worked tirelessly in developing the training material and setting up a computer lab to familiarize Ambassadors with the new computer system before it goes live.
When the gates go live, Resident Services will become the primary call takers for gate access. This new protocol will allow our Ambassadors to provide better service to both our residents and visitors at the gates rather than getting bogged down with phone calls.
The DwellingLive program is an innovative community visitor management and access control system. It will allow efficiencies in managing guest passes for both residents and Ambassadors. Increased security is one of the primary benefits of this system as there will be better tracking of visitors entering the community.
As for activation of the gate, Gate 6 will go live after Thanksgiving, and Gate 5 on December 5, 2016. Stay tuned for more updates as the new system rolls out!
Set Your DVR, Because You Won’t Want to Miss a Movie!
Emergencies Don’t Take the Weekend Off, and Neither Do We.
One of the first orders of business CEO Brad Hudson instituted was to make sure management was on call after hours, all week long, in order to respond to emergencies in the community. On weekends, the designated executive manager visits the Village to observe operations, drop-in on events and meet with residents. This is just another way that VMS is improving service to the residents of Laguna Woods Village in ways that truly make a difference. If you need assistance after hours, call Security at 949-580-1400.
By popular demand, movies are now shown on Mondays and Fridays. Check out what’s showing in November and December:
November 21: Pelé - Birth of a Legend
November 25: Carol
November 28: What's Cooking
December 2: Love and Friendship
December 5: The Age of Adaline
December 9: Pete's Dragon 2016
December 12: Lo and Behold
December 16: Jason Bourne 2016
December 19: Swiss Army Man
December 23: The Great Gilly Hopkins
December 26: Bridget Jones’ Baby
December 30: Florence Foster Jenkins
Monday Movies air at 2 p.m. (with subtitles) and 6 p.m., and Friday movies air at 2 p.m. (with subtitles) and 7 p.m.
New and improved high-definition (HD) is available on your set top box. Tune to channel 406 to view these movies and other programming in HD. The conversion to HD is still in beta testing, and the complete rollout is expected in first quarter 2017. Thanks for watching!
By Third Secretary Burt Baum
Attention Couch Potatoes–Get up and get active! It will prolong your life and help the community. We know that you have great ideas on how to run this place. Make yourself heard. Attend our committee meetings and speak up. Better yet, become an advisor. (See the listings in the Globe or on our website, www.lagunawoodsvillage.com, for when our committees meet.) But if you really want to straighten us out, run for the Board. We are always looking for good people.
Bean Counting Department–We continue to operate under budget. As of August 31, we are $600,000 to the good, and should have enough money in our Maintenance and Construction (M&C) budget to spend on walkway repairs. (See reports by Directors diLorenzo Dickins and Moldow)
Architecture Committee Rises from the Grave–Just around Halloween time this committee came back to life. It will deal with alterations, paint color, standards and all things having to do with structural changes in your manor. Advisors needed! (See the write up by our very busy Director Moldow for all the gory details.)
Watch Your Step–It may be Fall season, but we want you to stay upright. The only falling we want in the community is falling in love (it’s never too late). Third is planning a major program to fix our sidewalks to help residents avoid potential tripping. We need your help in reporting defects in the concrete. (Look for Director Moldow’s piece on the subject.)
Sunny Days–Solar panels continue to be installed on the roofs of some of the three story Garden Villa buildings as part of our "Bettering the Community" program in order to reduce the electricity bills for the mutual. We are still looking at early January as the time when we can flip the switch and start reaping the benefits of the overall project. (See Director Walsh’s update for more information.)
Welcome Newcomers (and oldcomers, too)–Just arrived and a little confused? We can help. Third Mutual runs a monthly New Resident Orientation program that will make you knowledgeable. Generally these sessions are held the third Friday of every month at 9 a.m. in the Boardroom, but on November 16 (DRUM ROLL) Third held it in the evening for the first time to accommodate those people who work or hate getting up early. Disoriented longtime residents are welcome too. Please call 949-268-2337 to make a reservation for the next New Resident Orientation in December.
Third Continues to Be Under Budget
By Third President Rosemarie diLorenzo Dickins
Expenditures and Revenue: Just like people running a household, Third Mutual tries to make sure it spends less money (operating costs) than in takes in (assessments and fees) while maintaining savings for a rainy day and future needs (reserves). We are pleased to report that as of August 31 we are spending $600,000 less than budgeted. This was achieved by:
A $170,000 reduction in utilities and telephone costs through landscape water conservation programs, residents voluntarily reducing water usage, and reduced electricity consumption (more efficient lighting) coupled with lower than predicted electricity rates.
Significantly lower-than-budgeted costs for M&C activities because of the timing of major repair projects.
A slightly higher-than-budgeted increase in revenue because of an insurance reimbursement. In reviewing the M&C figures please be aware that although we continue to work aggressively on dry rot repair, we will still be under budget on these costs. This allows funding for walkway repairs now, and the opportunity to determine later next year, what part of the excess will be used to complete work not yet done or put into reserves.
Resales: For the month of September resales are in line with last year at 42 units per month. Average resale prices, however, are higher ($341.389 vs $321,446 in 2015). Much of this is due to the improvements sellers have made in their units, which drives up the price.
2017 Collection and Lien Enforcement Policy: Although in Third there are a very low percentage of owners who fail to pay assessments, there is a very vigorous Collection and Lien Enforcement Policy. This was reviewed for 2017 with minor changes from previous years.
Restored and Revitalized Architecture Committee
By Third Director Bert Moldow
To reduce the number of committee meetings and to eliminate marathon M&C meetings lasting several hours, the Board of Directors of Third Mutual has placed the Standards and Paint Committees under a newly formed Architectural Control and Standards Committee.
This new committee will take on several responsibilities that were under the purview of the M&C committee. It will be responsible for review of manor alterations requests; recommending approval, removal or amendments to standards; proposing external manor paint color options; deciding on use of adjacent common area; and approve/denying nonstandard manor alterations or standard alterations objected to by neighbors. All committee recommendations will be presented to the Board for final approval or rejection.
The following criteria for its decisions shall be:
• Compliance with existing standards
• Aesthetic effect
• Cost impact on the mutual
• Conformity with local and state building codes
• Compliance with Davis-Stirling Act
• Value impact
The committee will meet on the first Thursday of every month at 2 p.m., room TBD. The group will visit proposed alteration sites to gain an understanding of the impact of the alterations being proposed. During this tour, the committee will hear staff’s recommendations and make a preliminary decision, which will be finalized during the committee meeting.
As chair of the committee, Bert Moldow is seeking volunteers with architectural or construction backgrounds to serve as advisors. This role will call for attendance twice a month for a half day. All interested residents can apply by calling Bert at 949-587-9776 or by sending an e-mail noting background information to BMoldow@gmail.com.
Third is “Bettering the Community” With Solar!
By Third Second VP Bill Walsh
The implementation of the Third Mutual solar project has begun. The first phase of the solar project involves seven Garden Villa buildings near Clubhouse 4, known as the “East Cluster.” The installation of solar panels on Garden Villa buildings 2393 and 2394 is already complete. Installation work is ongoing in buildings 2397, 2399 and 2400 with installation work on buildings 2353 and 2381 to begin by the end of November, weather permitting. The second phase of the solar project will involve solar installations on five Garden Villa buildings 3242, 3243, 3420, 5372 and 5510 near Clubhouse 5, known as the “West Cluster.” Work on the “West Cluster” buildings will begin after the solar installation in the “East Cluster” is complete. Residents in the “West Cluster” buildings will be given advanced notice of the expected start date of solar work on their building, likely sometime in late November.
The final steps in the solar project will require Southern California Edison (SCE) to connect the solar wiring in each of the 12 Garden Villa buildings to the SCE grid. SCE then inspects the solar installations and complete the administrative paperwork needed to properly allocate the solar generated electricity to the proper Third Mutual common area electric meters. SCE can then give Third Mutual permission to put electricity on the SCE grid, better known as Permission to Operate (PTO). We are targeting December 31, 2016 as the PTO date with savings realized in January.
Keep the Community Safe
By Third Director Bert Moldow
There are over 15 miles of concrete sidewalk in the Village, in need of regular maintenance. Tree roots and settlement from the drop in the water table caused by the drought have brought about uplifting and depressions in the concrete, which can cause residents to lose their balance.
The Third Mutual Board is aware of these potential conditions and is working with management to get a full program implemented, from inspecting to reporting to repair. But to really fix the issues, we need residents to report potential substandard sidewalk conditions either by calling Resident Services at 949-597-4600 or emailing them at firstname.lastname@example.org. A picture taken on your phone indicating the location would be helpful.
This is our community and each and every one can play an important role in keeping it safe. Thank you for doing your part.
Water Conservation Report
By Third First Vice President James Tung
A recent visit to some of the buildings identified as being high water users was surprising, because after inspection, no leaks were detected in the buildings. Therefore, the only possibility is that residents are using a lot of water—this kicks the cost of water into a higher monetary tier, much like a penalty for over-usage. To encourage the residents of these buildings to use less water, Third is going to take the following actions:
1. For buildings with meters indicating a possible leak, staff will inspect the manors and fix the problem.
2. For buildings with meters that do not show possible leaks, a letter has been sent to the residents asking them to conserve water. Third will observe the meters at those buildings for a period of time to see if, as a result of the letter, less water is being used. If savings don’t occur, Third will explore other avenues to encourage water savings. Regarding recycled water: in Third, there is recycled water in gates 5, 6, 7, 8 and 10, but not in gates 9, 11, or 14. According to El Toro Water District (ETWD), recycled water will be installed in the Gate 9 area in 2017. Our staff, through the request of Third Director, John Frankel, is working with ETWD on their recycled water expansion program to try to ultimately get recycled water in gates 11 and 14.
Did you Know?
By Third President Rosemarie diLorenzo Dickins
1. The sink overflow is meant to divert a minimal amount of water. Its main purpose is to allow air in the drain when the sink is filled with water. So, do not depend on it to save you from an overflowing sink. Do not leave the tap running!
2. The Village now has weekend and after-hours staff, on call, to address plumbing emergencies. If you experience a leak or other plumbing emergency on a weekend, or between 5:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. on a weekday, call Security at 949-580-1400 for assistance.
3. General Manager, Brad Hudson, does a complete landscaping tour every Friday to help us identify problem areas and work out a landscape improvement plan. If you have a landscaping issue, please contact Resident Services at 949-597-4600.
4. The end of daylight savings is a great time to remember to check your smoke alarm batteries. Need assistance? Call Resident Services at 949-597-4600. Staff will check and replace them if needed as a chargeable service.
Groundcover is the New Green
By Third First Vice President James Tung
Given the current weather conditions, we are still in a drought. The Landscaping Department is trying to improve the landscape appearance by repairing the poor lawns, converting some lawns to groundcover, and replacing some lawn with gravel. So far, residents of over 130 manors or buildings have volunteered their lawns for conversion to drought-friendly landscaping or hardscape. Twelve lawns have already been converted, and six more are currently in process.
Third Director Profile: Steve Parsons
By Third Advisor Carol St. Hilaire
Third Treasurer, Steve Parsons, served in the Air Force for 23 years where he was a comptroller, budget officer, and accounting and finance officer. He served as a school board member, logistic planner for Saddleback Church, State Vice-President and State Secretary at Gideons International, and treasurer of many PTA associations. After moving to Laguna Woods in 2014, he served as President of the Algarrobo Neighbors and Friends Club and on the Disaster Preparedness Task Force. He was appointed to the VMS Board in 2015, and has served on the Purchasing Task Force.
As a member of the VMS Board, Director Parsons acquired a keen insight into day-to-day operations and staff challenges, and he suggested workable solutions to management. As part of the Purchasing Task Force, he helped design an easy-to-use contracting system template. He assisted in designing and making provisions for the necessary care of residents in the eventuality of a disaster. He has a proven history of developing workable solutions, long-range planning, and fiscal accountability.
As a Third director, his focus will be on automating processes, developing long-range program strategies, and opening more communications with Village residents. His objective is the good of the Village. He would like to see Laguna Woods Village be known as the “Pearl of the Pacific” in senior living. He believes that working together can make this idea a reality.
City Offers Residential Energy Efficiency Improvement Program
Laguna Woods residents can apply to receive up to $2,500 in replacement home windows or doors through the City’s Residential Energy Efficiency Improvement Program. The program is made possible through a Community Development Block Grant awarded by Orange County.
To qualify, residents must be owner/occupants, at least 60, and either “very low income” or “extremely low income” as defined by the Federal Department of Housing & Urban Development. Current gross income limits are a maximum of $34,150 for a household of one and a maximum of $39,000 for a household of two. Residents who have previously participated in the city’s program are not eligible to apply for additional funding.
Preliminary applications are available at Laguna Woods City Hall, 24264 El Toro Road, and on the city’s website at
cityoflagunawoods.org. For more information, contact the city at 949-639-0562 or CDBG@cityoflagunawoods.org.
By United First VP Jan LaBarge
Hip Hip Hooray, and good luck to the new United Directors and officers!
Maggie Blackwell, 12-year resident of Laguna Woods, former elementary school teacher and defense attorney. Maggie enjoys tennis, bridge and golf.
Gary Morrison, recent transplant from a 20 year stint as a Laguna Nigel resident, HOA board veteran, and works as an auditor, controller and appraiser for Orange County. He enjoys family and trips to his home in Palm Springs.
Andre Torng, Taiwan native, is a leading expert in: System Implementation, Efficiency and Effectiveness Measurements, Program/Project Management, Strategic Planning, and Budget Control. Andre enjoys photography, nature and traveling in his recreational vehicle.
Greatly appreciated, but not-so-new, board members serving two year terms:
Janey Dorrell, Has done volunteer work in Saudi Arabia, owned the June Lake resort, and has extensive real estate knowledge, customer service, and organizational board experience. She enjoys family, friends, traveling and dancing!
Steve Leonard, is a musician extraordinaire, businessman, and energy aficionado. He enjoys his motorcycle, traveling and fine dining.
These individuals join Officers: President Lenny Ross, First Vice President Jan LaBarge, Second Vice President Janey Dorrel, Secretary Juanita Skillman, and Treasurer Pat English and the other seated Board members. We welcome these new Board members, anticipate new ideas and abundant energy; we wish our former members Ken Hammer, Tom Sirkel, Ming Lee Chang, Eva Lydick and Barbara Copley a fond farewell, coupled with many thanks for extensive service. You are appreciated and will be missed!
By United First VP Jan LaBarge
The holiday season is upon us, presenting opportunities for great joy, as well as the possibility of debilitating challenges. Please take time to appreciate yourself, your friends, family, and neighbors as we find our way around the potholes to the wonderful life we all deserve.
Wishing you all things of great value, happiness, peace and love.
Here Comes the Sun: United Solar Photovoltaic Project
By United Director Steve Leonard
The United Solar Photovoltaic (PV) project continues on budget and according to schedule.
The initial phase of civil work which entailed trenching, underground conduit placement, wiring and installation of inverters and grid tie-in equipment at eight United laundry facilities was completed successfully. Phase two consisting of steel beam carport structure strengthening, installing the rack mount roofing system and more than 2,500 solar panels is expected to be completed in coming weeks. VMS Security provided handicap parking and loading/unloading zones for affected residents in Cul-de-sacs 28, 38, 10 and 52.
After the installation of solar panels, we anticipate proceeding through the final Southern California Edison process and receiving permission to operate (PTO) by year end.
Under the terms of United’s Performance Guarantee Contract with Johnson Controls Inc., the solar PV system will provide a minimum of 80% of the common area electricity for carport, walkway and breezeway lighting as well as the electricity for United’s 175 laundries for washers, dryers and hot water heaters.
Thanks to the cooperative efforts of Johnson Controls, their subcontractors, United Board members and our exceptional VMS staff, United residents will enjoy decades of savings from renewable solar energy!
Committee Advisors Needed
By United First VP Jan LaBarge
As our rank and file change, so does our need for new advisors. I’m listing both GRF and United Committees (see page 17), with a description of each, in hopes that you will consider stepping forward to assist in the decision making process. Our board can only appoint advisors to Untied Committees. There are vacancies for advisors on all United Committees not marked “closed.”
You may also find the list helpful should you have an issue needing resolution and don’t know where to go to get it fixed. Keep in mind, almost everything goes through committee before it is addressed at the Board level. If not as an advisor, we still look forward to seeing you at our United Committee and Board Meetings.
United Committees 2017
By United First VP Jan LaBarge
Communications and Public Relations (CPR)–The purpose of the proposed committee is to write and edit, “The Village Breeze” for United. This committee would also be responsible for developing public relations material with staff, promotional and “other,” depending on United Mutual needs. They would produce the Members Meeting each year and any recognition and award programs, as needed. CPR would help with the year-end holiday dinner party, and alsowork with the Community in preparing the “Woods Holiday Dinner.” Meeting location and time TBD.
Cul-de-Sac Task Force (CDS)- This is a proposed task force that would will take care of the responsibilities of the now defunct Parking and Energy committees, including laundry rooms and Cul-de-sac Lighting. They will function as needed and operate under the auspices of M&C. Location and time TBD.
Executive Hearing Committee (EHC) – This closed committee hears the final complaints and requests for variances that have been turned down by the M&C Committee. They make recommendations to the Board following their deliberation. This committee meets the fourth Thursday of each month, 9 a.m., in the Board Room.
Finance Committee – Deals with creating the budget, posting liens, controlling purchases, and all things money driven. They provide the checks and balances for spending of HOA dues. They meet first Monday, at 2 p.m., in the Sycamore Room
Governing Documents Committee (GDC) - This committee meets to review existing documents, comparing their alignment with current law, our bylaws, and present community behavior. They revise, recommend, and produce new resolutions as the times and circumstances require. This committee meets the fourth Monday, 2:00 p.m. in the Sycamore Room.
Landscape - Deals with overall landscape issues, as well as requests for plantings and removing of plants. They cover purchasing and maintenance of existing landscaping and plan for landscaping programs in the future. They deal in both hardscapes and landscapes. They do not work with the creek. This group meets in the Pine Room, the fourth Wednesday of the month, at 1:30 p.m.
Maintenance and Construction (M&C) – This committee hears requests for variances, deals with architectural issues, acts on some member to member disputes, creates maintenance projects that deal with infrastructure, lighting, painting, plumbing, and electrical issues, in United Mutual only. M&C also reviews contracts and makes contract assignments. This group spends most of the United Budget. M&C meets the fourth Monday, at 9 a.m. in the Board Room.
Resident Advisory Committee – (RAC) attempts to give resolutions and solutions to residents with challenges, experienced by living in United. Their concerns are not limited to specific issues and can cover a gamut of problems. There is little to define what you will be dealing with but, hopefully, members lives become more enjoyable. Resident Advisory meets the third Thursday, in the Sycamore Room, at 3 p.m.
By United First VP Jan LaBarge
Once again, United finds itself saying goodbye to one of its long standing members. Jack Bassler was one of only two members to stay the course, when five directors resigned from the United Board, in 2013. Jack has been with us for the past five years, serving as United’s President, Vice President, and Chair and Co-chair of the Maintenance and Construction Committee. He’s chaired the Energy Committee, as well as, served copious GRF Committees. He has been a friend and confident to us all, sharing his knowledge and experience freely.
Jack leaves for personal reasons. We wish Jack and his wife a peaceful, grace filled, resolution. You are appreciated and will definitely be missed.
Traditional Holiday Dinner
Menu: Appetizers, Roast Turkey and Ham, Sweet Potato Casserole, Green Bean Casserole, Dressing, Cranberries, Mashed Potatoes, Gravy, Hot and Cold Beverages, Desserts
Save the Date!
Join us: December 25, 1:00 P.M., in Clubhouse 2
Stay Tuned for Additional Information.
The Elves are Checking it Twice! We would Love some volunteers! For details, email: email@example.com. Or call Jan at 949-461-1405; leave your contact information and say, “I'd like to volunteer.” I’ll get back to you after Thanksgiving.
Food or Monetary Donations are greatly appreciated.
Use same email address and phone number.
At the Towers ...Honoring our Veterans.
By Towers Administrative Coordinator Alba Tucker
On Thursday, November 10, The Towers continued its tradition of honoring veterans by presenting a slideshow featuring participating residents. The material was organized and presented by the Activities staff and proudly shown to an appreciative audience.
The Towers is proud to list this year’s participants and thanks each of them for their service.
Al Levy, John Altrocchi, Al Massing, John Dalis, Allen Whiting, John Dudley, Anne Gilbert, Joseph Heller, Bernie Silverman, Larry Strauss, Bert Coffey, Len Czarnowski, Bert Hack, Len Mogel, Bob Ainley, Leonard Seroff, Bob Barton, Lou Behrman, Bob Rock, Lou Seidner, Bruce Cowan, Mannie Schneider, Bryce Jordan, Mark Karpeles, Chester Savage, Mark Licha, Dan Lewis, Milton Schwartz, David Olney, Morris Sier, Erwin Levy, Myron Holburt, Folmer Starr, Neil Diorio, Francois Boucher, Norm Stevens, Frank Schacht, Norman Hewitt, Gary Long, Paul McNamara, Henry Nahoum, Pete Peacock, Henry Tornell, Renee Windham, Herb Harris, Robert Cooley, Howard Derow, Syd Aronson, Irv Fenton, Sylvia Belzer, Irv Gold, Virginia Dirocco, Jack Allen, and Warand Kirsch
Bridge at the Towers...a Long Term Relationship
By Towers Advisor Saretta Berlin
There is no shortage of games at The Towers. Residents and their guests play every variety of cards, each one requiring skill, strategy and calculation. Gin Rummy, May I?, and Canasta along with the traditional games of Poker and Pinochle. Mah Jong, a tile game that originated in ancient China, is especially popular at the Towers with both men and women. Rummikub, a tile-based game with elements of rummy, has a large following. Domino games include Mexican Train, classic Dominos and even a form of tile-based solitaire. Hands down, the most popular game here, and elsewhere in the Village, is Bridge.
Norma Koskoff, who volunteers at The Towers as the Duplicate Bridge leader/coordinator, described the many benefits of the game: The weekly games often have six to eight tables, a large group that offers plenty of opportunities for interaction, competition and stimulating play. At the Towers, all levels of play are welcome, from newcomers to those players who are accumulating master points. Instruction is available elsewhere but can be arranged at the Towers. One of the nicest benefits is that acquaintances made over the bridge table often leads to long-term friendships.
Duplicate Bridge games cost $4 each. The Towers participates in the American Contract Bridge League (ACBL), a large international organization that certifies player achievement through master points. “There is life after Bridge,” Norma says. “At The Towers we try to provide a stimulating and pleasant environment for friendship and interaction to residents and their guests.”
Living the Good Life...Tower Talks with Thilde Peterson
By Towers Advisor Saretta Berlin
As soon as she turned 65, Thilde Peterson made her way to The Towers at Laguna Woods Village. She runs a business consulting firm called Peterson & Partners and commutes almost daily to Los Angeles to work with growing companies, mostly with women owners. “After a long and arduous day,” Thilde said, “I realized that coming home to a lovely dinner would make my life infinitely better.”
Making life better is actually what Thilde does: With a degree in Human Development and a specialty in Gerontology from Cornell, she has presented programs for Landmark Education throughout the United States for many years, reaching over 35,000 participants. At Peterson & Partners, the topics they lead for corporations and others center on time management, productivity and the science of accomplishment.
Soon after moving into The Towers with LilyMousse, the long-haired miniature dachshund who wins hearts wherever she goes, Thilde began to meet informally with residents. Over coffee or at dinner, the narrative began to develop: everyone wants to do more with his or her time. Some expressed a desire to find a new way to manage their days; others wanted new types of conversations to participate in.
In response to these suggestions, Thilde developed Tower Talks, a series of engaging lectures and discussions. The current four-part series, which is free to Towers residents and their guests, began in September with “How Your Brain Looks on Positive.” Lecture #2, “What You Don’t Know About Technology Can Hurt You” included demonstrations on new devices and elicited spirited responses from the audience which seemed to be evenly divided between those who loved their toys and those who remain mystified.
Lecture #3 was held on November 16, titled “It’s Not About the Money, Honey”. The final talk, takes place on January 12, 2017 and is called “Science is King and Hope is Queen.”
Each talk is followed by scheduled discussion groups and Thilde promises a closing party on February 2, 2017 for those who make the journey with her.
If you’d like to attend, please call the Towers Front Desk at 597-4278.
Laguna Woods Village Community Center
24351 El Toro Road
Laguna Woods, CA 92637
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